I’ve chosen to put these two reviews together mostly because as I sat down to write the review for chapter 9 I found myself talking a lot about the finale, so I decided, why not do both together?
I really loved the introduction of a fan base in chapter 9. I thought the three characters that were introduced (played by Taissa Farmiga, Jacob Artist, and Jon Bass) were pretty interesting and I was honestly so gutted when they were killed fairly quickly. There were so many elements of this side of the series that they could have gone into, and although they do explore the fans a little in chapter 10, I still felt slightly disappointed with how much we saw in chapter 9. As someone who had been waiting all season to see Taissa Farmiga, I was really hoping to see more of her, but then again I could say that about most of the cast this season.
The use of selfie sticks and helmet cams was really good. It added to the raw/found footage effect, but also made it feel slightly different. I was sad to see that chapter 9 was the last we’d properly see of that, although we do get a couple of moments with that style in chapter 9.
Overall the episode did escalate pretty quickly, and I was admittedly surprised at who was left standing at the end. Out of Audrey and Lee I would have said the former, but I guess Lee proved me wrong. I was personally surprised she didn’t die sooner, but it seems like she’s willing to do anything in order to survive.
Picking up in chapter 10 at PaleyFest was strange. You’re suddenly seeing all of these people alive again.I can’t help but feel like when Rory runs into the crowd to hug that fan, that Evan Peters would do the exact same thing. Seeing that fan give Lee that drawing of her and Flora was surreal considering you know everything that happened. And seeing people like Rory and Audrey interact was nice to see again, but also made me very sad, knowing how things end up for all of these characters.
From a little youtube-like interlude we see that the second season had been shown but people are debating on whether it was real. I have to assume that everything we saw was shown to the public, because it’s not specified otherwise.
When we pick back up we’re in a completely new field, although it does feel somewhat familiar. The documentary style is back, but this time it’s about Lee’s case. It has interjections from people like the District Attorney, as well as clips/interviews of Lee, and a voice-over which narrates the documentary/coverage.
Lee is acquitted of her crimes, but then is put back on trail for the murder of her ex-husband Mason. It turns out that Flora saw the whole thing, of course the truth about Flora hanging around with Priscilla comes out and Lee’s lawyer spins it to say that the little girl simply has a vivid imagination (and provides more evidence and compelling lines). Doubt is created and Lee is found not guilty.
After all of this we jump to a TV interview, seemingly the first since she was found not guilty, and it happens to be with Lana Winters from Asylum! I found it amusing that the last person Lee saw die was Audrey (also played by Sarah Paulson) and then she’s being interviewed by someone who looks just like her. Of course they never mention the fact that these people look alike (and that’s always the case with AHS), but I found it highly amusing. The Lana segment took me back and made me miss Asylum.
Once again we jump to something different and I will say that by this point it was feeling a bit much. This time we move into a ghost investigation/hunting style show called Spirit Chasers. Of course it doesn’t go well for them. Lee shows up at the house after finding out that Flora has gone missing, and Ashley Gilbert is already with the investigators. With it being so close to the next blood moon the pig man appears and kills Ashley. More of the ghosts/creatures start to appear and slowly everyone is picked off one by one.
After we see that Lana is okay after being attacked in her studio by Lot Polk, the episode finishes up with Lee and Flora. They have a heart to heart inside the house where police and that wait outside. Flora wants to stay and be like Priscilla so that she can protect her from the Butcher, but Lee won’t allow it. Instead she offers herself up to take Flora’s place and stay behind to protect Priscilla.
I liked the way the episode ended with Lee making that sacrifice in the hopes of Flora might one day forgive her. The other segments were also very good, but for the length of time the episode was on it did feel like it jumped from one thing to another very quickly and too often. I feel like it would have worked better if i was spread out over a slightly longer episode or two episodes.
Overall I did enjoy the episode, but it wasn’t my favourite. It didn’t have as much of an impact considering it was the final episode. Chapter 9 had more of the kind of ending I was expecting and generally that episode impressed me more. Overall with both episodes, but mostly the finale, it just needed to be reworked a little.
What did you think of the finale (and penultimate)? Let me know!