American Horror Story Roanoke : Chapter 4

The confusing story of a couple who brought a haunted house, refuse to leave it, believe when they want to believe and blame what they don’t want to believe on hillbillies continues. Many, many more stories are told as Matt and Shelby STILL refuse to leave their house.

This week is a masterclass in stupidity from Matt and Shelby. They learn a lot about the land their home was built on yet still seem to be happy to stay there, of course this time out its in aid of finding Flora who Elias (Denis O’Hare) takes them to after they finally calm down and listen to him and who Cricket (Leslie Jordan) dies trying to bring back to them just for them to seem resolute that they shall stay where they are put.

Possibly the most scary, yet not that scary, moment so far in this series happened when the Pig Demon started to attack Shelby and Matt in their own home, up pops Elias, the man from the tape recording, to save them and explain to them about some of the victims of the house. He then tells them about the blood moon and how all the deaths happen around this time because the ghosts become, for all intents and purposes, real.

As you would guess the Millers aren’t fast even now to lock their doors to stop these people walking in randomly but after proving he knows more then they do and saving their necks their first reaction to Elias is to throw him out the house. Poor Elias takes them to Priscilla and Flora just for him to be shot by the ghosts. Returning after the attack and they still obviously haven’t locked the door as Cricket appears then goes into the forest to talk to the spirits just to be taken away to have the story of the lost villagers shown to him by Lady Gaga’s Forest Witch. To see what happens all he has to do is promise her a bit of Matt. When Cricket tells Shelby and Matt this whilst Shelby is obviously pissed Matt doesn’t seem to mind and later when Cricket once more leaves them he sneaks off leaving Shelby alone and sleeping to once more sleep with Forest Witch Gaga.

So whilst Cricket got to learn how the spirits of the lost colony of Roanoke became bonded to this patch of land, complete with terrible accents from Kathy Bates and Wes Bentley, Matt learns the story of the Forest Witch through sex. He’s awakened from his second sex filled trance by Shelby screaming his name as the house is attacked by the Butcher.

The episode isn’t actually that bad. Shelby and Matt tend to walk through the episode just listening and having things happen. They react with their actual selves commentating over the top, there aren’t really big moments in the episode that Sarah Paulson and Cuba Gooding Jr have to talk out. Even when talking to Cricket and Elias they are there more to ask questions and react to them then actually join the conversation. For me I personally found it better because I’m having a hard time connecting both Shelby’s together. In this episode real Shelby talks about how bad she feels about getting Lee in trouble, it is the only real mention of Lee in the whole episode, Reenactor Shelby on the other hand doesn’t as far as I can remember talk about Lee, really worry about anything and flip flops her opinion on a drop of a hat. The opening scene after her over reaction to a strange situation that she obviously couldn’t tell was strange even though she is married to Matt and should probably be able to tell when something isn’t right (or at least reacted right there at the scene instead of flashing a light at him, seeing him not react and then walking off) was funny as it was Shelby Miller in a nutshell. She doesn’t believe anything until she wants to believe. It goes for the reverse too, she’ll believe someone like Cricket up until she can’t be bothered to or whatever he’s saying doesn’t fit what she wants to believe.

I thought learning about the colonists and Gaga was interesting. I know that Bates and Bentley are trying to use authentic accents from that time period but its hard to make out what they are talking about. Bentley much more then Bates. I am slowly getting used to it but I’m still finding their story quite boring. The problem is that there isn’t much to tell and they are spreading it out. They should have had the whole story from beginning to end told by Cricket in this episode. None of them are particularly interesting characters and they don’t really get to act together to get any of their story across. I thought they’d be the best part of the series but they haven’t done anything interesting. OK they disemboweled Cricket in this episode but that is about it.

Cricket and Elias have been the best parts of the show so far. So many Cricket moments have made me burst into laughter but “Gay for Pay” has to be one of the best lines in AHS history. Denis O’Hare is one of the best actors on the show and his Elias was instantly more likable and interesting then the Millers have ever been.

There is seemingly a big twist in Episode 6, a lot of people have found something in each episode that ties to the other series. Moving into a Murder House (Season 1), Crazy Nurses (Season 2), Cricket (Season 3) and now finding out that a Mott built the house, and it does look very much like Dandy’s house with the spiraling staircase and the rest (Season 4) which means we have to have one thing tying Episode 5 to Hotel before Episode 6 should push us in the actual direction this series is going to take. I’m not sure what more they can do with the colonists and whilst I’m pretty sure the theme of the ghosts causing trouble, Roanoke and its mysteries are going to stay till the end, I’m not one of those who thinks the whole theme will change in Episode 6, I’m excited to see what this series actually is about. I’ve enjoyed the True Life Documentary stuff but personally I’ve found the story rather slow and uninspiring. If it builds up to something great in Episode 6 and really turns the series around I’ll be impressed but the longer I feel I’m waiting for that twist and the more this series bores me the less impressed I’m going to be no matter how good the twist is.


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