"Double Feature": A Chilling Premiere Review
Almost two years after the last season of American Horror Story (2007) “Apocalypse” was released, the famous horror anthology TV series has returned and with full force without skipping a beat. Jumping right back into the horror, gore, and sex that so many of the show’s fans love, American Horror Story “Double Feature” is shaping up to be one of the best seasons the show has released yet. While the tale of the vampire is a long and extremely old story, “Double Feature” has brought an eerie and refreshing approach to the legend.
The show starts off with the Gardner family moving into a new home located in Providence, Massachusetts. The family has just relocated to the area in hopes that they may have more financial success in the area. The dampened down hues and tones of the colors throughout the introduction scene set the tone for the rest of the film. As the family is driving through the coastal town, the audience can see this through the blueness of the ocean that is tinted to be duller and greyer, all the houses look as though they came from the same factory being almost identical, and the constant overcast. This entire layout and environment of the show are perfect for the events to come and are reminiscent of some of the older seasons of the show. Once the family moves to the town, they immediately realize that there are crazy, seemingly mindless people roaming the streets waiting to attack those who wander in their paths. For the Gardner family, this is absolutely terrifying, even making the parents, Harry and Doris consider whether or not to move after just settling in.
Everything about the first two episodes is creepy and unsettling. From the drive into town with a lot of roadkill, to the daughter, Alma, making strange remarks like claiming the house is haunted and that it’s sadder when a cat dies than another animal like a racoon. On top of these strange remarks, Alma is a viola prodigy with hopes of getting into Julliard. To help Alma with this transition of moving, Doris takes her on a walk outside where they get attacked by an “opioid addict,” or at least that is what the sheriff tells them before giving a concerned look and walking away. Later that night, Alma sees the man who attacked her, along with a few other bald, ravaging humanoids. While they are gone before Harry sees them, he discovers their mangled and dissected bodies on the beach during his morning run the next day.
To overcome this discovery, Harry decides to make the mood lighter by taking his pregnant wife out to dinner at the only restaurant in town. Unfortunately, Doris gets sick before they leave, and he goes to the restaurant himself. There, he meets two renowned writers and a whole cast of colorful characters. While Harry is unaware of the writer’s identities until they tell him, he is mind blown to know he is in their presence. Austin Sommers (Evan Peters) and Sarah Cunningham (Frances Conroy) invite Harry to sit with them for a drink and to discuss the hardships and successes of being a writer.
During their discussion with Harry they promise him that his writer’s block will not last long and something about the town just inspires creative people. The entire conversation seems to be unsettling until crazy Karen (Sarah Paulson) interrupts them by screaming at Harry to get the hell out of the town, although much more aggressively. After Harry leaves the bar and returns home, he is attacked by another bald monstrous man who he bludgeons to death on his kitchen floor in the blink of an eye.
After this, things in Providence do not settle down and if anything gets creepier. The audience is shown that the “inspiration” the authors are gaining from the town is really just a pill that encourages creative thought. But wait, there’s a catch. The pill severely drains the body of natural vitamins and minerals in the blood, causing the individual to seek out blood. This pill is essentially temporary vampirism with creative inspiration. The audience sees that the whole town is addicted to these pills and those who take them without having any creative talent turn into pale, monstrosities with no will other than to drink blood. While there is much more that occurs throughout the remaining part of the double feature, those events must be watched with one’s own eyes to understand the full horror and terror the filmmakers present to the audience.
The next episodes of American Horror Story Double Feature will be available on Wednesday on FX and Hulu. The preview of the next episode seems to introduce a whole new story filled with extraterrestrial horror and chaos. Stay tuned and keep the lights on.
American Horror Story Season 10: “Double Feature” Official Trailer