**SPOILER ALERT #1** – This post will talk about some key plot points from AHS:Cult. If you haven’t watched the whole series yet, and still want to be surprised, you may want to skip this post.
**(NON-)SPOILER ALERT #2** – Despite a relatively linear storyline, Ryan Murphy once again Ryan Murphy’ed all over this season of AHS by leaving lots of “untied loose ends” and plotline dead ends.
I’ve watched every season of American Horror Story, and I find them entertaining and compelling. But every season, without fail, the show goes off the rails – whether it’s ridiculous plot twists or characters that appear, then disappear… Never to been heard from again. That being said, this season of AHS was better than most for this, but there were still some things that ALMOST turned me into a hate-watcher.
The Wizardry of Oz
First off, young Cooper Dodson did a great job on AHS: Cult as Ozzy. His performance was spot-on and, let’s face it, he probably saw some crazy stuff on set, even if it was “movie magic.” But Oz’s greatest power? Disappearing.
After his mom and nanny met their demise, you’d think Ally would spend all her waking moments with Oz… But throughout the series, he’d disappear for episodes at a time. Even if we assume Kai locked him in a room by himself, you’d have to think that he’s be pretty damn scarred. In the finale, he seems perfectly well adjusted.
Who’s Running Beverly’s News Show?!
It was good to see
Dylan McDermott Dermot Mulroney as Beverly’s boss on AHS, and his death scene (along with that of his attic-bound “friend”) was truly disturbing… But by the end of the series (especially when reporting on Gary’s untimely demise), Beverly looked like absolute crap, and yet she was allowed on air. In reality, no news producer in their right mind would allow this to air. Reporters are (sadly) judged on their looks on a regular basis, and Beverly’s devolution into hot-messedness would garner more angry viewer voicemails than WNEP Scranton’s backyard train. Who’s running this show now that Bob Thompson’s dead? Another cult member? Did Bev get a promotion? We’ll never know.
As an AHS newbie, Alison Pill is a great addition to the American Horror Story family – also, she’s Canadian! Her cherubic, innocent face is the perfect red herring to disguise her character’s motives… Although keen, fashion-savvy viewers may have realized she was probably in on it all along.
But Ivy met her demise and was placed in the world’s worst makeshift morgue/lye dispensary.. But in one of Kai’s last visits to his parents, Ivy is nowhere to be seen in the room.. And in the finale, Ally visits Ivy’s grave. We can only assume that after the FBI raid, they found the bedroom/graveyard and gave Ivy a proper burial. Kai didn’t take credit for Ivy’s murder, so how did that go down? Was he found guilty anyway? Is it an unsolved mystery? Did Ivy get buried between her lye-ing and that time Kai started hallucinating? Did they blame Speed Wagon? We’ll never know, and are left to connect the dots however we want – But this isn’t Gestaltism, it’s FX. That’s not art, Ryan Murphy – it’s lazy storytelling.
From Shrill to Kill
Don’t get me wrong, I loves me some Sarah Paulson… But AHS:Cult’s first few episodes were hysteric-Ally screamy and cry-y. Then, all of a sudden, AFTER her shrink and her partner bite it, Ally gets all super confident and clown-friendly. Coulrophobia is real, kids – and so is anxiety and many other mental illnesses. It’s not something you get over in a hot minute. I’m not buying it.
There were also the dead end plot points of the creepy spray trucks, Lena Dunham and Frances Conroy showing up because they wanted to, and many others. And the teased, much-hyped, then unceremoniously dropped bee plot point.
What’d I miss? Let me know in the comments, or lambast me on Twitter.
All this being said, once American Horror Story: Cult hit its stride a few episodes in, there were some great moments. Billy Eichner was a revelation, Billie Lourd is just plain awesome and, story-wise, the lack of “paranormal stuff to explain plot holes” was refreshing. I’m also hoping that Donald Trump stumbles upon the show and, confusing FX with Fox News, thinks that AHS:Cult is a documentary.
I’m still going to watch American Horror Story – and I’ll definitely be tuning into Ryan Murphy’s next season of American Crime Story – The Assassination of Gianni Versace. Not only am I a fan of Versace, I’m a fan of Darren Criss in (and out of) a Speedo.
What did you think of AHS: Cult? Let me know!