American Horror Story Series, Episode Four, Season Four: “Freak Show” (MAJOR SPOILERS)

couchpotatoesunite

A new podcast episode of Couch Potatoes Unite!, which is based on a blog of the same name hosted at couchpotatoesunite.wordpress.com. In this episode, and in honor of Halloween, our small but robust panel of casual horror fans (and rotating moderators!)–including moderator Kylie, Nick, and Sarah–gathered together to Look Back at the fourth season of American Horror Story, otherwise known as “Freak Show.”  This is the fourth episode of an ongoing CPU! podcast series examining one of our favorite television programs throughout its anthology of various seasons depicting different and unique horror stories per season, and it was recorded in July 2016. If you have not watched American Horror Story: Freak Show, be aware that there are MAJOR SPOILERS. Tell us what you think in the comments below, and check out the blog and YouTube for other TV related discussions, in both podcast and blog format. Also, if there are other shows you’re interested in the blog covering, sound off below! Tell us what you like or don’t like. Keep the discussion going!

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PODCAST! – Looking Back at “American Horror Story: Freak Show” (American Horror Story Series, Episode 4, Season 4; MAJOR SPOILERS)

Image result for american horror story freak show title

Moderator: Chief Couch Potato Kylie

COUCH POTATOES UNITE! WISHES YOU A HAPPY HALLOWEEN!!
(…If you celebrate it and publishes this AHS podcast in an effort to be festive! 🙂 )

THE SPECS:

Who: “American Horror Story” airs on cable TV, specifically on FX, Fall Wednesdays at 10:00 PM.

What: “American Horror Story,” a horror drama created by Ryan Murphy (Glee, Nip/Tuck) that tells a new horror story each season while featuring recurring actors and ensemble players.  This season is subtitled “Freak Show” and centers around one of the few remaining American sideshows or “freak shows,” fictionally encamped in Florida in 1952.

SYNOPSIS

The events of “Freak Show” transpire in 1952 in the quiet town of Jupiter, Florida, and follow a struggling freak show led by Elsa Mars (Jessica Lange). Decades have passed since the public has looked upon freak shows as a form of entertainment, but Elsa dreams of finding a home for her “monsters” as well as her own fame. When conjoined twins Bette and Dot Tattler (Sarah Paulson) are taken to the hospital, Elsa sees her chance to finally drum up some business for her sideshow, hoping the two sisters will save her troupe once and for all. Other members include Jimmy Darling (Evan Peters), a boy born with syndactyly who dreams of leaving the carnival behind and living a normal life. Jimmy’s mother, the bearded lady Ethel Darling (Kathy Bates), is Elsa’s second in command and maintains law and order under the tent. A strongman from Ethel’s troubled past named Dell Toledo (Michael Chiklis), and his three-breasted wife, Desiree Dupree (Angela Bassett), make waves when they arrive at the sideshow. In a time when the era of television is beginning to reign high above sideshow acts, these individuals must overcome those who persecute them based on their looks; however, as events unfold, it is revealed that multiple dark entities have taken up residence in Jupiter, with all of their eyes set on the freaks. Flashbacks are set in the 1940s, and there is a flash forward to the 1960s.

When: Season Four aired from October 8, 2014, to January 21, 2015, on FX.

Where: Each season focuses on a different locale.  This season, the action is set largely in Jupiter, Florida.

Why:  Nick and Sarah, two CPU! regulars, proposed that CPU! publish an American Horror Story podcast series, being big fans of the show, and your Chief CP, who has previously covered this program on the CPU! blog and enjoys the show quite a bit, agreed wholeheartedly to the idea. Thus, welcome to our new CPU! series revolving around AHS, with each episode in the series focusing on one season of the show.  The series will start at the beginning and will be ongoing as long as AHS stays on the air!

How – as in How Much Do We Love this Show?!

American Horror Story is a groundbreaking horror anthology series that airs on FX.  Not only did this program render the horror genre mainstream television fare, it also propelled anthology formats to popularity.  The show is widely watched and a tent pole for FX, becoming a Halloween/fall-time cable staple of disturbing imagery and grotesque scares.

