"American Horror Story: Cult" Episode 1 Recap: Election Night

07 September, 2017, 01:44 | Author: Courtney Perry
  • Sarah Paulson

Given that Twisty was already an adult in the 1940s, he couldn't possibly exist in a post-2016 election season of American Horror Story: Cult.

The show's creator, Ryan Murphy, recently spoke to The Hollywood Reporter and said that he had the idea of opening Cult with the election result all the way back in September 2016, at which point he was assuming that Hillary Clinton would win.

It would be nice to be able to declare all of this to be a brilliant and timely effort to process our world, but "Cult" brings with it numerous problems that have plagued past seasons of "American Horror Story".

The seventh season of Ryan Murphy's "American Horror Story" titled "Cult" will begin on President Donald J. Trump's win on election night.


Winter is later hired by married couple Ally (Sarah Paulson) and Ivy (Alison Pill) Mayfair-Richards to watch their son, Oz (Cooper Dodson). When she's interviewing with Ally and Ivy, she loves them. Their friends, the Changs, yell at each other. If you're not watching live on your television set, you have a few streaming options to watch online. In that same house, Winter Anderson (Billie Lourd) - who I'll assume is his sister, given their conversations and shared surname - is devastated. "Everyone is", he replies, stating the fundamental theme for this season, fear.

Cult premiered on FX Tuesday night, and so far things are, well... confusing (read our review here), but we're intrigued to see how this all plays out. Admittedly, it's a tiny, perhaps inconsequential detail-but given this season's obvious ties to Season 4, Freak Show, it's a bit hard to ignore that Murphy slipped in the fact that Winter spent a year campaigning for Team Clinton in Florida. He repeatedly stabs the guy and then runs after the girl to kill her too.

Ally finds her son, who immediately hides the comic book. Kai, unsurprisingly, is opposed, and launches into a diatribe over using fear to control people (it's a familiar narrative - earlier, when Winter admitted that she's "just so scared now", Kai snapped back, "Everyone is.") A city council member dismisses him as a basement dweller who feels free to emerge now that Trump is POTUS, and Kai storms out, incensed. Dunham will play Valerie Solanas, the real-life radical feminist who attempted to murder Andy Warhol and wrote the SCUM manifesto, urging women to eliminate the male sex. She freaks out, runs to her auto and calls her wife in a panic about how they're trying to kill her.

Now that Ivy and Ally get a night to themselves, they spend it on a romantic dinner at their restaurant. This time, it plays with a phobia that is more common than most people think it would be - holes. Even the most basic places are no longer safe: A trip to the grocery store starts off ominously when a MAGA hat-wearing cashier declares, "We finally got a real leader in Washington". The rest of the episode continues to capitalize on the fears of both the left and the right, with Ally and Kai serving as tropes of their respective parties. He wants society to embrace the fear and let chaos reign so that citizens will become so terrified that people like Kai, who aren't afraid of anything, can take control of the world. As she sobs on her living room floor, the group talk about how they can't believe Trump has been elected.

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