American Horror Story: Roanoke – Chapter 4 Review

The latest episode of American Horror Story: Roanoke featured much of the backstory we’ve been looking for. It answered all the questions (so we think) as to why Shelby and Matt are being terrorized by “The Butcher” and her gang of angry creatures. Unfortunately, it cost both Cricket Marlowe and Dr. Elias Cunningham (Denis O’Hare) their lives. So other than a bloody showdown in the woods, what else is left?

Chapter 4 bombarded viewers with information. First off, Elias (the man from videos) returned to the house and gave Matt and Shelby a complete history of everything that has happened there. Every former resident, including The Chen family, Mr. Piggy, and the psycho nurses who were all murdered by “The Butcher”. The one thing they all had in common besides who killed them was when they were killed. It turns out that she is only able to kill on the same six-day lunar cycle in October each year, the anniversary of her death. Unfortunately for Matt and Shelby, it happens to be that time of year.

With Flora still lost in the woods, the three of them set out to save her. They are able to find Flora but she is accompanied by “The Butcher” and her clan who look like they’re about to sacrifice her.  However, she is able to escape so in turn, the mob hunts Elias down with arrows, Rickon Stark style. Shelby and Matt are able to flee back to their house (though still without Flora), where they are greeted by Cricket. After another adventure into the woods (why they keep going back, I don’t know) Cricket returns with the truth about the Roanoke Colony. It turns out the true leader is Scathach, the Witch of the Woods (Lady Gaga). At the time of the settlement she was able to convince Kathy Bates character to kill herself and every member of the Roanoke Colony for some “Old Gods” religious reason, and now they haunt the land they once lived on.

So as you can see this chapter gave us a lot of the backstory. When the theme of this season was revealed, these were the parts I was looking forward too. Unfortunately, there wasn’t much to it. I was expecting the entire season to take place in the past, but instead, it seems they have crammed it all into one episode. Unless there is a major twist to the story coming, I can only imagine the rest of the season being Shelby and Matt battling “The Butcher” with a bit more of Lady Gaga. If this is the case, I’ll be really disappointed.

Overall this was a pretty good episode, though. It featured the backstory I was waiting for while also delivering some pretty thrilling and gruesome scenes. Without a major shakeup in the story, however, AHS: Roanoke may become stale the rest of the season. I fear that it will abandon its central theme and resort back to the nonstop “scares” we saw in the first two episodes as Matt and Shelby fight off the wrath of “The Butcher”.

Score: 7/10

 

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