Mmmmm Artisanal Baby Gravy: What We Learned From Last Night's Episode Of American Horror Story

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Mmmmm Artisanal Baby Gravy: What We Learned From Last Night's Episode Of 'American Horror Story'

By Joanna Robinson | TV Reviews | October 24, 2013 | Comments ()


Aw, It’s Everyone’s Favorite Racist Grandma: This is basically what my grandma looks like when she’s watching Fox News. I was so in love with Madame Delphine’s reaction to Obama. If she wanted to run for office, she would be ever so popular with the Tea Party. Move over, Bachmann, there’s a new set of crazy eyes in town.

It’s Okay To Love Your Undead Son, But It’s Not Okay To Love Your Undead Son: Oh man, Mare Winningham was always one of my favorite Brat Packers and I was really starting to like her pot-smoking mom routine until the touching went from bad to worse.

In light of Kyle’s sexual trauma, Misty Day’s Fleetwood Mac-fueled handsy-ness was extra inappropriate. Let’s not straddle the zombies, okay, Misty? What would Stevie think?

The Minotaur And The “Labyrinth”: So, um, yes, the labyrinth is her vagina. How is this going to end for Queenie? One of you last week dropped an erroneous spoiler that Queenie was going to die this episode, so I fully expected for her to get gored by the Minotaur (who, for the record, has been fully magicked if his trotters and cloven hands are any indication). Instead it looks like she going to be “gored” by the Minotaur. Will we have a Minotaur baby? Half-man/half-Queenie/half-bull? Things were getting a little rough there at the end, but what you do with your Bull Monster behind closed shed doors is your business, Precious.
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A Voodoo Queen For The Modern Era: As much as I delighted in Marie Laveau tonguing a pepper and bathing Cordelia’s barren nethers in goat’s blood, it was the iPad solitaire that really got me.
“On the day, you bring 2 ounces of your husband’s baby gravy in a jar”

She’s On A Mission To Civilize: What are we supposed to think of Fiona as a Supreme? Sure she kiss-murders scientists and kills little girls, but she’s actually kind of cool and progressive. She’s not only intolerant of intolerance…

…but also will not stand for religious hypocrisy. So, I mean, the Coven could have a worse leader, that’s for sure. P.S. Though I don’t have a photo of her here, I was delighted to see the fabulous Patti Lupone show up this week. Ryan Murphy is on a mission to make us all a little gayer, one fabulous diva at a time.

Nice Try With The Flashback, Show: I mean, the young version of Fiona was pretty fetch and all and I understand that she had to be somewhat of a match for Emma Roberts but this little chippie is more Cute, Young Charlize Theron…
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…than Face Meltingly Gorgeous Young Jessica Lange.

Enough With The Fish Eye. Seriously.: American Horror Story is famous for its off-kilter camera work, but the wide-angle shots in this episode gave me a headache. As I suspected, the director of this episode (Alfonso Gomez-Rejon) is the same one who gave me a headache last year with the episode “Spilled Milk.” Shots like this one from Season 2 are excellent when used sparingly and exhausting when used in excess.

The American Horror Story DYI Crafts And Redecorating Hour: Not since last year’s Skull Mint Bowls and Nipple Lamps have we had so much Martha Stewart-ing in one episode. First there was Marie Laveau Artisanal Baby Gravy In A Mason Jar…

…and then, of course, Fiona’s practical redecorating tips.

Was The Supremicide Premeditated?: My big confusion from this episode, though, was whether or not Fiona’s final act was premeditated. She was giving Madison “I’m Going To Murder You” eyebrows all day and when she poured out her own drink I was pretty sure she was up to something.

But the murder seemed so accidental. So heat of the moment. What do you all think? And we’re all in agreement that Madison was a Red Herring Supreme, right, and that Zoe or Nan or Queenie will end up being the real thing?

Ryan Murphy Never Misses An Opportunity To Sexploit: Let’s not finish on a downer, shall we? Let’s finish as The Good Murph intended: with blood-soaked pectorals. You’re welcome.

