For this episode, we discuss our hits and misses of the 2015 Fall TV season, both new shows and returning. Also, they get a bit giggly playing a game of Truth or Dare. Listen as Ellen does horrible celebrity impressions and Whitney reveals who she thinks would be a real lion in the boudoir.
In a truly shocking turn of events, Lady Gaga is not the thing that’s ruining American Horror Story this season. Over the last four years, AHS has pushed the boundaries of what is, or should be, acceptable for network TV. Finally, with the new season, Ryan Murphy and Co. might have gone too far.
For the record, I don’t think that Horror Story is actually scary. It’s been disturbing, and gross, and unsettling, and (on occasion) funny and touching. Not really scary, though. The one time it ever came close was an amazing scene in Asylum, when Lana Winters (Sarah Paulson) escapes from Briarcliff Manor with the help of seemingly decent psychologist Oliver Thredson, only to find that she is no safer outside than inside. The look of confusion, horror, and bitter disappointment on her face as she slowly realizes that Oliver (Zachary Quinto) is anything but her salvation is by far the best moment in the show’s notable history.
But then, the reason that moment landed so well was because we cared about what happened to Lana. The thing that differentiates seasons like Asylum and Coven (easily the strongest of the anthology’s run) is that they give us characters with whom we can fall in love, so we actually care when they are subjected to horrors, supernatural and man-made. I don’t think that these seasons were any less shocking or horrifying, they simply also provided us with a soft place to land.
Which brings me to Hotel. In only a few episodes, I’ve seen a dozen things that make me physically ill and, if you know me, that’s saying something. They are just vile enough that I won’t even mention them here. Suffice to say, while this show hasn’t ever been for the faint of heart, this new season might not be for anyone who didn’t spend their childhood torturing small animals.
Unlike previous (and much better) seasons, there’s unfortunately very little for audience to latch onto or identify with while they try to hold down their lunch. The closest thing we get to a hero is John Lowe (Wes Bentley) a police detective who (surprise!) struggles with alcohol dependence, a troubled home life, and a dark past. Minimal points for originality.
There’s also, so far, very little in the way of a story. There have been several violent murders, scenes of sexual torture, abject cruelty, but not much in the way of a discernible plot. I guess there’s a murderer? And some vampires? Who knows? Clearly not the writers.
Hotel is a perfect example of what can happen when a show can’t decide what’s more important: continuing to please their increasingly less avid fan base, or flipping a middle finger to network censorship.
I present to you a pop culture syllogism: if you like good TV, then you like American Horror Story; if you like American Horror Story, then you LOVE Jessica Lange. Therefore, if you like good TV, you love Jessica Lange.
It was recently announced that Lange will be making the fourth season of AHS her last. If you are wondering how the show can survive without her, you aren’t alone. For now, we’re going to enjoy the guts out of Freakshow and revel in Constance-Sister-Jude-Fiona’s last season. Thanks for proving that there are still great roles for gracefully aging women in TV. And the four years worth of reoccurring nightmares. Can’t forget about those.
Seriously, where did this guy come from? Has he always been a thing? Maybe it’s the distinctly Clockwork Orange-y vibe he throws off, or maybe I’m losing my uncanny ability to scope out even the most obscure of Hotties. Either way…
I never had a mind to crush on Mr. Peters till I got around to watching American Horror Story: Asylum. First, I would like to say, YIKES. AHS is rough stuff, even for a gal with a deep appreciation for even the most depraved examples of the horror genre. Second, I would like to personally apologize to Evan Peters for not getting it before now. You are smoking; You should know that about yourself. Also, your turn as Quicksilver in one of this summers watchable movies, X-Men: Days of Future Past, was bananas. You stone cold scene-stealer, you.
In summation, if you haven’t yet started crushing on Evan Peters yet, here is the chance to get the jump on all your friends. He is going to be huge, and you don’t want to be the last one to crash the Evan Peters Party. If you’re still not convinced, you can watch him in American Horror Story: Freakshow this fall. I guarantee you will be terrified and twitterpated in equal measure. Try not to think about it too much.