801 - "The End"

Director: Bradley Buecker
Writers: Ryan Murphy & Brad Falchuk

Heads up; format change. We'll have a (non-live recorded) Instant Take podcast tonight, as well as a "additional thoughts + feedback" session that will drop Friday. We'll probably continue this format throughout the season, though we might modify it / go back to the old format if this proves to be too much with Cecily's workload.


  • I thought this was a really good premier. It set up what was going on, the characters and just enough “creep factor”. I didn’t recognize Bates until almost the end of the episode. Sarah Paulson is playing basically the exact opposite of last season and I wonder if that will make her more tolerable for those that don’t (or didn’t) like her in AHS. 
  • Jamie91Jamie91 Pennsylvania
    edited September 14
    Another year begins! This was a very interesting premiere. I think it was purposefully muted...in the fact that I felt a considerable amount of restraint in what was shown on screen. This has been a pattern of AHS premieres since Roanoke. The first episode the last three years has been more approachable with less violence and off-the-wall sex scenes. For example: Cricket getting disemboweled happened four episodes into Roanoke, RJ nail-gunned in the head five episodes into Cult, etc. I think that's a smart move to try to get more people interested who might find some of the content repugnant.Overall, I'm really excited to see how they can do this. I agree with Cecily that it is giving off Asylum vibes, mostly because it seems incredibly claustrophobic mixed with some Blade Runner:2049 imagery.

    Finally, I was most struck with the fact that Emma Roberts is in the main title sequence! This is a first for the show in the cross-over world--a main character from one season becoming a main character in another season. Of all the people, I never thought it was going to be Madison Montgomery! But this is big, because before all the returning cast members were only back for one episode. If she is presumably only playing Madison Montgomery, she is the only person to be billed as a main character twice for playing the same role!

    I'm so excited this podcast is back!
  • A_Ron - tell Cecily that the long-haired guy at the end is the demon baby from Murder House, not the teenager. Maybe you missed it, but they were playing the Murder House theme song during his appearance ("Tonight You Belong To Me" by Patience and Prudence). 

    I thought the pre-credits sequence was awesome and really got me excited for the new season. They got right into it and it really grabbed my attention. The post-credit sequence that introduced the teenagers was also quite good. But literally the moment Sarah Paulson showed up the whole episode devolved into the usual Ryan Murphy camp. Everything about Paulson and Kathy Bates just screams camp.

    I'm still cautiously optimistic about the season though. I like your idea of having an FX network exec force Ryan Murphy to edit out his worst impulses and pare the story down to bare bones. 
  • BrieanneBrieanne California
    To echo PP above, the name on the badge that the long haired final new character showed to Kathy Bates was indeed Michael Langdon, aka Murder House baby.  My guess is he'll end up taking any people he deems worthy from Outpost 3 back to Murder House with him?  Not sure what that may lead to.

    Also, since Ryan Murphy can't seem to keep his mouth shut before the season even starts, he confirmed that both Sarah Paulson and Evan Peters will be playing dual characters this season.  The two new ones from the first episode in addition to their characters from Coven (Cordelia Fox) and Murder House (Tate Langdon).  I point this out because in the instant podcast A.Ron was confused how the witches might play into the season since Sarah Paulson was already playing Miss Venable. 
  • MichelleMichelle California
    I've been really intrigued by the premise for this season, and decided to take notes shot by shot on the opening sequence.  Here's what we have:

