Well, well, well, it looks as though I may have to eat my words because American Horror Story is turning itself around, and not a moment too soon because I was just about to hurl my TV through a window. We are now entering phase 2 of this saga; now that My Roanoke Nightmare (title of the reality show we’ve just spent 5 weeks hating) has wrapped the producer, Sydney, is now working on the follow up series. His new reality show is going to be called Return to Roanoke: 3 Days in Hell and his plan is to have worlds collide by having both the actors and the real people from the original show stay in the death house during the blood moon and film them freaking out. He pitches this to the suits at the network but they have a few concerns, one being that some viewers are pissed that Mason’s (Lee’s ex-husband) killer was never revealed and other viewers are pissed because they think Lee killed him and got away with it. Nonetheless Sydney convinces them to go through with the show and immediately gets to work.
He begins by interviewing Shelby, er, the real Shelby, who agreed to do the show because she was getting harassed by people who didn’t believe her story, but has one stipulation: Dominic Banks, the actor who played Matt, cannot be there. Why? Because her and Matt are getting a divorce because she had a weekend fling with Dominic. Sydney sympathetically agrees but that wouldn’t make for a good show so he casts Dominic anyway. At the house the crew is installing cameras everywhere as well as installing set ups around the house that are meant to scare the cast. You see, Sydney doesn’t believe their story or that these ghosts actually exist so he’s going to make sure he scares the shit out of them any way he can. His assistant Diana doesn’t like the idea of setting up the cast but Sydney has a goal of putting pressure on the real people to confess that it wasn’t real as well as get Lee to confess that she killed Mason. They continue to work when a crew member stops them to look at a circle of fetal pigs that someone left behind a tree.
Sydney’s next interview is with Agnes, the woman who played the Butcher on the show. Apparently after the show wrapped Agnes lost her mind and ran down Hollywood BLVD in full Butcher character screaming nonsense and swinging a butcher knife at people, slashing a bystander. Sydney believes that crazy Agnes is the one behind the fetal pigs stunt and the whole reason for the interview is to let her know she won’t be doing the show and to document production serving her with a restraining order. As Sydney and Diana-the-assistant leave Agnes runs out and starts screaming something about smiting them (using her Butcher voice), which Sydney likes because he wants her to show up to the set and continue with the crazy.
Meanwhile the real Lee does an interview with E! News to talk about the new season and explain her reasons for agreeing to do the show: clear her name and to get paid. Sydney, Diana-the-assistant and an exec watch the interview and discuss what they need to do to stay out of trouble in case Lee kills again and fake-Lee (played by a woman named Monet) starts drinking because she’s an alcoholic. Ironically while they’re talking lawsuits and staying out of trouble, Sydney gets a phone call from a crew member: another crew member has accidentally sawed their own head off. Sydney and Diana-the-assistant head to the set where, after evaluating the situation, Sydney decides the show must go on. This doesn’t sit well with Diana the assistant so she decides she’s done with the show and leaves. While driving away she sees someone in the road, changes direction and then the pig-man (the real pig-man) pops out from the backseat like an urban legend and grabs her and she crashes and she’s dead. She did manage to record the whole thing which police find three months later, but her body is still missing. So that’s the end of Diana-the-assistant.
It’s time to be introduced to more of the actors who played the real life Roanoke Nightmare individuals. Meet Audrey, an English woman who played Shelby and is married to Rory, the actor who played Edward. Sydney has set up a confessional which Audrey (I’m just going to call her fake-Shelby) is using to tell her and Rory’s story: they met on set, got married in a wedding that looked like a skit you’d see on SNL, and even though Rory is up for a movie that’ll keep him away for a while, she explains that she 100% trusts him while wearing the world’s worst poker face, and thus ends her confessional. Fake-Shelby and Rory head downstairs to explore and see something in the window. It’s Agnes (fake-Butcher). Agnes breaks the window, Rory and fake-Shelby run for the door but when they open it they’re greeted by the majority of the cast, and Sydney. Fake-Shelby and Rory tell Sydney about Agnes and fake-Shelby is convinced that little old Agnes is after her because she won an award called a Saturn and Agnes did not.
Everyone has convened in the living room where real-Shelby congratulates fake-Shelby and Rory on their marriage, following that up with “it’s never too late”, which makes fake-Shelby flip out because she’s self-conscious about being older than Rory. This caused me to officially be annoyed with real-and-fake Shelby. Real-Matt and real-Lee join the party and now Sydney can give them their cameras so they can document every waking moment. Kind of like that Facebook live bullshit but their deaths will be viewed later. Real-Shelby isn’t interested in cameras, she’s interested in apologizing to real-Matt who wants nothing to do with her. Real-Lee yells at real-Shelby for being a real asshole and then they all storm off. And then dick fake-Shelby chimes in and brags about how she nailed playing the real-Shelby, calling her pathetic. Jerk. Actor high-fives all around. Fake-Lee, fake-Shelby and Rory head to the kitchen and start gossiping; they all think the real people’s story is bullshit with Rory making the comment that they filmed in the house for 8-weeks and nothing happened. Real-Matt walks in on his comment and is like “yea assholes you were here in the Summer, look out the window.” And there it is, the blood moon. Still, the actors are dildos about it. Then, a message from the producers: over the next 3 days everyone in the series died except for one person, so now you HAVE to watch it. Which is fine because it’s finally getting interesting. Fun fact: the show never aired (in pretend) so we’re watching (or the fake viewers are watching) found footage. Leading me to think as well as hope it’s not like a Blair Witch Project type thing.
Anyway, real-Matt goes to his room, looking like the human equivalent of a ASPCA commercial. Rory and fake-Shelby film themselves doing it, fake-Lee pours herself a stiff one, real-Lee heads to the kitchen and real, dead-Mason walks behind her. Real-Shelby sneaks into real-Matt’s room; she tries to get romantic and he responds with: “we shouldn’t be here, we’re probably going to die this time.”
Meanwhile fake-Lee is real drunk and has stumbled into the kitchen where real-Lee is having a meal. Real-Lee offers her support to which fake-Lee replies “playing you is the reason I’m a drunk” and then she talks shit about killing Mason, which real-Lee denies.
Back in sad, real-Matt’s room real-Shelby is trying to convince him to leave and go home when they’re interrupted by a knock at the front door. Real-Shelby answers it and it’s fake-Matt, her weekend fling. Worlds collide: real-Matt comes face-to-face with fake-Matt and they get into a real fight that Rory ends up breaking it up.
While all of this is happening fake-Shelby is upstairs taking a shower. She gets out, looks in the mirror and the pig-man is standing right behind her. She runs out screaming, the gang comforts her while Rory runs upstairs to find out who’s behind the pig-man stunt. He searches all over ending with a closet; he closes the doors, turns around and is hacked to death by the real, dead-nurses. I have to say, it’s nice to see what the ghosts really look like, you know? Coincidentally, while Rory is being killed, real-Matt just happens to walk by the dead-nurses kill-room when he sees they’ve finally finished spelling out the word MURDER. I think it’s important to accomplish goals. Real-Matt walks into the kitchen and very REDRUM-like he looks at everyone and says “R is for Rory”. I haven’t 100% warmed to anyone yet so I’m not cheering for anyone’s survival, although I will say that knowing only one person survives and that at least one of the Shelby’s will get whacked is enough to cheer for.