American Horror Story Creates Houstonian Frustration

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Let me make something perfectly clear:  I thoroughly enjoy AHS and find myself actually looking forward to watching it each and every Wednesday night.

BUT…

The Family Harmon and the less than realistic dynamic that exists between each member is slowly starting to wear thin.   Oh yeah, sure–I  understand creative license.   I get that Vivien has known about the early history of her home—that it was once known as Abortion Central for promiscuous Hollywood starlets back in the 20’s and 30’s—yet she’s never mentioned it to anyone.    I understand that Violet can be brushing her teeth  at 2:46 on a balmy Tuesday morning and somehow Tate appears in her bathroom out of nowhere, even though the security system is on and armed and these little tidbits of  info concerning  A) an invasion of privacy and B) blatant trespassing are never questioned, nor or they ever topics of conversation with Mum and Dad????

As far as I know, Ben has never mentioned to his wife that the Burned Guy is harassing and  haranguing him and no one seems to know or care that Moira the maid (both young and old versions) has no particular shift.   She just comes and goes of her own accord.    And we never see her do any cleaning.  Now, Moira the Younger will get on all fours and hike her skirt up to clean the floor, but Moira the Older has yet to pick up a can of Pledge.   And last week, during part one of the special Halloween show, the emergency room nurse performed an ultra sound on Viv of the Stomach Cramps– now eight weeks pregnant–but when she took one gander at the fetus, the nurse fainted.

And did that upset Viv and Ben?     No.    Did they even mention it to anyone?    No, at least not yet.   Nor do we really know what the nurse saw on that ultrasound that gave her the vapors.   

I understand that this disconnect helps the story, but it’s so damn implausible.   Maybe this is just me,  but personally, I like a little fact with my fiction.

 And furthermore, these people aren’t like any people I know.   Sure, they’re prettier than everyone I’ve ever met and Dylan McDermott, the sexaholic dad sure looks good nekkid as a Jay bird, but they’re all so blasé about everything that happens to them.   For example, there was the home invasion a few weeks ago.   Nothing else was said about it.  It  was swept under the rug, like Constance’s ipecac cupcake crumbs.

Had that happened to me, I’d be eating Xanax like Pez and I would have pitched a tent and transferred my satellite dish over to some shrink’s couch.  We’re talking intensive therapy, 24/7 with a Thorazine drip option.  

But that would never be the case with  the stoic Harmons.    They’re too cool for post traumatic stress.

Even when Ben’s knocked up ex-mistress Hayden died at the hands of The Burned Guy which might or might not be Ben’s subconscious at work,  he didn’t even seem bothered by it at all.   I mean let’s be honest, her death sure solved a lot of problems for ol’ Bennie, but he didn’t bat an eye when Constance suggested that he turn that odd patch of backyard into a gazebo on top of her makeshift grave and the graves of God knows how many others.   Maybe it’s because I’m Catholic with a Jewish rising, but I sure as HELL would have demonstrated an inkling of guilt or at least a smidge of emotion, even while trying to act nonchalant. 

I guess in a way, I’m slightly miffed that I’ve broken my own cardinal rule:  I’ve started to care about a stupid TV show.  Week after week after week, I  find myself being drawn deeper into this storyline.    I’ve never watched a show as I watch this one, with the kind of committment I’m committing to AHS.  Why?  I don’t know.  Seriously, I can’t answer that, but not knowing sure doesn’t preventme from getting into each and every episode…enough to wallow in its subtext.   I actually think about it  sometimes;   when I drive to work; when I walk to my mailbox.   

When I’m plucking chin hairs….

My thoughts swirl around who, what , how and why as I try to connect all  the cerebral dots and in every AHS episode, there are several.   Now, please understand, I’m not obsessing over American Horror Story by any means, but it is taking up real estate in my head. 

And apparently, this is happening to others, too.  Ratings for AHS have gone through the roof since episode 1 and that’s been music to F/X’s ears.   Network brass are so pleased, they’ve renewed “The Horror” for another season.

God help us all.

But for the time being I’m grappling with a few issues besides the lack of communication between family members which I’m sure is intentional.  The writers want to convey just how dysfunctional this family is.  If that is in fact the case, then kudos—they’re doing that with amazing clarity.

