American Horror Story: Episode 10: “Smoldering Children”
Re-view-cap of Episode 10 of American Horror Story “Smoldering Children”
In the following we will recap this episode roughly while reviewing ideas/theories/thoughts in general. Ultimately this episode was Tate and Violet heavy which is something I always enjoy but if that isn’t your cup of tea there was always the naked!Ben fight. However the biggest reveal of night had to do with Violets pulse.
VIOLET AND TATE aka BATSHITCRAZY ROMEO AND DEPRESSED AS HELL VIOLET
Well, I was right. Violet is no longer alive. In fact she turned into that corpse from The Ring (Eeek!). It’s your typical love story: Dead boy likes alive girl. Alive girl likes dead boy. Alive girl kills herself by accident. Both continue living (er sort of living) trying to hide the truth from one another.
Tate’s completely mental mind made up this convoluted and slightly hysterical plan in order to protect Violet from the truth about her new and dead status. It entails getting into the Rubberman suit (TATE THIS NEVER REALLY SOLVES YOUR PROBLEMS!), knocking Ben out, and convincing Violet to commit suicide with him. However as always we are left in the dark about Tate’s true motivations so like Violet we fear for what he truly is trying to do with her. Ultimately Tate shows Violet her very dead body as a last resort in keeping her from trying to go to school and in turn keep her from trying (and failing) to leave the house. Tate also viciously kills an exterminator Ben hired to find whatever “vermin” is in his crawlspace – aka Violets horrible decomposing corpse. Is he going to be roaming around the house now? Tate actually believes he is punishing this man as well calling him a killer of the innocent. Tate, you big god damn teapot – stop calling the kettle black. Rather keep on going I’m starting to love how murderous you actually are.
What does Violets new ghostly status mean for my favorite feel good couple? Things seems to be looking up a bit on one hand but on the other when Violet was ultimately faced with a crazy eyed Tate offering a pact suicide and an eternity together she literally ran the other way screaming for her daddy. However, Tate seems sincere in that he was truly trying to protect Violet from finding out the sad truth about her deadness.
Something interesting is that both of them cannot remember their deaths. In fact with this reveal we see another side to the house; my true favorite character on this show. We see the house from a newbie ghosts eyes and a hilarious yet terrifying glimpse at literally being stuck in a loop. If Violet felt like she was going insane before now her poor (dead) brain is about to pop. Tate is legitimately saddened at what he has to show Violet. He needs to show her why she cannot go to school, cannot leave him, cannot grow up. It’s actually a really sad emotional moment. Gruesome and sad.
The last images of Tate and Violet playing cards is essentially Tate showing Violet that there will be no real changes in their relationship and routine. Seeing them realize how much they’ve been trying to protect one another is sweet – far too sweet for Tate who has just mauled her father – But I cant help but coo and aww. Did anyone else see Tate try to sneak a peek at her cards.ADORABLE. Also the whole dialogue concerning why Tate never told Violet that he in fact knew he was dead (which I am so happy I knew) and actually saying the line: “Hey I’m Tate. I’m Dead. Wanna hookup?” with a little sly smirk. How could not love this mental patient?
I love how Tate is sort of happier now that everything is more truthful. Violet does not seem as happy as him but she isn’t as scared or terrified as she should be. They are in fact together forever. Tate A would think it romantic. Violet semi accepting but mostly tired. Tate B is still remembering his epic fight with a very naked wet Ben Harmon.
Yes we got NAKED Ben and LATEX Tate fighting with lots of head injuries, lamp-weapons, and grunting. What actually surprised me was the reveal. Ben is wrestling with Tate’s mask trying to find out who violated his wife. (“You rape my wife?!?!”) There is lots of latex pulling but I did not actually think Ben would see Tate’s face. Too bad for Ben that he finally got to see Tate’s face right when Tate’s big chloroform plan actually worked. Ben succumbs to the drug, and Tate actually admits he would kill him if not for Violet. It is undoubtedly a Tate Violet does not encounter and I love how he doesn’t even seem to perceive the insanity of the whole thing. In his mind he is playing the hero for the love of his life. Protect his girl from the truth – Tate the problem is the truth makes you look worse than ever. Do you think Violet will still be up for a lifetime of being stuck in the house with her mass murdering but overly sweet boyfriend once she finds out he fathered one of her new siblings?!
This is a true horror. The opening scene of this episode captured a tortured horrible family dinner between new family: Constance, Addy, Tate, and Larry aka Laurence. Tate’s angsty teen bullshit is reminiscent of Violet but he carries a hole other darkness with him. After Tate says some amazing dialogue (“Thank you for the salty pig meat. And for our new charade of a family.”), and breaks some plates he vows to Constance that he will never be her perfect boy. Shit. I really wanted to see some other more palpable reason for your actions but I’m pretty sure you are just totally crazy and the house is giving you a huge push. He sniffs some sort of coke/meth/pill deal, prepares his guns for his “noble war”, and makes one stop before he hits up ole’ Westfield High for some horrible gunplay. Tate’s sort of crazed look during the shooting now explained he makes a stop beforehand. He visits boring looking Larry at work with a gas can in hand. AhhhLarrys burns are explained as Tate sets him on fire and walks away with this sort of “cool-guy” strut. Sigh. Tate the worse you get the more I never want to see your character go.
