'American Horror Story: Coven' - 'Go To Hell' Recap
January 24th, 2014 8:32am EST
With everything that happens in this latest episode of American Horror Story, “Go To Hell”, it really is a rather dull hour of television. Particularly AHS, which has always provided a smidgen of something to keep me entertained. Sure, it has its bit moments of excitement and shock, but ultimately left me feeling… Underwhelmed? Bored? Indifferent? This season hasn’t been the strongest in terms of story or character, so I don’t expect an instant improvement on that front, but while Coven’s narrative has suffered greatly, its sense of fun and entertainment has never really wavered. Whenever the story was getting too absurd or nonsensical or tedious, in came Myrtle with an insanely hilarious monologue or Madison spewing snark and bitchery wherever she went, or Fiona serving up Supreme, head bitch in charge realness. Those moments are missing from this episode; the ones that make me go “That’s why I’m still watching this show.” Aside from one really great Misty moment, everything else feels either disappointing or unremarkable. Maybe the writers left all the surprises and insanity for the finale.
Rant over. Commence Recap:
The episode opens with a silent movie style vignette, in which we are presented with the trial of the “Seven Wonders”. Those wonders are: Telekinesis, Concilium, Transmutation, Divination, Vitalum Vitalis, Descensum, and Pyrokinesisand; they must be performed successfully by a witch in order to be named the next Supreme. The vignette concludes with an ominous voice over of Fiona saying, “Our highest honor comes at the greatest price, death is not uncommon, and danger, inescapable. Attempting the seven wonders can get you killed, but perform them and you are the next Supreme,” as one of the old-timey witches is engulfed in flames. Fiona is talking to Queenie, who resists the witch’s attempt to manipulate her. They argue over Marie’s unknown whereabouts and the conversation ends with Fiona telling Queenie that her trials will begin soon. Nobody messes with the (current) Supreme.
Cordelia barges into Madison’s room seeking help. She wants to see whether she has her powers back, Madison is apprehensive at first and evades Cordelia’s grasp with some cool transmutation, but ultimately allows Cordelia to touch her and is relieved when Cordelia’s powers are nonexistent.
Queenie snoops in the basement/greenhouse and finds a bloody mess, we can hear a pissed off Marie talk about Delphine, but it is unclear whether Queenie hears it or not. She does, however, infer that the blood is Marie’s. She then manages to descend into her hell (back to the chicken shack) where she meets Papa Legba. He is impressed that she was able to descend before her time and schools her about the nature of hell. They come back from hell and discuss what to do with both Marie and Delphine. Papa Legba agrees to end his agreement with Marie in order for Queenie to be able to kill Delphine.
Cut to Delphine now giving the tour at her own house, which has become quite the tourist attraction. She has a modern new look and is denying all the atrocities she committed in the past. Queenie shows up and confronts Delphine, who tells her how she took over the house. It is quite hilarious to see Delphine in disguise going on the tour dedicated to her own life. She obviously is not too happy with the way the tours are conducted and promptly knocks the tour guide out quite gruesomely. Blood splatters everywhere. Queenie implores Delphine to repent and atone for what she has done, but Delphine feels absolutely no remorse and refuses to. She goes on about the state of the country and what a shameful way people behave, etc. She won’t be a hypocrite and apologize for what she is not sorry for, unlike so many nowadays. Queenie can’t have in anymore and stabs Delphine, sending her to hell. Finally! You go, Queenie!
At Miss Robichaux’s Fiona sits for her portrait and she’s all emotional and depressed, maybe questioning her selfishness and place in the world. Later Cordelia visits her and asks what the deal is about Queenie doing the “Seven Wonders”. But Fiona doesn’t want to argue. She does tell her daughter that she didn’t need to mutilate herself, her powers cannot leave her, they are innate, and it is all within her. Thanks, you kind of could’ve said that before she took some gardening shears to her face. She goes on to hand down her “most precious heirloom” (her mother’s necklace) to Cordelia who surmises that Fiona is “saying goodbye.” It’s quite the touching moment, until Fiona clasps the necklace on her daughter’s neck and Cordelia’s powers reemerge stronger than ever. She has a haunting vision (Via a close-up of her messed up eye-holes which I really had no desire to see with such detail. Seriously, poor Delia’s face is disgusting) of all the witches dead in the most gruesome ways, finally she sees herself with what appears to be a gunshot in the forehead and a hand snaps the necklace from her neck, it is revealed that the vision is in Fiona’s point of view and that she is responsible for the massacre. Very disturbing.