Two of CPU!’s frequent panelists, and one of our resident married couples, Nick and Sarah, are big fans of the show and, as noted above, proposed that CPU! start a series discussing AHS throughout its seasons.  We have already published our first episode in this series, chatting the first season of AHS, widely known as “Murder House;” the second episode discussing the second season, “Asylum;” and the third episode discussing the third season, “Coven.”  Listen here:

American Horror Story Series, Episode 1, Season 1, “Murder House”

American Horror Story Series, Episode 2, Season 2, “Asylum”

American Horror Story Series, Episode 3, Season 3, “Coven”

In today’s episode, the fourth episode of this series, we cover Season Four, “Freak Show.” As the seasons are discussed and published, moderation duties will rotate among the members of our small but robust AHS panel; however, for this episode, we’ve come back around, and your Chief CP is back at the moderating mic to talk this fourth season.

As we progress through this series, we will cover all aired seasons, from “Murder House” to “Hotel,” and continue the series as long as new seasons of the show are created.  After all, though common cast members may return from season to season, the season story arcs are always, by design, different, and CPU! is nothing if not thorough when it comes to TV adulation!  In this episode, then, we discuss our favorite and least favorite moments within the “Freak Show” season and our general impressions of the season’s success.

This podcast was recorded in July 2016, and there are, without question, MAJOR SPOILERS, as we cover major plot points throughout the “Freak Show” season. Listen at your own risk, and let us know what you think by commenting below!

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter (@cpupodcast), Instagram (@couchpotatoesunite), Pinterest (@cpupodcast), or email us at couchpotatoesunitepodcast@gmail.com – or subscribe to this blog, the YouTube channel, our iTunes channel, our Stitcher Radio channel , and/or find us on Google Play to keep track of brand new episodes.  In the meantime, let us know what you think!  Comment or review us in any of the above forums – we’d love your feedback!

Remember, new episodes and blog posts are published weekly!  Next Wednesday, we will pause our American Horror Story series again until later this year.  In the next episode, we will replay the audio recording of our LIVE podcast held at Grand Rapids Comic-Con, which occurred on October 22, 2016.  At Comic-Con, we debated the “Top 5 DC and Marvel Live Action Heroes and Villains.”  Stay tuned!

RECOMMENDATION

American Horror Story is recommended to anyone who loves horror, to fans of Jessica Lange, and to fans of any of the AHS repertory of repeat players.  As we discuss in the podcast, the panel provides mixed reviews about the “Freak Show” season relative to other seasons; Kylie and Nick like it less (Kylie likes it better than “Asylum,” though), Sarah, perhaps, likes it a little more.  American Horror Story is groundbreaking for its successful use of the anthology format, though its horror premises are not necessarily boundary pushing; indeed, most if not all of the seasons pay significant homage to horror films of yesteryear, but the panelists regard this quality as part of the show’s charm. If you haven’t yet caught up on AHS and have a hearty stomach for the gruesome and grisly, the entire series is available at all of the streaming services, including Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon. Horror genre fans who seek more scares on TV would be remiss to miss this show!

LOOKING AHEAD

Our next episode in this series will cover season five, “Hotel,” and will be published later this year.  Stay tuned!

American Horror Story Series, Episode Three, Season Three: “Coven” (MAJOR SPOILERS)

couchpotatoesunite

A new podcast episode of Couch Potatoes Unite!, which is based on a blog of the same name hosted at couchpotatoesunite.wordpress.com. In this episode, our small but robust panel of casual horror fans (and rotating moderators!)–including moderator Sarah, Nick, and Kylie–gathered together to Look Back at the third season of American Horror Story, otherwise known as “Coven.”  This is the third episode of an ongoing CPU! podcast series examining one of our favorite television programs throughout its anthology of various seasons depicting different and unique horror stories per season, and it was recorded in July 2016. If you have not watched American Horror Story: Coven, be aware that there are MAJOR SPOILERS. Tell us what you think in the comments below, and check out the blog and YouTube for other TV related discussions, in both podcast and blog format. Also, if there are other shows you’re interested in the blog covering, sound off below! Tell us what you like or don’t like. Keep the discussion going!

PODCAST! – Looking Back at “American Horror Story: Coven” (American Horror Story Series, Episode 3, Season 3; MAJOR SPOILERS)

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Moderator: Sarah

THE SPECS:

Who: “American Horror Story” airs on cable TV, specifically on FX, Fall Wednesdays at 10:00 PM (Season 6 premieres tonight!).

