American Horror Story Apocalypse
The 8th installment of American Horror Story is titled “Apocalypse” and begins, appropriately, with “The End” — the title of the first episode. And the end is exactly where the story begins in one of the most starkly, frightening scenes in the show’s history — no witches or gruesome murders or ghosts — but rather with an emergency broadcast announcing that incoming ballistic missiles are headed straight to America. London, Hong Kong, and Moscow have already been obliterated and the U.S. is next. In today’s world of heightened global tension and a president who has already mentioned he’s got “a bigger button”, the scene truly hits our current fears.
The season opens up, oddly, in a hair salon with Evan Peters adding yet another character to his AHS resume, Mr. Gallant. As Mr. Gallant works on a new do for Coco St. Pierre Vanderbilt (Leslie Grossman AHS Cult) the air raid sirens blare and the emergency messages hit televisions, Coco speaks with her dad who is in Hong Kong with her mom and brother. He tells her to get to the airport where their private jet will take her to a safe spot. Then the signal is lost along with Hong Kong. Coco and her assistant Mallory (Billie Lourd AHS Cult) head to the airport while Mr. Gallant goes to pick up his grandmother, Evie (AHS newcomer Joan Collins). It’s the single best scene in the episode for fans of Dynasty, an in-joke about Alexis Morell Carrington Colby Dexter Rowan.
Ultimately, everyone arrives at Outpost 3 where they are joined by more characters which include a couple of genetically superior teens and rich people who bought their way in. Outpost 3 is overseen by Sarah Paulson’s new character, Wilhelmina Venable, who comes across as a sort of Gothic headmistress. At one point she tells her “guests” that the Outpost was once an elite boy’s school…could this be Miss Robichaux’s Academy in New Orleans, home to the witches in AHS Coven? Paulson will also be reprising her Murder House and Coven characters Billie Dean Howard and Cordelia Foxx this season.
Kathy Bates (AHS Coven, Freak Show, Hotel, & Roanoake) is Wilhelmina’s enforcer, Miriam Mead who keeps Outpost 3 running tightly according to Ms. Venable’s strict rules which include no going outside the building and absolutely no copulation.
This season of American Horror Story has been promoted as a sequel to season one (unofficially titled “Murder House”) and season two “Coven“. However the majority of the characters from these two seasons are dead…and anyone who died in the Murder House is cursed to remain in the house as a ghost (a similar trope was used for season five’s “Hotel”).
How the show will handle the dead witches from Coven remains to be seen. Of course, we just saw a nuclear holocaust so it’s quite likely everyone is dead. We do know that Jessica Lange will reprise her role as Constance Langdon for one episode this season…which will likely be a flashback. Constance was last seen making off with the Harmon’s baby and later wiping the babysitter’s blood off the toddler’s face.
With Coven’s Robichaux Academy serving as Outpost 3 being the most plausible, what about the characters this season who died in the Hotel Cortez or the Murder House and are bound to these locations in the afterlife? To have all of them featured in flashbacks would be a little disappointing.
Episode 2 “The Morning After” finds our characters still in Outpost 3. It will get a little claustrophobic if we are stuck in the Outpost for the entire season. But Michael Langdon (not him, you’re think Michael Landon!), a long haired blond man who showed up at the end of episode 1, says he is there to determine who is worthy of going with him to a secret “Sanctuary”. “Langdon” was Constance’s last name, the nosy neighbor played by Jessica Lange in season one of AHS. So, naturally, all eyes are on him to be the Anti-Christ. But what if it’s not him? All the promotions have focused on a bloody baby…what if the Anti-Christ hasn’t been born yet? We have a young, genetically superior couple in the Outpost…what if they give birth to the Anti-Christ later on?
Episode 2 features the first character from Murder House to appear (unless you count Michael who was a toddler last we saw him)…and it’s the Rubber Man! Death also comes for another one of the characters but we know death doesn’t always mean gone. Next time Episode 3: “Forbidden Fruit”.
A Comprehensive list of actors and their characters part one.
The season is off to a nice start. All the actors are in top form especially Sarah Paulson's delightfully wicked Wilhelmina Venable. Joan Collins was, of course, a delight to see. At this point, it's still too early to see how they are going to work together Season 1 and Season 3. Watch for some interesting scenes around the dinner table! Take my word, don't eat the stew.
American Horror Story Apocalypse
- Writing - 10/1010/10
- Storyline - 10/1010/10
- Acting - 10/1010/10
- Music - 10/1010/10
- Production - 10/1010/10
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