Saturday, December 12, 2015

American Horror Story: Hotel - She Wants Revenge

This week's episode was all about revenge, lies, and double crosses. It set the last few episodes up wonderfully, while paying off previous storylines. I'll start this recap with the usual warnings that.... there will be spoilers. Now let's talk She Wants Revenge.

We open with Countess providing us with a lesson in anatomy. She is looking forlornly at the room where Valentino and Natacha were kept while musing on the workings of the heart. Seems that women's hearts age differently when compared to those of their male counterparts. A woman's ventricles shrink while men's expand. This causes Countess to muse that her heart must be quite small (due to her age) and that since there is room for very little within her heart the things that are important to her mean everything.

We get to see how heartbroken Countess was by Valentino leaving. She's kept all of her mementos of him, and still has one of his suit jackets that she wears while crying prettily. She totally never got over him. She is however totally over not being able to control anything. She is done with being 'ruled and managed'. She obviously has some sort of plan in store and I pity anyone who gets in her way.

Her and Will's wedding has been moved up to pretty much immediately. Will has BIG plans about their day. He wants a spectacle. Countess, however, wants something a little more intimate. She tells Will that she refuses to be put on display. It is all part of her new plan to take charge. She tells Will that he gets to design her gown, but that he has to leave everything else to her.

First order of business is getting flowers for the wedding. Countess asks Liz to order them for her. Liz is, obviously, unimpressed. She refuses to help Countess and reminds her that after killing Tristan that she wants nothing to do with Countess. Countess tries to reason with Liz by telling her that Tristan never loved her, that Tristan didn't know how to love. Liz, understandably, reacts pretty much as you would expect and their interaction ends with her telling Countess that she can order the flowers herself.

This line is delivered with such flair that it's instantly memorable. Dennis O'Hare captured the anger and hurt Liz would be feeling perfectly. I loved this scene because Liz refused to let Countess take away the memory of Tristan and their love from her. She stood up for what they had, and for herself. Countess took something precious away from Liz, and didn't even feel bad about it. I agree, Liz.... she can get her own damn flowers.

While Countess is bemoaning how everyone betrays her or is ungrateful she overhears a news report that is obviously related to the murdering child vampires that Alex created. She gets a call from a private detective she hired to track down Valentino. Turns out that he and Natacha are staying at some cheap motel nearby. Countess immediately rushes over to see him. She timidly asks if she can come in after he answers the door, and his reply is 'only if you kiss me first'. Swooooon. I wish I could have found a gif of this to include, but so much swoon. Finn Wittrock as Valentino was definitely my Christmas present from Ryan Murphy (so thanks, Ryan). Countess, obviously, kisses him BECAUSE WHO WOULDN'T AFTER THAT LINE?! Please.

Their encounter must leave Countess feeling frisky because she winds up having sex with another of her former lovers ... Donovan! The sex is so good that it prompts this exchange.....

Bringing up Tristan like that is just rude, Donovan. Still in mourning over here. Donovan wants to start over though. He wants to have a monogamous relationship. At least when it comes to love. He says that they can have whoever they want in their beds, but that she has to love only him for this to work again. Countess swears she will, but that she will not repeat history. She tells him that he is going to have to prove himself with action. She mentions that she's getting married on Wednesday, but quickly assures Donovan that she'll be a rich widow by Thursday. Donovan is very much into this plan. Countess mentions she wants a full clean start. They need to kill everyone who has wronged them. They agree to make a list of those to kill as they go for sexytimes round two.

There is a subplot involving some porn actors checking into the Cortez which displeases Iris. Seems Iris only likes tasteful porn. She thinks porn hurts people because it gives guys the wrong opinion of what women like, and it makes women feel they have to do things they don't like because it's expected. This scene shows just how far Iris as come as she enters the room with a greeting of 'douchebag' before she starts stabbing the sleazy director. Donovan shows up not too long after and is impressed by his mother's transformation. Iris reveals during their exchange that Countess questioned her about who let Bartholomew out of his room. Iris told Countess it was Ramona and tells Donovan that they need a new plan if they are going to help Ramona get her revenge. Donovan laughs and tells her that he's already on it. He's worked his way back into Countess' bed. Iris is skeptical about the real reason Donovan wants to be back together with the Countess Understatement. I would be DEEPLY concerned about Donovan's loyalties. He assures her it's fine, and that he'll let her know when he needs her. Their talk is interrupted by the male porn actor calling out for help and asking them to call the police. Donovan grabs the guy and takes him to Ramona's as a peace offering. This guy is having a really, really bad day.

