In an unexpected twist, this week’s episode of American Gods, “Git Gone,” starts on a very different note. Even fans of the novel will find themselves surprised, as the majority of events that take place in last night’s episode do not actually take place in Neil Gaiman’s original work. However, “Git Gone” does answer a number of questions that have come up concerning Laura’s mysterious and persistent presence in the series so far.
Need a quick catch up? Be sure to check out our recap of last week’s episode
This recap contains spoilers
While the intros that have marked the beginning of the first three episodes are absent in this week’s episode of American Gods, this episode begins with an Egyptian flair that hints towards the presence of Anubis. As the scene pans out, it becomes clear that we are in an Egyptian themed casino. Furthermore, we are focusing not on Shadow, but on his wife, Laura.
Immediately, we are given a brief overview of Laura’s single life, which is rather depressing and lonely. Every day, Laura gets up and goes to work at the casino, where she is a blackjack dealer. At night, she returns home to her cat, makes dinner, reads, and goes to bed. Seems normal, right?
Through Laura’s perspective, we learn a lot more about her character. While we were given a brief rundown of her from Shadow’s perspective in Gaiman’s work, we know nothing about her other than the fact that she was unfaithful and that she appears occasionally throughout the book, oftentimes to save Shadow.
In a wonderful, yet rather depressing twist, we are met with the true Laura. The Laura that is depressed and unhappy with her life – the one that is dealing with a hidden mental illness.
One day at work, Laura meets Shadow, who tries to pull one over on her and use his ability to manipulate coins to cheat her during his bets. Quick on the uptake, however, Laura catches him in the act and warns him that she realizes what he is up to. After a brief conversation, Laura tells Shadow to leave because he will never get away with robbing a casino.
After her shift, it is revealed that Shadow has been waiting for her outside. Immediately, he propositions Laura about the opportunity to rob the casino, as she knows all of the inside intrigues. Together, they could probably pull it off. However, she rejects his offer. Shadow doesn’t let up on the conversation, though, and the two end up back at her house.
From then on, we are given brief glimpses at their life together: Shadow teaching Laura magic tricks and cons; Shadow and Laura barbecuing with Audrey and Robbie; marriage; Shadow and Laura talking about belief and the idea of an afterlife; and finally, the origin of Laura’s nickname for Shadow, “Puppy.”
Although Shadow appears to be happy with the relationship, it’s incredibly obvious that Laura is not. One day, hoping to change her life for the better, Laura approaches Shadow about going through with robbing the casino, arguing that while Shadow’s initial idea was smart, his execution was poor. Laura, however, has worked for the casino for eight years – she knows all the habits and information necessary in order to pull off the perfect crime, assuring Shadow that there is no chance he could be caught.
Obviously, her plan wasn’t that perfect because Shadow ends up in prison, a scene that is familiar to those who watched the first episode of American Gods. Instead of transitioning to Shadow, however, we continue to follow Laura, where we learn more about the events that took place while Shadow was locked away.
Laura’s life steadily gets worse while Shadow is away. She continues to live life day by day, but everything changes when she comes home to find that her cat has died. Unable to deal with the situation, she leans on Robbie (portrayed by Dane Cook), who takes care of the situation and provides her with comfort. A quick hug turns into something more, as Laura gives in and begins an affair with her husband’s best friend.
After a few glimpses of their affair, we are brought back to Episode 1, where Shadow is talking with Laura on the phone just before his release from prison. Here, we are given a few more details that were unknown to us from Shadow’s point of view, namely that Robbie was in his bed while Laura was on the phone, assuring him that everything was fine at home.
Shortly after this exchange, the scene transitions to Laura’s last moments alive, where we see her giving Robbie the goodbye blowjob that results in death for both of them.
Instead of leaving it at that, however, we are given more details about what happens after Laura dies. Although it has been made obvious that Laura is not entirely dead, the viewer has been left in the dark about the events that lead to her appearance after she is presumed to be dead.
Here we are given a brief glimpse at the role of the gods, as, in a scene that is somewhat reminiscent of last week‘s episode, Laura is taken by Anubis to the scales of justice. Instead of readily submitting to the will of the scales, however, Laura refuses and is immediately met with an extremely dark fate – Anubis informs her that “death is not a debate” and that because Laura “believed in nothing” she will “go to nothing.” Before Anubis can send her to darkness, however, Laura is pulled away from the scene after a quick flash of gold.
The scene transitions to Laura, who is crawling out of her grave.She is drawn by a golden light towards Shadow, who is hanging from a tree, surrounded by men. Immediately, it becomes clear who saved Shadow at the end of the first episode of American Gods. Single-handedly, Laura, in her new zombie body, quickly murders the attackers and cuts Shadow down. Before Shadow or the viewer can see who the savior is, however, Laura hides behind a tree, just out of view.
In keeping with Laura’s backstory and the events leading up to the present day, an issue that has been bothering me throughout the entire series so far is finally addressed. Laura’s seemingly perfect appearance, which did not match her appearance as it is described in American Gods, finally makes sense.
In a confrontational scene that involves Laura breaking into Audrey’s house, where her former best friend finds her trying to sew her arm back on (it fell off after the battle to save Shadow), Audrey panics, as any sane person would when confronted by a person who was believed to be dead, and hides in the bathroom. In an incredibly awkward and uncomfortable scene for Audrey, Laura finds herself on the toilet, unable to keep embalming fluid from leaving her body rather painfully.
After a few explanations, some arguing, and unacceptable apologies, Audrey agrees to help Laura and sews her arm back on. Shortly afterward, the two embark on a journey to find Shadow. Just after their drive begins, however, the gods enter the picture and Laura’s pristine appearance is revealed to be the work of Anubis, who is also known as Mr. Jacquel, and his partner, Mr. Ibis (portrayed by Demore Barnes), who run a funeral home.
Mr. Jacquel reattaches her arm properly and makes sure that her body is in order, as it needs to be taken care of, as despite her seemingly alive state, Laura’s body is not actually living. After making Laura look normal, he makes it clear that she will eventually die as she departs once more to find Shadow: “When you are done, I will complete my task and deliver you into darkness.”
With the mystery behind Laura’s seemingly alive appearance solved, we find ourselves back in the present day. Although this week’s episode of American Gods ends in the same exact way as last week’s, where we find Laura sitting in Shadow’s hotel room waiting for him, it answers all of the important questions about Laura’s presence in the show.
Although we aren’t quite sure about why Laura has returned from the dead, other than the fact that Mad Sweeney’s coin had something to do with it, this week’s episode of American Gods provided fans of the series with new information.
Now that the mysteries surrounding Laura have been cleared up, fans can only wonder what next week’s episode has in store.