Ten Disturbing Things We Learned From American Horror Story Freak Show Episode Five, “Pink Cupcakes” (Spoilers)

For some reason, we found “Pink Cupcakes” (which have never before sounded so unappetizing) to be the first real episode this season that really ...bothered us. Not that we found vicious killer clowns (who friends of ours understandably referred to as “Stabby the Clown”) with no lower jaw (due to a tragic backstory) cheerful or anything, and Twisty’s whole storyline had a perfect payoff. We don’t have a pathological fear of clowns, but he was pretty threatening.  So I could have started writing these “Ten Things” pieces as usual,  right after the premiere, but there weren’t any big plot or character reveals (okay, Elsa’s legs were a surprise) that Ryan Murphy hadn’t already either hinted at or flat-out told us about in the media, or that we hadn’t more or less figured out.  We hated Dandy by the time the second episode he appeared in ended, and it was kind of obvious he wasn’t going to be a benevolent character.  Last Wednesday, though, we got some good reveals, and for the first time, we exclaimed out loud in surprise, and really, really were disturbed by a murder enough to also curse loudly. So let’s get on with the show. One, two …three.

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1.  Del is a closeted gay. Well, of course he would have to be closeted even if he wasn’t a manly circus strongman for a living; as a gay man outed in a small town in 1952 you would almost certainly end up on the receiving end of a vicious blanket party, set on fire, or be the victim of another hate crime (or have your life ruined in some other way) if you were not closeted. That’s why we were genuinely surprised to see him at a gay bar, and more than that, desperately, hopelessly infatuated (and even professing his love) with guest star Matt Bomer, playing a smoking hot young man named Andy who turns tricks and hustles for a living. He basically referred to the bar as his office. It was hinted at before that Del was not 100% heterosexual, though you had to pay attention to pick up on it. Well, being married to a woman with a male member next to the female one was kind of a red flag, but it could be argued that if a man had an opportunity to be with a hot, gorgeous woman with three perfect breasts, he might be willing to overlook the male member.

2. …or what appears to be a male member. Turns out Désirée is all woman. Well, maybe even more than all woman, since she has three breasts and a clitoris large enough to be mistaken for a penis. When she’s hammered and lonely and turns to Jimmy to “make her feel something”, they both panic when his hand comes away from between her legs covered in blood and Ethel takes her to see the kindly, compassionate Dr. Bonham from “Edward Mordrake Part One”.  He’s got some news for her: what she (and a doctor in her past) thought was a penis turned out to be a (very) oversized clitoris. It’s (figuratively) connected to her extra breast. He gives some medical explanation about her body producing a really, really high amount of estrogen because it was trying to compensate–it didn’t sound completely medically legit to us, but we will suspend our disbelief.  He tells her surgery can give her normal-sized lady parts (we liked how removing the “accessory” breast wasn’t even alluded to as an option when doing surgery–hey, let’s not get crazy here!).

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3. Désirée was also pregnant, and was bleeding so badly because she was having a miscarriage. The doctor tells her that she can even try again and having a child is a distinct possibility for her (though she should probably hurry because her biological clock is ticking). We see surprise, then wonder, then hope in her eyes as this sinks in. “I can have a baby with Del,” she murmurs. But, she damn sure has a change of heart before long, because…

 

 Why are you still moving? You’re supposed to be dead!

 

 

4.  By the time Del finds her, she’s packed a suitcase to movie into Ethel’s trailer.  Del is desperate to get her to stay, and we half expected him to hit her or shake her or some other form of domestic abuse, but guess he knew better.  She tells him she was pregnant, he says, “A baby… great!” half-heartedly, and then it escalates very quickly.  Turns out she knows Jimmy is his son.  She keeps telling him that he is the one with freak blood in him, not her, but all their years together he made her feel like she was such a freak of nature that she didn’t deserve anyone better than him …or a better life.  She wants to have a kid, but not his. To add to Del’s despair, remember that this is taking place after Andy pretty much broke his heart, telling him Del he was delusional if he thought they would ever have any kind of relationship, or even contact, without having to pay like ever other trick. After telling him she was leaving him for a real man who deserved to be with her (and she tells Del what he calls her “big dick” is going to be surgically corrected by Dr. Bonham), Désirée leaves him standing there,  with Del clearly about to have some kind of meltdown. Towards the end of the episode, Del pays a personal visit to Dr. Bonham and breaks his fingers, possibly his hands too. Then, just in case the doctor didn’t get the message, Del threatens to snap his grandchildren’s fingers “like twigs.”  Soooooo, that surgery won’t be happening.

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5.  Stanley has an extremely creepy fantasy life. All of his lovely daydreams we saw underscored how vile a man he really is. His grandiose dream of Paul’s body floating in a tank before an awed crowd of horrible rich people was unsettling. The horrifying shot of the Tatler Twins torso floating in the glass display tank–and especially the fact that Bette’s head was dead and rotting probably days before he finally smothered Dot, who was begging him for help (and begging Bette to wake up) –was disturbing as hell. So was Stanley’s casual explanation to the museum owner he sold the body to when she asked how they “expired”: “The droopy one caught a cold and died first.”

Please …kill me. Please, kill me?

 

6.  Elsa is getting desperate. She practically spits on the floor when Stanley tries to entice her with the idea of her own television show, but then when the entire crowd (not into anachronistic performances of songs, no matter how good they are) turns on her, we see her hopes burning to the ground. When Stanley comes by after the disastrous show, and she says to him wearily, “Tell me about zis… television,” we can see her fighting back tears. Once again, Jessica Lange’s performance on AHS breaks our hearts. She doesn’t get really scary until she sees Stanley driving away without her, Bette and Dot in the back seat. Her next move is to talk to the twins and tell them she wants to help their and look after them since they’re new to the business and Elsa is not. We didn’t expect, though, that she would drive them straight to the Mott residence in the guise of taking them in for a wardrobe fitting. “I have brought you something I believe you want,” she starts out to Gloria right before the episode ends. To be fair, I don’t think she would have taken them there if Elsa knew Gloria’s son was a blood-thirsty, homicidal sociopath. She probably just wanted them out of the way, maybe even only temporarily. How could THAT go wrong?