What: “American Horror Story,” a horror drama created by Ryan Murphy (Glee, Nip/Tuck) that tells a new horror story each season while featuring recurring actors and ensemble players.  This season is subtitled “Coven” and centers on a school for girls that serves as the legitimate front for a group of powerful witches.

SYNOPSIS

The events of “Coven” transpire in 2013 and follow the descendants of the witches who survived the Salem Witch Trials, who are nearly extinct and are in danger once again. Those who share this lineage are being subjected to strange and violent attacks. A mysterious all-girls boarding school has opened in New Orleans to protect and house young women who possess this unique bloodline and to keep them from the dangers of the outside world. The long-absent Supreme, and most powerful witch of her generation, Fiona Goode (Jessica Lange), arrives to ensure the safety of the Coven but also to fulfill her own hidden agenda. Fiona’s daughter, Cordelia (Sarah Paulson), teaches at the school and welcomes its newest student, Zoe Benson (Taissa Farmiga), who harbors her own harrowing secret.  Events reveal a long-held rivalry between the witches of Salem and the voodoo practitioners of New Orleans, as well as a historic grudge between Voodoo Queen Marie Laveau (Angela Bassett) and socialite serial killer Delphine LaLaurie (Kathy Bates). Other themes include racism, death, and family, such as the relationships between mothers and daughters. The season is set primarily in the modern day and includes flashbacks to the early 1970s, 1960s, and the 1830s.

When: Season Three aired from October 9, 2013, to January 29, 2014, on FX.

Where: Each season focuses on a different locale.  This season, the action is set largely in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Why:  Nick and Sarah, two CPU! regulars, proposed that CPU! publish an American Horror Story podcast series, being big fans of the show, and your Chief CP, who has previously covered this program on the CPU! blog and enjoys the show quite a bit, agreed wholeheartedly to the idea. Thus, welcome to our new CPU! series revolving around AHS, with each episode in the series focusing on one season of the show.  The series will start at the beginning and will be ongoing as long as AHS stays on the air!

How – as in How Much Do We Love this Show?!

American Horror Story is a groundbreaking horror anthology series that airs on FX.  Not only did this program render the horror genre mainstream television fare, it also propelled anthology formats to popularity.  The show is widely watched and a tent pole for FX, becoming a Halloween/fall-time cable staple of disturbing imagery and grotesque scares.

Two of CPU!’s frequent panelists, and one of our resident married couples, Nick and Sarah, are big fans of the show and, as noted above, proposed that CPU! start a series discussing AHS throughout its seasons.  We have already published our first episode in this series, discussing the first season of AHS, widely known as “Murder House,” and the second episode discussing the second season, “Asylum.” Listen here:

American Horror Story Series, Episode 1, Season 1, “Murder House”

American Horror Story Series, Episode 2, Season 2, “Asylum”

In addition, CPU! Chief Kylie previously reviewed and recapped the third season fully after its initial airing.  You can read that entry here.

In today’s episode, the third episode of this series, we cover Season Three, “Coven.”  As the seasons are discussed and published, moderation duties will rotate among the members of our small but robust AHS panel; this episode is moderated by none other than Sarah!

As we progress through this series, we will cover all aired seasons, from “Murder House” to “Hotel,” and continue the series as long as new seasons of the show are created.  After all, though common cast members may return from season to season, the season story arcs are always, by design, different, and CPU! is nothing if not thorough when it comes to TV adulation!  In this episode, then, we discuss our favorite and least favorite moments within the “Coven” season and our general impressions of the season’s success.

This podcast was recorded in July 2016, and there are, without question, MAJOR SPOILERS, as we cover major plot points throughout the “Coven” season. Listen at your own risk, and let us know what you think by commenting below!

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter (@cpupodcast), Instagram (@couchpotatoesunite), Pinterest (@cpupodcast), or email us at couchpotatoesunitepodcast@gmail.com – or subscribe to this blog, the YouTube channel, our iTunes channel, our Stitcher Radio channel , and/or find us on Google Play to keep track of brand new episodes.  In the meantime, let us know what you think!  Comment or review us in any of the above forums – we’d love your feedback!

Remember, new episodes and blog posts are published weekly!  Next Wednesday, we will pause our American Horror Story series until October, as we return to some Water Cooler entries for the following two (or so) weeks.  In the next episode, we will introduce a new Water Cooler panel discussing The Vampire Diaries spin-off, The Originals.  Stay tuned!

