Last night’s episode of American Horror Story: Asylum wasn’t my favorite, though it did feature Deadwood’s excellent Ian McShane as a psycho, serial-killing Santa and dentures as Christmas tree ornaments. I guess it was time for an episodic bridge, an installment with dialogue set to soap-opera music (and an instrumental of the creepiest carol, “Hark How the Bells”), but it seemed a little bit on the nose compared to weeks past. The good news, however, is that Sister Jude (Jessica Lange) and Dr. Arden (James Cromwell) now both know that the devil is occupying Satan Mary Eunice (Lily Rabe), and Sister Jude, fresh off the revelation that she didn’t accidentally kill anyone 15 years prior, seems to be taking it upon herself to cast that demon out. Merry Christmassacre, everyone!
Last night was Ladies’ Night at Briarcliff, and by “Ladies’ Night” I mean that ladies were on the torture menu exclusively. Nipple lampshade appetizers? Sure thing. Sliced abdomens over alien babies? You got it. Lobotomy frozen islands? Falling-down-a-trap-door parfait? Cold-corpse-of-your-ex-girlfriend flambé? NO THANK YOU, I’M FULL. But we’ve removed the teeth, sir. Well, then. OK!
Now that’s what I’m talkin’ about, American Horror Story: Asylum. While the pilot wasn’t as scary as I’d hoped, last night’s episode delivered plenty of the gray-faced exorcisms, shots of knives carving bloody meat during unsettling conversations, and electroshock treatments that are so close to my weird old heart. And what about Dr. Arden (James Cromwell) refusing to be seduced by Shelly the nymphomaniac (Chloë Sevigny) as she sexily begged him for five measly minutes outdoors? “No! Whores get nothing!” The euphemisms in this installment were top-notch: I think “Now slowly, show me your mossy bank” has got to be the most potent gender-neutral boner-slaughterer ever introduced into the aural atmosphere. But I’m getting ahead of myself. Let’s start at the beginning.
Big news in the world of mid-level to high-level cameo spots! First up: Justin Bieber continues his grand tour of every single conceivable corner of the pop-culture universe, having just taped a voice spot for The Simpsons. The news broke via that seminal fourth-estate institution, Justin Bieber's Twitter: "just did a voice over for the SIMPSONS!!! #swaggy," Bieber tweeted today, then deleted. Afterward, Simpsons executive producer Al Jean confirmed to EW that J.B. would indeed be stopping by Springfield for the show's 24th season: "He tries to get into a talent show that Bart is playing piano in and they won’t admit him. Draw your own conclusions." Also: "It’s a cameo, but all of his fans should watch every minute of the show, before and after he’s on.” That would be very #swaggy indeed!