Why Evan Peters Is. Everything.

Nope, not a typo. I have to emphasize the importance of this statement by ending the sentence, immediately followed by a new sentence which consists of one word.

So now that we have grammar validated, allow me to expound on this hyperbolic statement.  Exhibit number one:

And here’s the second piece of evidence:

And why not go for three?

And my favorite incarnation:

This guy…he is the real deal.

Born on the cusp of Capricorn/Aquarius in one of the greatest cities for baseball, food and culture in the nation, his stock continues to rise.

Image result for st louis archImage result

The bad news…he is only twenty nine…which is way beyond my “axis of creepy”. So he is safe from my charms.

However, as a consumer of fine television with incredible writing teams (see “Turn: Washington’s Spies), I can definitely appreciate his talent and versatility.  Evan manages to bring vulnerability, charm, and compassion to every role in which he portrays, which for some is quite the challenge. He managed to make Tate, “the beautiful monster”, likable and relative.  No small task.  His heinous and anti-social behavior in many of his roles should make for a creature that viewers love to hate.

Except you can’t. Not completely.

Maybe it’s those dead shark eyes of his that draw you in, looking for the glimmer of humanity. Or that easy grin that cauterizes his trustworthy, Midwestern/German face. Or that you just don’t want to completely turn your back to him because, well, you may not trust him as much as you thought.  In any of those scenarios one thing is evident.

Evan Peters has complete command of your attention.

And you’re not turning away.

Full  disclosure: AHS is the only body (clever pun) of work I’ve seen of his so I can’t elucidate properly on his entire collection of genius.  I probably would expect his characters to be a cross between “Jimmy” from “Freak Show” and “Kit” from “Asylum”. One dimensional at first glance, but later pulling back the many layers of the motivations for their behaviors.

Or maybe I’m getting confused with who he really is.  Maybe he shows us more about himself personally in every character he’s played than we are aware.  Isn’t that really what most performers do anyway?

To validate, I’ll allow Evan to speak for himself:

I guess creepy comes natural to me – I hate to say that.”

“But I love Halloween, and I love that feeling: the cold air, the spooky dangers lurking around the corner.”

“There’s something that’s sexy about a guy who has the strength to kill somebody, but is also vulnerable enough to be in love. It’s just those two sides – like, I don’t know why, but women for some reason aren’t attracted to normal guys, like, guys who are in between.”

(Much respect to IMDB for those quotes.)

Honestly, there’s always room on my Victorian fainting couch in my cottage on the shores of the Irish Sea for one of the many incarnations of Evan Peters.  I guess he’s not safe from me after all. Or I, unfortunately, from him. For he is one I seek out by which to be entertained. Because…he.is.everything.

Until the tea kettle rattles and the storms roll in…




Creepy, Purely. But Will It Last?

So I had simmering high hopes for this season of AHS.  I was not a fan of “Hotel” because it visually ran high on gore and intellectually was a snore. I admired their attempt to introduce Valentino to Millenials, but the story line was, in my opinion, uninspired.  Denis O’Hare’s Liz Taylor was on fleek (hope I used that right, 20 somethings), as was Kathy Bates and Angela Basset. Because. Always. And Matt Bomer is just so…I don’t know…luminous.  He is also totally believable playing straight. And if you’re into intense, creepy guys who hang out in corners and look at you from underneath troubled eyebrows, Wes Bentley brings it. Just for you. .  But that’s where my admiration ends.

So I was trepidatious when entering this season. All the fake teasers and refusal to announce the theme. Very clock and dagger.  But my hopes were pinned on a season as creepily satisfying as the first, so I dove in..again.


I was not disappointed. Except I’m not on solid land either.

Allow me to elaborate. Because this is my blog… (SPOILERS BELOW!)

