Three hurricanes, the repeal of DACA, the KKK and Nazis charging in the streets of the United States of America; It looks like we’re already living an American Horror Story!
But totally original jokes about the state of our country aside, American Horror Story: Cult has finally premiered, and boy was it gory, kind of gross, and funny in its own way.This season will be focusing on Ally, her wife Ivy (Sarah Paulson, Alison Pill) and their young son Ozzie, and (supposedly brother and sister) duo Kai and Winter (Evan Peters, Billie Lourd).
It’s an exaggeration of our post-Trump election world, and it’s hostile for the same-sex married couple, especially Ally who has lost control of her phobias of clowns, tiny holes, and blood among other things. While the LGBTQ community is one of the many groups that the conservative administration threatens to make life hell for, the show runners still purposefully make satire out of their white privilege; Self obsessed Ally manages to make 9/11 all about her during a therapy session, and Ivy is upset at her wife for throwing away her vote to Jill Stein.
Kai is thriving, ranting about the chance to take advantage of people’s fears in order to control them (similar to how Trump’s campaign went) and putting his theory into action. During the episode, he uses racial slurs and throws a condom full of urine at a group of Hispanic men, who then attack him. Unknown to them, the beating is being recorded on a cell phone, and will surely be used by Kai to insight racial tensions. It’s interesting to note that Kai also takes part in an actual hate crime, splashing Ally and Ivy with coffee when he runs into them in the street. It’s some of that hypocritical behavior that has become typical of some Trump supporters to show.
It’s obviously being set up for Kai to become a leader of some kind of movement or cult, but there is also a group of killers in clown masks wreaking havoc in the neighborhood. Ally has a disturbing run in with them at the grocery store, but the police and one handed Trump supporting cashier say there’s no evidence of anything happening. I mention the cashier’s missing limb because later events lead me to think that it’s not all in Ally’s head and that the cashier is in on it, but I wasn’t able to spot if any of the clowns was missing a hand.
The event I’m talking about is between Oz and Winter, who following a strange pact with Kai, snags a job as Oz’s new nanny. While his parents are out, Winter introduces Oz to the dark web and shows him videos of real murders and dead bodies. Oz spots the same gang of clowns that attacked his mom pull up to a neighbor’s house in an old ice cream truck. He and Winter go to investigate, and Oz ends up witnessing the murder’s of his parent’s friends, which he recounts to Ally and Ivy. Winter brushes off his story, blaming it on his imagination and the Twisty the Clown comic she found in his room, and Ivy agrees, mentioning his realistic night terrors. I’m thinking he’s telling the truth, since it’s the same clowns that attacked Ally and she never described what they looked like to him.
The seasons of AHS are all connected in some way, and this season is calling back season four’s Freak Show. I wonder how Twisty the Clown is now the subject of a comic book. Has Twisty gone down in history as an urban legend to monetize? Or has enough time passed that whoever is making the comic books doesn’t feel shame in exploiting the serial killer? While the gore in the episode grossed me out, I am intrigued and hope to be able to keep up with the new season.
I want to do a break down of the new opening as well, as I noticed a few callbacks to previous seasons in there as well. Stay tuned!