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S04.E01: Monsters Among Us

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One of the only surviving sideshows in the country struggles to stay in business during the dawning era of television; police make a terrifying discovery at a local farmhouse.

 

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I don't really get how the serial killer clown ties into the freak show. So far I thought it's kind of boring, but I also know they have to do a certain amount of setting up plots. So I am hoping the episodes get better and weirder as the season unfolds.

 

My only real complaint is when Ma Petit talks I can't understand her. The pitch of her voice just sounds like noise to me. I know that can't be helped, but it's a gripe nonetheless.

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Guest Accused Dingo

Holy crap I love this show.

 

Sarah Paulson's twins are so going to be my favorite.  I already love them.  

 

Ryan Murphy has finally found the perfect roll for Evan Peters...sex toy for bored married women.

 

Killer Clown  Killer Clown

 

Mommy made it toasty for you.  

 

One episode in an I am enjoying Freak Show more then I enjoyed the entire season of Coven.  My show is back!!!!!

 

So is Evan Peters Character starting a killer Cult?  

 

It's Pepper!  

 

Don't call us freaks!

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The clown is horrifying.

 

But other than that, I found this pretty boring and probably the weakest season opener of the four AHS seasons so far. Still, I'm intrigued by Lange's character and will stick around for her.

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What the hell accent was Kathy Bates doing? I couldn't figure it out. At times, some words almost sounded Canadian. I was just waiting for her to say aboot.

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I thought it was boring too.   I always think AHS starts off strong, and then falls apart and I get really bored mid-season (I still haven't made it all the way through season 2).  It's not a good sign that this season already started off boring.

 

Plus, the sound design.  In every scene, there is a constant stream of background noise, music or something.  I found it pretty annoying after a bit.

Edited by MrHufflepuff
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So Kathy Bates has ALL the accents? And her beard seems to expand and contract like lungs.

The less said about the drugged candy striper plot, the better.

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What the hell accent was Kathy Bates doing? I couldn't figure it out. At times, some words almost sounded Canadian. I was just waiting for her to say aboot.

It sounded like very exaggerated Balmorese (working class Baltimore)?

So Kathy Bates has ALL the accents? And her beard seems to expand and contract like lungs.

The less said about the drugged candy striper plot, the better.

Yeah, if they wanted horrific, kidnapped, drugged and forced porn would work, but then they got way too goofy with the rest of it all. Also, it's hard to be sympathetic toward the real people with deformities (freaks is a nasty word), when they're participating in something that vile.

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Well, I liked it. I had low expectations but I'm in, even with the body count. I hate clowns and that one was creepy. Jessica Lange always brings it. She wants to be a star. I'm looking forward to her back story. Loved the David Bowie number. I think Kathy Bates is supposed to have a Pennsylvania Dutch accent? A lot of characters to flesh out. Ryan Murphy always keeps us guessing as he yanks us around.  I've got to take the dog out but at least it's a full moon so I can watch for killer clowns...

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I think Kathy Bates's accent was suburban Pennsylvanian. I lived in Philly my whole life and I know that accent. She empahsized it way too much and I also agree that I heard a French accent somewhere in the German from Jessica Lange. I am reall freaked out by the clown but mostly it's that mask he wears. I was wondering during the scene where he has hostages locked up why he didn't open the cage and kill them. It seemed like they were scared but mostly unharmed by his rage. Couldn't he have just opened one of the cages up? Or was he waiting? I guess there's a reason he has them locked away in the first place. We shall see...

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Evan Peters did more in one episode then he did in most of the last season.

 

I liked the small interaction he had with Kathy Bates. So far on this series he and mom's have not worked out well.

 

I was cool with Twisty the Clown. It was creepy but not in the whole I cant watch way.

 

I am not surprised Elsa had something wrong with her. I didn't think it would be her legs though.

 

Either Bette or Dot seem to like Jimmy or maybe both twins do.

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I think Kathy Bates's accent was suburban Pennsylvanian. I lived in Philly my whole life and I know that accent. She empahsized it way too much and I also agree that I heard a French accent somewhere in the German from Jessica Lange. I am reall freaked out by the clown but mostly it's that mask he wears. I was wondering during the scene where he has hostages locked up why he didn't open the cage and kill them. It seemed like they were scared but mostly unharmed by his rage. Couldn't he have just opened one of the cages up? Or was he waiting? I guess there's a reason he has them locked away in the first place. We shall see...