I was hooked in a second with the Paranormal Survivor/Reality Show intro.  Because in my darkest of shame closets I will watch these types of shows.  And then we saw Lily Rabe. And Sarah Paulson. And Cuba Gooding Jr. Who were playing parallel characters reenacting real events. SOLD $$$$

Matt and Shelby are a young, interracial couple who, after two tragic events, escape L.A. and retreat to the wilds of North Carolina. They find a picturesque farm house, which, you know, they just walk into, and win it in a bidding war with some extras from Deliverance.  Soon after, they begin experiencing slamming doors, voices, and a tacky welcome wagon gift on their porch, not to mention a threat on Shelby’s life. But they’ve invested so much that they can’t just leave…

Enter Angela Bassett, Matt’s tough, ex-cop sister clinging to her sobriety. She agreed to stay with Shelby while Matt travels for work, which clearly sets up for bad juju and negativity in the air. Shelby drinks alot of wine after completing her yoga practice and Lee believes she is full of…yeah. that.

Events escalate when the women are alone in the house and creep down the stairs to the basement, guided by disembodied voices.  What they find is unexplained and decidedly creepy and may lend more explanation later on.

The end of the episode comes quickly, with Shelby’s reenactment of hitting a woman whilst fleeing from her home and then getting lost on the woods, but not before she encounters strange wooden and yarn contraptions hanging from trees. Oh, and the guy with no skull… And did I mention the tie into Roanoke? (Look it up…)

All in all it was creepy and very atmospheric. Exactly what I LIKE! No typical blood and guts, low on the shock value.

Which is exactly why I am not trusting that this is how the season will roll.

I’m fully expecting things to get really, really off topic and weird. And because I like this format so much, I feel it will change quickly.

However, I found some tie-ins to previous seasons which I’m paying attention to: Interracial couple, miscarriage, haunted house, and the PIGMAN!

So, keep it coming Falchuck and Murphy! I’m. All. IN.

And of course we have to see what Gaga will do.

Till the tea kettle rattles and the storms blow in…


The Verdict on “Salem”…”More Weight”.

Oh, you guys.

After binging for three weeks on the greatly underappreciated AMC drama, “Turn: Washington’s Spies” and participating in a successful campaign to get it renewed for a fourth (albeit final) season, I was ready for a new endeavor to round out summer.  Via Twitter, I learned that Samuel Roukin, who brilliantly portrays the sadistic and sassy Captain John Graves Simcoe, is slated to debut a character on the third season of WGN America’s “Salem”. In preparation, I eagerly “turned” (see how I did that?) to Hulu to bring me up to speed.

It’s no secret that I’m a AHS fan (see previous blog post “Why Freak Show Was Better Than We Thought”) and following that vein (clever) I figured that “Salem” would be worth  my time.  I’d seen previews and noticed the phenomenal Lucy Lawless joined the cast for Season 2, so I had high hopes.

Oh, you guys.

First of all, in the most respectful way possible, I think this show is written by George R.R.Martin’s illegitimate children.  One of the first scenes involves a very sensual interaction between two women, followed soon after by a complete disrobing of one of the women.  Which would have been appropriate if it served a point other than to have her naked.  Which I bought until the next episode, in which the body part necessary to be uncovered was done so without her taking off all her clothes.


I feel fairly comfortable in saying that after watching the first episode I needed a cold shower or cigarette.  I’m also fine with using “soft core” to describe a romantic encounter between Rev. Cotton Mather (yes, THAT Cotton Mather) and Gloriana, his  ginger temptress.  Even for basic cable, I was pretty surprised at the amount of flesh that was possibly harmed in the filming of this scene.  If I sound prudish, I assure you…I may be descended from the dreaded Puritans depicted in “Salem”, but I’ve been known to show my elbows in public, so…

Point being: less can be more.  Shadows, innuendos, raised eyebrows…they all work pretty nicely to set the mood. (See “Turn, Washington’s Spies”). Just sayin’.

