We’ve spent a lot of time heaping praise on the casting for Bryan Fuller’s upcoming Starz series American Gods. Ricky Whittle looks set to make a convincing Shadow Moon, Emily Browning has the chops to play his wife, Laura, and Gillian Anderson and Ian McShane are both phenomenal choices for the goddess Media and the central role of well-spoken con-man Wednesday, respectively. You’d be forgiven, though, for thinking the show’s casting streak might have finally come to an end today, with Deadline reporting that stand-up comic and occasional actor Dane Cook has just been cast in the Neil Gaiman adaptation, as Shadow’s former boss and best friend Robbie.
But here’s the thing: those who’ve read the book know that Robbie—a gym owner with a few minor moral weaknesses—is actually a pretty perfect fit for Cook. Enthusiastically friendly and ostensibly loyal (but with just a hint of a selfish streak), Robbie’s everything you’d expect from Cook’s aggressively bro-friendly persona. (Also, he’s only in the book for, like, five pages, so Cook-phobics probably won’t have to put up with him for long.) We’re not saying this is a casting move on par with, say, casting Peter Stormare as the Slavic god Czernobog, but it’s still another great pairing of actor and role. We’ll see if all these smart staffing choices pay off when American Gods debuts later this year.