American Horror Story: Coven Review: “The Dead” (Season 3, Episode 7)

american horror story: coven

The Axeman cometh indeed, if you catch my drift. I was worried that the Axeman would become a one-and-done trick, an outside element released into New Orleans and quickly forgotten, but American Horror Story: Coven made sure to put the character to great use. His time with Fiona was full of tension and revelations about her past, mainly because of the discovery that the Axeman was watching over her as a guardian/lover her entire life.

It’s a great twist that works in more ways than one: the revelation that some of Fiona’s more fatal “accidents” weren’t her doing help to soften her character the tiniest bit, but realizing that the Axeman became obsessed with her in the afterlife is a creepy reveal that sheds some light on how controlling Fiona is. Even unintentionally she has guys striving for her, dead or alive. Add in Fiona’s hair beginning to fall out as a result of chemo and you’ve got an interesting character study from the best perspective possible.

Seeing Fiona through the Axeman’s eyes is perhaps the most honest view we’ll ever get of the character, simply because he’s been behind the scenes of her life for decades. He’s still an evil man, and the fact that he’s somehow adapted to the modern world so well is a bit off-putting, but the Axeman genuinely cares about Fiona. Even though she leaves his borrowed apartment furious, she still returns. Their relationship wasn’t one I was expecting to study after last week’s episode, but after seeing how The Dead brought the two together so perfectly, I’m more than ready to see what lies ahead.

Of course, American Horror Story: Coven is never conservative when doling out twists and turns, and Kyle’s ordeal has certainly surprised me. He begins the episode chained up and about to be mercy killed by Zoe, and by the end of the episode he’s having a three-way with her and Madison. I had a lot of ideas where the Kyle story might go, but “sexual release for frustrated and/or dead witches” didn’t even crack the top 10 (it was in the 30s somewhere). Apparently, the fact that he died once is enough to make him immune from Zoe’s powers, which I guess is a fact we’ll just have to accept.

Madison, freshly resurrected, is plagued with the curse of not being able to feel anything, turning to binge-eating and self-destruction in her search for feeling. Her first time with Kyle comes as a surprise, but it makes sense that she would try anything she could, including sex with another dead guy. As nice as it is to see Madison tone down the snottiness and replace it with a little humility, it was a bit predictable since there aren’t many ways to take a character who starts off snobby. It was a nice touch having her be so open about her experiment with Kyle, but having her let Zoe in on the weird undead love triangle was icing on the cake. That being said, Kyle’s role in Madison’s life is still much easier to place than it is with Zoe.