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7. Maggie is having second thoughts. First she tells Stanley she did not agree to be involved with murder. Later, when she surprises Jimmy rehearsing, she pretends to read his palm and gives him a not-too-subtle fortune: something bad is coming for him, and he needs to get the hell out of there fast. She seems to be attracted to him, but still won’t let him kiss her. Hopefully she will end up ratting Stanley out more directly, and the freaks will end up cutting his throat and stabbing him (all together) about 70 times and then burning the body, the way they did with the police detective.

 

Jack the Ripper was a Windsor, for God’s sake.

 

8. Dandy’s mother Gloria is more batshit crazy–and darker–than we thought. At the very least, a sociopath. She’s mad at Dandy for killing Dora (“She was a mother!” is her first horrified reaction),but is pretty casual (and clever) about the way they dispose of the body. “These are special bulbs from Holland. Please do not question me!” she shrills at the men hired to dig a twelve-foot hole ( actually for Dora’s body). Oh, and we find out that Dandy’s father also had homicidal “urges”,  due to inbreeding (according to Gloria). One day he ended up “swinging lifeless from a Japanese Maple” because he couldn’t stand struggling with his urges any more and “suppressed them the only way he could” (also according to Gloria).  She tells Dandy he has to be careful who he kills, since it’s 1952 and they might have relatives who come looking for their missing family member; instead it needs to be people no-one will miss. The scene of them finishing up the bulbs planted over Dora’s corpse ends with on a disturbing note, with Gloria quietly telling her son, “we’ll figure something out.”

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9.  Jimmy is a local hero, though when Maggie points this out to him, he says, “Right now, I want to throw up.” Turns out Jimmy still feels terrible about poor Meep (though I bet the local chicken population is feeling better) being beaten to death in prison and then dumped in a sack on their doorstep.  In the scene where Jimmy and Désirée are drowning their sorrows in her trailer, he loses it and weeps, “it shoulda been me.” Interesting trivia: Ben Woolf, the actor who played Meep, also portrayed the Infantata, arguably the most frightening character from AHS Season One, AKA Murder House.

There’s nothing worse than the hurt of loving someone you can’t have.

 

10.  Dandy, unsurprisingly the new big bad (well, next to Stanley, who is also deadly but mainly just a greedy, scheming piece of shit looking for a big payday) is clearly just getting started. Either he or his mother decided a gay bar would be a good place to find a victim (we also loved the very serious MAN WANTED poster with an ‘artist’s sketch’ of a clown mask that Dandy passes). When Del leaves, crushed, Dandy zeroes in on Andy, and pays him a hundred dollars to come back to the Abandoned School Bus of Murder with him, and of course, things get really disturbing.  The fact that Andy turned out not to be dead even after Dandy stabbed him brutally over a dozen times in the torso AND sawed one of his arms off was the first thing this season that really caused us to feel deep horror.

 

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Stray Thoughts:

 

  • Gabourey Sidibe will be back as Regina Ross, Dora’s daughter in New York.  We loved the “Mrs. Mott, I’m feeling really uncomfortable, so I’m going to go now” line of hers when she was on the phone with Gloria, who was starting to ramble about raising Dandy. We doubt she’s going to stick around more than a couple of episodes, though it would be nice if she ended up beating Dandy to death. That was also a great reveal when Gloria hung up the phone and the split-screen disappeared to show Dandy, standing in his underwear, covered with Andy’s blood.
Motion pictures are the expression of our souls, our inner dreams, our fantasies.

 

  • We knew the Bette and Dot torso in the giant fish tank was a fantasy, but did anyone else worry at first that poor Paul the Illustrated Seal was really floating in the formaldehyde and that the rest of the episode might be the flashbacks to how he ended up in there? We were unsure, but did let out a big sigh of relief when we realized what the writers had done. Everyone should probably worry about his place in the new knife throwing act, though…
  • I had a good laugh at the way Dandy at first tried to act innocent when his mother screamed because she found Dora dead with her throat cut. “Somebody’s broke into our home and murdered Dora!”  he proclaims unconvincingly. Meanwhile, his mother, who immediately figured out that he did it , starts yelling at him about having to clean up his messes almost the second he rushes into the room. That smirk he got after he turned his back and walked away from Gloria to go to his room was chilling, as was his practicing ‘acting faces’ in the mirror.
  • That was an amazing monologue written for Del talking about the pain he goes through and how he is only strong on the outside, and Michael Chiklis knocked it out of the fucking park. It was obvious Del knew how desperate he sounded, begging Andy to let him get him a nice apartment with a record player and good light so he could sketch, to only be with him because he loves him so much, but the words kept flooding out as if he was trying to purge himself of something he’d wanted to tell another human being all his life. Give him a couple more scenes like that and Chiklis might just earn himself an Emmy nomination for Best Supporting Actor. For the record, a month has passed since Del and Désirée arrived in Jupiter.
  • Look around that ‘Morbid Museum’ in the scenes where Stanley is talking to the owner about the twins. There is some seriously disturbing stuff in there (and once again, we are 99.9% sure it was inspired by the real-life Mutter museum*). There are at least two Elephant Man-like skulls, and some really horrible things in jars.
  • I got a huge grin on my face when Jimmy referred to the pinhead duo as Salty and Pepper to the crowd after their act, which seemed to include a drum kit, a large mallet, and slapstick humor. “Salty and Pepper, Ladies and Gents!” We love it.
  • Boy, that crowd REALLY turned on Elsa fast. Guess they are not Bowie fans. Speaking of Bowie– great song choice to use of “Fame” in the montage of her getting ready to go have “publicity photos” taken (that ends with her hope being crushed).  The self-satisfied smirk on Stanley’s face when he saw Elsa unravelling onstage made me want to break his neck …and I’m a huge fan of Denis O’Hare, so I have always taken his side before no matter how much of a rotten prick his character is –until that moment. Hopefully Stanley and Dandy will both get an even more horrible variation of the notorious Todd Browning “chicken lady”  treatment.

Next episode, “Bullseye,” the freaks–including Ethel– seem to be turning on Elsa too. Check out the preview (again) below!

 

*Which I hope to visit some day, then sometimes during dark, sleepless nights question the decision of putting a visit to that house of horrors on my bucket list.

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Possibly the most breathtaking still of the set yet.

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Intense Horror Thriller “Proxy” Opens 4/18 – Find Out If Can You Stomach the Brutal First Five Minutes

Deciding whether to see Zack Parker’s Proxy, but aren’t sure if you want to because it might be too violent? Allow us to help you decide by posting this clip for you to view.