And then there’s the history.  Sure, the names are familiar: Mercy Warren, Mary Sibley,  John Alden, Tituba, Giles Corey.  But that’s where the similarity ends.  If you know the story, you know Corey was the only man to die as a result of the witch trials.  In this retelling, as portrayed by the stalwart and divine Kevin Tighe, Corey bites it in the pilot.  Which is unfortunate for all of us,  I think.  As for Captain John Alden, the embittered love interest of Mary Sibley, well…the real Alden died in 1687. Which is the year the show begins.  So that right there is a bit of a let down. Well, that and the assumption of actual witchcraft being practiced in Salem.  I’m willing to suspend my disbelief, but it needs to be within parameters of reality.

If that makes sense.  Probably not.

Historically, what happened in Salem was more frightening than a re-imagining of the story.  I think we’d like to think we are now above finger-pointing and name calling and more tolerant. I think we’d be wrong.

In summation: this period in time was more serious and resonant with the creation of this country than to just be reduced to horror clichés.  I feel it could be so much scarier to point out the parallels of the world in which we live to those over three hundred years ago, when blood-letting was thought to cure almost any disease.

Or when people didn’t bathe.  How did they get over the smell?  How did they live in close quarters like that? How did the human race not die out?

Will I stop watching? I’m half way through the first season, and like a fungus, it has begun to grow on me. But for my opinion to change, I’m going to need more substance.  Or as Giles Corey remarked, “Give me more weight.” (His exact words. Except paraphrased.)

I’m really holding out for Samuel’s character. I’m hoping he rolls his eyes. A lot.


‘Til the teapot rattles and the storm clouds roll in…









Why ‘Freak Show’ Was Better Than We Thought

With the recent release of American Horror Story’s teaser trailer for it’s fifth season, I got to thinking about “Freak Show”.  Widely and resoundedly panned as the worst season yet, critics and fans found this season lackluster, with elements of ridiculousness in the storylines and missed opportunities for viral memes (“ETHEL!!!!”).

I, however, have a slightly different take.  On the scale of fearfully terrifying characters, Twisty The Clown rates about a 1,000+.  I’m going to say that most viewers felt some sort of emotional reaction when he walked through the field to find the two young lovers.  The dead shark eyes. The sinister, grinning half mask.  The filthy costume. Shudder…

Visually, the show was a cotton candy confection. The vibrancy of colors, crinolines, and creep made for a cacophony of crazy that dazzled my senses.  Brilliant liberties were taken with the music, incorporating Nirvana and David Bowie into the age of Do-Wop.  It worked. It just did.

As for the cast, in the words of a dear friend of mine(blogger at Are You Finished Yet…please check her out), “everything Jessica Lange has done in her career has led up to this.”  Truth. She is perfect. Cold-blooded and hardcore. Just how I like my femi-villians. Kathy Bates?  Incomparable.  If you do nothing but base your opinion on her Baltimore dialect.  Angela Basset, Michael Chiklis, and of course, NPH.  What can you say about a PTSD ridden soldier who can’t be without his ‘Marjorie’?  Of course, they are illuminated by the workhouse cast that consist of Evan Peters, Sarah Paulson, and Naomi Grossman who have each created indelible characters.

Which leads me to my point: why this season was actually better than we (collectively) thought. The introduction of characters who live on the fringe of society because of physical limitations and the casting of actors who live with these same limitations was important.  Watching at home, one may say to themselves, “I would never treat people with that much hate, ignorance, disrespect, etc. These are good people! Just look at their backstories! They just want to be loved and accepted.”

Oh, Murphy and Falchuk, you sly devils (pun intended). Look at you always inserting social issues into blood and gore. For me, this is actually the cornerstone of AHS. From women’s issues to taboo love to discrimination, these themes are tightly interwoven with the “shock and shlock” that draws ratings. Much like pureed squash blended into cheese quesadillas, morality and awareness has been slipped into our scripted tv shows before. But I think this is a fresh application that I don’t mind ingesting.

I can’t wait to see what checks in to AHS: Hotel. So many good things happen in October…

Until the next storm rolls in…