Spoiler-Free Review of “American Horror Stories” Rubber Wo(man) on FX on Hulu: Home, Sadistic Home

*This is a spoiler-free review so feel free to read on!**

“Ghosts aren’t real and curses aren’t real…”

American Horror Stories premiered on FX on Hulu on July 15th 2021 with the first two episodes: “Rubber Wo(m)an” parts 1 and 2. The remaining five episodes will air weekly, leading up to the premiere of American Horror Story: Double Feature (season 10). Each episode of the spin-off anthology series runs for approximately 45-48 minutes. The first two episodes star Matt Bomer, Sierra McCormick, Gavin Creel, Paris Jackson and Kaia Gerber.

The series will present us with different stories each week connecting to the original AHS universe. The first two episodes bring us back to the beginning. A new family moves into Murder House so they can flip the house and learn that they may be in over their heads.

Here is the trailer:

American Horror Stories has the opportunity to bring us back to welcomed settings with familiar faces, but is the anthology spin-off worthy of your next watch? Let’s find out…

The Pros:

Images courtesy of FX on Hulu

Back to the beginning…

I am a big fan of American Horror Story and I love that we encounter a new setting, story, and group of characters (with familiar faces) in each season. However, some seasons are much stronger than others and often I used to wonder about what would happen next at these infamous places of horror.

Well, American Horror Stories has managed to cure my curiosity by bringing us right back to the beginning with Murder House. American Horror Story: Apocalypse managed to sprinkle in a lot from the other seasons and this is basically a snapshot version of that, as we branch off into a new story with a new set of characters in a very familiar setting.

The “Amityville Horror on Crystal Meth” is back and so is the infamous rubber suit. Scarlett moves into the house with her two dads, who are determined to fix up the house and flip it.

I absolutely loved this return to the beginning. We get to see Murder House through a new set of eyes with a new darkness emerging through its walls.

Familiar faces.

Many AHS alum have signed on for the anthology series and I was excited to see Matt Bomer star in this one. I think this helps us remember that even though this is a spin-off, it’s still a part of the AHS universe ultimately and that wouldn’t feel the same if we didn’t see some familiar cast members along the way for our journey.

I’m excited to see who else is coming back! *No spoilers here.*

A plot that draws you in.

I actually really adored the plot right from the beginning. Even though there were familiar concepts, it felt new and fresh. Scarlett was great and I loved the love story emerging in the walls, giving me some Violet and Tate nostalgia.

The Cons:

Images courtesy of FX on Hulu

Goes off the deep end a little…

In true AHS fashion, the plot does go a little bit bonkers when we get into the second episode. I thought that the first episode was stronger than the second, but things did get a little bit silly toward the end. That being said, that’s part of AHS’s campy horror charm and as a fan of the series, I have come to expect that.

So am I in or out?

Images courtesy of FX on Hulu

I’m in!

As a fan of the series, I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed this spin-off. I didn’t really know what to expect at first, but I absolutely loved it. It was really fun seeing the Easter eggs and nostalgia weaved into the plot while still managing to do something unique and different with the new story.

AHS always brings us a great balance of twisted horror and humor. It somehow just works even though it may seem slightly ridiculous at times. Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed my watch of the first two episodes and I’m really excited to see the stories continue!

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

Best,

Amy Koto, TV Fanatic Girl

THIS COMPETITION IS KILLER…

When former friends, Shay and Adriana team up to participate in a Halloween scavenger hunt with a cash prize, they temporarily put their differences aside to outsmart their opponents. However, they soon start to realize that a dangerous threat is playing their own version of the game, stalking them during each hunt.

Winning is now a necessity as their lives are at stake. As old wounds and memories re-surface, Shay and Adriana attempt to unmask the threat before the night is over, but soon learn that Scream Hunt is not done with them just yet…

My new young adult horror thriller comes out October 7th 2021! I hope you enjoy!

Scream Hunt is available here!

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Spoiler-Free Review of “Mare of Easttown” on HBO Max: Compelling new Mystery

*This is a spoiler-free review so feel free to read on!*

Kate Winslet returns to the small screen!

Mare of Easttown premiered on HBO and HBO Max on April 18th 2021. The series is set to air seven weekly episodes. It stars Kate Winslet, Julianne Nicholson, Angourie Rice, Guy Pearce, and Evan Peters. Each episode runs for approximately 50-55 minutes.

Kate Winslet stars as Mare, a local small town basketball hero who now is a detective. A new case is thrown her way that connects to an unresolved mystery from her past, involving the daughter of one of her former teammates. As Mare attempts to deal with the harsh reality of her own life, she tries to put the pieces together to solve this mystery.

Here is the trailer:

Mare of Easttown presents us with a bleak view on life, but its intricate details and compelling plot draw us in to this new mystery as we attempt to discover the truth along with Kate Winslet’s character. Is the series worth a watch? Let’s find out…

The Pros:

Mare of Easttown Spoiler Review 1

Images courtesy of HBO Max

Kate Winslet delivers.

I’m already a huge fan of Kate Winslet and she is one of my favorite actresses of all time. In just the pilot episode, she has managed to completely captivate the audience with her gritty portrayal of Mare.

Mare is far from perfect and she is dealing with a lot in her life, as we slowly start to unravel some of the tragedy that has taken place in her past.

I’ve seen a lot of shows featuring a small town detective immersed in a compelling mystery, but sometimes they can get lost in the midst of the plot.

That doesn’t happen here. Kate Winslet is so magnetic on screen and even in the quiet moments, you find yourself drawn to her, which makes this show that much more interesting in my opinion.

She is the one drawing us in and the mystery almost takes a back seat.

Incredible story-telling.

