Just another fly on the wall…
“Because,” said Thor, “when something goes wrong, the first thing I always think is, it is Loki’s fault. It saves a lot of time.” (Neil Gaiman, Norse Mythology)
Yes, this is a Floki post. Pure tinfoil. If that’s not your jam, I suggest you turn away now.
Warning, some super-minor book spoilers ahead for both American Gods and Norse Mythology.
First, some background on Loki from Neil Gaiman’s latest novel, Norse Mythology.
Throughout the stories, Loki plays a central character. He’s wicked-smart and always causing trouble through deception, manipulation, and general douchery. Loki is at once friend and foe to the other gods in the Norse pantheon, never knowing really what side he’s on.
Loki is like that long-lost cousin, who turns up out of no where and infiltrates your life; crashes on your couch indefinitely, starts temping at your office, changes all your DVR settings, and sleeps with your boyfriend. But he makes a mean Eggs Benedict, so you let him stay. Important point to note: Loki cannot handle his liquor.
It seems logical to assume that in a story where Odin is the main character and he is trying to put together Ragnarok 2.0, Loki must not be far off. Yet, we have had only a hint of Loki so far in the show: Shadow’s prison buddy, Low Key Lyesmith.
All we know about Low Key from the show is that he was always telling tales, filling Shadow’s head with all manner of anecdotes and advice. He was really the only influence on Shadow during his three years in prison; separated from his love and hidden away from technology and media. Away from the world. Away from Mr. World?
Low Key was probably not in prison before Shadow got there or after he left. Loki is a god after all. His purpose for three years was Shadow.
Shadow later remembers one of Low Key’s stories and imagines seeing him at the airport. It’s not that hard to imagine that he was actually there. So where has Loki been the rest of the time?
When we first meet Laura, we see clues for all many of the gods around her and Shadow.
- Laura’s TV – Media
- Cameras at the casino – Mr. World
- Laura’s smartphone – Tech Boy
- Ravens – Wednesday
- Statues of Thoth and Anubis at the casino – Ibis and Jacquel
- Sevens, like, everywhere – Mad Sweeney
No sign of Low Key or Loki. Odd, right?
“When the people came to America they brought us with them. They brought me, and Loki and Thor, Anansi and the Lion-God, Leprechauns and Cluracans and Banshees, Kubera and Frau Holle and Ashtaroth, …” (Neil Gaiman, American Gods)
Let’s look at three key characteristics of Loki:
- He is gifted at persuasion, using the subjects insecurities and vanities
- His plans usually fail, in the end
- He’s a shape-shifter
So, what about the fly?
This fly shows up at Laura’s place the night before she meets shadow and we see it again when Laura visits Shadow in prison the very first time. There it lands on Shadow’s hand and doesn’t move. We don’t see it again until Shadow is released and Laura is dead.
What if the fly is Loki? Watching Laura and trying to influence her actions. When Shadow goes to prison, Loki becomes Low Key for three years to keep an eye on Shadow. Then when Shadow is released, Loki is back to being Floki.
Another story from Norse Mythology shows Loki taking the form of a fly to interfere with the creation of three divine treasures, one of which was Thor’s infamous hammer, Mjölnir. You can read more about that story here.
The fly seems to show up every time Laura has a crazy idea:
- Off herself with bug spray
- Tell Shadow she would wait three years for him
- DIY her arm back on
- Try a warm-zombie seduction on Shadow
- Make a detour to go see the family, right after a good-riddance speech
- Release Salim, conveniently saving him from the incident with the bunny
Assuming this could be a possibility, what could Loki be up to? He is also one of the old gods and must be facing the same threat as Odin. So, the assumption should be that he is helping Wednesday who clearly does not want Laura around.
Going back to our list of crazy ideas that Laura has had, they all seem to be moving her away from Shadow. They have also, for the most part, been unsuccessful.
It’s not a huge leap of faith to think that someone or something did a Jedi mind-trick on her. Maybe planted a bug in hear.
There are also a few times in the show that we hear a strange trumpet/saxophone sound. It sounds a bit like a fly buzzing.
First is in episode 4 just before Shadow tells Wednesday that Laura is back from the dead and it’s basically messing with his head (and Wednesday’s plans). The second time we hear it is when the ice cream truck flips over in episode 7.
Maybe it’s all a bit far fetched. I’m sure most of you aren’t buying it. But perhaps for just a few of you, the seeds have been planted.
Thank you for taking the time to read my blog. Please share your thoughts with me in the comments below or find me on twitter @jezzie_bell.