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Comments Are Welcome, Bigots and Trolls Are Not

  • Madeline

    I could watch that last gif over and over and over again. Thank you, Ryan Murphy.

  • Sars

    Am I the only one left very uncomfortable with the fact that its QUEENY who wants to fuck the bull/human hybrid?

  • e jerry powell

    The blood put me in the mind of MIckey Rourke and Lisa Bonet for some reason.

    Women fighting age and SEMEN. What a combo. Think Joan Rivers shilling for De La Mer in "Nip/Tuck."

    That they consulted a choreographer for even a snippet of the ritual to get the Yanvalou to invoke the gods right made me so happy, I danced the Yanvalou in my chair.

  • J4Sho

    Fiona meant all along to kill Madison. I knew there would be trouble when she poured out her drink, but then when she came stumbling in the house like she was 3 sheets I was confused wondering what kind of game she was playing. I thought for a second she may not have meant to kill her, but after she slit Madison's throat she dropped the drunk act completely. Totally planned it!

    As soon as I heard baby gravy I knew it would be in the title of the Pajiba recap. Too perfect.

  • I thought it was Fiona's plan all along to kill Madison. The flashback clearly indicates Fiona's sharp about recognizing the details. So when they happen again around Madison, she's going to think that she's dying because the last Supreme was dying as she ascended into her power. So, what better way to delay death -- her only real mission in life -- than to prevent the next Supreme from coming into her powers?

    Obviously, this being AHS, I don't expect that this will be the end of Madison at all. Seems like the show hinted at next week's taboo sexual topic: loving those who are no longer alive.

  • Loving this season so far. I don't really have anything to add except that Lily Rabe obviously has a fantastic audition reel for when they decide to do the definitive biopic of Stevie Nicks/Fleetwood Mac.

  • ZizoAH

    I think Mare Winningham is slowly becoming the new Sean Bean.

  • flibbertygibbert

    favorite quote of the episode, "I've lead a disreputable life, but I've done it in style."

  • Jim

    I kinda liked the "She needs to work on her aim" toss away, too.

  • Just throwing these two scattered thoughts out there:

    1. That poor Young Fiona actress got a raw deal. You can't compare. That is, unless you can get Alison Lohman because after Big Fish, I'm not sure there's a better Young Lange.

    2. Angela Bassett is killing it up one side and down the other. I love her. She's spectacular, she's clearly having the time of her life, and I would do insane things to look half as good as she does at 55 and I'm a little less than half her age. Obviously, Bates and Lange are amazing too, but I'm ready for Bassett to get some more screen-time.

  • Maguita NYC

    Seriously! I have to watch each ep again just to make sure I wasn't hallucinating and she is that gorgeous! I cannot believe how mesmerizing that woman is. She is the only actress so far to put Lange's performance in the shadow and swallow the screen each and every time she is on.

  • I think it was both--Fiona was absolutely planning something all evening, at the last moment, she almost gave up (offering herself up to Madison). But when she saw Madison was weak, I think it rallied Fiona...I'm not going to give up being the supreme to this little girl who clearly doesn't know how to wield her power.

  • I hope that baby gravy was obtained by magic because if her husband had to produce all of that on his own he's going to need a few weeks off work for rehab.

  • JenVegas

    But that never actually happened.....We were just shown what WOULD have happened if Marie hadn't laughed her out of the salon. To be fair though, that was indeed a prodigious amount of baby gravy.

  • DeaconG

    Two ounces? That's a LOT of baby batter...

  • Sean

    I just wondered what he said when his wife told him to jizz in a jar for two months. And the logistics of the whole thing.

  • lowercase_ryan

    I had the same thought. New moon? he's gonna need two new moons to get that many affairs in order.

  • e jerry powell

    They're gonna need a bigger freezer.

  • simplysarah

    I want Nan to be the next supreme. I just love her. I loved the flirting with the neighbor boy. Jamie Brewer kills it on screen.