Every detail of this show is so well done. Even though there is this dark and depressing undertone, it doesn’t overwhelm the show. Every character and every moment shown to the audience is important in some way.

I often get bored with some of the set-up and fluff, but I didn’t feel that way here. I thought that everything was really interesting and when we finally got to the reveal at the end of the pilot episode, I was completely immersed into this show.

The Cons:

Mare of Easttown Spoiler Free Review 2

Images courtesy of HBO Max

Slow burn approach.

This isn’t necessarily a con to me at all. I actually think that the slow burn approach works with this particular show because Kate Winslet is so strong and the other performances really hold up as well.

However, if you are looking for a fast paced action thriller, you won’t get that here. I think that the slow burn reveals are rewarding enough and I can’t wait to learn more, but prepare for a slower pace overall.

So am I in or out?

Mare of Easttown Spoiler Free Review 3

Images courtesy of HBO Max

I’m in!

Mare of Easttown is gritty, compelling, and all consuming. It is already so interesting and intriguing with just the pilot episode and I can’t wait to find out more. Kate Winslet is incredible and I can already see an Emmy in her future…

I hope you enjoyed the review and feel free to post your own thoughts and theories on Mare of Easttown in the comments section below. Thanks so much for reading and happy viewing!

Best,

Amy Koto, TV Fanatic Girl

DON’T TAKE THE JOB…

Girl Number Thirteen Lurking Promo

It was only supposed to be temporary…but when Olivia Crewe accepts a new position that seems too good to be true, she soon discovers that twelve other girls previously had the same job as her. Only none of them lasted for more than thirty days. No notice. Nothing…right before they mysteriously disappeared without a trace.

My supernatural thriller Girl Number Thirteen is out now! I hope you enjoy!

Girl Number Thirteen is available here!

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Spoiler-Free Review of “The Queen’s Gambit” on Netflix: Your Move

**This is a spoiler-free review so feel free to read on!**

“Chess isn’t the only thing in life…”

The Queen’s Gambit is a limited series that premiered on Netflix on October 23rd 2020 with seven episodes. The series stars Anya Taylor-Joy, Thomas Brodie-Sangster, Harry Melling, Moses Ingram, and Marielle Heller. Each episode is approximately 50-60 minutes in length.

Based on the 1983 novel of the same name, The Queen’s Gambit follows the journey of chess prodigy orphan, Beth Harmon, who embarks on a quest to be the world’s greatest chess player. Over the years, Beth deals with addiction and grief while struggling to prove her worth in the male dominated game to earn her rightful place. The series takes place during the 1960’s.

Here is the trailer:

The Queen’s Gambit has so many defining layers that draw you into this world immediately. While female empowerment automatically comes to mind, the story that is told extends well beyond that, reminding us that even those of us with extraordinary talents can damage everything with the choices we make.

The Queen’s Gambit is filled with aesthetic appeal, a talented cast, and an inspiring story, but is it worthy of your next binge-watch? Let’s find out…

The Pros:

The Queen's Gambit Anya Taylor-Joy

Images courtesy of Netflix

Anya Taylor-Joy is perfection.

I was already a fan of hers, but she blew me away in her portrayal of Beth Harmon. She was magnetic on screen and so convincing down to the tiniest detail. Her wardrobe was fantastic and her emotions were so raw and convincing. I think she absolutely deserves some awards in the future for this role.

A story that pulls you in from the very start.

I didn’t immediately add this show to my watch-list and it’s not normally something that I would select on my own. However, I am beyond thrilled that I took this recommendation and I quickly found myself lost in the story.

There’s something about this story that transcends its premise. It has a lot of heart and inspiration embedded in its core, but it also doesn’t hold back when it comes to the mistakes and hardships either, which made me connect to it even more.

The Queen's Gambit addiction

Images courtesy of Netflix

Important lessons that really strike a chord.

While I loved the female empowerment elements in this series, I thought that the struggle with addiction was even more vital. Spiraling out of control into addiction isn’t usually defined in one moment. It’s slow and develops over time. Perhaps it stems from a past event or something beyond our control, but when it starts to cripple and destroy the extraordinary talent that so many of us would love to covet, it’s absolutely heartbreaking to witness.

The series could have really hit us over the head with a lot of this and I thought that its approach was simple, but effective. I think that there were a lot of really important messages throughout this series that should not be ignored and when we talk about overcoming something in life, we are the only ones with the power to change it.

The Cons:

The Queen's Gambit Cons

Images courtesy of Netflix

I don’t have a single con to mention…check.

So am I in or out?

The Queen's Gambit Netflix

Images courtesy of Netflix

I’m in 1000 percent! Checkmate!

I honestly went into this show without knowing what to expect. I thought that it might be somewhat interesting, but I was worried that I would lose interest quickly. Well, I was completely wrong and I am so glad that I started watching this show.

It was one of the best shows I have watched all year and it truly resonated with me. I recommend that you move this to the top of your watch-list even if it doesn’t seem like your cup of tea…trust me, you’ll love it!

I hope you enjoyed the review and feel free to post your own thoughts and theories on The Queen’s Gambit in the comments section below. Thanks so much for reading and happy viewing!

Best,

Amy Koto, TV Fanatic Girl

DON’T TAKE THE JOB…

Girl Number Thirteen Lurking Promo

 

It was only supposed to be temporary…but when Olivia Crewe accepts a new position that seems too good to be true, she soon discovers that twelve other girls previously had the same job as her. Only none of them lasted for more than thirty days. No notice. Nothing…right before they mysteriously disappeared without a trace.

My new supernatural thriller Girl Number Thirteen releases on November 12th 2020! Available for pre-order! I hope you enjoy!

Girl Number Thirteen is available here!

**If you enjoyed this blog, I would love it if you would click the follow button on your way out to subscribe.  Thanks for your support!