I guessed Baldmerese, but Phillese makes perfect sense. I googled "Kathy Bates AHS accent" and reviewers described it as broad Canadian, Cajun, vaguely Southern settling in Appalachia, Pennsylvania Dutch and Irish. I thought her son sounded vaguely weak Irish, like maybe someone who had left Ireland as a small child but was still around some people with thicker accents. The tattooed guy with the short arms sounded English of some sort.

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I feel like the average clown is scarier than this try hard clown.  He reminds me of the current Joker in the Batman comics  who has a cut off and then stapled back on face.

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I found this far more entertaining than the actual show.  Never watched this before, and so far, I'm not feeling it.

Yeah,the clown stuff was the more interesting part to me too so far, but those previews look really good,so hopefully we have some fun ahead. and when I say fun, I mean craziness!

 

The less said about the drugged candy striper plot, the better.

I'm putting that down as disturbing scene #1 so far.  AHS always has them.

 

Plus, the sound design.  In every scene, there is a constant stream of background noise, music or something.  I found it pretty annoying after a bit.

  Agreed.  It was very noticeable in that scene with Lange at the hospital. I don't like when music overtakes the dialogue like that. Let's see if it keeps up.

 

American Horror Story's fourth season has pube faces, evil murder clowns, and a Jessica Lange performance that somehow tops 'The Name Game.'

 

I respectfully disagree.  Nothing can top The Name Game for me!. :) That was brilliant.

 

My only real complaint is when Ma Petit talks I can't understand her.

 

Yeah, I didn't understand a word she said in her second scene with Lange. Damn she's tiny though.

 

Sarah Paulson's twins are so going to be my favorite. I already love them.



I think they'll definitely be a favorite of mine too. Two Paulson's for the price of one? That's gotta be good! I would love to see the behind the scenes and how they go about filming her.

That first scene in the hospital room with her(them?) and Lange,the effects were pretty good, the heads looked great.   But some scenes out of the room,you could see the green screen working for her. Not a nitpick, just an observation. because it's not going to be perfect.

 

I am not surprised Elsa had something wrong with her. I didn't think it would be her legs though.

I was not spoiled for anything so that was a surprise. Wonder if it's war related.

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That clown though. That muthafuggin' clown.

Also, Kathy Bates tweeted that Ethel's accent is supposed to be from Baltimore. So, yeah.

Edited by Kristen
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I guess there's a reason he has them locked away in the first place. We shall see...

 

He's creating his own show of "normals"? I don't know. 

 

Pennsylvania Dutch accent. Hmm. Maybe. (my dad's side is Pennsylvania Dutch, German speaking Pennsylvanians). But, Kathy Bates sounded Irish and southern at times. 

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That clown though. That muthafuggin' clown.

 

For some reason killer clown was not as scary as I thought he'd. Oh but he's still creepy alright. He was creepiest when he came out of nowhere and attacked the picnic couple, especially when he was acting clownish...I was just waiting for him to freak out any second.

 

ETA- I love the opening title credits. I'd seen them already a few days ago,but still cool to see.

Edited by Valny
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I don't have a clown phobia but I'm psyched for the reactions of people who do. That sounded sadistic. What I mean to say is, I will find as much joy in reading reactions to Twisty as I did watching Rubberman invade peoples' homes in those promo videos from season one. If I were afraid of clowns, that wide shot of Twisty playfully rising from the picnic blanket would have made me change the channel. Delightfully unnerving.

 

At a glance, Jessica Lange's character will be my favorite, which (sacrilegiously) hasn't been the case before. Elsa's despair at there being no audience for the amazing show the performers put on was so sad. And it was fantastically entertaining. I hate the thought that this very thing has happened to real people. AHS always brings bags of crazy with pieces of crazy trailing along behind the plotholes in the bottom of those bags, but I don't know if it will be enough to distract me this time from how depressing the reality was for sideshow performers. That image of Elsa alone, dejected and with her two prosthetic legs on either side of her was upsetting. Bring more crazy carnival antics, show, before I turn maudlin.

 

Lobster boy is so gross. I kinda love it. There was no time wasted in tackling the sexual applications of the various deformities. This season could become more perverse than the others. Not because of the physical abnormalities, but because these writers have no problem answering the intimate and insensitive questions that only a drunken frat boy would have the gall to ask someone with their various disfigurements.