Tate is supremely angry over Constance and Larry especially because she is just seemingly doing Larry so she can get back into that house. He also hates Larry because he knows he killed Beau. Seeing Addy here is a great fresh breath of air. I’m entirely too happy that this character is literally in a better place. Beau however is still stuck in the house. I love how part of Tate’s argument for Violet killing herself and staying in the house was to play with Beau (and watch videos LOL). I wish we got some Beau every episode just so my conscious knows he is getting some love.
Something fun to think about: Tate’s need to cover up or dress up even when hes “bad”. Between his combat boots and black coat for his stepdad-roast, and school shooting as well as his nifty latex suit for present “evil” actions. Ben must have hit a nerve during their wet naked fight insinuating that Rubberman is scared to show his face. I see this as true considering Tate’s severe psychotic reactions to things.
CONSTANCE “My nature won’t permit such weakness” LANGDON
We get some more killer flashbacks of Constance killing Moira and her husband, Hugo, including her feeding Hugo to her dogs and therefore literally turning him into dogshit. Constance is sort of a badass – but I’m also seeing where Tate gets some of his more colorful qualities. Constance is now in present day feeling the heat from her deadly games. The LAPD want to put a handle on the “Boy Dahlia” case aka Travis sexy sensational corpse. They are finding Constance the perfect suspect especially considering all the dead or missing surrounding her for the last 30 years. Jessica as always is amazing to watch in all Constance’s racist pompously scathing remarks. She is actually seemingly going to go down for a crime she actually had no part in and she gets sympathy from us because (like sweet Tate) Jessica Lange knows how to milk an audience for emotions. Right when we think she is going to be charged, she is saved by Larry doing something unexpected. He is taking the fall for Travis’s murder which he did not even commit. He seemingly at first planned to pin it on Constance but when he was retrieving Travis’s things from Murder House he ran into the dead man himself. Travis was all hooky and dumb which makes my smile. He couldn’t stay to talk though because he promised to play with two little girls. We see Larry’s horribly burned daughters having an adorable tea party. He is stricken by the scene. Larry also gets his first visit from his dead wife. Her visit convinces him to ultimately turn himself in to pay for what he’s done. What is amazing is he still ultimately loves Constance at the end of this craziness. This woman must give some sort of amazing blowjob because this guy cannot get enough of her even though she in the nicest of terms: A gigantic bitch. And oh yeah: Her son brutally tried to burn you alive. Constance does not have the willpower or passion to give him any sort of satisfaction as he asks for her to tell him she loves him just ones more. She instead just leaves and Larry suddenly looks like he’d much rather get her convicted again. I hope Larry is around more…. Prison does not suit him even if they have a killer theatre program. Fun fact! Larry loves Brigadoon and that my friends is what makes Larry so much fun. No wonder I’ve enjoyed him from the beginning. Now it makes perfect sense. It took this statement for me to realize he wasn’t even close to kidding when asking Ben for money for headshots. He really sees himself as a struggling actor of some kind.
Oh Larry I am pretty sure you are done with this show but if you come back I will be so happy. I’ll miss that burned up mug.
BEN & VIVIEN SITTING IN A TREE/PSYCH WARD
Before Ben’s confrontation with the malevolent Rubberman!Tate in a magic towel he visited his wife at the psych ward. He informs her that he believes her now and I love that not for even one second would she consider going into that house. However I’m thinking finding out Violet is dead and essentially stuck there may change her mind. Vivien’s facial reaction to Ben telling her about the twins having two different fathers was exactly as the audiences was last week when we found out which was sort of brilliant “WTF” expression. She does note to Ben however that he did not believe her when she first told him everything so why would he take the truth from someone (or something!) else. I love Vivien and Ben fighting – it shows how toxic they are while still obviously holding a lot of passion for one another. This show is just going to get more insane with the confrontations – I hope.
Will Ben remember that Rubberman is Tate? If so, how is he going to cope with that? He coarsely worries for his precious Violet as he blacks out from the chloroform – what will he do finding out that his little girl is not only dead already but having some sort of intense twilighty relationship with ever crazy ever violent Tate.
Will Violet try to hide her…um… condition from her parents? Will they ever believe her?
One of those babies wants out of Vivien’s uterus and its coming into a world of babycrazy ghosts. All of the ghosts are seemingly waiting to take one of these children. They should make a lifetime movie about this likening it to that Pregnancy Pact movie. Chad (!!!) is back and he wants a baby too now. I can hardly wait for all the amazing bitchy quips this man is going to spew.