We wanted to add EXTREME CONTENT WARNING to the title of the post, but it was already too long. So first, EXTREME VIOLENCE WARNING, even for Horror Boom. In fact, Mrs. Horror Boom here felt a little queasy at the ending, and I’ve never even been pregnant. I don’t recommend it if you’re pregnant, especially if you’re worried something will go wrong; same goes if your wife/partner/sibling, etc. is pregnant. As I mentioned earlier in my intro to the review Variety gave it (which was pretty positive), I do know of people who watched Inside while pregnant. If you’re one of those people then hey, watch away. I just don’t want to get yelled at for not warning you. If you’re eating something right now, you may want to set it aside while you watch. Okay?

Oh, and in case you’re wondering about the content, the clip is titled (on YouTube, anyway) as the following: “A Baby Is Beaten From a Pregnant Woman in Controversial Thriller Film ‘Proxy'”. That should weed out some of you right there. Also, over half the various comments on sites that ran the clip that I’ve read have been along the lines of that’s not art, that’s not even horror, that’s sick!  So consider yourself warned (again).

Did Zack Parker make a good movie? You can read the Variety review here, and here’s the link to Rotten Tomatoes and their page for the shocker (67% fresh as of this writing, if you were wondering) where you read many more reviews. Neither of us at Horror Boom have seen it yet (but with the reviews, we will be).

So! Proxy will be available on various VOD platforms in less than 24 hours… or, depending on when you read this, possibly right now.

Good Lord!

Good Lord!

 

 

Ten Things We Learned From American Horror Story Coven’s Premiere, “Bitchcraft” (SPOILERS Included)!

Zoe: What do we do if we can’t get in?
Fiona: Tear the wall down.

Another season (or ‘Volume’, as Ryan Murphy said he wanted to refer to them-we think it fits and sounds awesome) of American Horror Story, an entire new twisted, fun, and scary world for Murphy and Brad Falchuck to explore and reveal to us! Hold onto your broomsticks and voodoo dolls, ’cause American Horror Story Coven is going to be one fun, fucked-up flight! So, what did we learn? Here’s ten items, dive in. Oh, and we’re adding a new feature to these weekly companion pieces: besides “stray thoughts” that Mrs. Horror Boom wanted to mention* but couldn’t squeeze into the top ten, we’re adding “Predictions and Speculations” (until we come up with a snappier name). As always, we’d love to hear your opinions on them, and your own predictions. Plus, HEADS UP! PLOT SPOILERS (spilled by Ryan Murphy and the cast to TV Guide) for upcoming episodes given at the end of this particular piece.

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1.   Hey guys, don’t have sex with Zoe until she learns to control her power, unless you’re suicidal. It’ll hurt and you’ll start bleeding from every orifice that can be shown on basic cable. I see plenty of theories (or declarations) that Zoe has teeth in a specific part of her anatomy, but since her first lover’s death was deemed a brain aneurism with no mention of “penis also apparently chewed off”, we don’t think that’s it.

“I’ll have what she’s having!”

2. Jessica Lange‘s character continues the tradition of getting all the best lines, from “Don’t make me drop a house on you” to “the world’s not gonna miss a bunch of assholes in Ed Hardy T-shirts”. We look forward to many more.

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3.  Murphy sure wasn’t kidding when he said Taissa Farmiga and Evan Peters would once again be cast as “star-crossed lovers“.  Let’s see, she can’t have traditional sex with a male lover (and who knows if there’s a, er, workaround that’s not fatal), and he was killed by a telekinetic bus accident shortly after meeting his love interest, well before the end of the episode. We see in the previews for the upcoming episode “Boy Parts” (heh) that Madison plans to help Zoe bring him back… in a pretty messy, work-intensive method. The couple –and the writers– definitely have their work cut out for them (so to speak).

Tell us about this accident… and don’t spare us any of the gory details.

4.  Fiona will stop at nothing to get “an infusion of vitality, of youth,” as she puts it to her pet scientist in Los Angeles whose research to discover an anti-aging medication/serum she has funded with her late husband’s money. He tells her they’ll be ready for human trials as early as two years from now – Fiona tells him she wants it now.  The next time we catch up with her, she’s blasting Iron Butterfly and doing rails of coke in her very lavish, rock superstar-quality hotel suite, dancing, doing more coke**, nervously seeing a checking her appearance repeatedly in the mirror** . When she insists he visit her, we learn he’s been injecting her with it (at her insistence and probably threats to cut off funding) for five days, and “nothing, NOTHING has changed!” she yells at him despite his protests that he’s already not supposed to be giving her the drug. “Double the dosage,” she whispers, then practically roars, “GIVE ME MORE!”  He tells her human bodies are organic in nature– “We rot. We die”, then resigns. Fiona slams and locks the doors and tosses him across the room with a very mild hand gesture, then starts giving him a very passionate kiss, so passionate, in fact, that she sucks the life out of him (every review I’ve read compares the way he rapidly ages and shrivels to the scene at the end of Indiana Jones and The Last Crusade where the villain drinks from the Holy Grail). She looks decades younger briefly, then sees her age returning and smashes the mirror in fury. At the tail end of the episode, she digs up Delphine LaLaurie seemingly for the sole purpose of discovering how someone who was buried alive in 1834 seemingly hasn’t aged a day.

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From Episode 2, “Boy Parts”.

5. The one thing that distracts Fiona from her coke-fueled frenzy while she not-so-patiently waits for visible results from the experimental anti-aging drugs is a news story on candlelight vigils for the young witch (her character is named ‘Misty Day’ and played by Lily Rabe) who has gone missing and rumored to have been burned at the stake–Fiona looks genuinely concerned, probably with good reason (see prediction section for more on that).

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6.  The relationship between the supreme Fiona and her ‘sole offspring,’ daughter Cordelia Foxx, is strained …at best. During a scene between them where Fiona visits Cordelia working in her absolutely beautiful, lush greenhouse/lab, Cordelia is soon calling Fiona a bitch to her face. The conflict seems to be Delia’s teaching philosophy as Headmistress; Fiona thinks her daughter should take a more direct, assertive approach and prepare the girls for the coming storm (especially with the royal blood running in her veins), instead of teaching them to ‘cower and hide in the shadows’.  Surprisingly, most of the spite seems to come from Cordelia’s end. When she turns to her mother and asks, “When are you going to die and stop ruining my life?”, Fiona is visibly hurt, but replies evenly, “I’m here. I’m staying. So why don’t we make the best of it?” We hope they do–they’re going to need everything they’ve got when a pissed-off Marie Laveau shows up looking for Delphine Lalaurie.

