American Horror Story: Episode 2 (AKA: Jumping 3 Sharks at Once)

WARNING: Spoilers ahead

With the second episode freshly aired, there are a few things on my mind with this season of AHS. Like… Why do these people keep living in a house which is clearly either haunted or lined in hallucinogenic mushrooms? Where did that 24-hour cop-car go when the bloody butcher knife was stuck in the front door? And where the heck is Evan Peters and Lady Gaga?!

This episode started with Kathy Bates standing over a fire pit of human sacrifice in the woods shouting, “I am the queen of every hive!” and I think that’s a good summary of the AHS:6 spirit. Why have one horror trope when you can just have all of them? In episode two, we get almost every single one.

Sarah Paulson is lost in the woods after a night-time ghost-car-crash (I always hate it when that happens) and stumbles upon a weird cult of colonial re-enactors who are all at once trying to be The Blair Witch Project and Lord of the Flies. They succeed in neither, but Paulson is pretty terrified of the bad mash-up and runs away. Luckily, this time when she tells her husband, Cuba Gooding Jr., and the local police about the incident, they believe her and find a burned up effigy in the woods outside of their big haunted house.

(This means that, unlike Murder House, the ghosts around here leave physical evidence that outsiders can see and touch, so it makes you wonder why more people aren’t concerned about the teeth-rain happening at this house)

Strangely enough, after seeing this human-pig-roast, Paulson decides that now she wants to stay in the over-sized, not-so-colonial colonial and ‘fight off’ the supposed hilly billies who are trying to ‘scare off’ her and Gooding. This is where I would have chosen to flee the entire state of North Carolina for the rest of my life, but to each their own, I guess.

After this point, episode two start riding motorcycles right over shark tanks left and right. We get a little girl seeing an invisible friend named ‘Priscilla’ who says everyone in the house is going to die. Followed by some serial-killer nurse sisters who like to play a morbid game of HORSE on the dining room wall and are– wait for it– also ghosts! Then we have the return of Denis O’Hare, now playing a crazed doctor type on a video tape from 1997 (I liked to call him Dr. Exposition).

And lastly, we finish episode 2 of ‘My Roanoke Nightmare’ up with casual parent kidnapping and said kidnapped daughter lost in the woods with her sweater stuck up a tree. What does any of it mean? Not a single clue. American Horror Story has a lovely penchant for being muddled and convoluted, so it’s no surprise that we’re all lost by episode 2. I doubt any of it will come together in a cohesive way until episode 8 at the soonest, but that’s all just part of the fun of AHS.

Besides, there hasn’t been a single rape scene thus far, and that’s always a good sign, since AHS usually has the unnecessary rape trope by the first 30 minutes (see: Murder House, Coven, and Hotel. Asylum had rape too, but it was in the later episodes, so it was… marginally less disgusting, thought equally unnecessary).

Maybe next week we’ll finally find the Roanoke in ‘My Roanoke Nightmare.’ Take a shot of something strong when the word ‘Croatoan’ finally shows up.

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