Ranking the top 5 moments from “American Horror Story: 1984” season 9 episode 1 Season Premiere: “Welcome to Camp Redwood”

Happy Thursday TV fans!  After watching the FX network’s American Horror Story:  1984 season 9 episode 1 last night, I remembered that perhaps we should listen to creepy gas attendants who tell us that there’s nowhere to run or hide.  Or maybe we should go answer a payphone in the middle of the woods when a killer is on the loose.  Let’s make some good choices and go back in time to enjoy some 80’s slasher fun with a killer soundtrack!  Please note spoilers are ahead if you have not gotten a chance to watch the latest episode yet.  

In last night’s episode, “Camp Redwood,” Brooke, Montana, Xavier, Chet, and Ray all meet at Perfect 10 Aerobics and decide to take summer jobs as camp counselors at Camp Redwood.  We hear the campfire chilling story of the infamous killer, Mr.  Jingles and it seems like anyone with a half a brain would stay clear of this camp, but where would be the fun in that?  My top 5 moments from the American Horror Story:  1984 season 9 episode 1 season premiere are:

5

“I heard serial killers become more active in the summer months when it’s hot.”

Meet Brooke, played by the brilliant and amazing Emma Roberts, who seems to hit it off right away with Montana, played by Billie Lourd, at an aerobics class.  Brooke appears to be somewhat of a shy loner and clearly has a past since we witness her looking at an engagement ring in her jewelry box, but I’m already invested in her character and Emma Roberts can do no wrong for me.

4

“You’re a bad-ass!”

So maybe Brooke should have taken her own advice about leaving windows open in her apartment.  After initially turning down Xavier’s offer to go to Camp Redwood with them, an intruder breaks into her apartment and takes her jewelry.  The stranger claims to be the Night Stalker and seems to heavily worship Satan.  Connection to Hotel and Apocalypse? 

I’m not sure if this attack was random or not, but Brooke makes excellent use of my favorite weapon of choice…a frying pan, which definitely makes her a bad-ass in my book!  And so it’s off to Camp Redwood, since Brooke clearly doesn’t want to stay by herself for the summer.

3

“I have been fighting the lord’s fight against filth around the world for years.”

After our group hits a stranger in front of Camp Redwood with their car, they meet the head of Camp Redwood, Margaret, played by the hilarious and enchanting Leslie Grossman.  Seriously, I love this fierce trio of ladies and I’m hoping they can bring the fire again this season.

Margaret seems to be a big fan of following rules and we know what happens when you don’t follow the rules in a slasher film.  Margaret reminds them that girls wear red and boys wear blue and that they shouldn’t even try to make purple, which was another fun connection to Apocalypse.  Margaret has a vision of making Camp Redwood into a safe and pure place for children, but I’m not sure one can ever really lose the reputation of being the site of the “worst summer camp massacre of all time.”

2

“He liked to kill and he was good at it.”

The opening of the episode flashes back to 1970 and we witness serial killer, Benjamin Richter (aka Mr. Jingles) brutally attacking and killing some camp counselors who were having some late night extracurricular activities together.  In 1984, the group gathers around a campfire and Rita, played by Angelica Ross, fills them in on the history and questions why they are all really there.

Mr. Jingles apparently has a thing for collecting ears, which is beyond disturbing and we discover that Margaret is the only survivor from his massacre, showing off her missing ear. We also learn that Mr. Jingles has escaped the asylum he was in during present day (1984), grabbing a new set of keys, as he heads off to Camp Redwood.

Is he looking to eliminate Margaret once and for all or is he just looking to kill as he goes?  I’m not sure just yet, but there has to be a lot more to this if we are revealing the identity of the killer in episode 1.  Perhaps Margaret is in on it now?  It’s an early theory of mine, but we shall see.

1

“It was him!  I am not imagining all of this!”

After discovering the stranger from the road hung up on the back of a door, Brooke freaks out and takes off.  She is able to escape, but her friends think she is imagining things, especially when the body has mysteriously vanished and the rain coat killer seems to just be a rain coat.  Brooke is convinced that what she saw is real and decides to throw all caution out the window by answering a ringing payphone outside. 

I’m not really sure this is the best decision, but it does give us a chance to see that the Night Stalker is also lurking in the shadows.  Are there two killers on the loose or is this all connected?  I’m not sure, but it looks like Brooke is our potential final girl and I can’t wait to see what happens next!