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7.  Things sure liven up at dinner time. Also, maybe it would be a good idea to ban sharp objects. Spoiled telekinetic movie star Madison Montgomery, human voodoo doll Queenie, clairvoyant Nan, and Zoe are served dinner by Spalding. Queenie tells Madison to be nice to Spalding (after she calls him ‘Jeeves’) because he has no tongue. Madison immediately responds by asking him if he used his tongue for something wicked, ‘or maybe you just really suck at going down’. They snipe at each other (Zoe barely gets a word in and just stares with her jaw hung open) with Queenie calling Madison a “D-list, botox bimbo,” and Madison using her mind to flip Queenie’s soup all over her shirt. Queenie jams a fork into her own hand and twists it; Madison squeals in pain as her hand bleeds. Nan has to finally talk Queenie into going for a walk to cool down after Queenie holds a huge knife to her own throat and threatening to cut it. “Well,” Madison sniffs, “that was disturbing.”

There’s a storm coming….

 

8. Fiona knows how to throw a sick field trip. (“Jesus. Go change your clothes. Wear something… black.”) She takes the current group of students–who (except for Nan) don’t know that Fiona is the Supreme until Nan mentions it and she confirms it–for a breezy stroll, filling them in on some New Orléans history and places such as the Popp Fountain that were declared a safety hazard after Hurricane Katrina and closed it off. “What do we do if we can’t get in?” Zoe asks. “Tear the wall down,” Fiona replies. In one of the few scenes where Fiona isn’t lighting a cigarette, smoking, or stubbing out a cigarette, they crash the Lalaurie Mansion tour***  after Nan hears a voice she later tells Fiona belongs to “the lady of the house” whispering help me.

“To our future together.” -Marie Laveau

9. Don’t piss off Marie Laveau. The backstory (also told by the tour guide) that ties her to LaLaurie is that one of her lovers was tortured and killed by LaLaurie. Marie pretended to offer a love potion to LaLaurie that will stop her husband’s ‘infidelities’,  and she makes the mistake of inviting Marie Laveau into her mansion and gulping down the potion, which is a potion, but not one having to do with any kind of love. After LaLaurie chokes and falls to the floor appearing to be dead, we only hear that her body was never found. That’s because Laveau had her chained up and buried alive (probably because death was too good for her), leaving her soul to burn in hell–in the preview for Episode 2, “Boy Parts”, we briefly see LaLaurie assuring Fiona that hell is real, because she’s been there.

“The light hit him  just fine.”

10. Don’t piss off any of the women on the show, or get in their way, and even if you’re another female character, watch your mouth around Fiona and sure as hell don’t call her a hag. She’ll casually flick her wrist (without even looking up) and the next thing you know, your back is slamming into a wall across the room. Don’t tell Madison she’s not “hitting her mark” if you’re directing her; she’ll cause a lighting rig to drop on your head and kill you.  Though she’s got a more even temper, we know Queenie can fuck you up. I think Nan was trying to help out in general when she clued in Fiona to the fact she could dig up LaLaurie and make her Fiona’s bitch slave. Piss Cordelia off, she can slip you a ‘restorative potion’ that would put you in a coma for a few days (or weeks) as Fiona caught her doing. Zoe has only killed one man on purpose with her, er, female power, and boy did he deserve it (as did every frat boy on the bus who participated in gang-raping Madison– I cheered when she flipped that bus over, though partially because it was such a cool, seamless effect), but I’m pretty sure she’s going to become a force to be reckoned with. All you had to do to be tortured/killed by LaLaurie was A. be the wrong color and B. show up.

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Stray Thoughts:

  • I was bummed out when it was revealed Denis O’Hare’s character has no tongue (since he got so many great lines as Larry in Season One), but Murphy has assured us that he will be speaking later on.
  • I also hope nothing horrible happens to Cordelia’s cat; Fiona didn’t seem to care for the pet much.
  • The show’s writers did their research on Delphine LaLaurie, even getting her daughter’s names and nicknames right. At the time the story takes place, she’s on her third marriage (and we wonder if the show will mention rumors that foul play was suspected in her first two husband’s deaths, adding “Black Widow” to her monstrous resume), and her husband, a doctor, was involved in her crimes. I’d go into more specifics that were depicted as faithfully as possible, but in the last two weeks I’ve read details about LaLaurie’s sadistic crimes that I sincerely wish I could UN-read as of this writing.  The Minotaur is a creation of the AHS writers–and Murphy assures us he’ll return as one of Coven’s two seasonal monsters–but may shown in the cold open of “Bitchcraft”, such as the flayed faces, oddly shaped cages containing slaves whose limbs had been broken and re-formed to resemble animals, and lips sewn shut, among others, were all too real. As I said, I’m on information overload right now from the research I did, so that’s enough of that.

Predictions/Speculations:

  • We’re pretty sure ‘Misty Day’ (the witch with the power of resurgence) will turn up again, and unburned. In the scenes we saw of her actually being burned alive, Cordelia was simply recounting her story to the students. The news report that Fiona saw (and brought her back to New Orléans)  mentioned she was missing and only rumored to have been burned alive. Also, she’s shown in some PR shots released for the October 16th episode. Keep your fingers crossed for more Lily Rabe!
  • Marie Leveau will bring back her dead lover who was killed by suffocating inside a severed bull’s head placed/sewn onto his shoulders… and that’ll be “The Minotaur” monster Ryan Murphy brought up (as this year’s Rubberman/Bloody Face), who will terrorize the Academy.
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And here’s a couple spoilers I uncovered today I just couldn’t keep to myself (source: TVGuide), so SPOILER ALERT FOR FUTURE EPISODES BEGINNING HERE!

