American Horror Story: Asylum: Soooooo.... Aliens. OK, Cool.

Categories: Film and TV
Enter James Cromwell as Dr. Arthur Arden, the only actor in the series so far who can stand next to Jessica Lange and match her every move. Arden is a mysterious figure. Thus far, four patients have died of unexplained causes under his watch, which he shrugs off to Jude's questioning as natural. This is anything but natural though. It's very apparent that Arden is interested in mutation, and has some sort of connection to the fragmented memories Walker has of strange, demonic figures exploring him medically during his black out.

Arden later kidnaps Walker and straps him down to an operating table. I'm not sure if director Bradley Buecker was actively striving for the Josef Mengele vibe, but it arrived in spades with an ace to trump. Both he and his "patient" are stopped dead in their tracks though by the strange microchip that Arden extracts sans anesthesia from Walker's neck... a microchip that grows legs and suddenly runs away.

Thus far an audience couldn't be happier with Asylum. The decision to end the Harmon family storyline was the correct one. It had already overstayed its welcome by season end. By embracing both extraterrestrial and body horror in Asylum, it's clear that a more modern and terrifying approach is imminent. If you're looking for the edge that so many horror movies lack these days, you'll find it on Asylum.

American Horror Story: Asylum airs Wednesdays at 10/9 central on FX.

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MadMac topcommenter

Mr. F, you write some of the best crits here. I gave up on AHS1 around the third epi. But your review alone makes me want to celebrate (got my novel in dream agent's hands) by watching this on demand. Capt Dudly Smith/James Cromwell? Jessica Lange? Again? Commentary on the tone/times when the Loving case was ramping up for the Supreme Court? I'm all over this. I mean, honestly, how important is catching up on case work? Truly, truly well written, sir.

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