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American Horror Story: Apocalypse Review – ‘Traitor’

October 25, 2018 | Posted by Wednesday Lee Friday
Papa Legba American Horror Story
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American Horror Story: Apocalypse Review – ‘Traitor’  

First, I must apologize for last week’s error of not mentioning that Sarah Paulson directed the Return to Murder House episode. My bad. It might help if places like or Wikipedia listed the information correctly. Or better yet, they could invite me to the set! In “Traitor,” we get the answers to a few questions that have been bugging us. We learn some witchcraft etiquette and renew our love of Myrtle playing the Theremin. As always, spoilers here. Duh.

Let’s start with the most jarring revelation: Dinah is the new Voodoo queen. She took over after the demise of Marie LaVeaux after Papa Legba took her to the underworld. We learn that Dinah blames the witches for the disappearance of Marie, which we know isn’t so. But why did Legba take Marie? Was it because she refused to get more babies for him? At any rate, Dinah is in charge now. We see that her intentions are less than pure when she takes money to curse an unfaithful spouse by making him drink the disembodied heart of his lover. Anybody else think that guy was a little…hideous to have such a lovely wife and a sexy mistress?

Cordelia needs to see Papa Legba, knowing full well what it could cost. Dinah agrees for what seems like a very lowball price of $100K. Next, we meet “Bubbles McGee,” which sounds much more like a porn name than something taken by a serious actress. She’s starring in a film that seems an obvious rip-off of the Tales from the Crypt episode/issue “And All Through the House.” Shame Larry Drake is no longer alive to play the killer Santa (again). Bubble’s terrible movie is interrupted by the arrival of Madison Montgomery—letting her know that she’s been summoned. Her movie has other fun clichés like a kid who has an accent for no discernable reason, a recently escaped mental patient, and a victim telling a murderer that they “don’t have the guts” just before they die.

In addition to being Joan Collins—Bubbles is a witch. She can read minds, intentions, all the stuff we keep in our soul. Surely that “Lectio Animo” is one of those gifts that’s also a curse that keeps you from liking (let alone loving) other humans. Bubbles is an old friend of Myrtle’s, which means we’re in for some witty banter. Speaking of witty banter—”I suppose for you taking a shit is a form of reproduction” is hilarious. We don’t get a ton of laughs this week, which works well with the dour themes and serious plot development. So, what’s the hustle? Bubbles has to have dinner with the Warlocks so Myrtle et al can understand what their plan is and what they want.

How are the Warlocks falling for that? Never accept food from anyone who hates you. Duh, that’s how everyone died at Outpost Three. Anyway, Ariel and Baldwin hate the witches, can’t wait to kill them, and love the idea of taking over everything. But they suck. Pennypacker can’t even come up with an original way to murder them—he stole his powdery formula from an older and more gifted magical practitioner who is also a woman.

I notice that the spell that calls Papa Legba to this plane is in French. Voodoo is a mixture of old-world African paganism, ceremonial magick, and French Catholicism. A weird combination to be sure, but one of those things that happens when people move around a lot or must hide their faith and practices from oppressors. But I digress. Cordelia’s plan to have Papa Legba open the gates of the underworld so she can shove Michael there is…lame. Just lame. You can’t just go around opening doors. As this is all being discussed we get a visit from…Nan!!! I was surprised to hear Nan call her Supreme a “bitch.” Honestly, I didn’t care for it. Cordelia doesn’t deserve it, she didn’t fail Nan in any way.

Legba wants the soul of every girl at Miss Robichaux’s, which she doesn’t even consider. Good for her! Nan is bummed she won’t get her friends back, but she also seems pretty happy in Hell. Legba is good to her, and she’s having a fun time. Too bad her earth-boyfriend wasn’t so pious, or he might be there too. Dinah points out that it might be worth it to give up a few witches so 6 billion people can be saved. I don’t know about all that. People kinda suck. Anyway, I’m pretty sure the Earth has more than 6 billion people on it. Aren’t we closer to 8?