Will Drake is having a heart to heart with his son about what it means to be bisexual while they are trying on their wedding outfits. This speech is basically about the need people have to put labels on everything and how people who are bisexual are often made to feel that their choice is somehow invalid. They cannot be possibly be attracted to both sexes. People automatically assume you're gay, as Will states. I still think poor Lachlan is extremely confused about everything but nice sentiment.

Miss Evers comes to tell Will that he cannot marry the Countess. She tells him that Countess is awful and that he and his son will die if he marries her. She mentions that nobody survives the Countess. She reveals that she was supposed to marry Mr March until Countess ruined everything. Your jealousy is showing, Miss Evers (even if you are right). Will is not interested, and his reaction is to fire Miss Evers. Nice try, Will. She's stuck in the hotel so you're pretty much going to have her around forever. Miss Evers departs with a warning that she'll happily laugh and say 'I told you so' over his dead body when Countess kills him.

Meanwhile, Countess is planning a wedding surprise for Will. She's turning the area where Valentino was held captive into a new chamber. She claims it's a secure place for Will to house his permanent collection. She wants it done by tomorrow (which means it's meant for something much more sinister). The contractor says he cannot get the materials in time. Mr March comes in to help out and tells the guy to get his men together and the supplies and that Mr March will help them build exactly what Countess wants. As the contractor rushes out Mr March tells Countess not to worry and that he'll make sure it gets done. She is livid and yells that if he weren't already dead she'd kill him. She never wants to see him again because he robbed her of the thing she loves the most. Mr March begs her to reconsider. He wants their dinners to continue as they are his only comfort. Countess just sneers and tells him that the chamber has to ready for tomorrow.

Seems Donovan was right to bring a peace offering because Ramona is pissed about his lack of initiative during their last revenge attempt. He tells Ramona that he is newly recommitted to the plan. He says that Countess took him back and it made him realize that his desperation for her was like an addiction. He needs to be free of it. Ramona isn't buying it and wants to think on where they go from here. Donovan tells her that they have to act tonight because she's marrying Will in the morning... and he's given her enough sedative to keep her knocked out while they kill her. Donovan  admits that he cannot do it himself and wants Ramona to kill her. Ramona is very much on board with this new plan and suggests they drink porn guy to seal the deal. I haven't been able to figure out Donovan's loyalties, but I am starting to get the feeling that Ramona is getting screwed over and that Donovan is a double crossing liar.

Donovan asks Ramona why she waited so long for revenge. Countess killed Ramona's love over 20 years ago. Ramona tells Donovan that after everything happened she went home to her parents where she watched them die. Her mom died quickly, but her father slowly slipped away into dementia. One day Ramona came home to find that some burglars had beaten her father. She panicked and gave him some blood hoping that the virus would heal his Alzheimer's. Sadly, it didn't work. The virus only stopped the progression. Ramona spent 20 years taking care of him until one night she came home to find two dead bodies and a father that didn't even realize what had happened. This made her realize that he was frozen in place, and that it was not a life. She made the decision to slip him a Xanax and let him drown in the bathtub. Killing him made her realize that she had been frozen too, and that life had continued on without her. Everything had continued, and with Netflix becoming a thing people knew who she was again (because her movies were now available for FREE, something Ramona was incredulous about). This made Ramona remember everything Countess had taken from her like it was just yesterday (hence the newly found desire for revenge).

Alex goes Max's house to check on him (a little too late, Alex) and finds a house filled with child vampires and dead bodies. Turns out that all of the child vamps have killed their parents. These children have created a pseudo Peter Pan meets Lord of the Flies existence. Some of the children are done with committing murder, while others want to start killing off the weaker members of their little vampire clan. Alex wants to help (and clean up her own mess) but the kids don't want any adults messing things up. They, at first, want to kill her but Max points out that she's the reason they are now infected so she gets to live. They tell her to leave. Alex beseeches them to come back to the hotel with her before the cops come to investigate why the pizza guy never came back. Listening to adults is lame though so the kids declare that they will leave and Alex can explain everything to the cops. Way to go, Alex. There is no possible way that this will end well, and I predict Countess will be killing some vampires (including Alex) very soon.

