American Horror Story: Coven, Episode 307: “The Dead”

I am always amazed that this show gets me to feel so bad for Delphine. This woman creatively tortured slaves in her attic for years, and yet I was still hoping that Queenie would not turn her over to Marie Laveau. I guess Kathy Bates is just that good. The Delphine/Queenie dynamic is an interesting one, and in spite of Madame LaLaurie’s laundry list of wrongdoings, I still think that Queenie will come around. After all, they bonded over fast food and fashion – that bedazzled tiger sweatshirt sported by Delphine was breathtaking.

As usual, Zoe manages to royally piss me off. I don’t understand why she resorts to killing Spalding. Sure, he is probably a necrophiliac. Yes, he has an elaborate doll collection. Ok, he enjoys tea parties with said doll collection and the object of his probable necrophilia. But does that mean he deserves to die? He did not kill Madison, and it’s part of his job to protect Fiona. Zoe is quick to judge others for their misdeeds, but seems to think nothing of her own.

For instance, Zoe is no stranger to sexual encounters with the dead, making her distaste for Spalding particularly hypocritical. Zoe fornicates with not one dead person, but simultaneously with two. Now, the exact deadness of Madison and Kyle is something of a gray area. Kyle is literally a living being constructed from death, and according to Misty, Madison was deceased long enough to start rotting. My husband, Steve, maintains that there is a huge difference between “once dead” and “dead-dead,” explaining that “one looks and smells a lot better.” This is true, but it’s hard to argue with the fact that both Kyle and Madison are no longer entirely belong to the world of the living.

Zoe is outraged at the though of Spalding and Madison. She is devastated by the dead-on-dead extracurricular activities of Kyle and Madison. But, when the two invite Zoe to join their party, it suddenly becomes an acceptable act.

This uncomfortable threesome is probably the most-discussed aspect of “The Dead.” In line with past episodes, unnatural beings are restricted to unnatural sex. Sex is necessary to create life, and death is a necessary aspect of life. For Zoe, though, sex does not result in new life; it results in immediate death to her sexual partner. Unless, that is, her partners of choice are already kindof dead to begin with. So, while partial necrophilia is Zoe’s only option sexually, it really only contributes another facet to the unnatural fornication that has become the cornerstone of Coven this season.

Speaking of unnatural sex, this week we have the added bonus of Fiona’s tryst with the recently liberated and long-dead Axeman. What a timeless romance this is. Whilst trapped in the halls of Miss Robichaux’s, the Axeman watched little Fiona from afar with a fatherly affection – until she grew boobs, which abruptly changed the nature of his devotion. Since Zoe so thoughtfully decided to unleash this serial killer back upon the modern world, he has physically manifested and now he and Fiona can be together. Ickk. Mr. Axeman is walking the earth, but is he still dead? He functions as a living human being, but so do Kyle and Madison. At best, this guy is in the partially-dead club, meaning that Fiona has entered the icky-awkward sex club. The nature of the Axeman’s somewhat deadness is different from that of Kyle and Fiona in that he is not inhabiting his mutilated and murdered body; he is not life created from death, rather he is a manifestation of sorts. His affair with Fiona thereby seems somewhat normal, other than the fact that they are both murderous supernatural creatures.

After the break, I am anticipating the following: someone will die, that someone will  be resurrected, that resurrected someone will have uncomfortable-to-watch sex with Kyle, Madison, and Zoe…and probably the Axeman and Fiona, too.

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