The Beguiling Man Recap

Shadow wakes up strung up in a dark chamber. A man attaches electrodes to Shadow's body and gives him an injection. The leader of the men monitoring Shadow, Mr. Town, introduces himself and activates the electrodes, causing Shadow to moan in pain.

Outside the diner, Czernobog puts Zorya's body in the back of a truck while Wednesday, Nancy, and Mama-Ji look on. Laura watches from inside the diner, and a storm gathers overhead. Mama-Ji assures Czernobog that they will summon the next Zorya, but Czernobog says that there are no more believers so there will be no more Zorya. He figures that a new star will rise and hopes that she'll be up to the task, and Wednesday promises that he'll have his vengeance. Czernobog says that the country isn't good and drives off. Wednesday asks Mama-Ji if he can count on her in the war that's coming, and she says that she has no choice since he brought the war to her doorstep. Laura bangs on the window and asks what the plan is.

Inside, Sweeney, the Djinn, and Salim eat and Laura complains that they're wasting time when Shadow was taken. Mama-Ji comes in and tells the Djinn to go to the Corn Palace and ask for Old Iktomi. When the Djinn wonders why, Mama-Ji says that it's to recover Gungnir, Odin's spear. Sweeney goes out and complains that Wednesday is sending the Djinn to get Gungnir, and Wednesday insists that great battles require great preparation. Wednesday gets in his car with Nancy and prepares to drive off, and tells Sweeney and Laura to help save Shadow.

In the diner, Salim prays to Mecca and glances over at the Djinn, who glances back at him before getting up and leaving. Salim goes with him and says that he's going with him, and the Djinn tells him that where Wednesday wants him to go is dangerous so he'll go alone. He says that he believes in what he's doing even if Salim doesn't, and Salim assures him that he believes and belief is what the Djinn needs. After a moment the Djinn gives Salim a helmet and Salim gets in the motorcycle sidecar.

Laura tells Sweeney that he's not coming with him, and Sweeney says that he's staying with his coin so he can have his luck when he goes to war with Wednesday. He breaks into a car at the motel and Laura tells him not to get in her way.

Shadow continues moaning in pain until Town cuts off the power. He says that they couldn't find any records of Shadow's family other than his mother and his late wife. Town dismisses Shadow as a nobody who ended up in prison, and points out that he couldn't keep Laura from having an affair. When Town wonders why Wednesday needs him, Shadow insists that he's just a bodyguard and Wednesday doesn't tell him. His interrogator needs to know why Shadow just goes with the flow, and Shadow says that he has a curious spirit.

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Shadow's Mother is on a boat coming to Staten Island and talks about the Statue of Liberty with her son Shadow next to her. She says that she had to spread "her" message and says that Liberty doesn't judge them by the color of their skins, and assures Shadow that after one summer they'll leave if he doesn't like it there.

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As Sweeney drives and Laura directs him toward Shadow's light, she says that she doesn't believe in luck because she's an atheist. Laura points out that the gods just take things from people and never give anything, and Sweeney points out that she fucked up her life and Shadow's. They swerve to avoid a cow on the road and hit a nail, blowing out a tire.

In the command center, Bilquis meets with World and he says that her pitch was eloquent. She points out that killing Zorya convinced the old gods to join Wednesday's cause, and World says that they will scatter eventually. Bilquis says that Zorya will come back stronger and she has no place on his battlefield, and says that love and war sit on opposite sides of the coin so they'll never meet. She tells World that she won't fight for him, and he points out that the old gods now see her as a traitor. He asks if both sides will destroy her if she doesn't choose one.

Wednesday drives while Nancy tries to navigate.

Town tells Shadow that World wants to know why Shadow has put so much trust in a petty con man, and why Wednesday would hire Shadow. Shadow insists that Wednesday doesn't tell him anything, and Town continues torturing him.

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Shadow's Mother prepares to leave their apartment, and says that her and Jerry might grab a drink later. Young Shadow tells her that she looks age appropriate, and she warns him to be careful if he goes out. After she leaves, Young Shadow goes out as well. Three gangers follow him and shove him to the ground, and ask where he's from. The leader beats Shadow and the others join in, and once they're done the leader tells Young Shadow to stay in his lane. When he picks up Young Shadow's music player, Young Shadow grabs it and runs. Policemen grab Young Shadow, handcuff him, and take him away.

Later, Shadow's Mother tells Young Shadow that the gangers and the cops also want to be valued in the world and feel love. She says that they view Young Shadow as an enemy but he knows the truth of who he is. Shadow's Mother says that Shadow's father is dead and gone, and there's nothing to miss. She turns on the music and persuades Young Shadow to dance with her.

