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New Photo From Starz’s American Gods Introduces All-New Character Not In Neil Gaiman’s Original Novel

Something we have to look forward to in 2017 (other than it not being 2016) is the arrival of Bryan Fuller’s American Gods on Starz. Fans of the Neil Gaiman novel on which it’s based are looking forward to seeing their favorite characters brought to life, and non-fans are likely glad they now don’t have to read close to 800 non-Harry-Potter pages to see what the fuss is about. Something they both have to look forward to? The introduction of a new character, conceived by Gaiman, but not in the original novel — one that truly captures “America.”

The character was revealed in in the above photo exclusive to Enertainment Weekly in which we see cast member Corbin Bernsen (Psych) playing the role of Vulcan, who is known widely as the Roman god of metalworking and volcanoes, and is billed in the above tweet as the “god of guns” on the show. Yup. Nothing says America quite like guns, and if you think about it, its surprising that this god wasn’t included in the original book.

However, Gaiman did conceive of the character, and was originally going to write the character himself in a script. While scheduling conflicts wouldn’t allow that, American Gods co-showrunner, Michael Green, developed the character and had this to say about the character:

“He’s a brand-new addition who came from an experience Neil had. He was going through a small town in Alabama where he saw a statue of Vulcan. It was a steel town and, as he told the story, there was a factory that had a series of accidents where people were killed on the job and they kept happening because an actuarial had done the numbers and realized that it was cheaper to pay out the damages to the families of people who lost people, rather than to shut down the factory long enough to repair, and that occurred to him as modern a definition of sacrifice as there might be.”

He also talks about Vulcan’s relationship with the mysterious Mr. Wednesday, the old god who finds Shadow Moon in the first place.

“What’s interesting about a god like Vulcan who has bound himself to guns is it’s an evolution of what he was to what he could be, and that’s finding a new place in a world that didn’t have a place for old gods. That comes with a series of compromises but also a series of benefits for him. To say that maybe you can find a new place in this country, that it doesn’t always have to be so hard, makes him an interesting person as someone with a long history with Mr. Wednesday.”

So, he started out as a general metalworking and volcano god, and then he become the god of guns to adapt and keep up with the times? That’s certainly an interesting statement on the evolution of this country, huh? This new addition certainly opens up a lot of storytelling doors.

What are you looking forward to seeing on American Gods the most?

(via Comics Alliance, image via Starz/Entertainment Weekly)

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Teresa Jusino (she/her) is a native New Yorker and a proud Puerto Rican, Jewish, bisexual woman with ADHD. She's been writing professionally since 2010 and was a former TMS assistant editor from 2015-18. Now, she's back as a contributing writer. When not writing about pop culture, she's writing screenplays and is the creator of your future favorite genre show. Teresa lives in L.A. with her brilliant wife. Her other great loves include: Star Trek, The Last of Us, anything by Brian K. Vaughan, and her Level 5 android Paladin named Lal.