Overall, I thought the season 9 premiere was a lot of fun.  It provided us with a lot of nostalgia and cleverly reminded us about the slasher movie trope, while keeping us invested in the main plot.  It looks like I am planning on staying at Camp Redwood after all.  How about you?

**Fun fact:  Roy from “Roy’s Gas n Grab” warns our group of characters and tells them that they’re all going to die, which is a fun throwback to Crazy Ralph in Friday the 13th telling the counselors they are all doomed.

American Horror Story:  1984 episode 1 Music Soundtrack Highlights:

Bananarama – Cruel Summer

Rockwell – Somebody’s Watching Me 1984

Daryl Hall & John Oates – Private Eyes 

I hope you enjoyed the list and feel free to post your own theories and thoughts on American Horror Story:  1984 below in the comments section.  Thanks so much for reading and happy viewing!

Best,

Amy Koto, TV Fanatic Girl

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Ranking the top 5 moments from “American Horror Story: Apocalypse” season 8 episode 1 Season Premiere: “Everything We Know Is Gone”

Happy Thursday TV fans!  The wait is over and the end is here or is it now the beginning?  After watching the FX network’s American Horror Story:  Apocalypse season 8 episode 1 last night, we witnessed the end of the world, as an inbound missile alert threatened the entire planet.  Please note spoilers are ahead if you have not gotten a chance to watch the latest episode yet.  In last night’s episode, “The End,” many characters desperately tried to escape the destruction of the world, relying on their money and powerful connections to do so.  Meanwhile, an organization called “The Cooperative” arranged for other characters to be taken because they were identified as prime candidates to survive based on their DNA.  While the world enters into nuclear winter in the future, we watch a group of characters hold on to their own survival in Outpost 3 by following “the rules.”  My top 5 moments from American Horror Story:  Apocalypse season 8 episode 1 are:

5

“What’s a purple?”

Forty minutes before the bomb goes off, we meet Timothy, played by Kyle Allen.  Timothy is with his family when soldiers from The Cooperative burst in the door and explain that they are taking Timothy with him and that he will be safe.  Timothy tries to convince them to take his family as well, but they have strict orders to only take him with them.  Timothy was selected based on his DNA, which they detected when he completed some type of ancestry DNA kit.  Before he has a chance to say a proper goodbye, Timothy is taken and ends up in a cell underground next to a girl named Emily, played by Ash Santos, who was most likely taken for the same reason, although she explains she was in prison.  After the blast, the two are taken to Outpost 3 in Hazmat suits and witness two young adults being killed outside.  Timothy and Emily are horrified by what they see, but continue to the fallout shelter, Outpost 3, with little resistance.  While here, they are quickly introduced to Wilhemina Venable, played by Sarah Paulson.  Ms. Venable explains that she is in charge there and that they were both chosen to survive and will be known as “purples.”  Emily asks what this means and they learn that a purple is the elite and the worthy while the “grays” are there to serve them.  Everyone has a purpose and they are told that they must follow the rules no matter what, which include extremes like “no unauthorized copulation of any kind.”  When asked about her own purpose, Ms. Venable explains that they should think of her as the “strong arm of The Cooperative” and Emily courageously points out that she is not a purple then.  While it seems like everything has a certain routine and structure to it, Timothy quickly gets a warning sign when he sees the numbers “666” appear on the shower door and a whisper calling out, “beware.”  While we don’t know who is sending the message or what this means just yet, it’s clear that they are not the only beings to survive in the world.

4

“It’s like Satan’s Spotify playlist.”

