American Horror Story Freak Show, S4E5: Pink Cupcakes
Original Airdate: November 5, 2014
Recap by Sarabeth Pollock
There have been a few revelations this week about American Horror Story. The seasons are indeed linked together (in ways as yet to be seen), and Twisty isn’t gone yet. You can’t keep a good clown down, you know….
There’s a gathering of elite people. It’s the American Morbidity Museum’s Night of Discovery, and the curator wants to thank…not Stanley. Maggie laughs, as if that had ever been a possibility. They’re about to unveil a new exhibit on modern mutations. They pull back the cover…and it’s Paul the Seal Boy.
It was all a vision. In a dank hotel room, Stanley explains his plan, that he’s going to need tanks to preserve everything. He already has them, from an aquarium. It’s all about the preservation. That’s why he needs to keep Elsa on a tight leash. That’s how he is going to capture the freaks for the museum. As Stanley moves to pack, his male pornos fall out of his suitcase. Maggie reminds him that if there’s one thing the people of Jupiter hate more than freaks, it’s “poofs.” As Stanley picks them up, she tells him that since she has to live with them, she wants more of the cut. He’s proud of his girl…though he doesn’t say yes to the deal.
At the Mott residence, Gloria searches for Nora. Her coffee isn’t being made. Dandy comes down the stairs as his mother starts to scream. He says someone must have broken into their house, but Gloria knows that he did it. And now she has to clean it all up. She sends him to his room as he offers to help, and as he walks away, he smiles.
Stanley finds Elsa in her tent. He charms her, but she says it’s a full house and she must prepare. He says he’s from Hollywood, and she thinks that he’s from a studio. To her chagrin, he says he is from a television studio. But Elsa isn’t interested in television. Stanley doesn’t relent. He tells her that she could be in every house in America, but even then she doesn’t like it. Her face, next to shampoo commercials? Nein. Movies are the window to the soul. She would never participate in the “death of art and civilization.”
Jimmy is outside practicing his lines. Now that he’s famous, he has a “story” and he has to practice. As he juggles, Maggie sneaks up behind him. He says it has been a while since there was a full house. She offers to read his palm. She sees a shadow man who is coming to tell him things, make him promises. She tells Jimmy to go North to New York, to leave the show. He wants to kiss her, but she doesn’t let him. She says his future is bright but she’s not in it. He never should have believed that he’d have a chance with a girl like her.
Ethel can’t find Dell. It’s a full house and their barker is gone. She sends Jimmy to find him. Jimmy goes to the trailer but he isn’t there. Desiree is there and she has been drinking. She says that Dell made her feel special, but he’s gone now. She pours another drink, but Jimmy stays there with her. Even the whole town is there to see him, he says Meep was the real hero. He says that killing someone took everything out of him. As he breaks down crying, Desiree comforts him. He leans in and kisses her, and she begs him to make her feel something. Suddenly, though, as Jimmy goes into Third Base, his fingers come away bloody. She screams. He takes her from the trailer, with blood running down her thighs. The other freaks come out to help, but they need to go on stage, so Ethel grabs Desiree and Jimmy goes to fill in for Dell.
Jimmy introduces Elsa, who is back in her powder blue outfit. As she takes the stage and starts singing, the crowd tunes her out completely. She falls apart as people start getting up to leave, and throwing popcorn at her. Jimmy pulls her off the stage while Stanley smiles in triumph. After the show, Elsa is in her tent. She has called for Stanley, who comes to see her. Elsa is ready to know more about the television deal.
Ethel has brought Desiree to her doctor. She’s helping her into a gown and Desiree is nervous because she has never been to a doctor before. Desiree wants Ethel to stay there. The doctor asks if Desiree bleeds once a month, but she doesn’t. Maybe a few times a year. The doctor does an exam and asks where she was born. She says she was born in Philadelphia and the midwife said that she was a boy. However, the doctor completes his exam and says that the midwife was wrong. Desiree is 100% woman. Her ding-a-ling isn’t a penis at all—it’s an enlarged clitoris and he can remove it if she wants. He says her body was producing an excess of estrogen and it got confused. As for the bleeding, she had been pregnant and miscarried. The fetus had been about 12 weeks along. Ethel’s face darkens. Desiree is rapt at the idea of having a baby with Dell.
Gloria calls to the workers in her back yard. She is planting narcissus and needs a deep hole for them. The gardener says that narcissus need 18 inches, but she says they’re from Holland and they need 12 feet. Dandy watches from beside her, looking thrilled. Later on, they plant the bulbs and Dandy offers that the flowers will serve as a reminder that Nora didn’t die in vain. Gloria continues that Dandy suffers from an affliction of the affluent. Cousins married cousins to protect the estates and this was bound to happen at some point. Dandy says it’s because he needs to express himself, which is why he wanted to be an actor. He certainly doesn’t want to end up like his father, swinging from a Japanese maple tree. Gloria says they will find another way to go, since it’s 1952 and you can’t kill random vagrants anymore because people are missed.
Elsa is in her dressing room listening to Bowie again. “Vain.” Very a propos. She’s putting on her best makeup. Ma Petite must paint her nails perfectly. She’s taking publicity photos for her new TV show. But when Elsa goes out to the parking lot, Stanley is driving away with the Tattler Twins. She looks disgusted.