  • Zoe is going to constantly struggle with the decision–and consequences of– bringing Kyle back from the dead in kind of a Frankenstein-like state (which I guess is better than, say, a Pet Semetary or a Monkey’s Paw-like state) over the next several episodes. Worse yet, he won’t be able to communicate verbally.
  • The group of young witches-in-training will drop from four to three when [REDACTED] is killed by {REDACTED]
  • We’re going to get Queenie’s backstory in Episode 2 (Boy Parts) and got-damn, it should be good!
  • Jessica Lange will make LaLaurie her slave, and as a sort of poetic justice, give her to Queenie as a slave. All fucking hell is going to break loose (AKA: War between witch and Voodoo royalty)  when Marie Laveau wants her ‘property’ back from Fiona. Those were just the highlights; click here to read the entire juicy article from TV Guide for plenty more yummy details and teasers.   (END SPOILERS)

There you have it…and we promise to not wait until practically the last minute before posting these from now on. Thanks for reading AND for being so patient.

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*Mrs. Horror Boom is the only one on the Horror Boom ‘staff’ (of two) that’ll watch it, after I told my husband about certain nasty plot details from Asylum last year, he got scared off… with good reason.

**I predict black nail polish is about to get even more popular, and this spring I was already seeing soccer moms at my nail salon casually getting pedicures with it.

***This tour of the interior does not actually exist, and if I missed it in my research and it does, it certainly doesn’t exist in the form shown in “Bitchcraft,” where the last stop on the tour is the ‘attic of horror’ with most of the torture chamber intact and the tour guide shares the information that Delphine Lalaurie’s beauty treatment wasn’t just slave’s blood, it was a poultice made from the pancreas of her victims–the beauty treatment and the Marie Laveau revenge are all creations of the writers… though Nicholas Cage really did purchase the home. You can read more about the history of the mansion here. Pleasant dreams…

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Five F*cked-Up Things That Happen on Sons of Anarchy Season 5 (With A Bonus Of Five More Spoiler-ish Items)

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As of this writing, there’s less three days till the much anticipated Season Six of Sons of Anarchy premieres on Tuesday, September 10th on FX. We’ve been psyched since July! Straight up: Mrs. Horror Boom here (who also wrote “Ten F*cked-Up Things That Happen On Sons of Anarchy” about this time last year)  needs to warn you now that if you’re easily offended, or don’t want any S5 spoilers,  you shouldn’t be reading this.*  Season 5 was consistently entertaining, but also especially disturbing.  REALLY disturbing shit took place on almost every episode, sometimes twice in the same ep. I still recall more things that made me curse out loud (or yell “HOAH!” with varying degrees of volume at the screen) during S5 than in 1, 2, and 3 combined.  Quite a few people die horribly just because they were in the wrong place at the wrong time, and were probably thinking wait, what the fuck did I do? as a dying thought.

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Guy looks like Jason Vorhees just attacked him with a damn nail gun…

I originally wrote this as a ten-item list (with a bonus five), then stopped when I realized half the items were either A. really, really uncomfortable to put into words, even just documenting them  B. really offensive, even for SOA (I had one in the next-to-last draft, then I chickened out and replaced it at the last minute because there was no way to phrase it without sounding creepy) or  C.  contained spoilers or borderline spoilers. There’s some fans out there who are still waiting for Netflix to get S5 on streaming .*  So I compromised and wrote up five,  then a bonus five that you should probably skip if you’re waiting to see S5. One more warning!  This list is not for the faint of heart or easily offended. Then again, if you watch SOA, you know that the Kurt Sutter-helmed show is not for the faint of heart or easily offended in the first place.

Five Fucked-Up Things That Happen On Sons of Anarchy, Season Five

Note: This first one caused me to wince more than anything else that happened during S5. The prosthetic was waaay too realistic, and the sound effects added in post were really nasty.

1. A man in shackles suddenly and violently bites off his own tongue by slamming his chin down on a table (basically just to emphasize a point). Tongue flops down onto the table, blood everywhere, and while you are still trying to process this…

2.  Crying and laughing at the same time***, the man THEN picks up his severed tongue and hurls it across the room at a one-way glass window (he was giving an official statement), where is sticks- splat– and then slides down, leaving a gruesome trail. Good thing this came right before a commercial break aired …in fact I’m sure it was intentional, so horrified viewers at home could regroup and pay attention to the next scene.  Scroll to the bottom of the article to see it, that is, if you’re not eating or getting ready to eat …and be thankful it’s not in HD. (Note how fast the guy interviewing him scrambles the hell out of the room)

3.  A man beats another man to death by caving in his head with a large glass snowglobe. Not just any snowglobe, a musical snowglobe, and if that’s not Kurt Sutter-esque enough for you, the man deliberately winds it up before he goes to work on the guy’s skull. That way a merry little tinkling tune is playing throughout the murder (the song is nothing identifiable, you think Disney was gonna give them the song rights to “It’s a Small World” for that?). We see blood and bits of brains on the globe after he’s done (with the song still playing).

4.  A man (too long of a backstory to go into here) takes revenge on another man by forcing him watch his own teenage daughter (trapped at the bottom of a metal pit among some recently dismembered cadaver parts) get doused with the contents of a can of gasoline and then set on fire. She screams for her “daddy” to save her throughout being burned alive.  I think they ended up having her body cremated in the next episode; if so, it must have only taken about 10 seconds– tops– since that’s how long and badly she burned.

5. THIS happens: (not much violence, but very, very NSFW)

Say, I could swear I’ve seen that she-male somewhere before… glad they kept it a surprise till the end credits. Hope we get to see Cletus Venus VanDamme again!

BONUS – SPOILERS SPOILERS SPOILERS

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1. The following dialogue takes place between a woman and her mother-in-law (pretty sure anyone who’s watched more than a few episodes can figure out who) and the MIL threatens to have her sent to prison so she never gets to see her kids grow up (another long backstory).

Gemma MIL:  …at least I’d have the satisfaction of knowing you were locked up and getting fist-raped until they’re well into their twenties. (punches the other woman in the stomach, hard). Hope you aren’t pregnant. (leaves)

2.  A pretty big guy leaps from his hospital bed, attacks a petite nurse and smashes her head into a wall, then brutally stabs her in the neck five times with an ornate gold and silver crucifix (which used to belong to his retired porn star wife, who was beaten to death and dumped in a ditch a few seasons ago). So much blood spurts all over him (and the walls) that he looks like a leading lady in some French ‘new extremist’ horror movie about halfway in. The nurse was just minding her own business before he attacked her, by the way.

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3. A man goes to his ex-wife’s apartment, charms her into letting him in to talk, then roughs her up and slams a large hypodermic needle filled with a speedball into her shoulder even as she begs him not to do it (made more horrifying by the fact that she’s a recovered drug addict now working an a rehab center, where they do drug testing).