    • Slithering snakes
    • Candles that are extinguished then begin to burn - symbolic of resurrection or reincarnation?
    • Two barefoot people (scene is from knees down) with two animal skulls that have elongated faces - one of hte skulls has horns & is resting on top of a chalk drawing on the floor.  There are candles burning in the background.  Some sort of ritual?
    • More snakes
    • Red sketch of a demon-like figure, with the same elongated skull & horns - wears robe & carries a staff
    • More snakes
    • Red drawing (looks ancient?) of a man who looks like he is either cradling another man or trying to lift him up - they appear to be in a square hold in a wooden floor
    • Multiple tall skinny candles that melt down immediately
    • Black/white photo of a demon skeleton with horns walking through the woods - it turns to face the camera & large bony wings expand
    • Yellow/orange/red image of nuclear explosion
    • More rapidly melting burning candles, then snakes, then more candles
    • Two young girls in doorway - standing at top of stairs that appear to lead down to some sort of basement or shelter (fallout shelter?) - both are wearing dresses & look like they're from the '30s/'40s.  Younger girl's eyes are glowing.  Can see nuclear explosion behind them.
    • Black/white image of house out in the middle of nowhere - it's on fire - can see '30s/'40s-era car in front. Quickly flashes to burned rubble/remains of that house.
    • Snakes - one beneath an x-ray type screen
    • Red image of a winged demon - same skeletal demon from that b/w image of the demon in the woods?
    • More melting candles
    • Old photo (1920s/30s?) of a toddler with rosy cheeks - eyes suddenly glow - same image is in the Murder House opening sequence 
    • Two human skulls (mirror image of each other) that become animal skulls with curly horns - same long face as the previous skulls.  Black crumpled wads of something behind them that look very vinyl or leather-like.  Reference to Tate's black vinyl/leather outfit from Murder house?
    • Shoulders-up image of a human with a radiation meter in front of their face - camera zooms in and the face & neck crack open
    • Image of old mannequins ('30s/'40s/'50s style) - male & female mannequins standing, female mannequin sitting & holding a baby mannequin
    • Black scorpion
    • Upside down image of 2 people with those demonic animal skulls with spiky horns, wearing black robes - then appears to be a reflection in water (pool? puddle?)
    • Black/white image of a nuclear explosion with 6 test tubes in front - all have candle-like flames
    • More candles rapidly melting
    • Red image of a demon (maybe a person?) in a flowy robe with a hood
    • Image of a black demon with very short horns & bright white eyes carrying what looks like a grown man (or woman with short hair) who is swaddled/strapped down onto something - can only see from about stomach on up.
    • Upside down angel sculpture with its hand on its forehead - can see ripples, probably reflection in water
    • More old mannequins from '40s/'50s - they're a mom & three young toddler age boys in their living room.  Flames burn through the photo.
    • Black & white image of a nuclear explosion with the faded image of that same elongated animal skull, becomes more and more prominent/zooms closer, can see horns on it now
    • Red old drawing of a demon with wings being praised/worshipped by a large crowd of others who look the same as well as a bunch of serpents
    • More candles
    • Reddish-orange image of a flower with rapidly opening petals
    • Old drawing (red background like the others) of a winged demon with breasts(?) dangling off its chest - it's sitting on a man who is lying down & appears to be draining fluid (blood?) from its hip directly into the man's mouth
    • Forearm/hand reaching out to pull back a rumpled sheet or blanket
    • Old photo in a frame - toddler lying down, eyes closed, hands clasped, fingers entwined - can't tell if it's dead or just lying down & praying.  Face darkens & eyes glow.
    • Human skull with two burning candles on candlesticks
    • Old drawing (red background) of a woman standing in front of a crowd of onlookers who look like they're shocked or frightened - she is reaching upward and there are beams or rays of some kind shooting down at her.  Possession?
    • More candles & snakes
    • Weird x-ray like image of a woman - it fades to yellow then back to red & her face melts throughout this - can't tell what the image really is supposed to be
    • Old drawing (red background as usual for these) of men & demons (horns/wings) all sitting together around a rectangular table, drinking together, look like they're having a good ol' time
    • Black & white image of a microscope hovering above an image of a neighborhood street at night - glowing image
    • Black & white photo from '50s/'60s of a row of people all sitting, watching something - it fades & their heads all blur like a streak
    • White nightgown (maybe old?) floating up like it's rising
    • Another old drawing on red - a demon fighting, sword in hand
    • Glowing red/black image of woman (lying down or sideways image?) - looks like she's from the '30s
    • Same image from close to the beginning, two men with those demonic animal skulls & wearing black robes, reflection in water
    • More candles & a snake
    • Another old drawing on red, this one is a man with wings sitting down, head in his left hand, his elbow on his leg or knee
    • Extinguished candle lights up again

