American Horror Story Review by Nadim S.

American Horror Story 4.02: Massacres and Matinees

American Horror Story 4.02: Massacres and Matinees

Written By:
Tim Minear
Directed By:
Alfonso Gomez-Rejon

It's funny but I think Twisty and Dandy's newly formed relationship might just be the coolest element about the show this season. They're both so enormously demented, and I think that's going to make for some truly disturbing television. I can't say I was shocked to see Dandy drag the girl back to Twisty's hellhole, and I have a feeling the worst is yet to come. The air is just so full of menace and perversion when these two share the screen, and I absolutely can't wait to see more.

As excepted, Angela Bassett and Michael Chiklis finally made their first appearance on Freak Show as a particularly bizarre couple: Dell Toledo is a stereotypical circus strongman, but Desiree is a three-breasted hermaphrodite! Naturally I'm much more fascinated by Bassett's typically astounding turn, but the added layer of Dell being Jimmy's father is a welcome complication. Also, he almost killed him as a child.

While it wasn't very subtle, I loved the entire diner sequence where the circus gang was ostracized for being different. It beautifully paralleled the feeling of loneliness and isolation that so many minorities (different races, sexual inclinations, etc.) experience. Furthermore, the scene was powerfully bookended by Del viciously beating his own son (who didn't even know it was his father doing the beating). 

Now I want to say Meep's death was equally powerful and affecting, but apart from the cuteness factor, we didn't really have time to forge an investment in the character. Still, it was a well executed turns that adds a good sense of urgency to the proceedings.

It's fascinating to see Elsa express superiority over her freaks ("your kind will be blamed"). Although she has a disability herself, she puts herself on a pedestal, and it was especially compelling to watch her manipulate Bette and Dot by turning one sister against the other (and providing a murder weapon in the process). Why do I have the sinking feeling someone is going to try to surgically separate the two before the season is over? God knows this show always crosses every line there is (and that's what makes it so special).

How can something so creepy be so enjoyable to watch? But I guess that's what makes American Horror Story so powerful as a brand. The show has completely taken over pop culture, and it's easy to see why: it's so damn good.

Our Grade:
The Good:
  • Twisty and Dandy's relationship
  • The diner sequences
  • Elsa's sense of ill-placed superiority
The Bad:
  • Not enough time to invest in Meep's character

Nadim S. is a regular contributor of review for Critical Myth; The Critical Myth Show is heard here on VOG Network's radio feed Monday, Wednesday & Friday. For more commentary from Nadim, go to You can follow him on twitter at @nadsreviews.

American Horror Story by - 10/20/2014 7:34 AM134 views

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