During the episode, Timothy and Emily join the other guests in Outpost 3 and discover that some of the rich and famous have come along for the ride because of their connections and donations along the way.  This includes Coco St. Pierre Vanderbilt, played by Leslie Grossman, who hilariously told her significant other that they can see other people when she realized that they needed to leave on the plane without him to avoid the blast.  We also meet Mr. Gallant, played by Evan Peters, who has brought along his grandmother, played by Joan Collins.  There are a few other characters in the mix as well, but it’s clear that no one is used to following the rules and living in simplicity.  The mundane routine begins to set in, as they hear the same song play over and over, slowly driving them mad.  Meals consist of eating small cubes filled with vitamins that leave much to be desired.  Ms. Venable and her associate, Miriam, played by Kathy Bates, remind everyone that “we are the last vestiges of civilized life on the planet.”  Everyone is told that they must follow the rules in order to survive and they must keep out contamination at all cost.  We also learn that they have about enough food and supplies to last approximately 18 months.  Miriam announces that someone has brought in contamination from outside even though everyone swears that they have not done so.  Stu and Mr. Gallant are both identified as being contaminated and they are taken away brutally to be cleansed.  Luckily Gallant passes the contamination test on the second round, but Stu is not so lucky and begs not to be put through decontamination again.  Miriam shoots him in the head; however, ending the immediate threat.  It’s clear that Ms. Venable and Miriam mean business and they are not about to break the rules for anything or anyone.

3

“It’s only us.”

Later in the episode, we learn that Ms. Venable and Miriam are making up things as they go.  Miriam worries about what will happen when The Cooperative finds out, but Ms. Venable reminds her that “it’s only us.”  The two enjoy inflicting punishment and watching the faces of their victims, granting them some kind of temporary pleasure and power.  Ms. Venable says that “it gives me a tingle,” revealing that there is something sick and twisted going on with these two, but what will happen when The Cooperative finds out that they are dishing out their own kind of punishment and even pretending that some are contaminated to further along their cruel game?

2

“The stew is Stu!”

After the guests are clearly traumatized after Stu was shot, they are rewarded with a hot meal.  Everyone seems initially grateful and begins digging in, until they start finding bones that don’t really seem like they belong to a chicken.  “The stew is Stu!”  Everyone begins spitting out the food except for Mrs. Gallant who explains “I don’t care what it is.  It’s absolutely divine.”  While Ms. Venable tells them that they are not eating human flesh, it’s hard to believe anything that she says at this point.  Just when it seems like all hope is lost, the song they have been hearing over and over changes to a new one.  It begins playing Maureen McGovern’s song, “The Morning After,” which you can listen to here!  Everyone listens to the words and is convinced that it is a sign that they will be rescued.  Only we quickly flash to “18 months later” and no rescue has come at all.  The world has gotten colder and deadlier and it seems like everyone is clinging to an empty existence except for Timothy and Emily who have now fallen in love.  They ration one kiss a day just to be able to have something to look forward to, recognizing that they cannot do anything further for fear of breaking the rules.  While this is something sweet in the midst of all of this despair, I worry about Ms. Venable discovering their secret.

1

“Those who make it, live.  Those who don’t, end up like my horses.”

At the end of the episode, there is a breach at Outpost 3 and a horse and buggy arrives with a strange visitor.  Meet Michael Langdon, played by Cody Fern, who works for The Cooperative.  He explains that there is another Outpost that has supplies that could last up to a decade, but that he will determine who is worthy of survival there.  While it’s clear that he could make the determination to take everyone, he only has interest in those who are deserving.  While we don’t know what this entails exactly, Michael is no fool, as he recognizes that Miriam is already killing his horses outside.  He is not one to be messed with and Ms. Venable may be in some serious trouble for her abuse of power.  Which characters will be saved?  What else is left out in the world?  Stay tuned to find out!

I hope you enjoyed the list and feel free to post your own theories and thoughts on American Horror Story:  Apocalypse below in the comments section.  Thanks so much for reading and happy viewing!

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Best,

Amy Koto, TV Fanatic Girl

@TV_Fanatic_Girl

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When Kallie Bennett, a jaded teenage girl plagued by her alcoholic mother and her peers molded out of sheer bubble gum perfection, chases after Alice in Wonderland herself, she ends up lost in her own version of Wonderland, which forces her to face her utmost fears and introduces her to familiar characters with a dark twist. Among these characters is Ches, a gorgeous vampire with a conflicted conscience, who becomes Kallie’s guide and blossoming love interest. She also crosses paths with Queen Hartley, a manipulative witch who has the power to strip away one’s memories and imagination, which brings a bone chilling new meaning to “off with their heads.” In The Search for Alice, Kallie starts to realize that her Wonderland is just as frightening as her own reality and that she cannot always run away from her problems. She must figure out a way to defeat Queen Hartley and return home before it is too late, but she soon learns that escaping Wonderland means leaving Ches behind forever.

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