4.  A  rival gang member (named Diego) being chased by the club on foot sees a woman getting into her SUV, so without looking he yanks her out of the car and shoves her over, then leaps into the driver’s seat to jack the car. Unfortunately (for him), he didn’t see her pet pit bull in the back seat, who immediately attacks him.  Nero (Jimmy Smits plays this upscale bordello owner), turns his back to lean against the door to keep it closed as the guy screams, definitely fighting a losing battle with the dog (he deserved it, trust me). Dialogue between the cheerful Sons at the scene-  Jax: “That shit’s gotta hurt!” (Laughing) Nero: “We should probably let him out.”  Chibs: “That’d be the good Catholic thing to do.” End of scene.

5. The end result can only seen on the S5 Blu-ray “Extended Episode” version:  we see the Sons and Nero sauntering down a busy sidewalk to meet up with a fellow Latino gang that they have a better relationship with. One of them asks what happened to Diego, and someone answers, grinning, “Oh, we gave him a ride out of town.” They step aside from a colorful ‘rocking pony’ (one of the coin-operated mechanical ones that are made for small children to give them a ride when they rock back and forth) they’d all been standing around to reveal a half-conscious, bloodied Diego tied to it. The icing on the cake is that they dressed him in a full-length pink formal gown that looks like the one Gwyneth Paltrow wore to the Oscars that one year when she won Best Actress, except this one has more taffeta and sequins. “Hey man, I think pink’s your color,” one guy tells him while another loads in more quarters.

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Now that I think of it, those last two aren’t that fucked-up, considering that Diego did a bunch of horrible things, including running an illegal dog-fighting operation where the losing dogs got taken out around back and shot, then dumped into big plastic yard-waste disposal-type bins (we see them full of other abused, discarded dogs–the Sons who see this are visibly shaken). Before I saw the “extended scene” that didn’t air on FX, I assumed they let the dog kill him as poetic justice. Plus, Tig rescues one of the dogs and take her back to the clubhouse, adopting her, so the dog is one of the few characters in a happy place by the end of the S5 finale. Let’s hope that whatever mayhem goes down during S6 of SOA—and Kurt Sutter promised/warned us and the press in numerous interviews this would be ‘the bloodiest, deadliest, most brutal season yet’– that at least the dog ends up making it through okay.

Here’s the scene with the …with the …tongue (again, be glad the quality isn’t perfect):

Check out the extra-large Related Articles bit below this piece for more goods –and spoilers, if you want ’em—on Season Six of Sons of Anarchy. The last two articles focus on the very fucked-up (even for SOA) things that transpire on the Season 6 Premiere, “Straw”, including probably the ugliest and most twisted murder-by-drawning scene ever aired on TV (so far). There were probably enough for a ‘fucked-up things that happen in E0601’ piece, but no way am I going there.

Finally, here’s the latest S6 trailer:

*If you’re one of my relatives over age 60 or, actually, even a friend who knows me but doesn’t like to watch anything violent on TV or in movies, please stop reading NOW, especially if you happened to pick this day to finally check out my blog. Come back later this week when I’m writing about Insidious Chapter 2 or something.

**These fans on Netflix are ANGRY (if that was the only way I had to watch the show and had to wait a goddamned year while avoiding spoilers, I would be too).

***We’ve seen the Season 6 premiere since this was posted, and if the character had known what was coming for him– in the cold open for Chrissake– he probably would have just cried. GAH.

Cannes Film Review: ‘Heli’

Well, doesn’t this sound like a bag and a half of fun! This review from Variety is showing up here because we missed covering some of the genre films that were reviewed at Cannes this year. We actually think we’ll pass on this one, though; “violent despair” coupled with animal cruelty and “sledgehammer miserablism” isn’t really our thing (and we own copies of Inside, Martyrs, and Frontiere/s–all uncut– though we go at least two, sometimes three years between watchings, though).

Heli… just… no thanks. But in case it sounds good to you, now you know about it! Note: The featured image above is not in the movie; it was on our media library and seemed like a good generic messy photo at the time we edited this.

Kathy Bates Cast As Delphine LaLaurie In American Horror Story Season Three? We Think So! Read Why (Disturbing Content)

AUG 3rd UPDATE: Holy shit! We actually called it! Back in March!  During FX’s presentation at the Television Critics Association today, Tim Minear announced some major casting–including the official news that Kathy Bates WILL indeed play Delphine LaLaurie!  Yay Mr. White Horror Boom. This character will put the Horror into American Horror Story: Coven. Read on for more gory, disturbing details (after the self-congratulatory logo we inserted) in the original piece!

 

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So. Have you heard the very, very, VERY horrifying historical facts about her? Newspapers at the time called her, “a demon in the shape of a woman”. You know, the wealthy New Orléans socialite and notorious part-time torturer and murderess of slaves in her ‘employ’ in the 1830s who went by the name of Madame Delphine LaLaurie? No?

Are you SURE you want to?

Even if this ends up not happening, I doubt I’m alone in imagining it likely that Kathy Bates, now officially signed as a Season 3 lead –who will play the most evil character on American Horror Story “ever” according to Ryan Murphy— could end up portraying the vile, cruel, evil actual c-word woman (who has even made it to a few “top ten evil humans in history” lists, click this link for one of them). The more tiny bits of info on Season Three of American Horror Story are revealed, the more our theory seems to fit.

Before we present our case, though, let me back up a little.

I’ve heard LaLaurie’s name before, mainly because reading about some of the most haunted places in American also gives you some really horrible and blood-curdling historical facts for the back story.  On serious sites written by sane, intelligent people, they inform you (along with documentation, usually in the form of news stories and even photos to reference their knowledge) of whatever tragic atrocity or cruel twist of fate—often in the form of mother nature—occurred.  One of these back-stories was on the notorious LaLaurie Mansion, still standing, and officially the most haunted building in New Orléans. Think of all the horrifying, miserable things that have happened in the area that go back centuries …and this mansion still managed to make it to the top of a list.

