[Spoiler alert] is dead!
Sorry, there was just no other way to start off this redux. And yes, death comes frequently and swiftly in pretty much every episode of American Horror Story. But this death, even if it wasn't a total surprise, really put us through the ringer. Plus, a whole lotta wild s--t went down, making "Birth" the craziest, and best, episode of AHS yet. Probably until the finale, of course…
WHAT WE LEARNED
Vivien Gives Birth…and Loses Her Life: Tami Taylor?! Noooo! Yes, the moment we realized she was carrying a demon-baby, we knew Vivien (Connie Britton) would likely not survive the birth. That fact did not make her death any easier. Especially one as drawn out and gruesome as giving birth twice: once to a stillborn child, and again to a live baby boy. Vivien's original plan was to go to Florida and get far away from the house, but one of those babies wanted to come out as soon as Ben (Dylan McDermott) stopped the car in front of the house. On the bright side, Vivien had a full staff of nurses and a doctor at her service while giving birth inside the house. Sure, they were ghosts, but at least it was better than nothing.
The birth scene wasn't just heartbreaking because Vivien bled out and died. Ben telling his wife through tears that they could still have a life together and that she'd never lose him was really what twisted the knife that was already in our hearts. After all they had been through, and as messed up as Ben and Vivien's marriage was, in that moment we had hope for those two. At least Violet (Taissa Farmiga) isn't alone anymore, because we were treated to a nice mother-daughter moment in the end of the episode where Vivien and Violet embraced each other. As for the twins: the stillborn child was taken away by Nora Montgomery (Lily Rabe), and the living, breathing baby boy was last seen with Constance (Jessica Lange) and Moira (Frances Conroy), with Hayden (Kate Mara) popping up to ominously ask about the baby.
Violet's Love for Tate Does Have Limits: We got a flashback to Tate's (Evan Peters) childhood, which was what we had been hinting at for quite a few weeks now, and we got a good luck at the Infantata. How creepy was that reveal? We also confirmed our suspicion that Nora and Charles (Matt Ross) mutilated son Thaddeus is indeed the creature in the basement. And we also found out why Tate felt indebted to Nora: She saved him in the basement from being attacked by Infantata, and she taught him how to make the ghosts disappear. Which he taught Violet, who later used it on Tate.
Why did Violet order Tate to "go away"? Violet, courtesy of Chad (Zachary Quinto), found out everything her boyfriend did, the big secret being raping her mother. And as much as she loves Tate (which she admitted), Violet's loyalty turned back to her family when she blamed him for her mother's death. The exchange was brutal, especially with Tate crying to her that she was the only light he'd ever known. So, Ben is now truly alone, unless he manages to keep the ghosts from keeping his new baby. Which leads us to…
Ghosts Are Not Easy to Get Rid Of: Seems like every ghost in the house wants a baby. Hayden, Nora, Chad and Pat. But Constance has issues with the gay couple raising the child, and Chad revealed to her that they plan on smothering the children around 12 or 16 months, so they stay cute forever. Parents, this might be a warped question, but is that truly the best age for a child to stay?
Anyway, the psychic, Billie Dean (Sarah Paulson), taught Violet a spell to get rid of Chad and Pat so she can stop them from stealing Vivien's babies. The spell came from the story of Roanoke Island, which is a great example of combining true crime stories and mythology and twisting them to fit within a show's plotline. That's one of our favorite aspects of AHS. Surprise, surprise, the spell did not work when Violet tried to banish Chad, but what we did get out of it earlier was the great scene between Evan Peters and Alexander Skarsgård look-alike Teddy Sears. Who else loved when Pat head-butted Tate when you were certain they were going to kiss? Awesome.
Basically, this episode was everything we've grown to love about AHS—scary, sad, at times darkly funny, which makes it our favorite episode of the season. How about you guys?
WHAT LIES AHEAD
A Jaw-Dropping, Gut-Punching Finale: We've heard so many theories about the finale from fans and sources that we can barely begin to make sense of them all. In case some of them are true (and they probably are), let's just use this last week to dissect and speculate all we can until we at least feel a little prepared for the end of the season. So let's separate the big storylines and try and guess what's to come:
Still want scoop? Well, we'll be screening the finale next week, and we'll be sure to post our review/preview of the 90-minute season-ender. Keep your eyes peeled for that, and until then, head on down to the comments to talk about this episode and what you expect from AHS' season-one finale!