Friday, November 4, 2011

American Horror Story, Season one, Episode Five: Halloween Part 2

For the majority of this episode, it felt like the writers were channeling,  the 1987 flick, Fatal Attraction.  This episode was largely about Ben's chickens coming home to roost.  When he gets home from the hospital with Vivien, Hayden shows up and he promptly slams the door in her face.  I suppose one cannot have the little woman finding out about all the ways in which he has been naughty.  When he runs into Terry later on the property while searching for Hayden, he accuses him of being a conspirator to Hayden's plans to which Terry laughs and responds with, "you don't even know what question to ask."  Even though the Harmons have been haunted since their first day in the house they are not really aware of this fact.  All they know is that their lives are falling apart and feel powerless to bring about and end to all of the pain.

This episode answered a few question of where or not Tate is a ghost or a person.  Tate and Violet escaped to the beach and were making out in front of a fire when they were approached by kids whom Violet wrongly assumed were wearing halloween costumes.  They began by taunting Tate about never leaving his mother's house out of a desire to avoid them.  When Violet challenges them, they leave only to show up again outside of the murder house. The kids quickly discover that Violet does not know who they are and so they tell her to look it up.  When it becomes clear that they are going to hurt Violet, Tate leaves the house running to draw them away. Finally, when he can run no further, the kids surround him and demand to know why he did what he did. One girl tells him that she should be a thirty-four year old woman with kids and a family. It's clear that Tate killed these people and that he is a ghost himself. Can I just say that I feel vindicated, I guessed from the very beginning that Tate is a ghost.  

Before Violet can go running after him when Tate bursts through the front door, she is sidelined by Constance.  Constance takes her back to her place and tells her that Tate is her son but she cannot tell him that Adelaide is dead. It was absolutely heartbreaking to look at Adelaid's pale body lying in the cold morgue.  Once again Constance made it all about her as she talked about her lack of immortality now that Adelaide is dead.  I wanted to sympathize with her, but I found that I could not even as I watched her put makeup on Adelaide's face.  Now, only in death, is Adelaide allowed to look like the woman that she was.

I know that though Adelaide is dead that she will still be appearing on the show because we saw her ghost in the house but that is little consolation that once again another marginalized being has been killed off.  Adelaide was the only differently abled character on the show, and while I give the show credit for using an actual disabled person to play a disable character, whatever good will I had about this decision was lost with the ableist and abusive language continually aimed at Adelaide and her death which seem to read as punishment for wanting to be pretty.

I was similarly disappointed with Quinto's role.  There was much excitement of seeing Quinto on this show and yet he was sorely misused.  Episode four was fraught with homophobia and this episode he only appeared long enough to rant about how his halloween decorations were ruined and complain about his lecherous boyfriend.  Quinto is an extremely talented actor and the show did not utilize him properly.  

This week's episode ended with Ben leaving the house after surviving a night of being terrorized by Hayden.  I don't know about you but I found this rather anti-climactic.  We already know that Ben and Vivien are not going to break up.  The two of them need to remain attached to each other and the house for the show to go on. I think writers fall back on the fake cliff hanger because they run short of ideas.  Vivien certainly is going to make it easy for good ole' Ben but he is far from gone.  

What were your thoughts on Adelaide's death and did you always believe that Tate was a ghost?