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9 Weird Shows Like "American Gods" You Should Check Out

Updated on November 18, 2017
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Rahul is a TV addict who can never get enough of good shows. His all time favorites are "The Wire", "Breaking Bad", and "The Sopranos."

Where to begin with this show? One can tell within the first few minutes that it’s not your typical brain-dead show. It continues to get weirder and denser, sucking you in its engrossing and sometimes confusing story revolving around the fight among different Gods to remain relevant and in power. Based on the novel of the same name, American Gods has nailed it. If you’ve read the books you know that bringing the source material to TV was always going to be a tough task. I’m glad that Brian Fuller along with his team has pulled it off. Being a huge fan, I compiled a list of some other shows like American Gods. Let’s take a look.

Hannibal – An underrated show like American Gods

If you’re for some shows like American Gods, why not stat with another one of the Brain Fuller’s masterpiece? This visual extravaganza is going to mesmerize and horrify you at the same time with its stylish gory sequences.

Although the whole ensemble has done a great job, the two lead actors, Huge Dancy (Will Graham) and Mads Mikkelsen (Hannibal Lector) shine in their role as a troubled FBI criminal profiler and a cannibal physiatrist respectively. Will has a gift of being able to peek into the lives of psychopaths and solve the most puzzling of cases. He understands their way of operating and thinking, perhaps even sympathizing with those monsters to some degree. With each case, he is becoming one step closer to becoming a killer himself.

When he meets a Hannibal Lector, a physiatrist who is also a cannibal, it doesn’t take long for him to realize the true nature of doctor. They both know that the other party knows about their true identity and intentions, yet they want to prolong the inevitable for as long as possible. Hannibal wants to turn him into a killer like himself. Will, however wants to turn him in (or does he?). Who’ll win the cat and mouse game?

The sessions between them are the best part of this series. It’s therapeutic and poetic in some way. The psychosexual relationship between them will keep you glued to your seat.

Lector might be a killer, but you’d still wanna hang on to every word he utters. For some strange reason, I found myself rooting for him. Now, before judging me, why not give this show a go for yourself and see if you react the same way?

The Leftovers - One of the most underrated shows like American Gods

Imagine that around 2% of the world’s population vanished into thin air one day. No explanation, no traces left behind….nothing. No one seems to be able to figure out exactly where they’ve gone. They’re not dead. Just gone, somewhere.

The focus of the series is on dealing with plights of the families left behind – the ones who refuse to believe that their loved ones are gone like that. A number of cults have emerged after that event, causing chaos and unrest everywhere. Is there ever going to be a coherent explanation? Will they ever come back? The series tackles these questions heads on.

It’s all about believing. The show can get a little outlandish with its stories at times. It might seem as if they’re derailing from the main storyline. You, however, need to stick to it and wait till the second season to see whether you like it or not. The first season was underwhelming. But I’m glad that I didn’t give up on it after that. What a show it turned out to be after the first ten episodes.

The Leftovers is arguably one of the best shows to ever land on the TV landscape. The risk scriptwriters took paid off quite well in the end. Some episodes focus solely on just one character for an hour, not giving others any time on the screen. Most of the times, the story was a slow-burn, but an enthralling one nonetheless.

The characters are fleshed out in a way that their hardships will never fail to strike a chord with your heart. You’ll laugh and cry with them.

The story can be too much to take at times, so it’s better if you watch it one episode at a time. Take your time. Keep the tissues ready. You’ll need it.

Preacher

As someone who’s never read the comics it’s based on, I am loving it so far. The last two seasons have been a blast.

The story revolves around Jesse Custer a former outlaw, who comes back to Texas, his home, and becomes a preacher, hoping to get a fresh start. His past catches up with him when a cryptic force enters his body, empowering him with a sinister power. When he finds out that God has gone missing, he teams up with his ex-girlfriend and a junkie vampire, he embarks on a mission to find him. Can they restore the order?

I can’t go into much detail, but I’ll tell you this; the gorehounds are going to love this show! Every episode is crammed with blood, violence, guts hanging out of the body, brain-matter spread across the floor and much more. The violence feels cartoonish at times but never goes over the top. If you can suspend your disbelief for a while, you’ll love what The Preacher has to offer.

Some fans of comic books are not too happy about this adaptation. I, however, wouldn’t know anything about the source material. And I honestly don’t care about the accuracy of this adaptation. Nor should you.

