American Horror Story: Asylum Episode 9
It seems that we’re on track to get some answers to the many questions on American Horror Story: Asylum. With story arcs rounding the bend, episode 9, “The Coat Hanger”, had some delicious innuendos.
Season one favorite, Dylan McDermott, is back. But this time he is no mild mannered therapist. In fact, he is seeking help for a little problem he has. One of skinning and killing women. It was a fairly clear giveaway that McDermott was playing someone connected to Zachary Quinto’s Dr. Oliver Thredson, but the surprise was when he revealed that he is Bloody Face’s son. Again, I was able to guess that Lana would have been his mother, and back in 1964 we see Lana visiting Sister Mary, who tells her that she is pregnant, the result of Dr. Thredson’s rape. Poor Lana is in shock, understandably, and Sister Mary, in all of her demonic sunshine, tells her she will have the child against her wishes. Apparently Briarcliff is a bit like a Roman orgy with patients getting knocked up left and right, so much so that there is a plan in place for the unwanted children. They are all sent to the Home for Lost Children, an orphanage, and I have to wonder if Dr. Thredson grew up there, too.
As mean as Sister Jude was, I feel bad for her being locked up as a patient inside Briarcliff. Her weakness and vulnerabilities are finally exposed, but as quick as you see her softer side, you also see her claws come back out. The Monsignor visits her as she is restrained and tells her how everyone believes that she killed Frank, the security guard that was actually killed by Sister Mary. Her supposed motivation for killing Frank was the stress of her job. Sister Mary, Dr. Arden and Mr. Emerson all testify that she killed Frank. Things are looking up for the newly remorseful Emerson, but will he be able to hold up his part of the charade? The Monsignor tells Jude that she will live out the rest of her days within the institution. In a moment of irony, Emerson is led into Jude’s room where he tells Jude that he forgives her.
The namesake of tonight’s episode appears when Lana is driven to take matters into her own hands concerning her unwanted pregnancy. Lana finds Kit lying in bed in the infirmary and they both decide that they need to get Dr. Thredson to confess to murdering as Bloody Face. Kit’s suggestion is to use a truth serum, but Lana has a much more wicked plan. She goes to the bound Thredson and shows him the paper stating she’s pregnant. He seems to have a heart about the matter, and asks her not to give their child up, but Lana pulls out the straightened wire coat hanger, prompting him to call her a monster. Again with the irony. Her plan works and Thredson tells her why he murdered his victims while Kit is hiding in the shadows, recording the conversation. Lana goes on to tell Thredson that she already performed the abortion the night before on herself. The bleeding that followed convinced her that she was successful.
Dr. Arden finds strange footprints on the floor where he had his unexplained experience. After he comes upon Kit hiding Thredson’s confession tapes, Arden takes Kit back to his office for some questions. After giving Kit a drink, Arden says he believes Kit’s story about the aliens now, and admits he’s seen them. Arden shows a cast of the alien footprints he found, and asks Kit if he had sex with Alma before she was abducted. The connection between Kit and the aliens lies somewhere in the fact that both Alma and Grace had sex with him right before their abductions, adding in the prospect of a pregnancy, one that may be manipulated by the aliens. Dr. Arden wants to study Kit. He proposes that they bring Kit as close to death as possible in order to call the aliens back. Kit agrees to do it just so that he can see Alma again.
The Monsignor is compelled to carry Emerson’s redemption one step further by baptizing him, during which time Emerson attacks the Monsignor.
Lana practices stabbing a pillow with the coat hangers, but when she goes to kill Thredson, she finds he is no longer there. On her way back, Lana runs in to Sister Mary, who, using her omniscient demon powahs, informs Lana that her self-induced abortion didn’t take, and the fetus survived. She also reveals that the baby will be a boy, and a quick flash forward to current times when someone walks in to the therapists’ office and discovers her bloody and dead in her chair with McDermott standing ominously behind her, covered in blood. This ties the thread concerning McDermott being Lana’s and Dr. Thredson’s offspring.
Back in the common room Lana is smoking. Remember folks, this is 1964, before people were so aware that cigarette smoke might be bad for the baby, but would Lana even care anyway? In walks Sister Jude. After many stares of shock and confusion, Jude settles down with Lana and asks for one of her cigarettes. Jude claims she wants to help get Lana out of there – I guess the whole breaking news story doesn’t sound so bad now that she’s on the other side of things in Briarcliff. But Lana is understandably gun-shy after Thredson’s offer to help her leave. Jude says she will earn Lana’s trust and when she proclaims that things will be changing around there, Jude acts on this by going to the record player and smashing the record that plays that damn song. She is met with many cries of support.
Back in Dr. Arden’s lab, he’s telling Kit his plans of injecting sodium chloride directly into his heart which will cause it to stop beating, and within two minutes of his death he will be revived with an injection of atropine extracted from deadly nightshade, along with adrenaline and a sharp blow to his chest. Arden uses an ‘X’ to mark the spot, then violently injects Kit in the heart. Kit has convulsions then his heart stops. Soon after the lights begin to flicker and the familiar strange noise appears. Dr. Arden exits his lab through a door with bright light. Arden goes through another door and sees Pepper, the disfigured resident, sitting with Grace in the floor. Grace is naked and hugely pregnant. Pepper speaks and her voice is clear and knowing. Pepper tells Arden that Grace will be delivering her baby soon and needs a room so she can look after her.
A janitor discovers the Monsignor crucified to a cross in the sanctuary. He stirs and the janitor runs away in shock. We are left with the return of one of my favorite characters in the series, the angel of death, as she approaches the Monsignor.
Viewers are given the answer as to who is carrying on Bloody Face’s legacy in modern Briarcliff. We now have a face in connection with the doomed newlyweds from the beginning of the series. I also like that McDermott’s character is far from what he played in the first season.
Another thing I am glad they are somewhat addressing is the aliens. I want to know more about them and their role in the story.
There are still many questions to be answered, but with a three-week hiatus, we’ll have to wait before we get any answers. American Horror Story: Asylum returns to FX on January 2, leaving us with a good amount of information to chew on until then. So sit back, relax, have a cup of eggnog and hash it all out with your friends and family over the holiday break.