10 Reasons American Horror Story: Coven Has Lost Its Damned Mind
I've covered American Horror Story since it began, and I still think it's a very impressive show. Horror on television is difficult under the best of circumstances because of the limitations of the medium. You're limited in the depths of depravity you can plunge into, even on FX, and dragging out a scary story over the course of 13 episodes is a monumental task.
For the first two seasons, Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk seemed to be up to that task. Both Murder House and Asylum had their down episodes, true, but not all Friday the 13th flicks are equal, so why should we expect the same of a TV show? Unfortunately, as Coven comes to a close, it's also becoming damned near unwatchable. All that is sustaining me at the moments are the rumors of a carnival-themed fourth season.
What's gone wrong this time around?
There's No Reason for Characters to Stay Where They Are: The series has a set of very specific plot points that it hits each season, and one of those is the way it turns the setting into a character itself. To do that, though, the house must be some sort of prison either literally like it was in Asylum or in more subtle ways like the Murder House was. There is no conceivable reason for anyone to stay in New Orleans this time around. The war between the witches or between them and their enemies, the bloody catfight over the position of Supreme, every single problem can be solved as simply as the characters deciding to just walk away from the whole mess, and the plot has failed to deliver a compelling reason they don't. Which brings us to...
Everyone Hates Each Other: This is the first season where there is not a single drop of love between any two characters that lasts more than a few scenes. Currently, the warmest relationship is between Fiona and Marie, and it's based more on the fact that drinking after killing people is a fun way to spend an evening than anything else. Every other scene is a betrayal or a random act of hateful violence, and that makes it impossible to care what happens to them.
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