 

I'm in for now. Halloween is coming up and this is the perfect show to inspire that holiday spirit.

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Best character: The biker kid with the permanent Vulcan hands.

Best weapon: His razor. Fingers are too long to properly close around a stabbing-knife handle? But long enough to give a serious quick-draw advantage? Razor ambush is a perfect fit for him.

Although I still think that cop was pathetically incompetent, just standing there assuming that people he thought were violent criminal scum need not be guarded against.

I also love the dirty old German lady.

And the twins. I don't even have trouble telling them apart.

Left wing wants art and sex and freedom, right wing wants left wing to settle down and keep her panties on. 

Don't know WTF the deal is with The Clown with The Tear-Away Face. Seems like he was a lot grouchier back then, though, before he made friends with Jack Skellington.

Edited by CletusMusashi
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What the hell accent was Kathy Bates doing? I couldn't figure it out. At times, some words almost sounded Canadian. I was just waiting for her to say aboot.

I was going to come and ask the same thing, then I saw the crack about Canadian accents. (And having asked friends, personally if I say anything it sounds more like aboat than aboot!)

 

I realize I am channelling at least part of my anger at you, rather than at clowns. And normally? Normally, I'm okay with clowns. Even Pennywise I can deal with. This clown with the dead, unblinking eyes as he stabs people? Yeah, that's a big bowl of nope, and a lot of displaced patriotic anger.

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The clown scared the hell out of me I want the girl and little boy to be okay so bad but I won't even try to hope for anything good.

The dude with the weird hands is ugh I wouldn't even let him touch me let along do what those women were letting him do like wow!!!!

I liked it just fine.

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I got distracted. Is the girl being held captive the same one whose boyfriend was killed by the clown during their picnic? I couldn't be bothered to go back and watch again.

I could have sworn that I read that we'd see what was under the clown's mask in the first episode and I'm really disappointed it didn't happen. I find him sufficiently creepy, and I'm kind of more interested in him than the freakshow.

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I got distracted. Is the girl being held captive the same one whose boyfriend was killed by the clown during their picnic? I couldn't be bothered to go back and watch again.

 

Yes

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I thought it was boring too.   I always think AHS starts off strong, and then falls apart and I get really bored mid-season (I still haven't made it all the way through season 2).  It's not a good sign that this season already started off boring.

 

Plus, the sound design.  In every scene, there is a constant stream of background noise, music or something.  I found it pretty annoying after a bit.

 

 

This.  Also, please get out of my head.  Along with having a damn near identical sentiment regarding the buildup and inevitable letdown this show delivers, Mr. Jabroni & I were remarking on the terribly annoying background "music" that overrode almost every bloody scene.  Sometimes I feel like Ryan Murphy identifies a little too closesly with "Twin Peaks" but lacks the vision/talent/taste/intellectual fortitude to successfully pull it off.  I've been cursing him and saying that I've "learned my lesson" since "Nip/Tuck" - yet here I am, not only watching this dreck, but commenting upon it as well. 

 

 

I feel like the average clown is scarier than this try hard clown.  He reminds me of the current Joker in the Batman comics  who has a cut off and then stapled back on face.

 

Another echoed sentiment!  By the second appearance of Teefs da Clown, my head hurt from rolling my eyes so far back.  And my exact comment was, "This guy (meaning RM creating this character and assaulting our intelligence with his 'creepiness') is trying waaaay too hard." 

 

 

I am embarassed to say that I had sortof been looking forward to this show since the promos started, especially with the addition of Vic Mackie and Denis O'Hare.  But given how utterly frustrated I felt by the hackery of the premiere, I fear that I may never get to see their freakiness.  Thousands of struggling writers out there and this... THIS is who gets to keep a job writing this fuckery.  Well, he and Kurt Sutter.  I'm not sure who is in charge of programming at FX, but as my crazy aunt used to say, "That boy's got splinters in the windmills of his mind." 

 

ETA:  I forgot to mention Kathy Bates' accent.  Totally from Hollandtown in Bawlmer. 

http://www.baltimorehon.com/

Edited by SomeJabroni
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According to the candy striper (who conveniently is also a contortionist)

 

The contortionist was one of the "freaks."  Penny the Candy Striper (Grace Gummer) was stoned on the chaise lounge.  Also, as soon as she insulted Dot/Bette then said, "My Mom said I either do this or go to Reform School," I thought, here comes the lurid sexual violence.