RECOMMENDATION

American Horror Story is recommended to anyone who loves horror, to fans of Jessica Lange, and to fans of any of the AHS repertory of repeat players.  As we discuss in the podcast, the panel universally liked the “Coven” season relative to other seasons (some liked “Murder House” more), even though online opinion polls were not as kind to “Coven,” comparatively, as well-researched moderator Sarah notes.  American Horror Story is groundbreaking for its successful use of the anthology format, though its horror premises are not necessarily boundary pushing; indeed, most if not all of the seasons pay significant homage to horror films of yesteryear, but the panelists regard this quality as part of the show’s charm. If you haven’t yet caught up on AHS and have a hearty stomach for the gruesome and grisly, the entire series is available at all of the streaming services, including Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon. Horror genre fans who seek more scares on TV would be remiss to miss this show!

LOOKING AHEAD

Our next episode in this series will cover season four, “Freak Show,” and will be published in October 2016.  Stay tuned!

American Horror Story Series, Episode Two, Season Two: “Asylum” (MAJOR SPOILERS)

couchpotatoesunite

A new podcast episode of Couch Potatoes Unite!, which is based on a blog of the same name hosted at couchpotatoesunite.wordpress.com. In this episode, our small but robust panel of casual horror fans (and rotating moderators!)–including moderator Nick, Sarah, and Kylie–gathered together to Look Back at the second season of American Horror Story, otherwise known as “Asylum.”  This is the second episode of an ongoing CPU! podcast series examining one of our favorite television programs throughout its anthology of various seasons depicting different and unique horror stories per season, and it was recorded in July 2016. If you have not watched American Horror Story: Asylum, be aware that there are MAJOR SPOILERS. Tell us what you think in the comments below, and check out the blog and YouTube for other TV related discussions, in both podcast and blog format. Also, if there are other shows you’re interested in the blog covering, sound off below! Tell us what you like or don’t like. Keep the discussion going!

PODCAST! – Looking Back at “American Horror Story: Asylum” (American Horror Story Series, Episode 2, Season 2; MAJOR SPOILERS)

ahs-2x01_01

Moderator: Nick

THE SPECS:

Who: “American Horror Story” airs on cable TV, specifically on FX, Fall Wednesdays at 10:00 PM, though it is currently on hiatus (but is ongoing).

What: “American Horror Story,” a horror drama created by Ryan Murphy (Glee, Nip/Tuck) that tells a new horror story each season while featuring recurring actors and ensemble players.  This season is subtitled “Asylum” and centers on just that: an asylum for the criminally insane.

SYNOPSIS

“Asylum” takes place in 1964 and follows the patients, doctors, and nuns who occupy the Briarcliff Mental Institution, located in Massachusetts and founded to treat and house the criminally insane. The wardens who run the institution include the stern Sister Jude (Jessica Lange), her protégé Sister Mary Eunice (Lily Rabe), and the founder of the institution, Monsignor Timothy Howard (Joseph Fiennes). The doctors charged with treating the patients at the asylum include psychiatrist Dr. Oliver Thredson (Zachary Quinto) and the sadistic scientist Dr. Arthur Arden (James Cromwell). The patients, many of whom claim to be unjustly institutionalized, include lesbian journalist Lana Winters (Sarah Paulson), accused serial killer Kit Walker (Evan Peters), nymphomaniac Shelley (Chloe Sevigny), and alleged murderer Grace Bertrand (Lizzie Brocheré). Briarcliff’s inhabitants are routinely subject to supernatural and scientific influences, including demonic possession and extraterrestrial abduction. The season primarily takes place throughout the 1960s with flash-forwards to 2012.

When: Season Two aired from October 17, 2012, to January 23, 2013, on FX.

Where: Each season focuses on a different locale.  This season, the action is set largely somewhere in Massachusetts.

Why:  Nick and Sarah, two CPU! regulars, proposed that CPU! publish an American Horror Story podcast series, being big fans of the show, and your Chief CP, who has previously covered this program on the CPU! blog and enjoys the show quite a bit, agreed wholeheartedly to the idea. Thus, welcome to our new CPU! series revolving around AHS, with each episode in the series focusing on one season of the show.  The series will start at the beginning and will be ongoing as long as AHS stays on the air!