Lucifer

This series casts Tom Ellis in the role of Lucifer – a charming, arrogant force from hell who’s come to Earth as he’s bored of his work in Hell. While he’s at it, he decides to help the cops with their weekly cases.

I know that it sounds like your usual cop show with weekly cases, but there’s much more to it than meets the eye. The overarching story is building up to something intriguing. Besides, the acting is just extraordinary. Tom Ellis along with the rest of the ensemble have come together to create something that will keep you hooked one episode after the other.

As long as you keep your expectations in check and let go of the fact that it’s not as well adapted from the source material as it should have been you’ll have a good time. To be candid, one could have seen it coming. Straight up adaptation of the book would never have worked for a network show.

Overall, Lucifer is quite an enjoyable show but lacks variety. If you’re looking for some shows like American Gods to keep you occupied for a while, give it a go.

The Returned

Let me be very clear about it – don’t watch the American remake of this show. I’m talking about the original show here.

The plot revolves around a small community who’re shocked to find their loved ones back home – long after they were presumed dead. Although they appear to be just like any other human being, they bring chaos with them, spiraling things out of the control.

I loved the slow-burning episodes that successfully build the tension and intrigues us with its mystery. On top of that, the breathtaking sceneries are definitely going to take your breath away.

If you’re thinking about binging on a foreign show, there couldn’t be a better bet than The Returned. The second season took a long time, but it should air sometime this year (four years after the first one!). There couldn’t be a better time to catch up with its increasingly complex storylines and characters. It’s going to get in your head for sure.

Hemlock Grove - One of the most controversial shows like American Gods

Hemlock Grove is probably going to be the most controversial entry in this list. While some people loved it, the majority didn't share the same sentiment. Apparently, not a lot of people have the patience for a good story to be told. You’ve got give it some time, and before you know, you’ll be invested in its captivating story.

Leave logic on the doorstep and enjoy this gorefest that revolves around the murder of a teenage girl for the most part. In a town where nothing is as it appears on the surface, the hunt for perpetrator begins.The characters are not as well fleshed out as they should be, but you’ll still grow to love and hate them.

The story flounders and feels out of place at times, but sorts everything out by the end. It’s bizarre, in a good way. It's a shame that they canceled it just after three seasons. It had so much potential to turn into a gem of a show. Nevertheless, you still have thirty-three spellbinding episode to binge upon.

Tales From The Crypt

Based on the 1950’s E.C. comic books, Tales From The Crypt is half-hour show with different themes in every episode. Ranging from sci-fi, jaw-dropping twists to horror, you’re bound to see some sinister things you can’t even fathom – things that are guaranteed to disgust and amaze you at the same time.

Each episode is brought to us by a crypt keeper living in some sort of haunted house. He introduces us to the stories we’re about to watch, whetting our appetite for it in advance. And when you know what’s to come, it only becomes scarier. Though the stories are never meant to be taken seriously, the dark comedy is certainly going to get you.

This show might be old, but it’s still one of the best horror shows to ever air on TV. If you’re looking for some crazy shows like American Gods, Tales From The Crypt should be your best bet.

Penny Dreadful

Penny Dreadful takes place in Victorian London where a gunslinger, a scientist, and a medium unite to wipe out the unholy creatures from the streets.

There are monsters to hunt and vampires to slay, but the story focuses on one villain for an entire season. In the TV landscape where monster-of-week shows are popping up left and right, this approach is a breath of fresh air. An intriguing storyline combined with a talented cast (Eva Green!) and some amazing cinematography makes for a fascinating show that nobody should miss out on.

The showrunners decided to call it quits after the three seasons. There were a lot of stories still to be told, but this criminally underrated show had to go down as there wasn’t enough viewership. The good thing is, you have three amazing seasons of sex, murder, and gore to feast your eyes upon

Black Mirror - An underrated show like American Gods

Created by Charlie Brooker, Black Mirror revolves around future technology and gadgets, successfully showing us the dark, scary future we very well could be living in, thanks to the rapid technological advancements we’ve made in recent times. Though it’s not billed as a horror show, some of the episodes are guaranteed to horrify and disgust you.

Every episode focuses on telling a different story with no overarching connection to rest of the episodes, which translates to a well-paced storyline without the ever so annoying cliffhangers. There is nothing quite like it on TV right now.

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    • ChadCrouch profile image

      Chad Crouch 2 months ago from South Africa

      I am looking to start American gods heard its an awesome series.