    I hope Madison is gone for good. She was such an irritating character.

    Is Marie's voodoo shop in back of the hair salon?

  • lowercase_ryan


    agree to disagree, she was better than I expected.


  • I was also curious/confused about the Madison death scene. I initially wondered if Fiona was secretly testing Madison with "the Seven Wonders." There was clearly some set-up that Fiona was planning to hurt Madison in some way (especially when she poured her drink out at the bar), but her pleas to be killed did seem genuine. I think she was planning to kill Madison and remain Supreme, but did also genuinely wish to die.

    However, Vulture appears to have interviewed the episode's writer (who also wrote the horrific and thematically similar X-Files episode "Home" with the incestuous/deformed family) and he said that Fiona flattered her narcissistic side to offer herself to Madison like that, but had no real intention of dying, instead seeing Madison as a natural target considering she's sapping Fiona's power and life-force.

    Either way, I doubt Madison will be dead for long. The aforementioned writer indicated that her body will be used for some disgusting stuff and Next Week on AHS: Coven seemed to indicate that the butler is going to do sex things to it. And Misty will probably raise her for kindred company. Also, I'm betting that either Madison wasn't really the Supreme or that if she was, it'll be like the Slayer: when one dies, the mantle is naturally passed to someone else.

  • NoDice

    My vote for next supreme goes to Misty. I mean completely spurned, angry, possessive, backwoods hippie/hick, bat-shit (gator-shit) crazy, swamp-witch queen? Doesn't that sound fab?

  • Take my money.

  • Maguita NYC

    I'm torn between Misty and Nan. But then again, it is because I have a soft spot for the Jamie Brewer, and rooting for the show to showcase her wonderful talent!

  • Robert

    I hope my speculation last week that Queenie was in danger wasn't taken as a spoiler. I'm spitballing from the Ryan Murphy and horror rulebooks here. You don't load the racist slave torturing gun on the mantle and not fire it off by the end of the play. Do we really think Madame has gained the ability to destroy Marie just by sitting underground for over a century? That leaves Queenie as the target. Madame already knocked out Queenie, she of the can't feel self-inflicted pain abilities--just for being black on a weekday.

    I'm pretty sure Nan is next the supreme and Fiona knows it. Nan has shown off a few variations of the precog abilities she has (she can tap into minds and read the past and she can track down current thoughts), which means she does have more power than just mind reading. Cordelia only takes the girls in and socializes them to survive; she does nothing to further develop abilities that we know of. Fiona already pointed out that Nan is smarter than all of the rest of the students put together. Plus, Ryan Murphy really likes working with Jamie Brewer and making her the most powerful character this season would go against her role in season 1.

    Queenie's one power is well-honed. Madison is dead (?) and Zoe is a bit too obvious. If they really go out of left field, the new supreme is Misty Day.

  • Anna von Beav

    You know, Madison was unsure whether she set the curtains on fire. And Nan was also there. Hmmmm.

  • ed newman

    But she wasn't there when Madison lit Fiona's cigarette.

  • Anna von Beav


    Heh. I'll have to look more carefully upon my weekly re-watch and bear this in mind. I think we're unsure as to whether Fiona was for some reason setting Madison up to *think* she was doing those things (lighting the cigarette, making the guy walk into the road).

  • apsutter

    I don't know why but I've been thinking that it's Misty.

  • stella

    Nan would be awesome. I didnt even think of that.

  • Emily Roach

    Fiona is giving some serious Lady Mary face in that eye-roll gif!

  • lowercase_ryan

    A) How do you not mention Misty's hair (which was so hot and so perfect) or her Stevie Nicks spin? (h/t to Cindy)

    B) I think Fiona flip flopped on whether or not to kill her and when it went down she was like "well, that decision was just made for me, on to the next one."

    C) I want Misty to be the new supreme.

    D) I want Lily Rabe to win everything.

    E) One thing proven so far, dead ain't dead this year. I can think of a million explanations for Madison returning from the dead...pissed.

    F) Move Lily into the house already, wtf??

