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American Horror Story: Roanoke Season Finale

AHS Roanoke Season 6 - FinaleHave I been too kind? Too cruel? Too biased for or against certain episodes based on their inclusion or exclusion of Sarah Paulson, Leslie Jordan, or the anointed Evan Peters?

You fucking bet I have. AHS is cotton candy, not a vegetable medley. Now let’s get on with this finale and see if the writers and Ryan Murphy wandered back on set long enough to pull this shitshow back together for the last episode.

Play-by-play:

  • I have no idea what’s going on. Are we flashing back? Yes, we are. Interviews, oh the fun times. Okay I get it, I’d totally ask Evan Peters for a hug, too, if I got to ask him a question.
  • Flash forward. Lee’s still standing. Are we on Investigation Discovery? I think we are. Doing some voiceover exposition, color me shocked. It’s cool, though, at least it’s stand-alone and fits with the other pieces. The next logical step after two reality series setups.
  • This is taking a really long time. It’s exactly the same as an ID show, the kind I leave on in the background when I do laundry, wandering from room to room and popping in now and then to catch up.
  • If it isn’t Miss Lana Banana! Nice circle back to Season 2: Asylum. Hopefully it gets interesting as opposed to just functioning as connective tissue.
  • I just caught myself in the kitchen loading the dishwasher. Totally lulled into Investigation Discovery mode. Herded myself back to the tv.
  • “I did what I had to do.” Don’t fuck with Lana Winters. This makes me want to watch Asylum.
  • Goddamnit, and now we’re flipping channels? Is this episode an indictment of my attention span?
  • Leslie Jordan! Still bored. Nothing new happening here, we just switched shows. Blood Moon again, get with the dispatching already.
  • Am I being too mean? Is this better than I think it is? Should I be enjoying this more? Did Leslie Jordan just get killed again? What if this is actually really good and I haven’t noticed because Evan Peters isn’t involved, and the appearance of Lana Winters just made me miss Jessica Lange? Should I be paying closer attention instead of typing?
  • Now we’ve switched to news coverage. “It’s always been about Flora.” We’re getting down to what it’s all about. I think …
  • This is sad but not exactly what I would call intense.
  • Now we’re talking. Huge explosion, dramatically burning old house, a touch of slow motion, the steady approach of torches, and SCENE.
  • Well, that’s it.

AHS Roanoke Season 6 InterviewRecap: The finale is done. Everyone is finally dead, even Lee. In a tricky little move, there did turn out to be one survivor, in the form of Flora. This season ended as a compilation of different fake tv clips and fake news coverage: Flashback to between after My Roanoke Nightmare is filmed and fans are rabid, then flash forward to after Three Days in Hell filming/slaughter. Lee is acquitted, Lee goes on the Lana Winters Show, the last Polk family member dies on-camera near Lana Banana (that happens on her show), Ghost Chasers invites Cricket to trespass at the farmhouse during the Blood Moon, everyone dies, even poor Cricket dies AGAIN (this time of course he’s a re-enactor). Lee’s daughter Flora agrees to escape and Lee will stay in her stead to play mom to little ghost girl Priscilla and keep her from The Butcher, even though I think Lee sorta made a pact with Gaga Devil and the Butcher before, but now I guess not, I’m not sure. Explosion! Overlook-style house destruction (book not movie) and Flora is whisked away, while the Butcher and her clan approach.

AHS Roanoke Season 6 EndWell, with the house’s destruction we aren’t set up for a nice network of Murder Houses, but we did get to see Sarah Paulson pull Lana from her impressive deck of characters. For all practical purposes, this season tied up nicely: all those threads, started so frantically and ambitiously in the Writers’ Room months ago, have been accounted for and neatly woven into a coherent ending. Still, I feel a bit unsatisfied–is coherency overrated?

Join me next week for a look back at Season 6 in its entirety, as I reflect on cast, narrative, and the possible detrimental effects of trying to turn a hot mess like the body of work that is AHS into a puzzle with no missing pieces.

AMANDA GOWIN

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