TV: AHS kills the Christmas spirit


By Meryl Gottlieb | | @buzzlightmeryl
American Horror Story airs Wednesdays at 10 p.m. on FX
Rating: 4/5

Let me begin by saying that I am a huge Christmas enthusiast, and, if you are like me, you might find tonight’s episode of AHS, “Unholy Night,” a bit hard to watch. I’ll explain.

In 1962, a man we find out to be named Leigh (Ian McShane) shoots a Red Cross Santa, who honestly annoys us all, but that’s not a reason to kill him. It is clear from the beginning that Leigh has some serious problems with Santa and Christmas.

He puts on the bloodied Santa outfit and goes to a random family’s home, tortures them and kills them.

Gee, thanks, Ryan Murphy. I have been in the holiday high spirits since Nov. 26 and you just soiled them. SOILED THEM. Just when I begin to tolerate you, you attack Christmas. That is inexcusable.

Frank (Fredric Lehne), the security guard, wants to go to the police about what happened with Grace (Lizzie Brocheré), Kit (Evan Peters) and the creature.

Sister Jude (Jessica Lange) comes at Sister Mary Eunice (Lily Rabe) with a razor blade, saying she knows Mary Eunice is the host to the devil and her purity shields him. However, Arden (James Cromwell) intrudes and Jude is escorted out.

In 1963, Jude prepares the Briarcliff patients for a picture that will run in the local paper to remind the world how Briarcliff keeps the crazies out of the public. However, Leigh bites and kills an orderly in front of the photographer, who gets pictures of the scene. As a result, Jude locks Leigh up in his cell after caning him and cancels Christmas celebrations forever.

Back to 1964 though: Mary Eunice decides to bring Christmas back to Briarcliff and assembles a tree adorned with personal items of the patients such as dentures and hair ribbons — because nothing says Christmas like a nice set of choppers up on the tree.

Mary Eunice enters Leigh’s cell — with a Santa suit — and tells his story. While in prison, Leigh was raped by jailers, who had been singing Christmas carols, thus taking away his Christmas spirit along with his dignity. Mary Eunice urges him to celebrate Christmas again and put the suit on.

Arden gives Mary Eunice a Christmas gift of ruby earrings from a woman of the concentration camps who used to swallow those earrings everyday so her past wealth would always be within her. And the Christmas joy continues. Mary Eunice still adores the gift, which upsets Arden who misses her old pure spirit.

Jude wants to return to Briarcliff in order to stop the spread of evil: the devil’s possession of Mary Eunice, to whom Jude still shows affection.

Arden visits Jude in the abbey to plea for help with Mary Eunice. The two agree to work together in order to save her.

Kit dreams of a pregnant Alma (Britne Oldford), who then morphs into a pregnant Grace. Stop it. No love triangles, please.

Lana (Sarah Paulson) wants to help get Kit out of Briarcliff, for he’s been there since the incident last episode. She informs Kit of the truth about Thredson and assures him she will save him.

In the lobby, Leigh takes the star Monsignor Howard (Joseph Fiennes) gave Briarcliff to top the Christmas tree and tries to kill the orderlies and security guards. Oh, the Christmas spirit is everywhere!

After Frank takes Leigh back to his cell, Mary Eunice kills Frank in front of Leigh. She then unleashes Leigh onto Jude, who was tricked by Arden. Arden simply wanted to prove his loyalty to Mary Eunice by setting up Jude.

This is the last straw Arden; I’m thoroughly done with you.

tumblr_meleqjODMh1qdk4doo2_r1_250Thredson (Zachary Quinto) finds Lana just as she is about to call the police. He tells her how she made him kill Bloody Face because he had to remove all of the evidence. He is now furious that she betrayed him. He wants Bloody Face to rise again (like Fawkes the phoenix, only insanely terrifying) with her skin as his new mask. Right before he can take Lana, Kit knocks him out.

The tension and suspense was just too much; I can’t even.

Kit wants to keep Thredson alive so that he doesn’t get electrocuted, despite Lana’s wishes to kill him. Lana then brings up a very good point: If there is still a manhunt, why has no one turned Kit in? Look at you being all journalistic.

Arden is ready to dispose of Grace’s body when a bright light and high-pitched sound stuns him. The aliens took Grace! This is the only storyline I want her to have. I want to know more about the aliens because they sure aren’t like E.T.

After a terrifying interaction, Jude finally stabs Leigh. Seeing Jessica Lange in such a state of panic was phenomenal acting at its finest, but also so hard to watch because I adore her characters way too much.

If Lange and Quinto don’t win awards for this season, then I’m media-illiterate, which is an utterly false statement, so they better win.

Kit and Lana plan on keeping Thredson in a storage room, and Lana vows, “One day, I will bury you.”

And I cannot wait to see it.


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