Last week on American Horror Story, Shelby (Sarah Paulson) and Matt (Cuba Gooding Jr.) discovered the dark truth behind their home’s past. The murders that took place in that house were potentially responsible for the paranormal activity they were experiencing. During this time, Flora, Lee’s (Angela Bassett) daughter, went missing. Her sweatshirt was found hanging high up in a tree with no sign of the girl herself.
This week starts out with a search party to find Flora. Instead of fining the girl, they find clues made out of Flora’s torn apart doll and dead pig parts. After three days of searching, the child isn’t found and everyone is on edge. It isn’t long before another body is discovered.
Out of nowhere, a medium named Cricket (Leslie Jordan) shows up to help find Flora. He is well known for finding missing children all over the country alongside the FBI. He discovers that the house and the land are “protected” by The Butcher (Kathy Bates) who promises to kill anyone who trespasses on her land. This is a promise she has already kept. When Cricket demands money for helping to find Flora, Matt kicks him out under the assumption that he is a fake, but when he reveals knowledge of a secret Lee keeps, she realizes that he is, in fact, the real deal.
As I predicted last week, the word Croatoan has finally appeared, proving this season is about The Lost Colony. Cricket tells us that The Butcher was married to John White, the governor of Roanoke. He was forced to go back to England for supplies and left her in charge. She was unwilling to leave the settlement upon the request of some of the colonists and was punished for it. Her own son, played by Wes Bentley, was part of the betrayal. After days alone in the forest, she was dying of hunger and thirst and when she should have died, The Butcher was rescued by a dark woman in the forest (Lady Gaga) and sold her soul to her for life and revenge. Once again in control of the colony, The Butcher moved the group inland to the location of Shelby and Matt’s current home.
Finally the season is starting to peak my interest. The season has taken a Poltergeist turn with the missing child taken by the dead and a little person medium’s arrival to help bring the child back to the living. Again, several parts of the episode are reminiscent of Murder House, leading me to believe it really is being done on purpose. In fact, you may remember Billie Dean Howard (Sarah Paulson) from season one mentioning The Lost Colony to Constance (Jessica Lange). If my memory serves me correctly, she even uses the word Croatoan to get rid of ghosts that bother her. We have been leading up to this season from the very beginning.
This week’s episode wasn’t what I would call eventful but the backstory helps relieve a bit of the confusion brought on by the first two episodes. From this episode on, we now understand who the villains are, what they are, why they are and what they want. Now they can focus on providing more shock and awe, something this season desperately needs if it is going to improve to the level of previous seasons. It cannot stay this slow if it hopes to keep the audiences’ interests.