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Recap / American Gods S3E5 "Sister Rising"

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Season 3, Episode 5

Sister Rising

Shadow explores notions of purpose, destiny and identity with a newly enlightened Bilquis. Elsewhere, Technical Boy struggles with an identity crisis of his own. Wednesday asks Shadow to assist in a new con.

Tropes That Appear In This Episode:

  • Aluminum Christmas Trees: The idea of a chess-playing robot in the late-1800's is not a new one, as there already was such a machine — The Mechanical Turk — built by Wolfgang von Kempelen in 1770 to impress Empress Maria Theresa of Austria. Like the Technical Boy's automaton, the Mechanical Turk was also a fraud, the box that supposedly held the springs and gears that ran it hollow so that a person could operate it. While the original machine was destroyed in a fire in 1854, replicas and homages were made.
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  • Blunt "Yes": Ibis gives one to Salim.
  • Brown Note Being: By the time they make it to Bilquis' location, Technical Boy glitches even worse when in her presence.
  • Crisis of Faith: Selim is having one of these, not knowing who to pray to anymore.
  • Older Than They Look: Much like in "Donar the Great", this episode shows that the Technical Boy is much older than originally thought, a meeker version of Technical Boy introducing a rudimentary automaton at the World's Columbian Exposition in 1893.
  • "Shaggy Dog" Story: By the time Shadow and Technical Boy get to her, Bilquis was able to free herself from her capitivity by manifesting a long, forgotten power by flooding the facility with water.
  • Technician vs. Performer: In the beginning, the "Performer" Stage Magician The Magnificent Maximillian meeting the "Technician", an earlier iteration of the Technical Boy. While Maximillian is struggling to keep his audience with his magic act, the Technical Boy is struggling to keep them since his achievement is nothing more than a prototype that can only write one thing. When Max convinces him to cheat by controlling the machine, convincing the audience that it is way more advanced than it really is by using it to play chess, Max reveals the sham for what it is so that he can steal his audience.
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  • The Thing That Would Not Leave: Salim seems to have become this for Ibis, as by the time Laura asks him to come along for another adventure, Ibis gives them his car just so she can take Salim.
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