    So, all of these old drawings with the red background appear to be very medieval, some *very* much so but others are better drawings, so maybe medieval times through like the 1800s.  Pretty interesting but kind of on the nose if we consider that the themes of this season will most likely be good vs evil, satan/antichrist, demonic worship, etc.
    I agree that the first episode was kind of all over the place, but it's very like Ryan Murphy to use the premiere to introduce the characters & 'get the ball rolling', then getting deep into the theme.  I think this season is going to be outstanding and I'm here for the whole thing.  I can't wait for next week.  So glad you're both back to cover it!

    (Side note:  the man with the long flowy hair is Michael Langdon, who is Vivian & Tate's baby from Murder House - he's all grown up & is now apparently running the Cooperative, or at least is someone who is high up in that organization.)
  • MichelleMichelle California
    edited September 13
    Also, when I think of 'apocalypse', I think of the four horsemen of the apocalypse - Conquest/Pestilence (occasionally also Antichrist), War, Famine, and Death.  Also, the seven seals of the scroll, one of which that is opened and that is what brings on the four horsemen.   The horses are white, black, red, and pale.  These colors are very prevalent in the opening sequence.  Speaking of seven, aren't there seven outposts for the Cooperative?

    EDIT:  I just found this image in relation to the four horsemen  - it's called 'Death on the Pale Horse' and is the fourth horseman.  This image is in the opening sequence and is the one that I referred to when I said "Red image of a demon (maybe a person?) in a flowy robe with a hood" in my earlier post (the background was red on that one).  So yeah, the four horsemen tie in.

  • YES to everyone who already pointed it out. Michael Langdon is the Antichrist! I had to sign up for an account just to give this feedback after listening to the show this morning. I really appreciate how subtle this nod was to the 1st season, there was no hitting you over the head with anything like there sometimes is on this series. 

    I have to think the Victorian clothing is supposed to represent a more oppressive time period, both symbolically and as a way to make the 'guests' loose their comfort. Most of the pay-for-play purples we've gotten to know are particularly concerned with outward appearances, so taking their ability to dress and present themselves how they'd want sounds like a particular method of psychological torture.  

    Agree with Aron and Cecily, why aren't they all emaciated-looking when subsisting on these weird jelly cubes? And how do they not have ANY other food options? I'm no scientist, but if Brendan Frasier's dad could make a homey, food-filled bunker in Blast from the Past that lasted 20+ years, why couldn't we make something much better given the resources and technology available today? 

    No clue how the witches will play into things. I like it so far though. 

  • All the ChickensAll the Chickens Birmingham, AL
    edited September 14

    Also, did anyone mention that the long haired guy is Michael Langdon all growed up, aka the antichrist baby from season 1? No? Yes? Sorry.
  • edited September 14
    Hey guys!! So excited to be back on this crazy train!

    A couple things that jumped out at me during the premiere (some of which may or may not have already been mentioned) as well as some thoughts after listening to the Instant Take:

    - Although it would be an awesome and disturbing twist for our two young lovers to be the alien children from season 2, I’m not sure the timeline fits with what we know from Asylum. 1) The children would be portrayed as much older than teenagers. If you recall, Lana’s psychotic son, Johnny, was in his mid 40s when he confronts her in “present day.” Johnny was born around the same time as Kit’s children putting them at a much older age bracket than the kissing teens in Apocalypse; and 2) Lana’s interview at the end of season 2 provided some background into Kit’s later life with his kids. From what I gathered, they existed as a relatively normal family (minus the alien abductions and births, mother vs. mother murder, and general twisted fuckedupness). The kids didn’t seem to grow up seperated from each other or Kit. In fact, they developed into extraordinary “human” beings and accomplished amazing things much to the pride of their aging father. The separated at birth/early childhood premise doesn’t fit. Could it be possible that they’re connected to the alien children without actually being them?