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Sweeney changes the tire while Laura holds the car up. She drops it briefly on Sweeney's foot, and he points out that she's losing strength. Once they finish, Laura throws up and then complains that Sweeney is hovering over her all the time. She says that either she'll fall apart and he can get his coin, or she'll get her life back and give it to him. Sweeney tells her that there's a devil in New Orleans who can bring her back to life, but warns her that the price will be steep. Laura says that she'll do anything... once they get Shadow.

After Wednesday and Nancy stop for fried chicken, Nancy takes over driving while Wednesday sleeps. Nancy tosses it out the window and when Wednesday wakes up, tells him that he ate it all.

Technical Boy down a street in New York City and calls to Media. He says that she's archaic as messages flash on the electronic billboards, and Technical Boy figures that Wednesday scared her so she's back immersing herself in pop culture. He warns that if he goes back empty-handed then World will destroy him, and enters the media. Technical Boy says that she can't hide from him and addresses a glowing ball of energy, telling Media to come out because World needs her. He says that he'll give her a minute out of mistake, flicks the ball away, and removes his VR goggles.

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Young Shadow waits at a clinic and a nurse tells him that it shouldn't be much longer. He sits down and sees a man flipping a coin through his fingers. When Young Shadow says that the man makes it look like magic, the man tells him that magic takes years of practice for most people and gives the coin to Young Shadow. Young Shadow takes it and tries to flip the coin through his fingers without success. He turns back to the man but the latter has disappeared. Shadow's Mother comes out and Young Shadow, realizing that it isn't good news, hugs her.

Later, Young Shadow sits on the doorstep and practices flipping the coin. He hears his mother inside on the phone, saying that she is fighting. Young Shadow hears men yelling and goes to investigate, and finds three gangers beating up a Korean kid. Coming up, Young Shadow attacks them and finally beats them all down. He looks at his bloody knuckles and goes back home to wash them off. Shadow's Mother says that it isn't who he is, and Young Shadow says that he was just trying to protect the kid. She tells him that if he puts anger out then it will come back tenfold and the light in him is stronger than anything else. Young Shadow wonders how she knows, and his mother says that she gave it to him and gives it to him every day. He hugs his mother and cries.

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Laura tells Sweeney to speed up the car and then steps on the accelerator herself. They come to the end of the road and a field beyond, and Laura goes out into the field and lies down. Sweeney sits down next to her and asks if she's just going to lie there. He wonders if she's going to give up, and says that he knows a shortcut that's like the backstage but smaller. Laura says that it's important, and Sweeney hugs her tight and tells her to think about Shadow. They enter a black glowing void and scream, and reappear on a bridge above a train. Laura sees Shadow's light and realizes that he's aboard the train passing underneath, and she removes the handcuff bracelets from Sweeney's wrists... and then jumps onto the moving train. Exasperated, Sweeney jumps after her.

Town tells Shadow that he works for the gods and Shadow is siding with the relics. He asks Shadow about the time in Chicago when it snowed, and Shadow says that it didn't happen. Town feeds more power into Shadow.

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As she lies dying, Yong Shadow tells his mother that he doesn't know how to live there without her and doesn't want her to go. She tells him to let the pain people feel make him stronger, and assures him that his light will always be shining no matter how dark the world is. Shadow's Mother asks to see his trick, and Young Shadow rolls the coin across his fingers for her.

Later, Young Shadow goes to church and prays, and gets no response. He gets up and walks out.

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Wednesday and Nancy stop at a railroad crossing and while Nancy sleeps, Wednesday tells the car that it will be his standard. Nancy wakes up as Wednesday calls on the lightning to strike the car and light its way to Valhalla. As Nancy gets out and starts walking, Wednesday tells the car that he'll meets its reincarnation and steps back.

Laura and Sweeney crawl across the top of the train. They get inside through a hatch and Laura takes out an agent. Two more arrive, and Sweeney and Laura kill them.

Wednesday watches as the lights at the crossing flash.

More agents arrive.

Town shows Shadow the coin and says that it's a token of an old god that is unworthy of Shadow's belief. He invites him to come over to the winning side or play the loser, and tosses the coin to Shadow. Laura smashes her way in, knocking the door into Town. Another agent attacks her, and Laura crushes his head with her boot.

The train approaches Wednesday's car.

Laura goes to Shadow and tells him that she had to save him.

The locomotive slams into the car, destroying it.

Written by Gadfly on Mar 18, 2019

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