At the Academy, Zoe and Queenie explain to Mallory that the old Supreme must die before the new one can take power. It’s increasingly clear that Mallory is the true Supreme—especially now that we know Michael isn’t actually a witch or warlock. We see this when she saves Coco. About Coco, her power to know how many calories are in food is…at least as annoying as she is. But before long we see that the power to know what’s inside something (or someone) is pretty helpful. That’s how she catches the ‘traitor.’

There’s an issue though. The ladies bring back John Henry Moore from a pile of ashes. Fair enough. He explains that it wasn’t his warlock brothers, but a woman who murdered him. This leads Cordelia to believe there’s a traitor among them. But there isn’t. A traitor is someone who pretends to be with you and then stabs you in the back. Meade is not that. She doesn’t pretend to be pious, or a good witch, or on anyone’s side but Satan. She may be violent, murderous, deceitful, and conniving—but she’s out loud and proud about all of it. Does that mean there’s a real traitor running around out there? If so, who?

Mallory is a delight. She’s not just wicked powerful. She’s kind, encouraging to her sisters, sweet, and clearly wants to do only good. She’s a lot like Misty Day, actually. But less naïve and um…muddy. Setting aside that a bunch of witches stood there doing nothing while Coco choked to death, Mallory’s method of saving her was disgusting but innovative. We’ve known from the outset that Mallory is mad powerful and Michael’s most likely foe. How that will end up is the biggest question of the season. That and why Coco thought she was ‘swearing on the Supremes.’

We learned a few things about Myrtle this week. Her Theremin skills are improving. She’s apparently awesome at fellatio (thanks for that mental image, AHS), and she vapes. We also know that despite her protestations, Cordelia brought her back from the dead (again) because she needed her. Note that Cordelia didn’t bring back her mother, any former supreme, or any council members. Shame, I’d have loved for Quentin to pop back by, or even Pembroke. Surely there was enough “Revertame Ad Me” to go around? Listen for the guy planning to murder a few dozen women to quip that he doesn’t like to use magic for personal gain. Tell it to the CGI fire while you’re tied to a stake, buddy.

How much do we love the old-timey feel of the Seven Wonders segments? I love it a lot. The music, the antiquated look of the footage—I just adore it. We’ve gotten even more of it this season than we did in the one that was actually about a coven. The last supper dinner had nine members, while the actual last supper (Sure, let’s say that’s a real thing that happened for real) had 13. It’s a last supper in that it’s the last time they may all be together. We can’t help noticing that there’s no Spaulding, and no Fratkenstein AKA Kyle. There has simply not been enough Evan Peters this season. I assume he’s largely ditching the season in favor of being Quicksilver.

After John Henry is brought back (watch for Myrtle to quip that she remembered him being taller), and Mallory is proven to be the Supreme, there’s to be a burning. Anybody else wish they could remove people’s mouths with a flick of the hand? I’d also like to know what eyeliner John Henry uses. Mine won’t survive a long shower, but his stayed on after being burned alive and then resurrected. Meanwhile, Coco can no longer enjoy junk food thanks to her calorie knowledge.

The episode “Traitor” ends on a high note. Those albino dudes we see far too little of are back to help with the ceremonial burning. I was wondering how Meade died, and now I know. With this in mind, I think Michael’s hatred for the witches is stronger than he let on. Remember though, that John Henry and Behold are not around at the open of this season. So, we shouldn’t expect them to live much longer. Meade though, seems to be having a swell time despite being on fire. Wild. I wish I believed in anything that strongly, kind of.

I honestly can’t imagine where this season is going. Will there be an event that brings everything back to normal? Will Mallory heal the world like she does fawns and annoying blondes? Are Naomi Grossman (that was her as Satan’s Cardinal last week) and Leslie Grossman related? Will we ever see Evan Peters again? What will happen to Zoe? Queenie? Misty? So many questions still to be answered, and only three episodes remaining. That’s all for now though.

See you’s next week!

The final score: review Very Good
The 411
One of the things that I disliked the most about Coven was how the willy-nilly bringing of characters back from the dead detracted from the drama. This week, the phrase "matter of life and death" took on a similarly meaningless vibe as we saw resurrections, deaths, and deaths we knew would later become resurrections. Still, we got plenty of blood, fire, soul-searching, and questions answered.