American Horror Story Double Feature Review

Reagan Boots, Contributor

For the first time, American Horror Story has decided to divide their season into two storylines: “Red Tide” and “Death Valley.”  American Horror Story is praised for its complex storylines and character development. It can be difficult to find a show so memorable, but this one will haunt you. 

American Horror Story’s “Red Tide” was set in Providence, MA. Rather than taking the town’s happy summer side, they chose the winter season, which is an aspect I really enjoyed. Instead of showing viewers what they typically associate with P Town, they focused on the locals and what happens when the tourists head home. 

As for the storyline, I thought it was a strong idea. A struggling author moves out to a quiet town only to find out what really happens in the off-season. When it comes to pacing, the writers didn’t have enough time to fully develop their characters. Ten episodes is a perfect amount of time to develop the characters and the storyline, but because this  double feature only had six episodes, it felt unfinished. It felt like they decided to kill people off as a quick fix to the time constraint.  

Along with that pacing issue, “Red Tide” seemed to be too focused on the black pill. While there were so many other great storylines to focus more on, it seemed as though they dragged out the one concept. This is very unlike American Horror Story, as they typically tackle many different aspects and storylines all at once. “Red Tide” wasn’t a bad storyline, but compared to their other work, it was very underwhelming. 

After episode six, the season transitioned into “Death Valley,” an alien-themed storyline. This part of the season went on for the remaining four episodes. The writers partially went back to their typical ways of tackling multiple aspects at once. While a storyline was developed in 1954, there was another one as well in 2021. In the black and white part, there were a lot of surprising aspects that I really enjoyed. It brought in numerous references to that time period which made it feel more authentic. 

I felt that there was a lack of the typical AHS character development, but the progression of the storyline seemed a lot better than the previous six episodes. The ending of this part seemed a lot less rushed, and more thought out. Although it still isn’t my favorite ending ever, it did a lot more than “Red Tide.”

In the end, this season definitely felt like AHS in the aspect of the cast. Other than that, it felt a little lacking compared to the others. It’s definitely taken the spot at the bottom of my ranking with a 6.5/10.