Bryan Fuller cannot catch a damn break. After cutting his teeth on Star Trek: Voyager, Fuller started creating some of the most inventive series on television, such as Dead Like Me, Wonderfalls, and Pushing Daisies, all of which were cancelled before he and his creative team got to fully explore the narrative worlds or their underlying thematic ideas. He also wrote and worked as a consulting producer on Heroes, and you can see his fingerprints all over that botches series’ best episodes. This is all the more devastating considering just how radical and evocative his longest-running series, Hannibal, ended up being by the end of its third season.
And yet, the unmitigated brilliant he showed there wasn’t enough to save his job at either Star Trek: Discovery or American Gods, the latter of which was one of the very best seasons of TV to be released last year. Fuller and his longtime collaborator, Michael Green, were fired from American Gods over budget issues, leading to a long hunt for a replacement showrunner to work with source author Neil Gaiman on season two. That search ended yesterday, when Jesse Alexander was announced as the lead showrunner on the show’s second season. Surprisingly, Alexander is also a Fuller collaborator, having worked on Hannibal with him, as well as a producer on Lost, Alias, and Heroes.
The second season of American Gods was originally expected to premiere in early 2019, but the search for a showrunner has likely put that back to at least summer 2019, if not fall. Regardless, one should not lose hope that American Gods will remain as satisfying and ambitious in its second season. Fuller and Green already penned half of the season before being fired from the project, so at least the general narrative will continue to explore sex, religion, romance, death, familial relations, and the metaphysical with the same wild abandon that made the first season so riveting. The imagery might not be quite as inventive or cleverly revealing, but American Gods will survive for now, which is all good news on this end.