I’ve decided that since I can’t think of what to write and I enjoy watching American Horror Story (and there’s a new episode on right now) I’ll write a summary/review of the episode for this article. Maybe give it a shot, since I’ve never done it before.
My guide says that the episode starts in 4 minutes, but it’s going to be playing for a second time, so I turn to the channel and accidentally catch several seconds of the end. Donovan is dancing alone, smoking a cigarette, and crying while rap music is playing in the background. For a moment I thought I was accidentally looking in a mirror, until The Countess entered the frame, also crying. I have no idea what the context of the scene is yet, or why they’re listening to this rap song during this clearly very emotional moment, but I am glad that this is going to be my first glimpse of the episode.
Liz Taylor narrates what working the front desk is like at the Hotel Cortez in Downtown Los Angeles, where apparently dozens of people come to do drugs and have affairs. I can’t imagine who would come to a hotel in downtown LA to have an affair, because the cost of parking by itself costs more than the divorce would. Two elderly people rent a room, apparently to euthanize themselves. Surprisingly they choose to do it by a gunshot to the head, which seems very inconvenient. Luckily for me, Iris agrees, and wonders why they don’t simply kill themselves at home. Liz Taylor cries, and laments the loss of Trystan. In her defense, so would I, because he was really hot and half Liz’s age. Liz contemplates killing herself, but then realizes if she did she’d become a ghost in the hotel. Better to do it someplace else. Iris convinces her to kill herself with her, somewhere else, after they’ve taken care of their unfinished business. They make a suicide pact. What are friends for?
Miss Evers calls’ Liz’s son so that Liz can meet with him for the first time in 31 years. Who better to reach out to the son that you left so that you could become the woman you were meant to be, than the dead maid who haunts the hotel you work at? Miss Evers warns Liz that her son may not be very understanding. Who knew that the woman who died in the 1920’s wasn’t the pioneer of transgender rights that we’d hoped her to be? Liz kicks Miss Evers out, but not before paying her with a bottle of Oxy, so she could presumably wash out even more blood from people’s linens. What more could a woman ask for? All I have for Miss Evers are questions.
We cut to John Lowe admiring his latest trophy- ears from some poor people that he murdered for having false gods. I have to admit, I still don’t understand the random religious streak John Lowe has been on. Since when does he care about God? He’s never shown any interest in much besides sleeping with Sally and being a terrible father. Why the religious motivations to the murders? I pray we’ll get an answer, but I fear it’ll fall through the cracks of Ryan Murphy’s poor planning.
Donovan sneaks into Valentino’s motel, where a thankfully shirtless Valentino demands to know the meaning of this. Meanwhile, Natacha (what a stupid name) meets The Countess in her penthouse, and they share an awkward kiss. Alexandria Daddario must be a fantastic actress, because I imagine it takes a lot of training to act like you don’t enjoy kissing Lady Gaga. After a lot of back and forth, The Countess shoots Natacha, Donovan shoots Valentino, and Finn Wittrock is out of a job for the second time this season. The best line of the night, however, is delivered by The Countess who after shooting Natacha proclaims, “Who’s the little mouse, now?” I’m beyond surprised that they didn’t include the word “bitch” at the end of that sentence. Donovan shoots Valentino again several more times, then says something I couldn’t hear because I was eating chips. He licks his blood and says, “I have better cheekbones anyway. Cheekbones for days.” Lady Gaga said it better.
James Patrick March sets some contractor on fire for reasons unknown, when John walks in. “What are you doing?” he asks, delivered with the same emphasis as if March was doing something benign like woodcrafting. John wants to know where his wife is. March wants him to murder people outside the hotel. We can’t all get what we want.
John and Alex reunite, after what seems like months but was in reality probably more like 5 days. Alex is dressed like a governess from the 1800’s, so I’m guessing Chloe Sevigny wore her own clothes to work that day. John accuses Alex of being a bad parent, which is the pot calling the kettle black. Actually, it’s more than that, because a pot and a kettle would be better parents to Scarlett than John and Alex. “We have another child,” John says. “I haven’t forgotten about Scarlett,” says Alex. Haven’t you though? I’ll be honest, even I’ve forgotten about Scarlett. She’s one of about 5,000 subplots and to be honest there’s just too many blonde children to keep track of at this point. They both agree they’re terrible parents, and then prove the point by moving on to the next subject without a second thought. Bye Scarlett.
Alex has been given one chance to fix her utterly idiotic decision to turn her 12 year old patient into a vampire without telling him, and then letting him turn a litany of children who go on to murder a whole bunch of people. She enlists John’s help. He agrees, apparently not at all phased that vampires exist.
Liz gets ready to meet her son, in a reunion that will probably turn out to be anything other than joyous. Liz serves her son Douglas a drink, not telling him who she is. Douglas compliments her dress, which I’m sure will foreshadow a horrible flip once he turns on his father. Douglas mentions meeting his dad, and Liz lets him leave without revealing herself. I know that no matter how much I prepare I won’t be ready for the awful turn.
