Starzl performed the world’s first liver transplant in 1963 and the world’s first successful liver transplant in 1967
Shadow Moon (Ricky Whittle) is introduced to all manners of weirdness in Starz's 'American Gods.'(Photo: Starz Entertainment)
George Michael said you gotta have faith, but Shadow Moon, the protagonist of the Starz series American Gods, mightily struggles with his own belief system when he meets deities during a bizarre road trip.
Based on Neil Gaiman’s 2001 contemporary fantasy novel, Gods stars Ricky Whittle as Shadow, an ex-convict who, just after learning his wife (Emily Browning) has died, becomes embroiled in a confrontation between mythological Old Gods and the personifications of technology known as New Gods.
In Gods, which begins its eight-episode first season April 30 (Sundays, 9 ET/PT) after a world premiere Saturday at Austin’s South by Southwest Festival, “we get to talk about faith and belief and where we direct our energy in the world as a common reflection for these characters going through this journey,” says executive producer Bryan Fuller.
Shadow is returning to Indiana for his wife’s funeral when he meets the mysterious con man Mr. Wednesday (Ian McShane). Wednesday offers him a job as his bodyguard and confidante, but Shadow balks, thinking the old guy's a nut job. However, Shadow quickly becomes convinced that there’s something strange afoot when he encounters a number of otherworldly situations: He gets into a bar fight with a leprechaun named Mad Sweeney (Pablo Schreiber), and is accosted by the faceless goons of the Technical Boy (Bruce Langley).
Easter (Kristin Chenoweth) is wooed by Mr. Wednesday (Ian McShane). (Photo: Jan Thijs, © 2017 Starz Entertainment, LLC)
“The world around him is unraveling and his big struggle is, is he crazy or is the world crazy?” Whittle says. “How much can you put in front of him before he actually starts to believe?"
Shadow cautiously comes aboard Mr. Wednesday's cross-country mission to round up the Old Gods now living ordinary lives, and the pair's relationship is as key to American Gods “as your heart is to your body,” Fuller says.
Adds executive producer Michael Green: “Shadow starts the series as someone comfortably American and feeling like he’s already a citizen of the world," but he's "an immigrant into the new culture of the world of gods and magic.”
The roster of Old Gods includes Easter (Kristin Chenoweth), who wants to prove she’s more than a holiday with bunny rabbits and colored eggs; Bilquis (Yetide Badaki), a love goddess whose bedroom habits get downright bloody; and Vulcan (Corbin Bernsen), a god of guns created specifically for the show.
Crispin Glover plays the enigmatic New God known as Mr. World. (Photo: Starz Entertainment)
As for New Gods, The Technical Boy rules the Internet, the TV goddess Media (Gillian Anderson) takes the form of iconic celebrities and the enigmatic Mr. World (Crispin Glover) exists in a “heightened reality that threatens Shadow’s sanity,” says Fuller.
While Old Gods have a very concrete memory of what it's like to be worshipped by those “who show their faith by bending knee, giving willing sacrifice and announcing that devotion clearly and in song,” Green says, “the New Gods all evolved in times where worship is a commodity to be bought, sold, traded, pilfered, clicked and to be gotten from people, with or without their notice.”
Adds Whittle: "These are real gods with real-world problems — they’re struggling in life as people have lost their faith and belief. These guys are living amongst us and living ordinary lives. That allows even the most skeptical people who maybe aren’t into fantasy to really get into this show."
photo of Sneak peek: 'American Gods' tests its hero's faith with a cadre of deities
Amazon is putting its own streaming twist on the traditional pay-TV bundle.
A takedown of 35 Brooklyn gangbangers included one credit card fraudster who used the stolen info to buy pricey dolls.
Bryan Fuller will not venture into the final frontier as the show runner for “Star Trek: Discovery,” CBS has announced.
Another American television series is filming scenes in Newfoundland.
The 'Fall Guy' gets splattered in new season of Starz horror comedy.
Two previous botched attempts at an American adaptation of cult British comedy “Peep Show” haven’t dissuaded Starz from seeing the show as a potential crossover hit.
Bonny Prince Charlie saw Scotland’s isle of Skye on the run. He was fleeing government troops after his Highland rebellion ended disastrously at the 18th century Battle of Culloden.
Star Trek: Discovery's premiere date has been pushed back for creative reasons
Cate Blanchett and other big-name movie stars are speaking out about the plight of refugees in a stark video that asks viewers to imagine what they'd do if they had to flee war.
- J.D. Power & Associates 8 most dependable cars, minivan
- Wake up to this crazy good Goo Goo barbecue biscuit from Holler & Dash
- Muscle Shoals Swampers, Jimmy Hall appear in Bayside Academy music showcase
- New York City Ballet dancer returns to Alabama for "The Sleeping Beauty"
- Who should replace Alec Baldwin as Donald Trump on 'SNL'?
- Jimmy Buffett to return to The Wharf in Orange Beach
- Beer garden in the works for downtown Montgomery
- Weekend box office: 'Logan' tears up opening weekend with $85.3M debut
- Resumes are more art than science
- How to open a resume: Objective statement vs. qualifications summary
- Don't confuse a resume with an autobiography
- Do I really need a cover letter? Plus more common resume questions
- Tim Tebow stalked by Colorado woman at Mets spring camp: cops
- KING: The Democratic Party doesn't get why it's so unpopular
- Paul Ryan, Kevin McCarthy Obamacare replacement should be called ‘Abominable Care’
- Fisher’s finish leads to Match Play and a shot at Masters
- Robinson, Lind ready for a spring training job fight
- World Baseball Classic failing to draw interest of American fans
- Ben Carson confirmed by Senate as HUD secretary
- Proposed $54B jump in defense budget won’t help economy much
- Are baby boomers too old to ski? Probably not.
- With allergy season around the corner, educate yourself now
- Butter or olive oil? Eggs or no? New nutritional review cuts through the myths.
- Every traveler’s eternal question: ‘It’s 2017, why don’t we have WiFi on all planes?’
- These activists want greater home-school monitoring. Parent groups say no way.
- Tired of people asking where you’re going to college? Here’s what to say.
- Perspective | Ask Amy: Woman reels from memories of tough childhood
- Perspective | Trump’s first D.C. dinner as president: An overcooked, $54 steak. With ketchup.
- Review | Colada Shop in D.C. reviewed: Little Havana done right, and an $8 daiquiri
- Amal Clooney Demos How to Perfectly Pull Off a Skirt Suit While Pregnant
- Jennifer Lopez Made The Entire Audience Blush When She Answered This Question About A Sex Tape
- There are six styles of love. Which one best describes you?
- 9 reasons why every Canadian should own a canoe
- Switzerland Is The Best Country In The World, According To A U.S. News Survey
- A police officer’s wife wants people to remember his service — not the gruesome way he died
- This Café Only Serves Cereal And It's Incredible
- Future of B.C.'s grizzly bears at risk, according to new report
- Bullbaiting, squirrel busting: Terms used in 'My Scientology Movie' explained
- Scarlett Johansson's custody battle: What happens next?
- Review: Make time for this sensational, intense season of 'American Crime'