Saturday, October 20, 2012

American Horror Story - Asylum: A Premiere Review

So the second season of American Horror Story premiered last Sunday but I didn't know about it until yesterday. I'm so not up-to-date on TV this year! But regardless, I got to watch the premiere and what a premiere it was!

I was a little bit skeptical of the second season, since the first one was fucking awesome! When they announced a cast switch-up after the season finale of season one, the fans were often dragged back and forth concerning the casting. Earlier reports stated the return of certain cast members and then they said the cast would return playing other characters, and finally only some of the cast came back in different roles.

The premiere was flawless. Although it was a bit tricky to follow the storylines at first, the slow reveal of certain mysteries helped to clarify any doubts I had early on. AHS has that talent of dragging you alongbrutally with your consent.
There are multiple storylines, once again, all unfolding in one location: a mental asylum.

We have the story of two twisted lovers (Jenna Dewan and Adam Levine) exploring the asylum in modern times. Teresa (Dewan) explains certain facts about the abandonned hospital and helps us establish the past of the asylum. She has a fetish for practising sexual activities in dark, horrifying places. Her boyfriend, Leo (Levine), follows her into the hospice and both get a taste of darkness.

Sometime in the 60's, shortly after JFK's inauguration, we follow the story of Sister Jude and Dr. Arthur Arden (Jessica Lange and James Cromwell) who both run the asylum although they do not seem to get along. Sister Jude (Lange) is a nun with a pious heart. She runs the asylum with an iron fist based on zealous religious beliefs. She's shown to be ruthless when she holds a journalist (Sarah Paulson) against her will when Sister Jude finds Lana (Paulson) wandering around the asylum.
And finally we have the story of Kit Walker (Evan Peters) who is also known as Bloody Face, since he was allegedly seen leaving the crime scene wearing a mask made of bloodied skin. He is brought to Briarcliff Asylum to be taken care of by Sister Jude until he goes to trial. He swears he did not kill his wife, Alma (Britne Oldford), and that he is not crazy. He believes (and we are shown) that in actuality, his homestead was attacked by an unseen creature that may or may not be aliens. Inside the asylum, he befriends a woman named Grace (Lizzie Brocheré), who is also accused of murdering people she loved and equally claims to be sane.

Behind all of these stories lies Monsignor Timothy Howard (Joseph Fiennes), the man whose vision inspired Sister Jude to turn the asylum into a pastry factory and who brought Dr. Arden (Cromwell) to the hospital so he can find a cure for tuberculosis. We see him briefly discussing with Sister Jude, who fantasizes of giving herself to him, and reassuring her that the mysterious and sometimes spooky Dr. Arden is not to be worried about.
The main plotlines all revolve around religion and mental illness, and how the ignorance of our past harms us more then we know. There is alot of sex/sexual references in this series and the creepy, edgy factor of season one was not lost in the change. I love that they inserted the music from the original Carrie into the season premiere - it really gave it that extra fear factor.

Here's a teaser for you to watch!

You can catch the show on FX, wednesdays at 10PM or do like me an watch it here. Hope you're not afraid of the dark!

Candles are out,
Eleven's Ink


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