FX’s American Horror Story
Directed by Tessa Blake
Written by Manny Coto, Brad Falchuk, & Kristen Reidel
* For a recap & review of 10×07, click here.
* For a recap & review of 10×09, click here.
In 1963, at Palm Springs, Ike Eisenhower’s golfing again while having a chat with Richard Nixon (Craig Sheffer). They’re talking about “the Alien Treaty,” and whether John F. Kennedy (Mike Vogel) should know about it. Nixon obviously thinks Kennedy should be kept out, whereas Eisenhower thinks the President of the United States should know about the deal that was made before he took office. A while later we see Nixon and Eisenhower in D.C. at the White House, taking a meeting with Jack Kennedy himself. Eisenhower gives Kennedy the secret files on what occurred in Mexico, showing the crash landing site and the alien autopsy. Jack wishes it was “a hazing ritual for new Presidents,” but it’s all too real. He’s unimpressed by what Eisenhower did, particularly considering “5,000 people a year” get abducted by aliens, though Ike thinks it’s all worth it to protect the rest of the country. Easy to see where Death Valley is heading, given Kennedy’s just finding out about the aliens and it’s 1963, the same year he winds up getting assassinated. Love the way
While Kennedy struggles with what he now knows he’s also having an affair with Marilyn Monroe (Alisha Soper). He doesn’t even tel his wife about the aliens, but he’ll tell Ms. Monroe. Marilyn isn’t that surprised about aliens; she had an experience as a little girl, waking up to a strange teddy bear in her room and then a blinding light, too. She thinks Jack needs to tell the American public the truth, and that’s why people love him, his honesty. However, we know where that’ll lead.
And Nixon’s already sure of that, too. He found out Kennedy’s conducting secret studies, about you-know-what. Nixon doesn’t want any Democrats or Jews messing America up, so he tells Eisenhower they’ve got to do something before Jack exposes the U.S.A’s deal with extraterrestrials.
Mamie and Ike sit down for salisbury steak, thanks to microwave technology from the aliens, and that’s when they discover Kennedy’s been assassinated in Dallas. She supports Ike, believing he only cares about “the good of the country.” She calls Kennedy’s assassination “patriotism,” and thinks he did the right thing by making a treaty with the aliens.
Except Ike isn’t so sure anymore.
We jump back nine years prior. Eisenhower was dealing with the fallout after their first encounter with the aliens, as well as a newfound lack of faith in something to “pray to,” and he was making the rest of his administration aware, especially the military. Many were worried about what the aliens could do, far beyond the capabilities of the Russians or any other enemy. Alien Maria showed up with a box, made of radiation-resistant metal, so that anything inside it will be undetectable to radar; could prove quite useful. Alien technology was offering to speed up technology three times faster than anything currently on Earth. Not only that, aliens were looking for a new place to live, because their planet was dying. They needed Earth. But the place is contaminated, and that’s why aliens abduct people, to start crossing alien and human DNA, so that they might survive there. After Maria’s done talking she explodes her own head.
Things went wrong with Amelia Earthart, who was used to incubate a baby. Only the baby went mad after it was born, killing everybody in the room. Eisenhower’s not willing to just sit around and let that newborn alien-human hybrid terrorise them, so he locks and loads, heading in to take a look firsthand, seeing all the bloody bodies left behind in the thing’s wake. Then the thing came flying at Eisenhower and his men, and they opened fire, seemingly killing it.
“You’re not the only one who’s leaving behind a legacy.”
We get lots of great history in between the plot in Death Valley, such as Mamie talking about making birthday celebrations popular for adults in America. Then there was Mamie, meeting with Dick Nixon behind her husband’s back, making him aware of the alien issue. She wanted Dick to convince Ike to “do the right thing.” She wasn’t above twisting his arm a bit to do that convincing, using Nixon’s vanity and lust for power against him. Later, Dick went to Ike with what he knew and discussed America’s sovereignty in the face of an alien threat. “We play their game,” Nixon said, believing they’d play along, use alien technology, and eventually turn on the extraterrestrials when the time was right. Ike certainly wasn’t happy when he found out Mamie was the one to bring Nixon into the fold. He felt it was a violation of their marital trust. He went home and confronted Mamie about it, only to see the alien that took over Maria was now inside his wife. Doesn’t look like ole Eisenhower had much choice after that.
Back to current day, with our now pregnant pals rushing to see a doctor. They’ve suddenly got growing bellies, even though their alien abduction only occurred recently. Kendall wonders if maybe the cattle they saw mutilated were radiated, or infected with something, clinging to a “logical explanation” she hopes they’ll find. Jamie takes them to a doctor she trusts, Dr. Reyes, hoping that’ll get them some answers.
The doc takes a look at Jamie using the ultrasound machine and notices “two heartbeats,” and sees something that clearly disturbs her, rushing out of the room. Goddamn. While the doc’s gone, Kendall has Troy hop on the table and she uses the ultrasound to take her own look; what shows on the screen is definitely not human. Worse, Troy wonders how the alien baby is meant to get out of him. Could it be a Ridley Scott’s Alien-type situation? Or, somehow, worse? Then a few government agents turn up at the doc’s office, executing Dr. Reyes and coming to subdue the friends, knocking them out and taking them off someplace else.
When the friends wake up they’re connected to machines, hanging in some sterile room. Kendall wakes up, freaking out, and someone called Theta (Angelica Ross) in strange garments greets her, explaining what’s about to happen in the next stage of the alien incubation process. Theta says the alien babies are “hope for the future” and they’ll save a whole planet, just not Earth. Kendall can only worry about the monster growing inside her belly, forcibly put inside her.
Wherever the friends are it’s a quiet, sterile, and routine place. There’s even a cafeteria where there are strange foods full of “micro nutrients” and classical music playing. We see Steve Jobs (Len Cordova), who’s been there for “fifty years,” talking to someone called Calico (Leslie Grossman). Soon, Jamie and the boys are reunited with Kendall. Calico explains a few things to the new folk, advising it’s easier to forget everything from before rather than remembering. She’s also been there more than once, and she clearly hasn’t aged in decades, either. She tells Kendall and her friends the government are definitely “in cahoots” with the aliens.
But Troy starts tripping, wanting answers about how he’ll deliver the baby inside him. Guards soon take him away, subduing him, and the ruckus is over. Yet Kendall and her pals have no more answers than before, and they’re finding it futile to resist the whole process.
Troy’s brought to another room, where Theta comforts him a bit. She says it’s nearly time for the baby to come. Then Theta removes her headpieces, showing off her half-human, half-alien face. And Troy’s about to finally give birth to a fresh little baby.
“Life must find its own way”