*If you wish to continue reading, keep in mind that there will be spoilers.*
The new season of Ryan Murphy’s American Horror Story is upon us and draws inspiration from the Shining. It takes place in a supernatural hotel very akin to the Overlook, from aesthetics to the appearance of two children seemingly stalking the guests. Even the direction of the episode felt eerily similar to Stanley Kubrick’s style.
The action kicks off with two Swedish tourists who serve as way to introduce the viewers to the Hotel. They are greeted by the concierge, Iris, portrayed by Kathy Bates.They are then introduced to room 64 which seems to be where most of the fun will ensue for many guests of the hotel including our Swedish friends. The supernatural elements begin to build as they are stalked by two small children and then attacked by a disfigured man. We are then introduced to our protagonist Detective John Lowe, played by Wes Bentley, who is on the prowl after a serial killer with a connection to the hotel.
The nuttiness of the premiere is cranked up once again when a junkie is sodomized by a figureless man in the hotel. This is where I began to feel a serious disconnection from the show. This scene and the following are supposed to be shocking and horrific, and instead they ended up being whacky and zany. Continuing the worrying trend downwards, we are introduced to Lady Gaga’s character; a cocaine-snorting sadistic vampire, who appears to be our antagonist alongside her companion. They end up seducing and murdering a young couple, set to some rather catchy music. This whole scene felt out of place and again failed to make think anything other than how hard the show was trying to outdo itself.
We then end up back with the tourists from before whom one of which ends up Lady Gaga’s pray and the others fate is left unknown and it is revealed to us Lady Gaga is head honcho of the hotel. The premiere ends with a standoff between the detective and the serial killer, who has taken two more victims.
As a newcomer to the show I can’t see myself coming back to this series, it just isn’t for me. However, the show is visually entertaining and is quite unique so I can understand the show’s cult-like following, it just doesn’t suite my tastes.