  • Even Stevens

    Jeez, you really ruffled some feathers there. I hope those downvotes aren't aimed at Lily Rabe because she is a goddess, backwoods goth is working for her

  • lowercase_ryan

    downvotes? really?

  • I was about to say the same thing. Nothing you said seems really, terribly objectionable and downvote-worthy.

  • Jezzer

    I've noticed that lots of people find downvoting a lot easier than the difficult, stressful task of squeezing words out of their delicate little brains.

  • One or two on just about anything I get. There's always someone. It was the quantity (7? Really?) that surprised me here.

  • In terms of the dead this season, it's reminding me a lot of Season 1. Misty's powers are awesome on their own, but they also serve the same handy plot device that the Murder House did: everyone can and will come back. As long as the writers keep it fresh, I think that'll be pretty cool.

    My guess is that Misty won't join the coven, at least not for a long while. Her character arc seems to be about finding your tribe and feeling the cold loneliness of rejection, so that has to unpack a bit further. I initially chalked Misty's desperation for Zoe up as a lesbian thing, but I think the girl just wants some love and steady company.

  • lowercase_ryan

    Good points about Misty, I can see it going that way.

  • Bert_McGurt

    Hmmm, I hadn't noticed the bull's head outline in the fisheye shot up there. That's gotta be intentional, right?

  • lowercase_ryan

    that was from last season

  • Bert_McGurt

    That explains why I hadn't noticed it. Also resolves the "Why is there snow in New Orleans?" question.

  • Robert

    There were also clues in Season 1 that pointed to the direction of Season 2. The horns were intentional and could have been foreshadowing the Minotaur in Season 3.

  • Bert_McGurt

    Yeah, definitely makes more sense now that I realize it's from last season.

  • Maguita NYC

    This episode left me in utter shock, speechless and a tad disgusted. But I truly must commend on some of campiest performances ever. They were glorious!

  • Me too! But it's exactly the kind of AHS I want: fabulous camp underpinning some truly shocking and creepy developments. This builds on what Season 1 did so well, I think. Season 2 had the creepiness, but it was also gloomy and but for a few isolated moments of fun, it was sort of joyless. I think this episode encapsulates AHS at it's best: half campy, half horrific.

  • Maguita NYC

    I liked last season very much, it is true that it was dark, but it seemed appropriate with frustrating political shenanigans what with abortion and women's rights on the line in many states. It hit a nerve...

    But I agree this season is much more fun, and I'm very much liking the intensity of surprise murderings and witchy moments so far!

  • That's a very good point. Season 2 had a great exploration of the violation of a woman's power over her own body. It was a great example of using super natural elements to make points about real human issues.

  • lowercase_ryan


    my favorite reaction to anything ever

  • Even Stevens

    That line and Madison's "um other than me being AWESOME?" were the most I've laughed at any show in awhile

  • grr arrgh

    I truly hope she wins an emmy just for that. It was so perfect.

  • I saw it at the gym and busted out laughing on the treadmill. THEN caught it again at home while working and busted out laughing again.

    Honestly, that was the most epic reaction to anything ever.

  • Seriously. I giggled with glee when she said that. It was so over the top, I loved it so much!

  • NateMan

    Next to last GIF was clearly special effect-ed by someone who's never actually cut something's throat. Let me tell ya, it's a shitload more messy than that. At least with pigs and cows, so I'm thinking it wouldn't be any better with a person. That, or she was only injured and just needs some superglue.

  • ZbornakSyndrome

    Yeah, slitting a throat is a super messy proposition (crime scene photos and case files, you people can't prove anything!). I was expecting a gush or arterial spray, and instead, it barely stained her white dress.
    For a show this obsessed with gore and body horror, you'd think they would have gone for it.

  • e jerry powell

    I was only judging against what she did to Christine Ebersole in the first sequence, really.

  • melissa82

    I'm so happy you added the "At least with pigs and cows" ....

  • NateMan

    You're right. I meant to add "and hobos."

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