    - Is the location of Outpost 3 supposed to mirror Miss Robichaux's Academy for Exceptional Young Ladies from Coven? The grand staircase entrance is very reminiscent to the academy’s. Wilhelmina states it was a former boy’s school that was converted by The Cooperative. Even the introduction given by Wilhelmina was similar to that of Cordelia Fox’s introduction to Zoe when she first arrived at Miss Robichaux’s (::cough, cough:: both intros given by Sarah Paulson ::cough, cough::). I like the idea that the writers could be playing with chirality this season, depicting the mirror image of the earlier seasons (Breaking Bad nod). ***Also, Outpost 3 and Coven being Season 3?? Coincidence? Probably, but it’d be cool to think it was on purpose. 

    - Kathy Bates is a bad ass. That is all. 

    - With the introduction of Michael Langdon as part of The Cooperative, is it safe to assume we’ll see the West Virginia Queen, Constance Langdon, this season??? Or is this just wishful thinking?? I can see the big reveal being a black leather chair swiveling around and Jessica fucking Lange sitting there, hands steepled like a goddamn Bond villain. 
  • That's true about the twins ej987. They would have been born in the 60s so they would be in their 50s now.

  • I think I mentioned in the S8 thread before the season began, but the only way I can see integrating the Harmon family + Tate Langdon is by the Outpost being built on the bones of Murder House. Or maybe if you move the bodies to a new location, the spirits will relocate as well? I don't know, since that rule isn't really mentioned in the first season.

    Of course, they've been there for over a year and a half, and no sign of the Harmons or Tate yet, or really anything supernatural aside from the rapidly aged anti-christ Michael Langdon showing up. So that kind of throws a wet towel on the idea that this outpost is built on Murder House foundation.

    Also have no idea how they bring in the Coven witches or how these characters who are all played by the same actors can co-exist in the same bunker without addressing why they look identical. My guess is maybe they will jump around to difference locations outside of the Outpost 3.

  • One thing that got me and Inforgotnto mention was that the “tickets” bought for the bunker was ripped right out of the movie 2012. 
  • Although I'm not really worried about World Super Powers nuking each other into oblivion anytime in the near future because self preservation is a hell of a thing, seeing these Nuclear Apocalypse fictions really does make me glad I live in a place that is a good distance from any realistic important bombing target areas. 

    Also, for those worried or just interested in what an attack near you would look like, including where the fallout would reach, this is a good website: http://nuclearsecrecy.com/nukemap/

    Seeing what the 100Mt "Tsar Bomba" can do on this map in any location it strikes is horrifying, especially the fallout area.
  • KingKobra said:
    One thing that got me and Inforgotnto mention was that the “tickets” bought for the bunker was ripped right out of the movie 2012. 
    The paramilitary coming to grab the kid, and not his family, before the end of the world reminded me of Deep Impact.
  • MichelleMichelle California
    edited September 15
    @A_Ron_Hubbard, confirmation that there are (at least) 7 outposts.  I'm rewatching the scene where Michael Langdon comes to Outpost 3 and speaks with Venable.  He says she's done a good job running the place "considering that 3 more outposts have been overrun and the other 3 won't last through the year".   Earlier in the episode in the dinner scene, when they receive the message carried to them by the pigeon, the message said that 3 outposts had been overrun (not using the word 'other').  3 overrun + hers + the other 3 that Michael mentioned not lasting through the year = 7.    I'm convinced that this relates to the seven seals since the four horsemen tie in.  Maybe Outpost 3 will be the 4th outpost breached (the seal being broken) and that is what releases the horsemen (remember, the 4th horseman is Death and is the one in the vignettes of the opening credit sequence).