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Supposedly, you can see terrified ghostly figures running around in fear, the most well-known was the ghost of a little girl who this awful bitch kept as a slave. When she was brushing Delphine’s hair, she hit a snag by accident. Delphine beat her with a whip until she ran for her life, with Delphine close behind. The little girl ended up on the roof (there’s plenty of photos of the actual site of the death) and either slipped, was pushed, or just jumped off just on instinct to put some distance between she and her attacker. I’m guessing it’s one of the last two. Stories claim on certain nights you can see the poor thing’s apparaition make an appearance by jumping off the roof and hitting the ground. That was about all I learned about the background of the mansion and all the atrocities that took place there, courtesy of Delphine. I would gladly be a servant to Countess Bathory than LaLaurie. Elizabeth Bathory just bled you do death. Still pretty horrible, but what ‘Ms. Bathory’ did almost seems quaint in comparison to the torture and living hell Delphine subjected her slaves to.

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I regretted it when I looked for more online, because I found out more than I want to know. If you really want to know, here’s one of the LESS blood-curdling accounts.  It’s still upsetting, though; you have officially been warned. What that crazy bitch did to her ‘servants’ she kept in an attic room is shockingly graphic and brutal; I’m linking to it because I don’t want to describe it. It takes a lot to turn my stomach, but this fucking nightmare of a story did it, and would have even if it was presented as fiction. Speaking of nightmares, you may be in for some really bad dreams tonight. If you decide to rifle around on Google for some of the more detailed descriptions, they’re not too hard to research …but again: we warned you.

Here’s a little more about the mansion itself, focusing less on the murder and torture.*

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OK, now we’ve got the actual true-life background. Here’s some reasons why (and a couple why not) Murphy may have cast Bates as LaLaurie, with some hints that Ryan Murphy dropped in January and some recent news…

  • A fairly recent article in The Huffington Post revealed Season Three in not only set in New Orléans, but also will in fact film there. This was confirmed by Frances Conroy herself (who will have a bigger role in S3- bring that ON!)
  • When dropping hints in January, Murphy said it would be shooting in a specific location in America “where true horror has been” Check and CHECK.
  • When the story broke that Bates would be featured in Season Three, it reported she was playing an actual ‘true-life’ evil woman, in a story that ‘really happened’. Check.
  • Reasonable physical resemblance -see above and featured image (though Delphine may have been slightly younger when she was run out of New Orléans, it’s close enough), other than this horrifying wax museum depiction (hope they have enough sense to have that exhibit age-restricted)
  • As far as Dylan McDermott saying Bates is “perfect” for the part, maybe he’s thinking of Misery, where Bates as Annie Wilkes kept someone against their will and made SURE he didn’t go anywhere (though he was already pretty fucked up below the waist from the car wreck, but she was capable of doing some serious damage… and had planned to kill him after the book was finally finished and she’d read it, at least in the novel …which was much more brutal than the movie).**
  • Murphy said (also in January) there was going to be (as referenced above) the most evil, horrible female character he’d even written as the villain of the season. Read the story? Can’t argue with the description.
  • Bates has also been revealed to play first Lange’s “best friend”, who would become her “nemesis”.  Lange has been repeatedly described as playing a very glamorous character. Delphine was a very wealthy woman who threw plenty of fancy parties entertaining other wealthy socialites, so the guests here everyone dressed to the nines. No-one else except her husband was privy to the “attic chamber of horrors”, or, I’m guessing, the female slaves she kept chained to the stoves in the kitchen to cook. The other residents of the area did not take the news lightly after the horrifying, graphic report hit the papers, and angry mobs gathered, many ready to burn the mansion to the ground. So, I’m guessing she didn’t have a whole lot of friends left.

Here’s some facts against our theory –though we’re still betting on Delphine being a part of the story AND Kathy Bates playing her…

  • When E! asked McDermott if he thinks Kathy Bates is “perfect” for the upcoming season, he said, “She really is. All the witches of Salem … there’s plenty of them!” Huh. Well, now we know they’re shooting in N’awlins. Did he maybe confuse magic with voodoo?
  • Characters in American Horror Story Asylum unlucky enough to be locked up somewhere and against their will were also mangled by a horrible individual, and one of them begged for death. Also, Delphine LaLaurie was married to a doctor. Too much of the same?
  • Murphy  has reassured us this season will be much less dark and depressing (since everyone involved needs a change of pace after Asylum).  The events surrounding Delphine were pretty goddamned brutal and I have trouble thinking how they could be played off as ‘campy’. However, we don’t know how large a role Bates will be playing- maybe the torture and atrocities that took place in the Delphine mansion are not the center of the story.

We’ll be adding any ammo we can find to back up our theory (or destroy it) as it develops. Watch this space!

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*Here’s another about ‘the hauntings’. Most are probably bullshit. That being said, I’m sure as hell not going near that goddamned place at night even in a tour group. Ever.

**in which she chops off his entire foot with an axe, cauterised it with a blowtorch, and later uses an electric carving knife to cut off his thumb (no real reason other than her being in a bad mood that day) then later made a cake for him and stuck his thumb in calling it a special candle, telling him if he was good and finished the cake, he wouldn’t have to eat the candle.  Sounds somewhere in the ballpark of Delphine LaLaurie.

For use in article Delphine LaLaurie. Black an...

Photograph of copper plate found in St. Louis Cemetery #1 by Eugene Backes in the late 1930s. Text reads: “Madame Lalaurie, nee Marie Delphine Maccarthy, decedee a Paris, le’ 7 decembre, 1842, a l’age de 6 –.” (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Ten F*cked Up Things That Happen on Spartacus (Starz) – NSFW – Disturbing Content Warning!

SPARTACUS IS A HISTORICAL PORTRAYAL OF ANCIENT ROMAN SOCIETY THAT CONTAINS GRAPHIC VIOLENCE and adult content. Viewer Discretion is advised.

 

 

The above disclaimer (or attention-magnet) is shown along with the usual MA – LSV rating before each episode of Spartacus on Starz.  Fans don’t just watch the show for the blood, sex, guts, and sex, but also for the well-written characters and their story arcs, as well as plot twists and reveals that have stunned even some of the more cynical reviewers.

What’s an article on Starz‘s epic series Spartacus doing up on here? Well, it’s in the new issue of Fangoria, for one (even though they didn’t focus on the gore, sadly), and every episode has been brought to you by (among others) Raimi/Tapert/Donen Productions. Yeah, THAT Raimi. Some gladiators look like actual monsters; some characters are beautiful outside and monsters inside.

Just another day at the office for the House of Batiatus...

