Last week we saw everything was wrapped up nicely for the ending of the documentary. I was stumped as to where it would go next. The writers have trodden new ground for the franchise and split one series into almost two. I say almost because, although it is based on My Roanoke Nightmare it is a completely new premise. This week we are introduced to another reality-based slice of the AHS cake that we can really get our teeth into. It’s a simple storyline. The success of My Roanoke Nightmare was huge – a surprise smash hit, so what do all good television networks do with a smash hit show? Commission another. But this time they want to go down an even more reality themed route and bring in the real-life people who suffered in the house in Roanoke along with the actors and actresses who portrayed them in the documentary. Genius!
Cheyenne Jackson plays the power hungry, money motivated producer Sidney who is desperate for the spin off to become as big a success as the original. He doesn’t care about the feelings of the cast or crew. He wants what he wants. End of. The fact that some of them have had a difficult time since the show ended doesn’t bother him one bit. In fact, he seems excited by the potential of bringing even more grittiness into the show and to Hell with what the cast and crew want.
This first episode does a great job of re-introducing us to the actors behind the characters even though it is odd seeing Kathy Bates who we know as Thomasin White – aka the butcher – as Agnes Mary Winstead the actress, who it becomes clear has had some very disturbing issues since portraying the butcher.
Of course, Matt, Shelby and Lee are the same ‘real-life’ people from the documentary, but things are far from rosy for them. They never got their happy ending after escaping the house alive - Matt has left Shelby after she had an affair with Dominic Banks who played Matt in My Roanoke Nightmare. I know it may sound a little confusing but trust me, it isn’t. Lee is struggling to convince people she had nothing to do with Mason’s death and Angela Bassets character who played Lee is facing her own inner demons.
The actors make it clear they don’t believe the story the survivors of the haunting told, mocking them behind their backs. Snooty Audrey Tindall who played Shelby on the show seems the most vocal about it and she thinks nothing of flaunting her engagement to Rory Monahan – Edward Phillipe Mott – in front of the heartbroken Shelby.
Are their beliefs right? Will the scares come from the over-zealous producer who is hankering after another smash hit or will they be shown that the story told by the people who lived it was as horrifically true and terrifying as they said? Roll on the next episode as I can’t wait for my next fix of horror!