Donovan and Ramona arrive at the hotel to find that Countess is still out from the drugs Donovan gave her. Ramona goes to stab Countess who shows she's actually awake just as Donovan tazes Ramona. They lock Ramona in one of the things used to restrain the Swedish tourists that are now located in the chamber Countess had made (how the contractor completed the job in one day is a mystery). Iris is very dismayed that Donovan has fallen back into the Countess' clutches. Donovan reveals that everyone who is against him and the Countess will end up in that room so that they can 'hate watch' them with the cameras Countess had installed. He warns Iris to keep her mouth shut or she'll end up in the room as well. He even tells her that he was weak and should have let her die instead of infecting her. Iris tells him that it'll be him who dies if he stays with Countess. Donovan tells her to go, and as he is leaving the room Ramona taunts that Countess has already moved on to the next guy. She tells him that he has to know that and if he doesn't then he is more dumb than he is pretty.

Countess is having a lovely afternoon with Valentino all to herself. Seems Natacha has taken to the modern world in a way that Valentino never will. He says that everything confuses him and that since Countess gave Natacha her Black AmEx card all Natacha wants to talk about is shopping and Uber. Countess admits she gave Natacha the card so that she could have Valentino all to herself. Valentino says that he thought Countess loved Natacha. Turns out that Countess only put up with her because Valentino loved her, and the Countess was insecure and young. She didn't think she was enough for Valentino. He tells her that she's more than woman enough and that she reminds him of his own time. She admits that she's spent her time creating pale imitations of him. This finally puts words what I have been saying. All of the guys look similar because they are just a stand in for Valentino. She tells him of her plans to use Will's money to turn the Cortez into a fortress against the modern world. A place where they could be happy together. When Valentino inquires about Natacha and how she fits into these plans Countess inquires how he would feel if something happened to her. Valentino replies that he would have the Countess to comfort him (so basically he's not too worried). It's all very swoony and the way Finn delivers these lines is knee weakening. However, Valentino is obviously not very loyal if he's willing to allow Countess to kill Natacha. Unless he's not understanding her meaning due to the fact that English is not his first language (which I seriously doubt). Natacha walks in, just as they are about to kiss, with stories of the modern world. Countess invites Natacha to a girl's night at the Cortez (after assuring her that James is long dead) telling Valentino that he's not invited. Countess leaves their motel smiling as a jealous Donovan watches on. You should have listened to Iris, Dono! She tried to warn you.

The wedding day has arrived. Countess' gown is pretty and it's a very small gathering with just Liz there to witness the wedding. When the priest asks if anyone knows of any reason to object to the marriage Liz immediately jumps in and shows that she is still very angry at the Countess.

Countess once again has a fantastic line with the whole 'She drinks' thing. The priest finishes marrying them and Will rushes off to the bar to have a few drinks before the honeymoon. Countess meanwhile stays behind and offers Liz her bouquet and expresses that she hopes Liz finds true love one day. Countess actually seems genuine here. It still makes me angry because Liz had a love and he was taken from her BECAUSE OF YOU! I do think that Liz is one of the few people that Countess does mildly care about though. She's probably the closest thing to a real friend Countess has.

Mr March introduces himself to Will and fills Will in on the fact that Countess has a child. One that Will knew nothing about. James is all too happy to show Will to Bartholomew's room. Will reacts horribly to seeing Bartholomew and says really hateful things about him. Countess overhears and her maternal instincts take over and she decides to not wait for the honeymoon to kill him. She knocks him out and puts him in the sealed off chamber with Ramona. Ramona sweet talks him into freeing her as he is not confined like she is. Will releases her and his kindness is repaid by her slicing his throat and feeding on him. As Will lays there dying Miss Evers comes to watch with a smirk on her lips and an 'I told you so' in her eyes.

The next episode is titled She Gets Revenge and I cannot help but wonder who 'she' is. Ramona? Countess? Liz? All scenarios are certainly plausible. This episode did a fantastic job of setting up the final few that are remaining. All the players are in place, and we know what everyone wants. It's just a question of who will come out on top.

Countess' happily ever after is an eternity hidden away with Valentino and having him all to herself. I cannot blame her for THAT being her end game but at this point I kind of hope she doesn't get it. She's ruthlessly destroyed a lot of people's happiness, and is willing to ruin more lives to get what she wants. Donovan is not going to just go away quietly either. While he didn't get to kill Tristan, he may still get the chance to kill off the love of her life. My one hope is that Liz and Iris make it out of this whole thing alive, happy, and with a lot of purple eye shadow and champagne.

Until next week..... enjoy your stay (just don't insult Countess' baby) 

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