Season two of American Gods is so close now and if you’ve read any of my American Gods pieces, you know that I try my best to avoid the negative comments that always seem to associate itself with the show. It’s very public that season two lost two of its showrunners and two of its stars from the previous season and that the showrunner that stepped in also left. It’s been two years since season one premiered and with the shakeups happening, it’s caused a lot of people to speculate that the series was in tremendous trouble. Neil Gaiman, the man who wrote the books to American Gods and Amazon Prime’s upcoming Good Omens; sat down for an interview where he looked to debunk some of the rumors circling the show.
We all know there have been some unfortunate behind-the-scenes issues. Can you talk to me a little bit about what happened and why it took two years for us to get Season 2?
Gaiman: It took two years to get another season mostly because Starz wanted to wait and see what happened. The two years bit has nothing to do with changing showrunners. It has to do with Starz looking at American Gods [and] going, “This thing is weird. We don’t know if people are going to like it or not. We think they will; we like it. But it’s kind of not like anything else out there.” And waiting until, I think, Episode 2 was broadcast until they commissioned another [season]. From that point, that was where it started. So then you have to get scripts written. Then you start making another [season].
What about the change in showrunner? I think some of that has scared some fans and they’re concerned about Season 2 not living up to Season 1.
Gaiman: I mean, it’s sort of weird, because I got to read a certain amount of stuff online, and I’m going, “OK, well this is imaginative bullshit.” Which it was. … [One report] was the kind of article that obviously nobody writing it has access to anybody who knows what’s going on. But they have access to people further down the food chain who have ideas about what might be going on. And so you just read it and go, “Well that’s bullshit. That’s not true. And even he wouldn’t have said that.”
So you know, what fascinated me about that … I was just reading Steven Bochco’s biography … and the behind the scenes ups and downs and shake-ups and shakedowns that went on with Hill Street Blues, with NYPD Blue, with LA Law, with all of these things that he cheerfully writes about, I’m going, “Holy f—! This makes what happened on American Gods look not just normal but incredibly tame.”
I certainly hope that news outlets can stop focusing so much on the behind the scenes “drama” and look to appreciate what the actors and writers were able to do even with some obstacles. Tune in March 10th for episode one of American Gods!
A girl with too many fandoms to count.