We thought we'd never make it, but the time has finally arrived. We're hours from the finale of AHS: Coven, and despite our best intentions, we've got absolutely no clue how it will all end. Of course, being that the episode is called "The Seven Wonders" and that the only thing that's managed to stay consistent throughout this supernatural debris bundle is the question of the next Supreme, we'll hopefully have a read on that by season's end. It's the other 20,000 questions that will likely fall to the wayside and disappear in a sea of useless plot lines proliferated throughout the Ryan Murphy universe that are bringing us down.
But with all the series' permutations over a remarkably short 12 episodes, it's hard to keep track of the nonsense that's come and gone and potential character development (and actual characters) thrown into heaps of rubble where their only job is to disintegrate until they're barely distant memories. Yet, American Horror Story will sew itself up on Wednesday night, angle for some Emmys in August, and move onto another place in time and supernatural space. And more likely than not, the only thing we'll have to show for it is the following list of nigh unanswerable questions. Like...
1. Is anyone really dead?
Fiona was eaten by alligators, Madame LaLaurie has a knife in her chest, the Ax Man got many literal axes, but we know the drill. People don't really die on AHS. LaLaurie had her head cut off and lived to tell the tale; the Ax Man survived his last witchy murder and lived on as a pedophile ghost; and Fiona is played by Jessica Lange, which is basically a free pass for unquestionable immortality. Riddle us this AHS: who actually dies? You've only got one more episode — can you possibly explain yourself?
2. If AHS loves ghosts so much, where is Nan?
Nan had a sprawling, expansive plot. She brought the righteous Patti LuPone's nosy neighbor to Fiona's door; she fought zombies for her hot neighbor boyfriend; she accused his mother of killing him and forced her to drink bleach. And after all that, she's drowned in a bath tub and given to Papa Legba: the end? Spalding gets new life and Nan — the far more interesting character — is just expelled? What gives? Where is Nan's hot neighbor boyfriend and why isn't he a ghost? What's keeping Nan and her boyfriend from being ghost lovers like Spalding and his dolls?
3. Why is no one affected by the earlier sexual abuse plot lines?
Kyle was sexually abused by his mother. Madison was gang raped. They both shed some tears, shared a brief moment about being literally dead once, had rough sex, and then moved on. Sure, we can extrapolate that Kyle's violent streak could stem from his mother's abuse and that Madison's already vicious and jealous (often about Kyle) tendencies were amplified when she was assaulted, but the connections are pretty thin considering the fact that Kyle is a Frankenstein monster who's naturally angry and Madison was killed her director before she even got to Miss Robichaux's. With so much weight put on those tough scenes of sexual violation and no real connection to the plot as it stands today, we're forced to assume AHS was pulling out the horrifying stops just to garner some extra OMGs rather that using them to any real dramatic end. You wouldn't do that to us, would you? AHS? Hello?
4. Will Cordelia ever have that baby she was so obsessed with?
At the outset of the season, Cordelia had hopes and dreams. Mostly, they were baby-related hopes and dreams, but they were hopeful nonetheless. Her dreams were so big, we were forced to watch as she participated (in a dream) in a voodoo ritual that featured burning semen and goat's blood poured on her vagina. Now that we're at the end, will Cordelia ever get her baby? Or did that dream die with Hank's fidelity? Has she lost her will to hope for something more? Will she ever become the Paul Newman of witches who love salad dressing and market Cordelia's Coriander Surprise, like Myrtle suggested?
5. Where are the other witches? And why aren't they involved?
There are other witches. We know that because there's a council — who Myrtle paralyzed — assembled to govern them and because Hank once sexed and killed one outside of New Orleans. But if there are others, why don't they care that this coven is tearing up their corner of New Orleans? Were there no possible replacements for Myrtle and her eye-less cohorts? Wouldn't they have heard about the showdown at LaLaurie's or the mass murder at the witch hunters' corporation front and come running? (Side question: Is the news a thing in New Orleans?) Was Stevie Nicks the extent of the extended witch community?
6. Were there no other witch hunters left after Hank and his father's company?
Alright. We can accept that AHS happens in a bubble, even within the witching community. But what about the order of witch hunters who came after Miss Robichaux's coven? Yeah, Hank got his brains blown out and the Ax Man took out the leaders of the sinister corporation during a rather messy board room meeting, but we were given the impression that this witch hunter thing was a larger movement that threatened all of witchdom. You're telling us it's all peachy now that a few heads have rolled?
7. Why Was Madame LaLaurie even involved?
Yes, AHS loves to tell us that redemption is a myth, but couldn't the series have done that in a way that actually made sense in the plot? Fiona awoke LaLaurie for no reason other than to piss off Marie LaVeau — something she could have done in a million other ways — and as a result, we learned all about Nicholas Cage's sick taste in vacation homes and got to watch Kathy Bates turn a terrible character into an intriguing, yet ultimately disappointing one. But what the hell does a terrible New Orleans murderess really have to do with witch culture? And what did we really gain from this storyline aside from extra servings of Kathy-Bates-is-awesome and a factually-skewed history lesson?
8. Where is Stevie Nicks and where is her magical scarf?
If she's a powerful witch, why is she not concerned that her dear friend Fiona is dying? Couldn't she write another witchy song about all this nonsense? Why was she ever around in the first place, aside from the fact that she's friends with Ryan Murphy?
And for that matter, what did Madison do with Stevie's super important twirling scarf? Did she steal it just to be spiteful? Did Misty Day ever get it back? No, seriously, did Murphy bring Nicks and her scarf on just to distract us from the fact that the series' plot is a sprawling wonderland of nonsense?
9. Is Zoe's lethal vagina done now?
The hook for Zoe's entire character was that she couldn't have sex without killing her partner — it was shocking and racy and completely compelling. But then, she fell in love with undead Kyle and apparently, her killer cameltoe is no longer an issue. The consequences of her cursed sex were erased when she found love in an entirely hopeless place, but once again that means AHS dealt out a creepy sex card only to wash it away when the WTF luster had faded. We get it, AHS. But that doesn't mean we don't feel duped.
10. Why? In general.
The truly disappointing thing about AHS: Coven is the sheer fact that it's jerked us around on a string of unbelievable, jaw-dropper moments — Queenie's sexual frustration and Minotaur exploration, Zoe's killer vagina, Cordelia's voodoo sex rituals — and almost none of them have actually served any purpose aside from dragging out the series' only sense-making plot line: who is the next Supreme? AHS: Coven has basically been a wildly crowded Christmas tree, bedecked in clashing ornaments and tinsel. Now, it's Christmas morning, and even if some of the above chachkies come to make some semblance of sense (This race car ornament is Christmasish because your dad bought it while he was thinking about Christmas, get it?), the only thing worth caring about are the goods at the bottom.
We like to think of ourselves as more discerning TV consumers who delight in the intricacies of side plot and character depth, but not when it comes to this show. This is what you've made us, American Horror Story.
Image: FX (2)