Episode 446: The Worlds of Neil Gaiman: American Gods and the Anansi Boys

March 7, 2016


Featuring Matt Anderson and Ben De Bono

In this episode we analyze two Neil Gaiman books, “American Gods” and “Anansi Boys.”

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4 comments on “Episode 446: The Worlds of Neil Gaiman: American Gods and the Anansi Boys

  1. Nadir Muhammad Mar 21, 2016

    I feel like the incarnation of Wednesday in American Gods was unlikable because he was affected by the land in some weird magical literal sense hence why he had such a bad relationship ultimately with Shadow

  2. It’s interesting to think of other places where Gaiman’s theme of “gotta serve somebody” shows up. There’s the Bob Dylan song of that name, of course. Then there’s David Foster Wallace’s much-admired commencement address where he says, “everybody worships”. I think that is obviously true.

  3. I also have to admit I didn’t really get the point of American Gods and I found it’s plot disappointing. Maybe I should reread it; obviously I missed some hints of what was really going on with Odin and Loki.

    I did find parts funny, especially the bit about the Center Point in Kansas, but Shadow’s decision to choose annihilation over eternal life was the moment I lost all respect for him.

  4. Finally, I wish Ben and Matt had given more attention to Jesus’ absence in American Gods. I felt Gaiman’s failure to confront American worship of Jesus was, frankly, gutless, and that’s a strong argument against this book having the depth to become a true classic.

    On the other hand, I’m glad Gaiman took the easy way out because I don’t expect he has much to say about Jesus that would be enlightening. I could be wrong, but his silence tends to support my view.

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