But there are so many other things about this show that vex me.   Such as the Rubber Man is.   Who in the hell is underneath all that latex????   

Could he be the ghost of Constance’s horny car salesman husband?  You know, the cute one with the fine ass who was wearing the tight white,  man panties that she shot for trying to camel hump Moira the Younger in the master bedroom in the 1983 flashback?  We’ve heard very little about him and most of the ghosts we’ve met (or think we’ve met) seem to have some semblance of a back story.  Besides, we were introduced to Rubber Man BEFORE we knew that Constance had killed her husband.  If you remember back in the pilot episode, Rubber Man sexed up Viv, though she thought it was Ben just getting his kink on.  And lest we forget that it was Ben who found the black shiny Latex onesy in the attic shortly after the family moved in.   He was also the one who tossed it in the trash.

We also know that Rubber Man killed Chad and and probably  killed Patrick, though we didn’t see the dirty deed.     He also appeared behind  a frightened Violet last week as Burned Guy was pounding on the door, demanding his thousand dollars from Ben.    The next thing we know, Violet is nowhere to be found; the front door is open and the burglar alarm (the one Tate never seems to trip) is blaring.    Also in last week’s episode, when she goes to meet Tate in the basement, he greets her dressed in the rubber latex suit.    She asks his where he got that thing after it was thrown out and he replies,  “finder’s keepers”.

Hhhhhhhhh’mmmmmmmm….

Other things I want to know:

Does the real estate agent have ghostly connections, too?    I got the feeling that Chad and Patrick appeared at the house of their own accord.  When Viv asked if they were the fluffers the real estate agent suggested, Chad just kind of looked at Patrick with a “WE’RE IN” look and they assumed the fluffer role.   Then where is the gay fluffer the real estate agent suggested?   Could Chad be a ghost and Patrick the living entitity he haunts?  Connected in life; connected in death?         

Chad and Patrick are just as wonderfully pissy in death as they are in real life…BUT…what is it they want?   They came back because well, they’re ghosts…at least, Chad is, but what’s their agenda?   Are they some menacing tag team?   And why did they run out of the house as quickly as they did when Viv threw a hissy and started destroying all the festive Halloween decorations that they’d all worked so hard to put up?    Now, I saw a quick camera shot of the Rubber Man standing in the corner of the living room; I wonder if they saw him too?   And since it was The Rubber Gimp Man who killed them or Chad, did they not want to stick around to watch what might happen???  Was that why Patrick said “you shouldn’t have to see this” then they 86’d the house?   Nothing happened other than Viv developed abdomenal cramps because her eight week old fetus was apparently practicing “Seven Brides for Seven Brothers”  style hitch kicks en utero.    Ben immediately rushed Viv to the ER.     We don’t see Rubber Man again until we see Violet and the Burned Guy and his frantic door banging nonsense.  

And what’s the Rubber Man’s connection between the Chucky Demon Seed Basement Baby, both Moiras,  Tate, Constance,  the Burned Guy and all the other ghosts?   Are they free agents, able to appear or disappear at will  OR does the house hold minion over them????    IF so, why?   That makes the house an even bigger character on this show.  And what’s the house’s agenda???? 

It appears Chad’s ghost wants the Harmon’s out of there, while all the other ghosts seem protective of them.   Think about this for a sec:   Violet often hangs around in the basement all alone waiting for her regular rendezvous with Tate and nothing ever happens to her–the Chucky Demon Seed Hume Cronyn looking  Basement Monster Baby is no where to be found.  That certainly wasn’t the case  with the opossum, the mean bat wielding red-headed twins, the two home invaders  who died or as in the case of the  mean chick from Violet’s school, almost died down there.   

The Rubber Man seemed to be protecting Violet when Burned Guy was angrily pounding on the door and even though last week ended with her no where to be found, we know she’s okay because she appears in the preview of part 2 of the Halloween episode.      She gets a black rose from Tate….at least, I think its Tate or  maybe it’s from a horny Moira the Younger who’s expanding her lusty horizons by suddenly deciding to try her ghostly hand at bi-sexuality.