    Also, who do we think are going to be the ones that Michael takes back with him to the sanctuary?  And how is he going to get there?  His horses were killed.  I guess they could send a carriage for them all?

    Man, I think this is the hardest I've ever theorized about an AHS season.
  • MichelleMichelle California
    Episode 2 promo is up!

  • Finally saw the first episode.   Holy moly, this season looks like it's going to be so good!  :)

    I don't mean to sound morbid, but I've actually thought about this, and feel like if there was ever a nuclear war, I'd much rather die in the first blast than survive it and have to try to survive/deal with the aftermath. 
  • ElisaElisa Los Angeles
    I just wanna say that I loved both casts. I am so glad to have Cecily and A-Ron together to dish AHS.  
  • TaraC73TaraC73 Manchester NH
    I watched last night too, and loved it! I got a vampire vibe from the dude who showed up at the end. I just hope this doesn’t turn into a vampire story, I hate those. 

    But yeah, solid pilot!!!! 
  • MichelleMichelle California
    I did a Coven rewatch over the weekend and realized that in the opening sequence, the images of snakes, candles, animal skulls, and particularly the shot of the skull resting in a chalk drawing on the floor were from Coven. 
  • All the ChickensAll the Chickens Birmingham, AL
    edited September 17
    TaraC73 said:
    I watched last night too, and loved it! I got a vampire vibe from the dude who showed up at the end. I just hope this doesn’t turn into a vampire story, I hate those. 

    But yeah, solid pilot!!!! 
    That would be lame, but it won't. His id says Michael Langdon (and they call him Mr. Langdon)

    I know it's been hilariously repeated a lot in this thread alone, but for those who don't remember season 1 very well:

    He's the antichrist baby that Vivienne Harmon gave birth to in season 1 (Murder House). Tate Langdon, a ghost, had sex with Vivienne while dressed up in the full bondage suit so she thought it was her husband Ben. Throughout the season, they suggest that her baby will be the antichrist because it is the seed of a spirit.

    Tate's mom Constance Langdon then takes the baby (Michael Langdon) in the season finale. Then you get this final scene confirming that Michael Langdon is basically the antichrist straight from The Omen movie.

  • cdrivecdrive Houston, TX
    edited September 18
    I've watched it 2.75 times now.  Once by myself. Second time starting at the "2 weeks later" part, watching remotely away on business sync'd with my wife and live commentary on speaker phone which was so much fun.  And just got back home last night and we watched it again.  

    Man it's so great to have AHS and Ryan Murphy back.  I love his humor and his punches at modern society.  

    Billy Eichner brohamming it up in his cell phone "Free Willy 6 part limited TV series it's fucking genius!"

    Joan Collins! "This champagne is burnt" which is a nod to some vintage shade from Alexis Colby on Dynasty.  The "this might be fake news. I'm calling Donald"

    "How do you know my genetic make up?"   "You submitted it in a DNA kit to ancestry.com"

    "This stew is Stu!", of course. So funny.  

    "Not a single bag of Pirate's booty!"

    Being trapped in a bunker looping The Carpenters - Calling Occupants of Interplanetary Craft

    Also I had a strange conversation with an uber driver recently about "Singularity" and the rise of AI.  Geordie Rose, D-Wave Quantum Computers that are currently, apparently, already breaking through dimensions and dialing up AI that are like Lovecraftian entities like "The Old Ones."  AI that couldn't care less about humanity as say a person would to an ant on the ground.  

    What made me think about that uber ride conversation again, about AI destroying the world, was that fully autonomous plane and also Ms. Veneable's comment about how technology caused this nuclear holocaust.  Also the comment of "I can't believe we actually did it.", which could be interpreted other ways.


  • cdrivecdrive Houston, TX
    edited September 17
    Asylum is totally gonna get worked in. I’m on #TeamCecily on that. Especially with the ‘canker puss monsters.’ 

