A little backstory (WARNING FULL SPOILERS AHEAD):
I've been a fan of American Horror Story from season 1. I feel like the show has had it's ups and downs while it's tried to stay scary and shocking without being too offensive or insensitive. In the very first season, main character Tate was revealed to have raped Violet's mother (on top of a LOT of murders). Season 2, AHS: Asylum, took a turn down a really dark path where Zachary Quinto's character Dr. Thredson had many rape and torture scenes that were hard to handle. So this isn't the first time AHS has made me uncomfortable, but I've always stayed for the well acted and scripted characters and story lines. But now I'm afraid Freak Show is going down a road I'm not sure I can follow.
When the title of season 4 came out, Freak Show, I was intrigued. I've always thought circus-based horror was particularly scary, so I was super excited to get freaked out (pun intended). But what I got instead was this weird mash-up of overly sexualized disabled people and actors with barely comprehensible accents. I was more than dissatisfied with the premiere episode, but I held my breath, waited for the writers and actors to prove me wrong. And it just got WORSE.
Fast forward through a woman drugged and forced into an orgy, Lobster Boy using his 'claws' for the 'good of the ladies,' multiple poor singing performances (accents even MORE accented), and the "monsters" becoming the killers everyone thinks they are. Sure there's been overtly sexual themes in all of the seasons, but I guess, to me, it seems like they're shoving it down my throat that these characters, despite their deformities, have sex lives and needs just like everyone else. Sure, that's all fine, but having an innocent bystander drugged and raped against her will, then having to watch the footage and told it was her fault for liking it is a whole other story. When I wanted to be entertained by television, THIS IS NOT WHAT I ASKED FOR. So, I have found myself cringing through every minute I've sat through and I've decided that after 5 episodes, I can't watch anymore. I can't do it. It's so excruciatingly uncomfortable to watch.
Who knows, maybe if the hype stays positive I'll give it another try when the whole season is out to binge-watch. But for now, I'm happy this will be my one and only review on the topic.
If you agree or disagree, leave your opinions in the comments!
Written by: Brittany Lopez