Will the Harmon’s acknowledge Addy’s death?   I hope they will.   Her traumatic end—death by impact of the grill of a ’83 Camaro (the same car salesman daddy tried to ply Moira with for sex..remember????  Huh??   Huh????)   saddened me in a way, because she and her mother,  Constance provided some stellar “Mommie Dearest” moments.  We probably won’t see Addy again;  not even her ghost because by dying in the street after the hit and run accident, she screwed the pooch.  She lost her chance at resurrection.    Constance desperately tried to drag Addy on to the lawn of The Murder House to die, but  didn’t do it in time.  She was already dead.   This tells me  that the house must be like some sort of higher-end Pet Sematary.  Remember the Stephen King book and movie?  The storyline involved people and animals that are buried in this Native American burial cairn, but they don’t stay dead; they come back to life, mean and sinister and with a jones for murder and mayhem, but nevertheless, they come back to life.   If everyone who dies in the house or on the property eventually comes back as a ghost,  that also means we’ll eventually see the ghosts of the two home invaders who were murdered in the basement,  providing their agents can secure  subsequent  AHS guest spots for them. 

This also means the storyline will demand  that Constance haul out some other miscreant child, for comedic affect.  She’s such an interesting mother.  

Also,  I get a sense that the next homage to a famous scary movie (and AHS is full of  cinematic hat tips) will  be Fatal Attraction.   Hayden is dead, but her dusty, dirty ghost is back with a vengeance and like bat shit crazy Alex (the Glenn Close character from the movie) she is ANGRY and hell-bent on telling Viv everything,  about the baby, being with Ben in Boston,  that Ben and Burned Guy tagged team her death by shovel AND that she’s now a worm buffet under the new gazebo in the backyard.      Like the movie, there’s  even a bathtub scene.   And lastly, remember the boiling pot o’ rabbit from Fatal Attraction?    Well, don’t quote me, but I have a feeling that harrowing scene will be duplicated this week.  I think Viv’s cute little white puppy will be given the chance to see how a microwave oven works–from the inside.   

I suppose all these questions and others will be answered soon.   Let’s hope so.  

The second half of the special Halloween episode, which the creators have  thoughtfully stretched out over a week like some crazy haunted Hanukkah, will air tomorrow night.  

Yes, this show makes me nuts and frustrates the hell out of me, but for some strange reason I keep coming back for more, like Lindsay Lohan and community service.  

Join me here after the show,  kids.  Something tells me we’ll have LOTS to talk about.

4 comments

  1. Hi!!

    First, I truly love your articles about AHS.

    Now let’s go to the point:

    I’m watching the show with spanish subtitles (not a whim: I’m spanish -kind of a blessing, actually) and in the first part of Halloween episode you said you couldn’t hear what Patrick told Chad when they saw the rubber man during Viv’s fit of anger. Well, I’m glad to announce you that, according to the subtitles, it was something like “you shouldn’t have seen this”.

    That was all. Keep writing, I’ll keep reading for sure :o)

    PS: I agree with you about the let’s-say-peculiar dynamic of the plot. Did you see Ben’s face when he saw his ex-mistress at the door? Does this man have any botox around his eyes that stops him from blinking? And why they don’t even comment the list of murders-strange things that have happened in the house during supper? It seemed to be something interesting for them in the first episode… Well, now I think about it, I’ve never seen them eating happily together, or together at all.

    At first, I thought the show was somekind of flashbacks of the family daily life, with missing spaces, in order to make us feel lost, but perfectly reasonable for the main characters… Now I’m OK with my old LOST explanation: they are all dead.

    Bye.

  2. Very funny write up. I agree with you on just about everything. I thought Patrick might be alive too. I saw a clip from this week’s show where Chad is in the front yard destroying all the landscape of the house and he blames Vivian for the fact that Patrick is probably at some gay bar having his fourth unprotected blow job. I doubt seriously if a ghost could have that happen, even on Halloween. I sure as hell know if could never happen to me. SIGH. Keep on writing. Your AHS reviews are wonderful

  3. Love your blog. I’m such a wuss. I’m too scared to watch the freakin’ tv show, but so ridiculously curious about it. Your blog allows me to know what’s going on while not having nightmares for the next 5 years. Plus, your commentary definitely makes it funner. Yes. Funner is a word.

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