Cordelia then pays a visit to the Axeman and warns him of Fiona’s true intentions. She channels her best Fiona and tells him, “She’s going to regain her power, and when she does she’s not going to waste her time on some halfway decent musician in a twelve dollar suit. You feel that? That empty, heartbroken feeling, that’s what it feels like to get close to Fiona.” Snap!
With her powers back, Cordelia attempts to “find” Misty Day once more and finally is able to see where she is trapped. She and Queenie go the cemetery to break Misty out. Queenie performs the Vitalum Vitalis on Misty and revives her.
At the house Myrtle lets Madison know that Cordelia and Queenie are out rescuing Misty when Zoe shows up with Kyle in tow. She says she has returned because “there’s no escaping what I am. I came back because I’m clearly the next Supreme.” Then in comes a very angry Misty Day and lays the smackdown on Madison. It is hilarious and awesome, she really beats her ass. Kyle breaks them apart just as the Axeman shows up in a rage. The witches show some coven solidarity and join their forces to oppose him. They notice blood on the floor and Cordelia uses her sight to see whose it is.
In her vision, Axeman confronts Fiona about her treacherous plans, he tells her Cordelia paid him a visit and tried to turn him against Fiona. He finds a boarding pass in her purse and Fiona admits, “Let’s be realistic, when the next Supreme is dead I’ll have thirty years of vitality until another one comes along…Hell, I know you’ve got all this to offer, but come on…” This doesn’t really sit well with the Axeman and he attacks her, violently hacking at her with his axe.
Back at the house, the witches discuss what to do with Axeman. Myrtle says they should spare him, he just got rid of the greatest threat to the coven after all, but the young witches have other plans for him. Madison is first and strikes him with his own axe, and then Zoe, Misty and Queenie follow stabbing him repeatedly, blood spraying their faces. Myrtle cradles a crying Cordelia.
Jump to Delphine living out her own personal hell. She is now a prisoner in her own twisted torture chamber. Her daughter Borquita is trapped in a cage nearby. Marie is their cruel torturer and makes Borquita drink her own mother’s blood, yuck. Just as Marie is about to brand Borquita, she recoils like she has just awoken and realized where she is, and refuses to continue. Papa Legba shows up and tells them (Delphine and Marie) that this will be eternity for them, Delphine punished for all her evildoings and Marie, for all the innocent souls she sacrificed. As Papa Legba says, “No one gets away with sin. Eventually, everybody pays, everybody suffers.”
Finally at Miss Robichaux’s, Kyle hangs the portrait of Fiona and the girls all say what a great Supreme she was, Cordelia is all like ‘did you all eat a brain tumor for breakfast?’ “She was a force to be reckoned with but she was a horrible Supreme,” says Cordelia, “She shirked all of her responsibility, including the most important, identifying her successor. So it will be up to us to find our new leader, and the only way is through the test of Seven Wonders… Sunday at dawn it begins. Everyone participates. And by next week, we will have a new Supreme.”
That is what it all has come down to. Frankly, the whole Supreme mystery is not as intriguing as it was in the first half of the season and has become annoyingly tiresome. Unless a crazy, unpredictable twist awaits us in the finale, I don’t know how the show can justify all the attention/time it has given to this particular mystery. If they resolve this story thread like they did Delphine and Marie’s story, then I’m certainly not looking forward to the finale. Perhaps what has skewed my negative reaction of the episode is the disappointing ending for those two. While I’m all for Delphine finally getting her comeuppance (and it was a satisfying end for that character), I was hoping for more of a triumph for the Voodoo Queen. Sure, she is not being torture, but she is stuck with Delphine for eternity, and torturing people takes a considerable toll on you soul. Not that Marie shouldn’t have been punished at all, just that her sins don’t really compare to the ones committed by Delphine. Putting them together and forcing them into the same hell somehow equates their transgressions. Delphine was an abuser of power and privilege and took great pleasure in her exploits, whereas Marie had to work against many injustices creating her own power and came nowhere near the sadistic nature of Delphine. Also, Im just kind of sad that is the end of Marie and that we’ll likely not see her again. Angela Bassett was probably my favorite performer this season.
And about wrapping up stories unsatisfactorily, Fiona's death is incredibly anticlimactic and underwhelming. All season this bif face-off has been hinted at, 'who will be the Supreme to challenge Fiona?' or Fiona vs the coven, that to have the Axeman just kill her so easily feels off. I'm still holding out for some crazy twist that she might not be dead/completely dead.
What did you think of “Go To Hell”?
Photo Credits: FX