Title of the episode: Madness Ends
or, American Horror Story: Where Are They Now?
While certainly not ending with the majorly satisfying ‘crunch’ of a twist brought by season 1, the finale of season 2 answered most questions about the fate of the characters and how they all intertwine with each other from the series premiere. It still doesn’t answer my personal question of “why the hell are there aliens in the show”, but at least it concludes everything else with one of the strongest episodes of the season overall.
Head inside for a breakdown of what happened!
We start by looping back to the very beginning of ADAM LEVINE’S Briarcliff bang-session with his girlfriend. What they are unaware of is that Bloodyface and Lana’s son (DYLAN MCDERMOTT) whose real name is Johnny Morgan has taken up residence in Briarcliff and he is the one that hacks off ADAM LEVINE’S arm with a machete. So supposedly he escapes afterwords and everything is blamed on the group of Bloodyface wannabes from the third-ish episode.
This revelation is somewhat disappointing because I really wanted it to be one of Dr Arden’s mutants beasts still locked away and forgotten about for the 40+ year time stretch. Even better would have been a crazed Sister Jude after being abandoned in solitary. But there’s other much-less-sinister plans for Sister Jude as the episode continues. I just need to figure out how to parlay my MWTVG fame into being a writer for this show… If somebody has ideas on how to do so, send them my way!
Anyway, Present-day Lana is up for a Kennedy Center Honor and is being interviewed by a news anchor. In reminiscing on her Briarcliff expose, she explains how she broke back in to the asylum to film for her documentary. She attempts to find Sister Jude but her cell was empty when she got there. She finds out that Kit had gone back for Jude and checked her out into his care. Kit saw her through to full but slow recovery aided in part by his kids who had some sort of healing powers over her. After her sanity returned, she acted as a grandmother figure for the kids until she passed away six months later. JESSICA LANGE is fantastic and has her best performance of the season by far.
After Lana was able to close down Briarcliff, her next target was then-Cardinal Howard. She confronts him in a parking deck and accused him of all the horrible things he oversaw while heading up the asylum. Overcome with guilt, he went home and slit his own wrists.
Pause again for a second here, because this is where it becomes more-and-more unfortunate that they killed off Sister Mary Eunice and Doctor Arden three episodes ago like they did. Even the abrupt disappearance of Leigh Emerson (IAN MCSHANE’S character) was a poor call as he could have reappeared to finish what he started with the Cardinal. Or even LILY RABE could have duplicated Emerson’s crime and crucified Cardinal Howard herself. But with Monseigneur Cardinal Howard becoming such a massive S.O.B. as the season progressed, they did not give his storyline a very satisfying conclusion. Hollywood? Do you hear this gold? Call me sometime.
So then what happened to Kit? He ends up marrying again and asks Lana to be the kids’ godmother. His son Thomas became a law professor at Harvard while his daughter went on to be a neurosurgeon at Johns Hopkins. Kit himself was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer when he was in his 40’s and was re-abducted by the aliens before death. So aliens randomly appear and fall flat yet again. No major revelations on why he or his kids were so special. No more mention of the spider robot in Kit’s neck from the first episode. I said it before and I stand by the fact that the alien bit should have been completely replaced by focusing on Sister Mary Eunice’s possession by the demonic entity. The show wouldn’t even need to change much from everything that happened, but it would have felt much less disjointed.
Lana then admits to letting her baby live rather than having an abortion like she wrote in her book. Unbeknownst to her, her son is standing in the next room. Johnny comes out after the interview ends to finally kill Lana as he had been planning for years. After a brief exchange, he pulls a gun on her but falls for her motherly love she tries to give him. She is able to get the gun from his hands and shoots him instead. The back-and-forth between Lana (SARA PAULSON) and Johnny was one of the single best scenes in the episode and quite possibly the series thus far. Evidently this is considered the ‘twist’ of the season, because it ends very shortly thereafter.
So the finale, while mainly driven through Lana’s interview, was a great episode and a pretty decent way to end the second season. Again, there could have been more efficient use of the storylines and there were a couple false starts and very loose threads left bare, but let’s not beat a dead horse. We now move from here to the impending third season. As far as rumors go, it might take place in New Orleans and be all about Voodoo. Cool! As long as there’s no aliens.