How – as in How Much Do We Love this Show?!

American Horror Story is a groundbreaking horror anthology series that airs on FX.  Not only did this program render the horror genre mainstream television fare, it also propelled anthology formats to popularity.  The show is widely watched and a tent pole for FX, becoming a Halloween/fall-time cable staple of disturbing imagery and grotesque scares.

Two of CPU!’s frequent panelists, and one of our resident married couples, Nick and Sarah, are big fans of the show and, as noted above, proposed that CPU! start a series discussing AHS throughout its seasons.  We have already published our first episode in this series, discussing the first season of AHS, widely known as “Murder House.”  Listen here:

American Horror Story Series, Episode 1, Season 1, “Murder House”

In today’s episode, the second episode of this series, we cover Season Two, “Asylum.”  As the seasons are discussed and published, moderation duties will rotate among the members of our small but robust AHS panel; this episode is moderated by none other than Nick!

As we progress through this series, we will cover all aired seasons, from “Murder House” to “Hotel,” and continue the series as long as new seasons of the show are created.  After all, though common cast members may return from season to season, the season story arcs are always, by design, different, and CPU! is nothing if not thorough when it comes to TV adulation!  In this episode, then, we discuss our favorite and least favorite moments within the “Asylum” season and our general impressions of the season’s success.

This podcast was recorded in July 2016, and there are, without question, MAJOR SPOILERS, as we cover major plot points throughout the “Asylum” season. Listen at your own risk, and let us know what you think by commenting below!

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter (@cpupodcast), Instagram (@couchpotatoesunite), Pinterest (@cpupodcast), or email us at couchpotatoesunitepodcast@gmail.com – or subscribe to this blog, the YouTube channel, our iTunes channel, our Stitcher Radio channel , and/or find us on Google Play to keep track of brand new episodes.  In the meantime, let us know what you think!  Comment or review us in any of the above forums – we’d love your feedback!

Remember, new episodes and blog posts are published weekly!  Next Wednesday, we’ll continue our American Horror Story series by moving on to Season Three, which will be moderated by Sarah – and just in time to coincide with the premiere of the mysterious sixth season of AHS!  Maybe the witches of the “Coven” can help us conjure some clues regarding the closely guarded secret that is the premise of Season 6…or maybe not…

Stay tuned!

RECOMMENDATION

American Horror Story is recommended to anyone who loves horror, to fans of Jessica Lange, and to fans of any of the AHS repertory of repeat players.  As we discuss in the podcast, “Asylum,” though generally well-liked and garnering high ratings, met with mixed reactions from the panel; Nick liked it more, Kylie liked it less, and Sarah felt uncertain about it (though she conceded that she probably liked “Murder House” more).  American Horror Story is groundbreaking for its successful use of the anthology format, though its horror premises are not necessarily boundary pushing; indeed, most if not all of the seasons pay significant homage to horror films of yesteryear, but the panelists regard this quality as part of the show’s charm. If you haven’t yet caught up on AHS and have a hearty stomach for the gruesome and grisly, the entire series is available at all of the streaming services, including Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon. Horror genre fans who seek more scares on TV would be remiss to miss this show!

LOOKING AHEAD

Our next episode in this series will cover season three, “Coven,” and will be published next week alongside the AHS season 6 premiere.  Stay tuned!

American Horror Story Series, Episode One, Season One: “Murder House” (MAJOR SPOILERS)

couchpotatoesunite

A new podcast episode of Couch Potatoes Unite!, which is based on a blog of the same name hosted at couchpotatoesunite.wordpress.com. In this episode, our small but robust panel of casual horror fans–including moderator Kylie, Nick, and Sarah–gathered together to Look Back at the first season of American Horror Story, otherwise known as “Murder House.”  This is the first episode of an ongoing CPU! podcast series examining one of our favorite television programs throughout its anthology of various seasons depicting different and unique horror stories per season, and it was recorded in July 2016. If you have not watched American Horror Story: Murder House, be aware that there are MAJOR SPOILERS.  Tell us what you think in the comments below, and check out the blog and YouTube for other TV related discussions, in both podcast and blog format. Also, if there are other shows you’re interested in the blog covering, sound off below! Tell us what you like or don’t like. Keep the discussion going!