 

My own problem with this episode is, I know this is going to be violent and lurid and (purposely) over the top and campy and batshit crazy.  It's supposed to be batshit crazy.  But personally, I need someone to root for as they go through this season's insanity.  In season one I was pulling for Vivien and Violet until the end.  In season two Lana Winters was probably the purest hero this series has had, and she triumphed in the end.  In season three I was with Zoe (until she killed Spaulding;  that was unnecessary) and Cordelia and Misty.  But this season?  Of the major characters (I'm not counting the two Twisty hostages) everyone's already awful.  Bette murdered her mother; Dot helped cover for her sister.  Jimmy killed the police officer who had the nerve to try and arrest Bette for a murder she actually committed, then the entire "freaks" community (except for Elsa) held a mass stabbing of the police officer's corpse.  If Twisty kills all the major characters I think my reaction will be, "Meh."

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That clown though. That muthafuggin' clown.

Also, Kathy Bates tweeted that Ethel's accent is supposed to be from Baltimore. So, yeah.

LMAOOOOOOOOO!!!  Oh, Lord.  I've been around that accent my whole life and my God ... she could've dealt with a bit more time to refine that ... whatever it was.  She sounded exactly like someone trying to sound like they're from Baltimore.  Dundalk by way of Hollywood.  It's not that the sounds she made were incorrect so much but that they were so over-emphasized that it became a caricature.  No one actually talks like that.  That's how people talk when they're making fun of Baltimoreans.

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I'm optimistic for where this season will be heading. I've enjoyed all seasons of AHS but I think this season can strike the balance between fun what the fuck moments and genuine scares that season 2 did.

The clown doing silent, clowny things was 100% pure nightmare fuel for me (shudders).

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--So the candystriper wanton is Meryl Streep's daughter?  LOL

 

--I liked Ma Petit and was not happy to see what was happening to her in "this season" previews.

 

--That song might have been a lot of fun if you caught the David Bowie origin, but on its own. . .mmm, not so great.

 

--Soiled clown costumes are inherently creepy, even without the extra toothy topper.

 

 

 

.

Edited by candall
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I love the little woman. Was that Ma Petit? She's so cute. I'm sure she probably hates hearing that because she's a grown adult woman, but she was so sweet and I loved her little voice.

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Every complaint I had about this episode is forgotten because Jessica Lange is singing "Life On Mars" in a bad German accent and everything is beautiful and nothing hurts.

This was the point at which I shouted, "OMG THIS SHOW IS PURE MAGIC!" And that eyeshadow Elsa was wearing. Damn!

I loved everything about this episode except the opium rape film thing. That just felt like it was done kind of weirdly. Like, what was the point of even bringing the candy striper there for that? What was the motivation? It's not like she's super rich and Elsa can blackmail her or something. Maybe Elsa sells the films?

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I liked it but I didn't love it though. Solid enough opening episode.

I never trust any character Jessica Lange plays and in that respect, Elsa will probably be no different but I did like her enough in the episode (dodgy accent/singing aside) and the last scene was interesting.

Bette and Dot are clearly going to be the highlight of the season though. Already find both of them massively interesting. Dot seemed to soften to Jimmy as well.

The rest of the freaks had their moments - Ethel was a good wingwoman for Ethel, Jimmy made some fair points about wanting a better life. Really liked Ma Petite and seeing Pepper again. Poor candy striper girl though.

Dandy gave me the creeps as well. His fixation on freaks is clearly being set up as an unhealthy one.

The clown was scary too. Will be interesting to see how he affects Elsa's troupe though, 8/10

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I cannot believe my husband tricked me into watching another season of this show. At the end of each cycle I shudder deeply, shake my head, and proclaim, "Never again." Yet somehow I get pulled back time after time. Probably I need counseling.

 

I grew up hearing German accents, and I had absolutely no idea what Jessica Lange was saying most of the time. Had to turn on the subtitles.

 

The song blew my freaking mind. 

 

Twisty the Clown is played by John Carroll Lynch!  Dear, sweet Norm Gunderson! Somehow that disturbs me more than anything else. 

