Devil's Night is here and this week's American Horror Story Season 5: Episode 4 confirmed our waking nightmares by introducing Richard Ramirez, John Wayne Gacy and the other serial killers that make Lady Gaga look like a nun from The Sound of Music
Devil's Night is every night at the Hotel Cortez. So when Halloween comes along our debonair host Mr. March (read Ryan Murphy) has to mount something dreadfully spectacular. After we got a closer look at the real life serial killers in the American Horror Story: Episode 4 promo, a sizable chunk of last night's "Devil's Night" was devoted to a non-narrative exposition of the pathological death hounds that have given definition to America's unconscious obsession with glamorous blood letting. And they all showed up as per invite: Richard Ramirez, aka Night Stalker, a blumbering John Wayne Gacy who (although ahistorical) donned his Killer Clown face paint to dispatch the night's bloody ritual, an unfairly ruthless Aileen Wuornos (whose crimes speak to much deeper social factors than AHS creators allow) and even a comically facemasked Zodiac killer, who was smarter than any of them to begin with. The extended scene takes hallucinogenic turns and, viewing it through the inebriated gaze of John Lowe, the real seeps into fantasy while timelines merge and murder becomes as deliriously campy and irresistible as the Hotel Cortez itself.
While detective Lowe was sitting front row to the serial killer cabal downstairs, his wife had made her way into the "black as the ace of spades" heart of the Hotel, finally falling in step with the current owner, Lady Gaga's Countess. Dr. Alex Lowe somehow manages to smuggle the shell of her half-a-decade missing son from the Hotel. But rather than the logical approach of calling the cops and shutting the Hotel down, she gives the waifish owner the benefit of the doubt, not wanting to "lose my boy again." And the vampish vampire who apparently "turns" people only about once a century has given about four people the blood-sucking treatment in the last three weeks. We never expect the American Horror Story Halloween specials to get much further in terms of plot. But given last week's attempts to cram as much narrative material as possible in the space of an hour, when Matt Donovan sacrificed himself for mommy, now was as good a time as any to keep half the troupe at home and focus on the series' bread and butter: torture and unbridled sadism. What did you think of the Devil Night dinner?