    Also there were a total of 10 outposts.  The 2 kids were told this by the male cooperation agent in the tank when they were being driven to the outpost.  
  • edited September 17
    @A_Ron_Hubbard two points about the latest podcast: I believe either you or Cecily posited that the nuclear winter might actually be fake but when they showed the close-ups of the horses, their facts had enormous lesions on them, so I think that part's true. Also, you raised the question of when this season might take place. Joan Collins' character said "Fake News, I'm calling Donald," so I'm assuming it takes place now-ish. That really doesn't say much about whether the teens are the babies from Asylum, as you pointed out, since alien time-traveling might be involved. But it does mean Michael Langdon was rapidly aged, since that took place only eight years ago.
  • All the ChickensAll the Chickens Birmingham, AL
    edited September 17
    @A_Ron_Hubbard two points about the latest podcast: I believe either you or Cecily posited that the nuclear winter might actually be fake but when they showed the close-ups of the horses, their facts had enormous lesions on them, so I think that part's true. Also, you raised the question of when this season might take place. Joan Collins' character said "Fake News, I'm calling Donald," so I'm assuming it takes place now-ish. That really doesn't say much about whether the teens are the babies from Asylum, as you pointed out, since alien time-traveling might be involved. But it does mean Michael Langdon was rapidly aged, since that took place only eight years ago.
    I'm not sure that Murphy cares about timelines, dates or throwaway lines, and if this is set in the future, the hint that Trump is still POTUS could be some joke about people actually believing he could be the "Last President." 

    And of course, it's well known that anichrist babies age 6 times faster that normal babies. Pretty sure that's in the bible.
  • Hey guys .
    Fun lil survey 


    This is uber late I will plan on doing for each weeks episode. This was strung together hasty without hd screen caps as I was not able to any screeners this season ans did not have internet until this week . I ll post my blog recaps for episode 1 and 2 on that thread.

     I called the star crossed lovers # YA1 And YA2 as young special powred orphans is tried and trued troupe . I think these are our witches.Not  only does this fit nicely with Young Adult genre but also the genetics comment was told to Queenie and maybe Madison Montgomery also.
    I've seen alot of mixed reactions but I love the opening of this season and and intrested to see if the GUT (Grand Unification Theory) concept that fans have been hammering as true might actually pan out.  
    I would not  put it past Murphy and Falchuk to take their anthology series and turn it into a MCUesque world . Not only is that a positive business decision that FX would love I think changing the series in this fashion that raises the stakes for a creator as autuer that Murphy claims to be . 

    The steampunk+Edwardian dystopian meets supernatural is a intresting remix. 

    I already enjoy (Kbates )Merriam Mead ambivalence toward and attraction to Miss Venable ( Sarah Paulson)  speaks taboo lesbian power couple that is gonna end up turns to betrayal is a relationship rife with tension and twist.

    I wonder mostly what is up with Mr.Interview with vampire. He is the son of lady gaga character before she became imortal but while she was special is that correct? Someone needs a rewatch

    Have we heard of character before that name sounds so familiar perhaps why it was picked. 
    I feel like she a good canidate for survivial the dead pool just because we will get maximum Adina Porter. 

    Speaking of Adina ..she pulled double duty as major support on CWs The Hundred. This season had storyline of people under bunker survive a dark year where they had to eat caníbal cubes so im going call it that Grey's Anatomy is not just a tv series but also nutrient rich meal.

    Any bets when  this  seaon shark jumps and we claim it's cancelled but still watch becuse Murphy tells us what to do. I say lucky episode 7

    I vote Coco's lovely locs as tribute!
  • MichelleMichelle California
    edited September 21
    I wonder mostly what is up with Mr.Interview with vampire. He is the son of lady gaga character before she became imortal but while she was special is that correct? Someone needs a rewatch
    No, he is the son that was conceived as a result ofTate Langdon raping Vivian Harmon in season 1, “Murder House”.
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