American Horror Story: Freak Show wrapped up its fourth season with an 80-minute season finale Wednesday night which was jammed-packed with a killing spree, a wedding and a little heartbreak.
The FX production is known for its diverse and robust cast, which makes it hard to pencil-in a happy ending for everyone.
So how does creator Ryan Murphy settle this key quandary? With what AHS does best, killing.
By killing off most of his cast, Murphy is able to hand-pick the characters for which he has to write an ending.
After the blood dried, there were only four main character stories for Murphy to choreograph. However, Murphy ultimately chose to address six characters’ endings.
Dandy, the show’s last remaining antagonist, starts the episode by killing the majority of the freaks.
As the bodies pile up, Desiree, Bett, Dott and Jimmy are the only survivors of the freak show. Dandy holds Bett and Dott captive and forces Dott to marry him. They go along with this scheme for survival.
As the newlyweds are enjoying a fine dinner from the house’s new chef, Dandy falls under some drug induced stupor. We find that Bett and Dott have drugged Dandy to seek vengeance.
After introducing herself as the chef, Desiree calls in a butler who turns out to be Jimmy.
As Dandy wakes up he finds himself in a large Houdini-like water-escape chamber. He quickly finds that he is chained to the bottom with no way out.
Desiree tells Dandy that he will finally get to be the star of the show as they fill the tank and watch him take his final breaths.
Another survivor of the show is the former Freak Show owner, Elsa Mars. She moves on to be the biggest star in Hollywood, complete with her own show The Elsa Mars Hour. From the start it looks as if she’s content and all of her dreams have finally come true.
Elsa later meets up with her old friend and love interest Massimo Dolcefino. She tells Massimo that she is “cursed,” and, although she has everything she has ever wanted, she is bored and lonely. She is married to her Hollywood manager, but the marriage is worth nothing more than the image it creates.
Elsa comes to the conclusion that she and Massimo should runaway together. Massimo says that he is also “cursed” and only has a month to live.
Elsa’s story ends on the set of her Halloween special as she is approached by Dr. Edward Mordrake during a performance of David Bowie’s “Heroes.” Knowing her time is up, Elsa tells Mordrake, Twisty the Clown and company that she is “the biggest freak of all” and falls dead on the stage.
The last scene is of Elsa leading her freak show in some sort of afterlife purgatory.
Murphy ties some final loose ends during Elsa’s performance by showing Desiree embraced by her presumed husband Angus T. Jefferson as they walk by a storefront and see Elsa on television.
Jimmy and Bett are married and are expecting a child. As they are sitting on a couch together watching the television, Jimmy holds Bett and rubs her pregnant stomach. Seeing Elsa shown on the television, Dott smiles and turns it off.
Overall the season finale was decent. Murphy tied together several endings in an exciting twisting finish. However, many fans will be left with more questions than answers as the seasons were supposed to connect.
Fans certainly could not have expected a full explanation and fusion of all the seasons, but most would have hoped for a greater resolution than was given. Many of the Asylum references were either shallow or poorly developed, and the season did nothing to foreshadow the seasons of Murder House or Coven.
Although some of the characters ended the season happy, many of the fans will not be. If Murphy continues to fail to address story lines, he runs the risk of losing a large part of his fan base.
Hopefully will see a more full circle connection developed in season five of American Horror Story.