I’ve blogged about American Horror Story before, seeing as it’s the BEST show on TV right now. But the internet is currently all a-flutter with gossip about it as its third season “Coven” is about to come to a close, and the fan sites are awash with theories about what the premise of season 4 will be. The theme of the show alters every year (but with the same cast, all playing new roles) and at the end of each season, the last couple of epiosdes are peppered with clues about next year’s premise. I’m throwing my hat into the speculation ring because I think I’ve cracked the code…
This morning I watched the latest episode, “Protect The Coven”, and there were two intricacies imbedded in the script that I think were hints. Last week it was announced by the creators that season 4 would be set in the 1950s, and that what happened historically during that decade is a big clue as to what the new season will be about.
In “Protect The Coven”, Myrtle gives Zoe a piece of jewellery, which she encourages her to pawn for funds so that Zoe can escape with Kyle. The jewellery is in the form of a Harvester Ant, which is “one of the most venomous creatures in the world…along with Fiona”. This is a tiny clue, but I believe, nonetheless, a clue. I’ve often thought that an inspired setting for a season of AHS would be the countryside – more specifically, a farm. This is such a perfect horror setting (I directed two amateur slasher movies on an abandoned farm when I was in my teens and the atmosphere on a quiet farmyard in the middle of nowhere is eeriness at its best). The reference to “harvest” seems to be a clue here. Later on in the episode, Fiona and The Axeman are discussing their future (which would seem bleak seeing as she has cancer and he is already dead). They talk about going to live on a farm. Fiona laughs at the idea of being a “farm wife”. Another clue?
We all know how horror classics such as “Children of the Corn” and “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre” utilised this rural setting. Desolate barns, vast cornfields and solitary woodsheds are the perfect place for horror to ensue; and seed drillers and wheat sickles are ideal instruments for a bit of gore. The sickle is, after all, the accessory of choice for the Grim Reaper.
To add further weight to my theory, the 1950s seems to have been a prominent decade for agriculture in America. Most notably the passing of the Humane Slaughter Act of 1958. Says it all, really! Might we have a farmer who wishes to take that Act too far? Or too literally?
The other screamingly obvious historical event of the 1950s was the Cold War. At the meeting between Fiona, Marie and the Delphi Trust (where Fiona orders a “filthy martini” and Marie requests a “diet Sprite” (brilliant)) Harrison Renard tries to negotiate with the witches. He says the following: “This war is a thing of the past. Sometimes I feel like I’m trying to rid the state department of communists” If that’s not a Cold War reference then I don’t know what is. Even the Communist symbol contains a sickle/scythe type instrument. Symmetry or what!?
Could it be that we’ll get an agricultural AHS setting, placed against a Cold War backdrop. In season 2 we saw Nazi-ism within a the horror of a morally corrupted mental institution. I suspect that season 4 might deal with Communism in 1950s rural America. And as it’s AHS, it will balance intelligent social commentary with blatantly glorious terror. I predict the residents of a small farming community in Santa Fe will be getting back on their feet post WWII, and that either a Soviet spy will appear on their doorstep, or a fleeing Communist, who will bring political threat with them. At the same time, a more evident threat will probably lurk within the crop fields, in the form of a possessed scarecrow, a deranged milk-maid or a psychotic band of Amish children. Seeing as the 1950s was all about hydrogen bomb testing as well, I hope they throw in a mutated victim of nuclear testing for good measure!
God, I want to work on this TV show!
Oh, by the way, this article marks my 100th blog post! Huzzah!