However…Stanley is back at the Museum with the curator. He unveils his prize…and it’s the decapitated Tattler Twins. The curator asks how they expired, because Bette looks more decomposed than her sister. Stanley flashes back to a picnic he shared with the girls. He pulls a napkin away from a plate bearing two pink cupcakes. Bette looks thrilled, but Dot isn’t so sure of him. Stanley says they’re celebrating the girls’ bright future. Bette asks if he baked the cupcakes…and we see that he did, but he added drugs to them. Dot wants to know details. How would they learn enough songs for a whole hour? While Stanley talks to Dot, Bette starts to foam at the mouth. Stanley tells the curator that it was pneumonia. Later, Stanley sits at the twins’ bedside and watches as Dot cries because Bette is dead. She’s practically decomposing while Dot is vibrant and alive. But she’s in pain. He offers her another cupcake, but she says they need to go to the hospital. Stanley smothers Dot.
But then we return to the picnic. Bette wants a cupcake, but Dot tells her that if they’re going to be on television, they need to watch their figure. So…are they dead? I’m not so sure….
Dandy is in his playroom, and he’s working out in his underwear. He says he was meant to be in films. He oils his body up and practices his faces in the mirror. He sees himself as the perfect man. He says he’s the future of greatness. The clown showed him the way. Now the future starts tonight.
Dandy goes into a gay bar. He bumps into Dell, who is bringing drinks to a young man, Andy, played by Matt Bomer. He says that the kid’s art is really good, and someone offered to take him to LA. Dell gets possessive and says that Andy belongs to him. Dell says that this is hard for him because he’s trying to figure out who he is. Andy says that Dell must be hiding from something. Dell grabs Andy’s hand and says that he wants to put Andy up in a better home so he doesn’t need to be in the dank bar. He says that the pain he feels knowing that Andy is with other men is driving him nuts. There’s nothing worse than loving someone you can’t have, Dell says. Andy says that the bar is his office. When he’s there he is at work. Dell doesn’t like hearing that, so he leaves. Andy lights up a cigarette and sighs. That’s when Dandy walks up. He asks what Dandy would like. Dandy smiles to hear it’s $20 to take him home.
Bette tells Dot that it’s the chance of a lifetime. As they discuss the tv deal, Elsa walks in and says she agrees with Bette on this one. It’s a huge opportunity. She says that Stanley has asked her to go as well, that Stanley has asked Elsa to mentor them. Bette wonders if Elsa will be a guest on the Tattler Sister Hour. Elsa says that she has arranged for a seamstress to do a private fitting for them the next day. Dot suspects that Elsa is up to something, but Bette doesn’t care. She wants a new hat.
Dell returns to the trailer to find Desiree waiting for him with her bags packs. She tells him the news about being able to have children, she also says that Ethel came clean and told her that the lobster hand-trait came from Dell’s father, so he had the freak blood all along. She wants to have babies. He doesn’t believe that anyone would ever go for a three breasted man, but she says that it’s all cosmetic, and after a surgery she will be a normal woman. She storms out of the trailer. She’s going to stay with Ethel.
Dandy leads Andy to Twisty’s old trailer. He tells him it belonged to a friend of his. Andy steels himself for the experience, but then Dandy says he isn’t a “fruit.” Andy says that he doesn’t think he paid a hundred dollars just to talk. Dandy suggests that they strip down and then face each other. When Andy gets to three, he turns to see Dandy in his tightie whities wearing Twisty’s mask. Dandy lunges at Andy and stabs him repeatedly. Dandy basks in being covered in blood, but Andy isn’t dead. He stabs him again, and then he gets to work. Rule one of being a good serial killer is getting rid of the body. He cuts Andy’s arm off and then tosses it into a tub of acid. Once Andy’s arm is gone, Andy comes back to life. Dandy tells him that he’s making him feel bad. Andy begs Dandy to kill him. Dandy happily complies.
Gloria is on the phone with Regina, Nora’s daughter. She’s in New York learning to be a secretary. She’s concerned because she hasn’t heard from her mother. Gloria says that Nora is very busy and won’t be able to call until after the holidays. Before Regina can interrupt, Gloria asks what Regina thought of playing with Dandy as a child. She recalls him biting his nannies, but she can’t remember Gloria being around very much. Gloria said that he had been sick once and was calling for her but she didn’t know how to care for him, so she sent in the nanny, and after that he never called for her again. Regina is getting uncomfortable, so she tells Gloria to have Nora call as soon as possible. Dandy walks up behind her. “Mother,” he says. He’s in his underwear, and he’s covered in blood. She gasps.
Elsa is driving on the outskirts of Jupiter. The Tattler Twins are in the back of the car. Bette says that she thought they were going to town. Elsa says she has a better idea.
The doctor tells Dell that he’s sorry for his loss, and that miscarriages are always difficult. Dell wants to know more about the doctor and his credentials. He moved down from the North to be closer to his family. Dell grabs him and says that he isn’t going to touch his wife. He breaks the doctor’s fingers and says that if he goes to the police or tells Desiree what happened, then Dell will go after his grandchildren.
There’s someone at Gloria’s door. It’s Elsa. Elsa says she has something that Gloria might want….
And that is it for tonight’s episode! Raise your hand if you thought Bette and Dot really were dead! I did. And while I wasn’t exactly shocked by the revelation that Desiree is really a woman, I was shocked that Dell is dabbling in men…and that he attacked the doctor. I’m also bummed that Andy is gone so soon. He looked interested, and he could have been an interesting foil between Dell, Dandy and Stanley (and Stanley’s giant penis).
What did you think of tonight’s episode? Leave your comments below!