The Almighty Johnsons delivers its best episode to date in its latest outing. Episode 4, ‘You Gotta Love Life, Babe’ doesn’t really add to the over-arching story line here, but reminds us that our five gods are flawed, and have mortal concerns to deal with, just like the rest of us.

Things kick off with Rhiannon, a young girl once on the receiving end of Olaf’s promiscuity, turning up with news that she’s pregnant. News that, Olaf, seems to take in his stride, until we learn that he’s actually planning on doing a runner.

Yes, his reasons for needing to do this are theoretically sound. He ages slowly; suspicions would inevitably be raised when the child reaches 30, and Olaf doesn’t seem to have aged a day. But I can’t help but wonder why he’d let himself get in these predicaments in the first place. Olaf handles the situation poorly, especially considering he’s the family oracle and seemingly ‘go-to’ guy for advice, and it falls onto the shoulder’s of Axl to really give him an earful.

In fact, during this episode, I grew a lot of respect for Axl. His efforts to persuade Rhiannon into the keeping the child and giving it away to Val and Mike was quite touching. In previous episodes, Axl has come across as a slightly naive, immature young boy, but if anything, he was the most grown up out of all the brothers. Are these some of Odin’s qualities, shining through perhaps?

The element of Rhiannon being pregnant, once again brought the subplot of Mike and Val’s problems with IVF treatment to the forefront. Their failings with the treatment are putting a slight stress on their marriage, and the whole Olaf getting someone pregnant, and not even wanting it was a real kick in the teeth to Val.

Olaf is actually quite insensitive about the whole matter, which surprises me. He’s definitely lost a few brownie points.

We also learn of Mike’s reluctance to use his powers and become rich. You know, a part of me almost forgot he was the god of games, if he walked into a casino, he’d come out a rich, rich man. I’m sure some of his reluctance comes from the fact the last time he showboats his talents in a game of pool, his good friend ended up in a coma from the resulting fight. Poor, Mike.

Elsewhere, as I guessed would happen, Ty and Anders find themselves butting heads over Dawn. Anders is very much a manipulator; his magical words his weapon of choice and it’s fair to say he doesn’t exactly treat dawn well. Or most people for that matter, he’s a man of his own agenda.

I do wonder at the interest in Dawn, more so from Anders side. Let’s face it, he could talk anyone he wanted into working for him, so is there a particular reason why he chooses Dawn? I wonder if there are actually emotional feelings for Dawn in the works. This will be even more interesting for when Anders meets the goddess Idun from the last episode, who, as we know, he’s destined to fall in love with.

And on the subject of goddesses, there was hardly a mention of them this week. And this fact didn’t really affect the episode at all. Character drama was at the forefront here, and The Almighty Johnsons, was all the better for it.

All in all a great episode, more of the same again please.

Levi St John

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