'The Almighty Johnsons' premiere: Norse gods go nuts in 'It's Kind of a Birthday Present'

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the-almighty-johnsons-season-1-premiere-recap-poll-syfy.jpg To call "The Almighty Johnsons" an odd show might be a bit of an understatement. Maybe it's normal to have a semi-comedy about Norse gods parading around as working-class guys in New Zealand, but it's kind of novel over here in the Western Hemisphere.

That's part of the show's charm though. Did "It's Kind of a Birthday Present" leave you wanting more godly action or were you left scratching your head?

Basic plot stuff, just to keep things straight

"The Almighty Johnsons" begins its story with the 21st birthday of Axl Johnson, the youngest of four brothers who also happens to be the human incarnation of the Norse god, Odin. Odin is a big deal. He's pretty much in charge (not that you would know it from the way the others react) and is the one who will either make the gods all godly again or who will kill a bunch of them.

Axl, however, doesn't get much past his birthday party before a bunch of goddesses -- who are extremely annoyed with their male counterparts -- start trying to kill him. They don't want an Odin to boss them around. Unfortunately for the ladies, love goddess Michele isn't so good at the killing and instead inadvertently fulfills an omen by shooting Axl with an arrow.

Also, Axl gets a big sword. He enjoys that part.

Things to watch for

One major warning here for American audiences not wanting to be spoiled while watching "The Almighty Johnsons": All three seasons of the show have already aired in New Zealand, which means that the show's Wikipedia page and many locations on the Internet explain all sorts of secrets.

You won't find any direct spoilers here (even though the author has totally seen the episodes), but here are a few things to watch for:

  • Axl as Odin is supposed to find Frigg, his ethereal wife, and have sex with her. He takes to this task rather enthusiastically.
  • Ty is always grumpy. 
  • Axl's roommate, Gaia, might look familiar to American audiences. That's because she is played by Keisha Castle-Hughes, an actress nominated for an Oscar for her leading role in 2003's "Whale Rider."
  • None of the goddesses are going anywhere.

Does it all work?

There is something sort of awkward about "The Almighty Johnsons." While it's an intriguing and thoroughly entertaining show, its oddness might make this a difficult sell to some audiences. What about you, the person who has taken the trouble to read an article on the subject?

Vote in the poll below to express your opinion on the matter.

"The Almighty Johnsons" airs Fridays at 10 p.m. ET/PT on Syfy.


Photo/Video credit: Syfy