American Horror Story: Asylum: What's a German Game You Play With Dice? NAZI!

Categories: Film and TV

This week's Asylum was the first of a two-parter, and for a horror series it sure did keep the fright down to a bare minimum.

The newest resident of Briarcliff claims to be Anne Frank. You know, one of the two dead teenage girls your English teacher made you read the diary of... except hers was the one that was actually real. Her story, backed up with an actual Auschwitz wrist tattoo, is that she survived in a mass grave, and lived on the streets of Germany after the war. Once she saw her diary was published, and that she had become a martyr to millions, she decided that she must remain dead so that the story would continue its powerful effect...

OK, look. I love Franka Potente, who plays "Anne Frank" with all my heart. She's Run Lola Run for God's sake, and that makes her more awesome than anyone you've ever met. That someone put this dismal writing in her mouth is just slightly less offensive than giving her coffee with body fluids in it. Her entire tale is ridiculously contrived. She kept her identity secret, but spills it the first time she knifes some anti-Semitic jackass and gets thrown in the loony bin? OK, squire... whatever gets me to the next scene.

Things get metal when she recognizes Dr. Arden (James Cromwell) as a Nazi doctor from the camps. In a fun bit of flashback we see a young Arden (Played by John Cromwell, who I can only assume is James' son or grandson named after his famous director father) maliciously experimenting on female inmates of the camp with a mysterious disease. Anne confesses everything to Sister Jude (Jessica Lange) who pieces it together with accusations from local cops that Arden roughed up a prostitute that discovered Nazi memorabilia in his house.

When Sister Jude confides in her Monsignor (Joseph Fiennes... that's right, he's actually in the show occasionally), he dismisses her accusations as drunken delusions. He then secretly phones Aden to let him know people are onto him and to clean up any messes he may have lying around.

All this sounds really interesting, and it is despite being ridiculous. All parties involved play this bit of weirdo Nazisplotation to the hilt, but that's not how we spend the majority of the episode. Nope, instead we get to watch Lana Winters (Sarah Paulson) go through aversion and conversion therapy to cure her tribadism. That's an archaic word for lesbianism, y'all, and I use it any chance I get.

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