Just another day at the office for the House of Batiatus…

I’ve tried to keep these vague as far as characters involved, but several of these could be considered spoilers. If you plan on watching Spartacus: Gods of the Arena (prequel 6-episode miniseries) Spartacus: Blood and Sand (Season One) and Spartacus: Vengeance (Season 2) and want to go in completely  100% clean, maybe you should just skim it.*
If you’re considering watching the show but are unsure if it might be too graphic, violent, and disturbing for you, then this is a great way to find out what you’re in for.  Hint: if you’re worried it might be too sick for your personal tastes, there’s a 99% chance you are, in fact, correct.

These aren’t the  most fucked-up things, or all the fucked-up things, they’re just some memorable highlights. I’m not kidding, this list almost wrote itself, I sure didn’t need to stretch to think of ten bloodcurdling events. If I included every messed-up thing that happened, the list would easily go into triple-digits (and there’s still one season left as of this writing).

1. An especially disgusting character gets interrupted while raping a screaming female slave. When he stands up and faces away from her to turn and confront the interlopers, the woman grabs his sword and rams it all the way up his ass with such force that the tip pokes through his stomach from before she yanks it back out. So there.

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2. Soon after, a male character gets information out of that pig by pulling some of his guts out of the aforementioned wound (with his bare hands) and promising him a fast death if he tells him what he wants to know right away (it works).

3. A gladiator kills his opponent by shoving a spear through his opponent’s mouth, out the side of his face, then twisting it until the man’s jaw is literally hanging by a few threads (shown in slow motion, with shots of even the most jaded spectators looking horrified). Extra points to the make-up/FX team for using prosthetics.

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4. In one of the most disturbing scenes of the entire goddamned series (which is saying quite a bit),  a noblewoman snaps, attacking her (former) friend, and kills her in an enraged frenzy by savagely smashing her skull down against the marble floor countless times.  She literally bashes her head in, we’re talking bits of skull and brain within a radius of at least a yard, her eyeball is popped out of the socket, her face caves in, blood everywhere, before someone can intervene and pull her away.

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5 .Two gladiators are brought out to fight a giant fat rival gladiator (who may remind viewers a little of  Ancient Rome’s Tor Johnson). They win by working as a team, wrapping a chain around his neck and then using all their combined weight to pull the chain from opposite sides until the fat gladiator’s head pops off like a champagne cork.

6. In an underground fighting area, simple referred to as “The Pit”,  unofficial fights to the death take place. Fighting dirty is encouraged, bets are placed, and the crowd mostly consists of criminals, compulsive gamblers, etc. Many dead bodies get dragged up and hung upside-down on meat-hooks. One ‘champion’ celebrates every victory by slicing off the skin of his dead of opponent’s faces and wearing it on his own. He doesn’t bother fashioning it into a mask like Leatherface does, he just slices ‘em off with a hooked blade and then slaps that shit right on his face.The skinned faces look really horrifying, and brought the gore-extravaganza also known as the 2010 Piranha*  remake to mind for me.  Check it out below (sorry, I couldn’t find one without the editorial comments stuck in the action):

7. A noblewoman decides to “sponsor” a new gladiator-in-training and picks the one whose main character trait is that he’s more well-endowed than Dirk Diggler from Boogie Nights.  They must have used a prosthetic, otherwise the actor playing him would have been a porn superstar and made enough to retire by now. Later, after he betrays someone, his endowment in chopped off (we don’t see that part, but we see his bloody junk in the sand) then they crucify him in the training square, we see the wound bleeding down his legs (it’ll look familiar if you’ve seen the Italian cannibal flick Make Them Die Slowly )

8. At a party of the city’s richest and most important men and their wives, a captured fighter in the slave rebellion is unlucky enough to be picked to be hog-tied and hung up from the ceiling like a human piñata . Instead of getting hit with sticks, though, people draw numbers to determine which guest gets to step right up to cut off a piece of him first. If that’s not fucked-up enough…

9.  This gets worse as the guest who gets first, er, stab at him cuts out his tongue with a sword. Either the sword is about as sharp as a butter knife or the guy who did it was really, really bad with his weapon, as the poor rebel’s tongue is not so much cut out as slowly sawed off. The host jovially tells the second guest not to cut too deeply,  “to not deprive others of their turn”. Again, the wealthy party guests (plenty are politicians, with their wives) are drawing numbers out of a goddamned bowl  so everyone gets a turn. At one point, you can see a line of smiling guests forming. People eat snacks, chat happily, etc. while watching and waiting for their turn.

10. A man’s face is suddenly chopped off during a fight with an uppercut of a sword starting under his jaw (possibly the most shockingly gory thing I’ve seen in the history of the series, which is no small feat). One second it’s there, the next second CHOP  Not just his face gets liberated from his head, but the whole front of his skull.  As he falls forward, dead,  his brain slowly slides out of his brain-pan like a gory loaf of bread . Think I’m exagerrating?

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Even two of the toughest, most seen-and done-it-all former gladiators who see it are visibly stunned …as you can see if you have the stomach to watch the actual clip below:  

The final season of Spartacus, titled Spartacus: War of The Damned premieres tonight, January 25th,  on Starz. Find out more here – including the fact that the premiere is online, streaming, for free …now!

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The term “blood bath” on Spartacus is often literal.

*Though I am putting a more spoiler-y version later (don’t worry, you will be warned well in advance if you want to avoid spoilers)

**Mainly brought to you by the genius of Greg Nicotero, in some of the best work I’ve ever seen from him and Nicotero-Berger. I still cannot believe that movie got away with an R-Rating, but that’s a piece for another time.

Dedication: This piece goes out to Pete, Cindy, Norm, and all my other friends at Get Glue who asked me to tell them when I wrote it–thanks, you guys. Seriously.

Best News Horror Boom Has Heard All Week! The New Evil Dead (2013) is CGI Free (at Dread Central)

New Evil Dead is CGI Free | Horror Movie, DVD, & Book Reviews, News, Interviews at Dread Central. (Click Link to Read Feature on Dread Central)

 

We also recommend reading the comments after the article (there’s a couple haters, but most make good points). This news ROCKS!  You’d be surprised (or maybe you already know) what you can do with a good composite shot.

 

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This New Fan-Made Poster Puts the EVIL DEAD in Motion! (at Dread Central)

Fan Made Poster Puts the Evil Dead in Motion | Horror Movie, DVD, & Book Reviews, News, Interviews at Dread Central. (Click Here to Read on DreadCentral.com)

 

Not too shabby!

Not a lot of green or black blood so far in the remake…