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American Horror Story Review: “Fearful Pranks Ensue” (Episode 3.04)

What’s in the box? Well it’s not Gwyneth Paltrow’s head for one thing but the head of your friendly neighborhood minotaur.

Fearful Pranks Ensue was the best episode of American Horror Story this season. It focused more on the adult witches, fleshing out Fiona’s past. It gave some insight on the feud between the white and black witches. Introduced us to the witches counsel and gave us an idea of who Spalding and Hank are; two seriously messed up dudes.

First off Marie Laveau is a vengeful bitch. You cross her or any of her friends and my god she will make you suffer horribly. In 1961 an African American boy in her community was hung by the neck by a bunch of white men. This not going over so well with Marie, she resurrects the dead to take care of these gents. These zombies did not seem like the typical zombie like you would see on The Walking Dead. One took a bullet to the head and kept on coming until all the men involved with the boys murder were brutally dismembered. These chain of events sets up where the next hour went.

Back in present time the counsel comes a knocking on the school door. Three members, one of them a warlock. Cordelia immediately greets them and comes down with a case of foot in mouth disease. Blurting one bad thing after another in which she thought they were there for. When in truth it was Nan who summoned them because she could not hear Madison anymore. They ended up questioning all the witches present of Madison’s whereabouts.

One thing this episode did was not focus much on Queenie (incapacitated by the minotaur), Nan or Zoe which was a welcoming change of pace. It also helped flesh out Cordelia’s character a bit and make her a little more interesting.

Myrtle Snow, one of the counsel members has a serious vendetta against Fiona. This goes all the way back to when Fiona killed Anna Lee to become the Supreme. Myrtle has a built in lie detector but needs a way to prove Fiona’s guilty. Her idea, cast a spell on Spalding who is always hovering around Fiona. Solid, sound plan one would think. However Spalding overheard Myrtles plan and right before confessing his love to Fiona he cuts out his tongue. Guess he tried one upping Van Gogh.

Let’s stay on the crazy train for a minute. Beyond Spalding cutting out his own tongue we are shown more on how much of a disturbed individual he is. In his room he has hundreds of dolls that he likes to have tea parties with. When not having tea parties he’s out on the lawn hugging scarecrows. Oh and Fiona asked him to dispose of Madison and he did a bang up job of that. Sitting in a rocking chair in Spalding’s room wearing only her underwear is where she is. We are shown at the end of the episode when Spalding is wearing a woman’s night gown from Little House on the Prairie.

I did mention earlier that Hank, Cordelia’s husband is also a nut job, so while talking about crazy people I’ll jump right to him. He’s off somewhere on a “business” trip or so that’s what he tells his wife on the phone. His girlfriend from a different area code shows up and he bangs her in Patrick Bateman like fashion. The dude has a seriously creepy demeanor about him. All this leads to him putting a bullet in this woman’s head. Guess it’s one way not to get caught… cheating on his wife… that oh gee by the way is a witch and her mom is the Supreme.

After the counsel failed to get any information on Madison’s whereabouts (she’s upstairs dummies) Fiona and her daughter go out for drinks. This is one of the few times we see them sort of bonding. Rightfully so Fiona is nice to Cordelia here, she did get her mother’s back when the counsel arrived. After a little conversing and telling Cordelia she hates Hank because he reeks of BS we are left with a sick Cordelia in the bathroom. Once she emerges a mysterious assailant appears from a stall throwing what appears to be acid in her face.

Back at the house things aren’t all ho-hum either. The three girls and Madame LaLaurie are there. LaLaurie tending to costumed kids (it’s Halloween) when Marie Laveau sends over a package of her own. The resurrected bodies of Madame LaLaurie’s daughters and quite possibly other family members. All descending on the house to exact revenge for Fiona putting the minotaur’s head in a box.

There was a lot to take in during Fearful Pranks Ensue and it was all good. The setup for the next weeks episode looks to be mighty juicy with zombies descending on the school and whatever is happening to Cordelia’s face. This season is shaping up quite nicely and I’m excited to see where it goes.

How do you feel about this past episode? Let us know in the comments below.

Quick Notes:

  • Drinking flaming snake blood apparently raises the dead.
  • If one witch kills another witch it’s penalty is death by fire.
  • Kyle is on the run… somewhere.
  • Odd black and white scene that seemed out of place.