John and Alex go to some house to find the vampire children (and murder them?) and John goes upstairs alone with a flashlight. Alex hears coughing and follows the noise. She sees Kimmy, a little girl with measles, and is attacked by a little boy with a knife. John rushes in with the gun and they are soon surrounded by vamp children. This is just like that french movie where the couple is terrorized by a pack of wild children. I never saw it, but I read the plot on Wikipedia. Anyway, back to the show, Max arrives and tells Alex she shouldn’t have come back, while wearing a shirt that says “Like a Boss”. Oh give me a break, we should have let the kid die of the measles episodes ago. Kimmy starts seizing, and Alex does CPR on her, which makes no sense because aren’t they there to kill the kids? Kimmy dies. Oh well, I didn’t really have an attachment to her anyway. Alex and John offer to help the kids.
The Countess talks to the police about her husband, and as much as I love Lady Gaga, her acting in this scene seems to be about 90% looking around the room with her eyes wide open. “Maybe he got cold feet!” says the detective. The Countess is NOT having it. Will Drake enters, or presumably his ghost. Will Drake says he got lost for two days on the 7th floor. What happened to cell phones? The Countess ushers the detectives out, Lady Gaga’s acting ability declining with every passing moment. Why is she wearing a suit? “You murdered me you bitch,” says Will, in what feels like the perfect follow up to The Countess’ earlier smackdown line. The Countess threatens to kill Will’s son, and Will goes to check on him. March suddenly appears only to say “I told you so,” and The Countess responds, “bite me.” This line is surprisingly delivered quite well, and seems out of place in the rest of the scene. Perhaps Lady Gaga’s bad acting was simply her putting on a show of ignorance for the detectives? I hope so. I am quite fond of her.
Alex and John arrive with the kids in tow, no towhead related puns intended. Will The Countess allow the kids in the hotel? None of them are blonde. Maybe she’ll kill them. I sure hope so, I’m kind of getting annoyed at these children actors. All the kids file in the inescapable chamber, and John pushes the last one in. This is a fun new development. The kids start fighting. Will Angela Bassett become their den mother? God I hope so.
John lies post-coital in bed with his wife, reunited over their bonding of locking small children in inescapable fortresses. Alex still wants to divorce. John doesn’t. Alex is happy John’s changed. Maybe they’ll stay together after all! They do both love murder now, for one. Alex leaves to process things, and we get to see Chloe Sevigny’s butt. Nice. Sally is not happy, and ambushes John in the john (pun intended). “Did you come inside her, or just shoot on her tits like you do with me?” Sally asks. Blunt. It’s not exactly easy to cheat on your mistress with your ex-wife when your mistress is dead and presumably omnipotent. John waxes poetic about being in the moment. Sally seduces him. Hasn’t he had enough sex? Maybe they’ll be a throuple like Kit and his wives in season 2. Throw in Scarlett and we’re basically back to Briarcliff. But no. John pushes Sally away. Sally mentions that Alex doesn’t know about John being a serial killer. They make out again. Man, I am loving Sarah Paulson’s crimped hair this season. I think her hair is my favorite character. They make out again, choke each other a little bit, then John leaves. “I deserve more than this!” Sally shouts. You go, Sally- know your worth. Sally ambushes John with a knife at the elevator. She threatens to kill Alex, when the Addiction Demon shows up behind her.
Cut to Miss Evers ‘ ecstasy over receiving a washing machine. How does this whole hotel not have a washing machine? Liz and Iris debate about how to kill themselves, when Miss Evers tells Liz that Douglas is waiting for her at the bar. Douglas tells Liz that he and his wife are taking Liz’s advice and moving to Boulder, CO. Liz says she needs to tell Douglas something. Based on the playful music playing, I think I may have been wrong about the sad ending. Turns out Douglas already knew that Liz was his father. He’s still sad about Liz leaving though. Liz is surprised that Douglas is accepting of her being transgender, but turns out, Douglas is an even bigger fan of Pedro Zamora than I am. I can’t tell you how happy it makes me that whoever wrote this episode included this line. Bravo.
Donovan cuts meat for The Countess and she admires his work with a knife. She tells him about Will and he tells her about Valentino. The Countess is surprised, or would be if her face could still show that emotion. She goes to see Valentino’s body and sobs. Well done, Lady Gaga. I enjoy uncomfortable displays of emotion in cheap motels.
Liz goes to visit Iris, who has set out a bunch of weapons to commit suicide with. Iris has made a tribute video to immortalize herself. I have never seen anything so beautiful. She wants it to be a beacon of hope for her three followers on Instagram. I think once Scream Queens ended, the humor came back to American Horror Story. Liz decides against suicide. Iris feels abandoned. Liz gives her a pep talk. They should take over the hotel! Or they could just leave, but unfortunately they never take my advice.
Alex takes John to see Holden, and he loses it. Alex, John and Holden leave to go home (to see Scarlett?) What about The Countess? Won’t she stop them from leaving? Not to worry, Sally is there to scream and threaten to murder John.
Oh my God. The rap song that Donovan dances to is “Hotline Bling” by Drake. I only know the first line, hence why I didn’t recognize it. Jesus this episode is campy. I love it. The Countess returns. She’s surprised Donovan didn’t run. They fight, and the fight seems to bring out the best in Lady Gaga’s acting. The playful music starts again. What is going on? Is she gonna kill him or what? He wants her to. It’s the only way she’ll love him. What sense does that make? Iris and Liz come in and shoot the place up as “Hotline Bling” plays again. Am I really seeing this? Like seriously? This isn’t a joke? I don’t know if I love it or hate it. No. I know. I love it. How could I not?
In scenes from next week, PRECIOUS IS BACK! Yes! I love Gabourey Sidibey.
Verdict: You used to call me on my cellphone.