AHS: Freak show Ep. 10 “Orphans” Review
By Rob Jefchak
As the fall comes to a close, so do all of the TV shows for the season until January comes around. One of the trickiest things I find myself remembering is that this is NOT a season finale but a mid-season break. It’s important to remember AHS is going on a break because if I were to base the events of this final episode for the mid-season as a finale of sorts, I would be pretty furious and insanely horrified by this episode’s last shot. In the final episode for this year, the freaks mourn yet ANOTHER death in their family; which causes Pinhead Pepper to become horribly depressed and distraught as her world and family have fallen apart completely.
Stanley continues to worm his way into collecting chopped up freak parts under everyone’s nose; that is until Maggie breaks the silence to Desirae and reveals the horrors she and Stanley have been creating at the oddity museum. Dot and Betty offer their life savings to Maggie in order to free Jimmy from jail, Jimmy gets a disturbing offer from a visitor at his cell and we learned the sad past, present and future of the Pinheads through Elsa’s saddest story yet.
Aside from the jaw dropping last shot that left everyone stunned, this actually turned out to be a painful yet peaceful finish for easily the show’s most overlooked character: the Pinheads (or Pepper in this case.) Who knew such simple characters had such a powerful and emotional backstory to be told? We have seen the Pinheads dancing and playing in the background with little focus or even dialog from them, yet the show has always established the characters purity and innocence amongst all the guilty sinners and bloodied hands under this big top.
Pepper’s story is simple and yet holds such pain and emotion that it hits us like a freight train each time we see her reaction to the best and worst (mostly worst) times of her life. We’ve seen the freaks be insulted, mistreated and cast out by everyone imaginable, but nothing could have prepared us for what Pepper’s true family did to the sweet simpleton that resulted in her being locked up in a very “familiar” place (depending on past seasons one might have seen in this series). Seeing Maggie FINALLY snap out of it and show someone what Stanley has been doing behind closed jars was desperately needed, thankfully it was Desirae she confessed this too and for that I’m pleased.
Desirae has strength, sass and a strong presence which is needed in this show. She makes things normal in an abnormal surrounding with her strong attitude and even seeing her talk with Dell demonstrated that despite all the crap he’s put her through; she’s strong and decent enough to walk away without being cruel. I can’t say too much on my reaction to Jimmy in this episode because to talk about it would give away a huge spoiler for the ending I previously hinted towards. I will say that I’m confused by Jimmy’s decision; even with his situation looking grim I cannot EVER fathom anyone would willingly agree to the deal he made with his jail time visitor.
Elsa and Stanley remain in their same place, both scheming and lying to everyone and each other and nobody watching them is surprised (or interested) for that matter. I’m sure it’s all building up to something but after so many episodes of them pulling the same tricks on each other, you can’t help but worry and wonder if their comeuppance really going to be worth the time they spent on these two’s dark dealings.
With that, the season for this year comes to a (somewhat) close with previews of what’s to come in January. Shots of Neil Patrick Harris appearing as a demented magician already have me hooked and I cannot wait to see how things continue after the ending to this last episode.
Here’s looking forward to another happy helping of horror story in 2015!