Thursday, November 3, 2016

American Horror Story: Roanoke Thoughts and Spoilers

Image result for american horror story roanoke finn wittrock
Finn Wittrock as "Dandy Mott" in American Horror Story:Freakshow (picture from





Like most American Horror Story fans, I was eagerly anticipating Chapter Six in this crazy series. My anticipation was doubly ramped from spending four days at Fan Expo staring at the booths of several cast members from AHS including Denis O'Hare. I watched a panel about Freakshow where Naomi Grossman spilled the beans about AHS being renewed for a few more seasons. It was fun to read about it later and knowing I was there when it was announced (or slipped, judging by the looks her fellow castmates gave her). I also briefly met Denis O'Hare when he was walking around and he even let me take a picture with him. I was shaking like a little fangirl! I never did talk to the other cast members as I was too afraid to approach them. But I could see them from my own booth and watched their fans line up for them.

Sephera Giron and Denis O'Hare at Fan Expo Canada 3016

But I digress...


I didn't like the first few episodes very much. It likely has more to do with how I was watching them  than the material, but then again, the story just didn't compel me. I had to watch a couple of episodes on my little ancient old-fashioned TV in the bedroom because for some reason it wasn't coming in on the big screen TV in the living room. The cable box wasn't working right and I didn't notice it didn't get FX properly until I went to watch the show. Luckily, the small analog TV got the channel by some miracle! However, it was very difficult to see. The show is dark as it is and that TV is dark because it's old so I couldn't really see what was going on in the re-enactments. I didn't like the reality TV framework. Maybe once I see how it all ties together, I'll go back and binge watch it. AHS is great to binge watch.

I was hoping for a real twist for episode six but they did exactly what I thought they were going to do. Have them all return and shoot another show.

And so, they did and here we are.

The Premise Doesn't Work
The premise that some of them would actually return is not believable. I don't believe for a minute that Shelby and Matt would ever return to that unexplainable nightmare. No. Nothing would get anyone there and the thin idea of a reconciliation is not believable either.

And for God's Sake, please, everyone, stop with the accents. For all that is horror, please stop!

I have a lot of work to do so I can't spend as much time as I'd like talking about actors and storylines and such but I'll touch on a couple of ideas as they come to me before I get back to work.

Finn Wittrock 
Yes, I did indeed spot him the previous week. However, it was only after the episode was over and I was wondering if he had shown up at all. Yay for the Googles! I discovered he was the hillbilly so I caught the scenes again on the rerun and saw him. 

This week his character was featured more prominently. Perhaps I'm jaded from years of horror-watching. Perhaps I'm jaded from last week's head smashing and disembowelments. However, what he was doing to Lee was nothing compared to what Ray Liotta once had done to him! They could have cranked up the gross factor more than they did. And well, though Finn did a great job, again, his talents were massively underused. 

Even if he appears again in the next twist as he did in Hotel, we won't get to know him as we got to know Dandy. We enjoyed Dandy because we got to watch him evolve throughout the show and see a range of talent however with Jether Polk, we see a bit of potential, and a whole plotline I conceived in my head but there's no way it would happen. There was talk that this character would be his most disgusting or whatever yet. I didn't think there would be a way to top his perfect portrayal of Dandy and I was correct. Of course, the issue is with the roles he's getting. I understand he has contracts for other work and so now only wants to do a couple of episodes instead of long stretches. It's too bad because he's a good actor and fun to watch as a demonic psychopath. Like I said, maybe I'm jaded but this character though creepy and disgusting wasn't a showstopper as Dandy was. I'm not sure any of the characters besides Agnes are big standouts or memorable in this round of AHS.

My Theory about Jether Polk
When his character first appeared for the first time in Episode 7, I thought he might be somehow in league with Sidney. Since the Polk house is obviously fitted with cameras as well, (how else are we watching "found footage?") Sidney and his crew had to get in there to do it and either the Polks know they are there or they don't. Sidney might have given Jether a camera and phone to record events as he did with the others. When Episode 8 chugged along, I thought even more that Jether was in league with Sidney about shooting the show. Maybe Jether wasn't even "slow" since he'd say oddly intelligent things now and again. 

However, his demise seemed very real and kind of hard to fake so even if he was in league with Sidney, he's not now.

Finn had one of the best lines in the episode, as his characters often do. "We live in the United States. We have TV."  

Yup. Even cocaine-snorting pot-growing cannibals like to chill in front of the telly!

Cameras in the Polk House
I've noticed I'm not the only one who's realized there have to be cameras in the Polk house or we wouldn't be seeing all these grizzly scenes. People are questioning it all over social media. So who put the cameras there and do the Polks know?

Lee's Confession
I didn't see kill her husband if she did so I don't know if it's a real confession or if she's covering something up. I didn't see a lot of the first few episodes between crappy TV and half-watching when I had the good one because I was working on something else so she could have killed him in front of us and I missed it. Maybe someone else killed the husband like Flora and Lee figures she's dying anyway so she might as well give a fake confession to let the real killer off the hook. When she realizes she's still alive, she wants to retrieve the tape from Jethel's camera, not knowing the whole Polk house is rigged as well (I don't think. I can't remember if she ever screamed at a camera.)

Pig Man at the End
Of course, we all knew the minute the door opened that it wasn't the real Pigman. I had to hop on the internet to confirm the actor, Wes Bentley who played The Butcher's son in the re-enactment. I think we all agree he'd been hired by Sidney in advance and happened to show up late for some reason, likely his schedule. We were running out of bodies...

How High Are You?
Lee has half a thigh, part of a shoulder, and no ear, Audrey had a tooth ripped out with pliers yet both seem pretty chipper and good to go come morning. I know they are on and had some drugs but do they have an endless supply? What are these magical drugs that let you run from monsters and ease the pain? 

Humans Kill Humans
Notice almost everyone is dying because they turn on themselves, in every sense of the word. Sure they are running through the haunted house but in the end, Shelby was the one responsible for a few deaths, not the ghosts or even the hillbillies.

Reality TV
I think most of us suspect this is a show within a show within a show within a... Obviously, this found footage was edited and such. It drives me nuts when they use camera angles that aren't the planted cameras or a cell phone. I think next week, we'll find many of the dead characters alive because they were acting. Perhaps Sidney had set it up and most of the deaths weren't real at all. I'm not sure I believe Shelby is dead at all. It seems too convenient. I don't believe for a minute Sidney is dead. Don't forget, this is a show within a show and the footage CAN be edited to take out stunt people, special effects, and so on since everyone lies and nothing is real and there were gimmicks planted everywhere.

Big Finale
The last episode will likely be Sidney and Agnes and Jethel on Sara Paulson's medium's show from the other seasons. Or maybe everyone is dead when she comes to do a show on the house and she gets haunted and of course, has more evidence for future shows.

As to who is "final girl?" I lean towards Lee, who gets immediately arrested when the cameras stop as this was some kind of set up to extract her confession. I hope it's not Sara Paulson but it likely is since she is always the winner. They said one person survives. We're supposedly down to three with the arrival of Dylan.

Or it might be Sidney. Or Shelby who faked her own death. 

It's AHS, who knows?

I have many more thoughts but I must stop now!

What thoughts and theories do you have about American Horror Story: Roanoke?