American Horror Story: 1984 Finale Review: The 80s Will Never Die - GMonsterTV

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American Horror Story: 1984 Finale Review: The 80s Will Never Die

The ninth season of "American Horror Story" focuses on the 1980s. "1984" brings back all our favorite Ryan Murphy players (except for Sarah Paulson, Evan Peters and Jessica Lang). This time around, our main characters include:

  • Brooke (Emma Roberts)- a goody two shoes. She heads to the camp in order to try to escape The Night Stalker (who previously attacked her in her home). 
  • Montana (Billie Lourde)- a free spirited aerobics instructor
  • Xavier (Cody Fern)- another aerobics instructor
  • Trevor (Matthew Morrison, from another Murphy property "Glee")- the camp's activities director
  • Chet (Gus Kenworthy)- his dreams of Olympic gold are shattered when he tests positive for steroids. He hs been wandering aimlessly since then. 
  • Ray (LeRon)- friends with Chet. He is also harboring some secrets.  
  • Nurse Rita (Angelica Ross)- the camp's nurse. She has a secret past. 
  • Margaret Booth (Leslie Grossman)- sole survivor of the original massacre. There is much more to her than meets the eye. 
  • Benjamin Richter/ Mr Jingles (John Carroll Lynch)- a Vietnam vet who was committed to an asylum for the Camp Redwood massacre. He likes to collect severed ears.  
  • Richard Ramirez/ The Night Stalker (Zach Villa)- He has made a pact with Satan that he will send him as many souls as possible in exchange for immortality. 
  • Bertie (Tara Karsian)- the camp's cook. 

The basic premise of the story is that in 1984 a group of people take jobs as summer counselors at Camp Redwood. The site has a very checked past. It was the scene of a massacre by Mr Jingles some years earlier. Now the sole survivor (Bible thumper Margaret) has bought the camp and is reopening it. 

Nurse Rita (real name Dr Donna Chambers) breaks Mr Jingles out the asylum. She takes him back to the camp-- I guess to do some experiments? I'm never really sure what she's trying to accomplish. Enter Richard Ramirez. He had a quick thing with Montana and is at the camp to wipe out Brooke for her (because Brooke caused her brother's death... or so she believes). He also just likes to kill people.  

All hell breaks looks as, not one, but two serial killers terrorize the campers. Wait, make that THREE. In a surprise twist, Margaret actually killed the kids in 1970 and blamed it on Jingles. She even cut off her own ear. Ouch!  

Episode 5 seemed like the finale since most of the cast is killed. But nope. Whoever dies on Camp Redwood grounds is stuck there for all eternity as a ghost. The one exception is Ben and Richard. They are able to leave the camp due to a pact with Satan... I think. Jingles eventually gets away from the Night Stalker and starts a family. He names his son Bobby (after his brother was accidentally killed in the lake at the camp back in 1948). Benjamin then had to kill his mother in self defense. What a screwed up family.  

Margaret frames Brooke for the murders. She is sentenced to lethal injection. Meanwhile Margaret has gone on to become a successful business woman who deals in macabre real estate. In 1989 she hosts a big music festival at Camp Redwood. The plan is to lure 80s musicians to the camp and kill them all... thus making the camp a magnet for "murder tourism". Things dont turn out as she had planned. Hubby Trevor tries to stop her and blocks the entrance to the camp. Margaret shoots him (and Brooke drags Trevor into Camp Redwood). This makes him a ghost (which is what he wanted anyway so he could spend forever with Montana). The undeed seek their revenge on Margaret. They feed her in parts into a wood chipper (which shoots her remains just outside the property line). But that doesnt work. She becomes a ghost as well. 

Fast forward to 2019. A now grown Bobby (Finn Wittrock) heads to the camp. He's looking for answers about his father. There he encounters several ghosts. They try to get him to leave ASAP so as not to be killed. Montana sends him to Red Meadows Asylum. It turns out Donna is now the medical director there and was the final girl. But wait, there's more. It turns out Brooke did NOT die at the camp. Ray helped Brooke across the threshold and out of the camp. Brooke has married, had kids and lived a happy life. She also sent money to Bobby for all these years.   

Bobby goes back to the camp a second time. Really bad idea! He has some tearful moments with his father and sees his ghost grandmother (Lily Rabe) and uncle. He then heads back over the line and out of Camp Redwood forever. I'm surprised he got out alive. Will he follow Montana's advise of "tell our ghost stories to your children-- the 80s will never die"? I guess we never know (unless he pops up again in a future "AHS" installment).   

Grade: 3 1/2 Monsters (out of 5). Not a horrible season (I'm looking at your "Roanoke") but not a great one either. "Asylum" and "Freak Show" remain my favorites."American Horror Story" is known for starting off strong. But it's often bogged down by so many sub plots that it cant stick the landing. I'm happy to report that "1984" actually has a fitting (and even happy) ending. Too bad it didnt have more an emotional impact on me. By the finale, I didnt really care about any of the characters. No one was very likeable. I wasnt really rooting for anyone to survive. Has "AHS" lost it's mojo? I don think so but it needs to create characters that we care about to keep coming back till the end of the season. I'll still be back next time around though. Like the ghosts of Camp Redwood, I'm here till the bitter end.   

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TV: Heavy On Sci Fi, Horror & Adventure

November 30, 2019
American Horror Story: 1984 Finale Review: The 80s Will Never Die Reviewed by GMonsterTV on 11:57 AM Rating: 5 The ninth season of "American Horror Story" focuses on the 1980s. "1984" brings back all our favorite Ryan Murphy pl...

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