 

I am reall freaked out by the clown but mostly it's that mask he wears. I was wondering during the scene where he has hostages locked up why he didn't open the cage and kill them. It seemed like they were scared but mostly unharmed by his rage. Couldn't he have just opened one of the cages up? Or was he waiting? I guess there's a reason he has them locked away in the first place. We shall see...

 

See, I thought the scene where he was manically throwing stuff at the cage and the boy and young woman were screaming helplessly was hands-down the scariest moment in the entire episode. I'm always complaining that characters on TV and in movies are depicted as too brave. If I were in that sort of situation (you know, if I were placed in a cage by an evil, murderous clown), I guarantee I'd be shrieking and peeing myself every time the he cleared his throat or accidentally knocked over his coffee cup.

Edited by Portia
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The less said about the drugged candy striper plot, the better.

 

Oh, the other hand, Sarah Paulson has finally passed on the mantle of "character who gets tortured almost all season".

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Those oppressed minorities sure do like fightin' the power with their rape and drugging and murder, ya 'all.

Someone must have showed poor wittle Ryan Murphy the 1932 Horror Classic, "Freaks"... and because he's Ryan Murphy and thus not that smart he totally misunderstood it (lets just say that in the film while the Freaks DO get excessive eventually, they have ample provocation first--they don't just do it out of the gate because they're Freaks).

 

The show really DOES have to somehow work in the phrase "Gooba-gobble, gooba-gobble." though.

 

Edited by Kromm
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Twisty the Clown is played by John Carroll Lynch!  Dear, sweet Norm Gunderson! Somehow that disturbs me more than anything else. 

 

 

See, I thought the scene where he was manically throwing stuff at the cage and the boy and young woman were screaming helplessly was hands-down the scariest moment in the entire episode. I'm always complaining that characters on TV and in movies are depicted as too brave. If I were in that sort of situation (you know, if I were placed in a cage by an evil, murderous clown), I guarantee I'd be shrieking and peeing myself every time the he cleared his throat or accidentally knocked over his coffee cup.

 

OMG - that's John Carroll Lynch?  I saw his name in the credits and then didn't think about the fact that I hadn't seen him.  Yikes.  Count me among those not inherently scared of clowns but looking over my shoulder last night.  That scene was horrifying too and agree with the others, it was somehow more terrifying when he was making balloon animals etc like a "normal" clown.  Aaaaaaaa....

 

I didn't catch the Bowie reference, I assumed with the eye shadow and the suit that it was a Jessica Lange channeling Marlene Dietrich as Madonna reference somehow.  Which amused me enough.

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Fuck clowns. I'm out.

I got to the clown and had to turn the episode off, and decided that I will be watching this season in the daylight.  I LOVE horror movies and have literally never had to watch anything in the daylight because I was too scared to watch it at night.

 

Fuck that clown.

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That's Jessica doing Marlene Dietrich doing Bowie, and it was spectacular!

 

 

Oh, that explains the eyebrows Lange is sporting this season. I feel stupid now for not picking up on that earlier.

 

Sarah Paulson's twins are so going to be my favorite.  I already love them.

They're my favorites too. I find it interesting too that it was the sweeter and gentler of the sisters who ended up killing their mother. I thought the split screen stuff was fun. I liked too that they can communicate without speaking. So far Jimmy Darling is the only one who has been able to get Dot to smile. I won't be surprised if Jimmy ends up using his hands with them too.

 

I don't have a fear of clowns but I can see why other people would and I thought the picnic scene with the couple was pretty scary. I couldn't believe she took the flowers! At first I thought there'd be something in them.

 

I liked Ma Petit and was not happy to see what was happening to her in "this season" previews.

That shit upset me!

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For some reason killer clown was not as scary as I thought he'd. Oh but he's still creepy alright. He was creepiest when he came out of nowhere and attacked the picnic couple, especially when he was acting clownish...I was just waiting for him to freak out any second.

 

ETA- I love the opening title credits. I'd seen them already a few days ago,but still cool to see.

And when he came out of the shadows before he killed that boy's parents. Eep!

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I liked this first episode and am looking forward to this season. The only complaint I have is the loud background music, I couldn't hear some of the conversation. So far I like all the characters and Jessica and Kathy kill it as usual.

But that clown! <shudder>

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