A Prayer for Mad Sweeney
American Gods Season 1



Critic Ratings: 19
Critics Consensus

"A Prayer for Mad Sweeney" explores some of American Gods' core themes - and the relationship between core characters - in the final hour before the season finale.

Episode Info

After an over-too-quickly reunion with Shadow, Laura joins an unlikely travel companion on the road back to life and back to Shadow. Mad Sweeney's long, often tragic past is explored.


Ricky Whittle
as Shadow Moon
Emily Browning
as Laura Moon
Ian McShane
as Mr. Wednesday
Pablo Schreiber
as Mad Sweeney
Yetide Badaki
as Bilquis
Bruce Langley
as Technical Boy
Jonathan Tucker
as Low Key Lyesmith
Cloris Leachman
as Zorya Vechernyaya
Show More Cast

A Prayer for Mad Sweeney Photos

Critic Reviews for A Prayer for Mad Sweeney

If we've learned anything this episode, it's that gods are as fickle and temperamental just as often as they are benevolent or sit in any sort of judgement of us mortals.

Jun 12, 2017 | Full Review…

All in all, a lot of meandering that fails to build much of an appetite for next week's episode which is, after all, the finale of this first season.

Jun 12, 2017 | Full Review…

"Prayer for Mad Sweeney" takes an in-depth look at the complicated, often contentious relationship between Mad Sweeney and Laura, and the result is one of the show's most gorgeous and lyrical episodes yet .

Jun 12, 2017 | Rating: A- | Full Review…

How they managed that in one hour of television featuring a zombie and a leprechaun, both of them total a-------, must be something like magic.

Jun 18, 2018 | Full Review…

For an episode that is supposed to have so much heart and warmth, it leaves the viewer feeling how Laura must be now: cold.

Jun 14, 2018 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…

Two of the most messed-up characters on American Gods-spend some quality time together in the show's seventh episode, and we see how the big ol' wee person has done both admirable and terrible things over the last 300 years.

May 14, 2018 | Full Review…

American Gods gave us its most tender episode of the show to date.

Mar 15, 2018 | Full Review…

I'm still not crazy about it, it's a better episode than most.

Dec 20, 2017 | Full Review…

Other things worth paying attention to in Prayer for Mad Sweeney? That big albino buffalo. His name is Tatanka Ska, and he's sacred to the Lakota tribe.

Nov 4, 2017 | Full Review…

Personally, I am enjoying American Gods' meanderings more than I am the central plot. (Though I like that, too.)

Jun 12, 2017 | Rating: 3.5/5 | Full Review…

What "A Prayer for Mad Sweeney" is truly successful at is in demonstrating the malleable nature of identity and how circumstances and need can forever alter who a person is, which can be something of a surprise even to themselves.

Jun 12, 2017 | Full Review…

"Prayer for Mad Sweeney" works well as a standalone episode, though its placement as the penultimate episode of American Gods: Season 1 is a bit curious.

Jun 12, 2017 | Rating: 8/10 | Full Review…

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