American Horror Story: Freakshow Review S04E01

I am a huge fan of the show, but the images and small teasers that I have gotten thus far had made me leery of what was to come. So, I tried to hold down my hopes for the season premier.

I felt the show started off very slow and some people are scared of clowns, but I wouldn’t base a whole show around it. I felt there was a little too much in the beginning about the murderclown. I hope that there will be a twist down the line.

One of the things I have loved from past seasons was the digital enhancement to make Jessica Langue younger, and the two-headed woman was done extremely well! There were no glitches in the stitching of the two heads at all. The subtle things such as the passive head leaning over while the aggressive one is upright is such a nice touch. I also applaud the split screen effect they used to separate the two at certain points. It was odd to begin with, but nice to be able to see the dialog actor and the reaction actor at the same time.

About 75% through the first episode, the show started getting my attention. I would attribute this to them finally being at the circus, a plot developing and of course, Jessica’s Life on Mars performance in Marlena Deitrich voice and look. When it first started, I was groaning, but when it was over and she reacted, then explained what her goals were, I was touched and “felt” her. This was what I liked about her performance in previous seasons. In one episode, she elicited a negative response, then in the next, a positive one. If you know my view of “art”, I always say, love or hate something, it is art. If it is forgettable, then it is not art. Jessica produces art.

I do have a gripe with the whispering every line with noise and music and the accent wasn’t really necessary, but I will forgive them because they gave me the last few seconds of the episode, which made me appreciate everything before then.

Kathy Bates. Hmm… We are made to like her character as being the most “grounded”. Looking back on the “bearded lady” acts, I tend to believe that they were either fake or they were drag queens. Kathy’s character came off as a lesbian to begin with, but ended up being more of a rural working woman. She is a caregiver, mother to lobster boy and apparently the bouncer.

The tall woman and the tattooed guy are good actors. They didn’t sound stiff like cameo actors usually do.

As a whole, the show was good. It took a while to kick in, but now I am actually interested in the story.

The story so far:
Freakshow Circus is in town with very little turnout. A local two-headed girl is in hospital. She is force-ably recruited to join the circus. Meanwhile, a murderclown is terrorizing the town. Two headed girl is blamed. Policeman comes to arrest her and is killed by lobsterboy. Sold out show ends up being two people who bought out the seats. Jessica performs a song and then realizes her dream of being discovered is dashed. These two are there to “buy” the two headed girl. She refuses to leave the circus. Jessica reveals that she, too, is a “freak”.