FX American Horror Story Massacres and Matinees TV Show Review. American Horror Story: Season 4, Episode 1: Massacres and Matinees found Elsa Mars (Jessica Lange) exposing her true colors when she was unable hide her seething envy as Bette and Dot Tatter (Sarah Paulson) stole the show with their rendition of Fiona Apple’s Criminal. [I was able to give a pass and actually enjoy Elsa Mars’ rendition of David Bowie’s Life on Mars in the first episode, but I will not be able to get past Murphy and Falchuk doing this in every episode. It does not work! It takes you right out of the truth of the moment, the era. It is extremely campy, gimmicky and showy (not in a good way) and did I say it does not work. I hope they stop this.]
Dandy Mott (Finn Wittrock) was at first introduction, comical…and annoying. I knew something was brewing with him…however, I could not have predicted the creators pairing him with Twisty the clown (John Carroll Lynch)! This is nothing short of brilliance, for all its storyline possibilities…and probable future chaos.
Strongman Dell Toledo, played excellently by the exuberant Michael Chiklis, came to town (who we couldn’t have imagined not showing up, as his energy and character are much needed and such a perfect fit for the show) looking for work for he and his gal Desiree, a hermaphrodite with an ample bosom, played with gusto by Angela Bassett. We also learned that Dell and Ethel Darling (Kathy Bates) had a romantic past together…and that Dell is most likely Jimmy Darling (Evan Peters)’s dad.
The cops started digging around even more after the officer that went looking for Bette and Dot last week went missing as well. Jimmy held on to the dead detective’s badge, and once Dell proved to be an aggressor, Jimmy tried to frame him by planting the badge in his trailer. But when the cops get tipped about the badge, they came to collect a culprit…Dell is a step ahead, and planted the badge in Meep’s tent. In a disturbing moment, Meep (Ben Woolf) is hauled off to jail and is cornered and mauled by the other inmates as he screams out in terror.
This is a tight episode.
One hope I have, that “they” will pull back on the overly blatant monologues from Jimmy about “freaks being targeted and segregated by society. It is not necessary to hit us over the head with this. We get it. We got it…let the story be the message.
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