TV Review: American Horror Story: Coven – Episode 12 “Go To Hell” (USA, 2014)

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Despite repeating structural felonies, I was impressed with the ending to this episode. I didn’t see it coming and it definitely had a shock value that put new motions into practice.

The Seven Wonders Witch trials loom, but there isn’t much preparation or focus on them. Instead, the episode prefers to tread on already explored territory, such as Cordelia and Fiona’s hot and cold relationship. Newer strands are included, such as the whereabouts of Marie Laveau and Queenie’s investigation into her.

This episode makes it abundantly clear that the writing team are all out of ideas. Characters who were brought back from the dead die again, actions go without consequences and emotional moments marking the transformation of a character have them back to their usual selves by the end of the scene. We are left to question why these happen, if they didn’t have any relevance to taking the story down a new path. Some endings to characters and story strands are more of an alternative to how they originally ending in previous episodes. I would argue that the Witch Hunters strand was let go too soon. Having finished in the mundane manner it did has left the series with little content besides the upcoming Seven Wonders trial.

The character and plot isn’t logical either but we’ve clarified by now that this is a consistent trait of Coven.

Not much good came out of this episode unfortunately. The direction was good again, where the alternative styles of filming actually help the telling of the narrative accounting for the dreamy states of conscious of Fiona to quirky camera swirls to ascertain an uneasy feeling.

Despite my grumbles, the ending is quite exciting although short lived. If it wasn’t for Queenie’s story strand the episode would have been nothing but repetition of character conflicts and story. At least we are closer to the resolution to the central dramatic question of the series, who will be the next supreme?

Review Score: TWO AND A HALF STARS (OUT OF FIVE)

American Horror Story: Coven airs Monday nights on Channel Eleven.

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