We get relatively little insight into Shadow’s (Ricky Whittle) backstory in American Gods Season 1. Sure, we know about his recent history—about his time in jail and his relationship with Laura Moon—but less attention is given to his childhood, to where he came from. In American Gods Season 2, that will change.
Talking to Den of Geek at this month’s TCA presentation, Ricky Whittle teased the appearance of a Young Shadow.
“We have Shadow’s very own coming to America story,” explained Whittle. “We kinda delve into his past and discover why he’s so pure and why he’s able to kinda constantly be the universal punchbag—physically, emotionally, spiritually—but still get up and keep moving forward with this light in his heart and this belief it will be okay, or that he just has to get to the next day.”
Apparently, Shadow has always had that quality.
“We see that through his youth,” said Whittle. “He didn’t know his father when he was growing up, so he had no presence there. His mother raised him alone, and that’s the story we’re going to see. So you’re going see that he really truly did lose a lot in his life because she is so pure and gave him so much and he really did feel true love there.”
For Whittle, Shadow’s search to find that kind of love again is what motivates him.
“That’s maybe what Shadow’s been searching for all this time throughout the first and second season is that feeling again,” said Whittle. “Where can he find that love. That pureness again. But it definitely explains more about how much Shadow has lost in ways. Where he’s come from.”
American Gods Season 2 will premiere on Sunday, March 10th, 2019 at 8 p.m. ET on Starz and will be available the same day on the Starz App.