The Name Game
Okay, so you may not be too impressed with my American Horror Story: Asylum review of episode 10, The Name Game. I’ll put it out there right from the word go – the characters fell on their faces for me. While there were some fabulous moments, as a whole, the Monsignor (Joseph Fiennes) seems way to wishy-washy to be aiming for the highest station in his field and Dr. Arden’s (James Cromwell) battle is not at all endearing and appears rushed through. Finally, Sister Jude (Jessica Lange) is (mostly) not convincing as a crazy person. Even Pepper’s (Naomi Grossman) know-it-all attitude was beginning to bug me!
Also, is it just me, or is the audience starting to wonder where all the lose ends are leading? I am still wondering why Shelley the Nymphomaniac (Chloe Sevigny) was even a character (and why she was released and then killed) and whatever happened to that nasty little child that Sister Eunice (Lily Rabe) took under her wing?
So let the recap begin…
The first scene of episode 10, The Name Game was awesomely brutal. Kit’s (Evan Peters) alive and Dr. Arden lies about the visitation. Poor gullible Kit…In ‘reality’ Grace (Lizzie Brochere) is alive and Pepper has gotten a voice. And hello, we all KNEW there was more to her baby-killing background. I’m so glad she’s innocent. Incidentally, her line:
They’ll open up your head and stir it with a fork.
is the line of the episode – go Pepper!
Now we come to my major bugbear of the episode - the Monsignor. I found it nice that he apologised to Sister Jude for not believing her, but really, he just seems to flit around this week like an annoying little gnat. While the sex scene between him and Sister Eunice was an excellent portrayal of the guilt associated with sex in the catholic church, it did little to improve his image. If the audience believes he has the gumption to aspire to be the Pope than I’ll spend the night in Briarcliff myself thank you very much!
The Angel of Death (Frances Conroy) is back again. First she tells the Monsignor (while he is crucified) that he still has work to do, which leads him to believe he is powerful enough to attempt an exorcism on Sister Mary Eunice. Then she arrives to help another person. But more on that later…
Speaking of Sister Eunice, she is everywhere in this episode of American Horror Story: Asylum. She’s messing with the Monsignor, Dr. Arden, Sister Jude and countless others. In the process, Sister Jude gets her brain fried. This leads to the best thing ever: Mental Asylum Idol!
Dr. Thredson (Zachary Quinto) is all super superior in this episode. He’s threatening Lana (Sarah Paulson) and Kit with the fact that not only has he now got a full time job at Briarcliff thanks to Sister Eunice’s handy work (both as an employer AND with knots) but he will be resuming their therapy sessions. And really, FX, did we need reminding of the colostrum line?! *shudders* When he is searching Dr. Arden’s room for sodium pentathol to ‘help’ Kit remember where he put the confession tape, the plot thickens upon him finding Pepper delivering Grace’s (and Kit’s) child – uh-oh, I’ve got a bad feeling about this one!
Speaking of Dr. Arden, he is beginning to unravel this week. Not only does he witness his virtuous Sister Evil Eunice having wicked red lingerie sex with the Monsignor, but he also has to question his beliefs thanks to the aliens. Pepper must have really hit a chord because we finally get to meet his experiments as he feeds them a wheelbarrow of bloody gore and then fills them with bullets. Unfortunately he can’t pull the trigger on himself.
And here is where we start to get to the guts of the episode.
While I had a hard time believing that Sister Jude is really brain-fried and not just faking it, she delivers a fantastic performance as a crazy person when the Mother Superior arrives for a chat. We find Jude (now Judy Martin) trying desperately trying to remember everyone’s names. She then starts muttering like a true nut job to the Mother Superior. Her words are peppered with snatches of truth – but will Lana be freed in time as a result of what Jude says?
Sister Eunice has worked out that the Monsignor is trying to kill her. His performance also improves and we are starting to believe his tortured mind. However, I DON’T believe that the devil could work out the Monsignor’s true intentions, yet a few small words and the real Sister Eunice appears for the Monsignor to bluff. Needless to say, Sister Eunice takes a shortcut over the edge of the banister and down three flights of stairs.
Is she really dead though?
She must be, since the Angel of Death arrives to kiss them both away.
Dr. Arden is gutted at the death of Sister Eunice and convinces the Monsignor to cremate her instead of a traditional burial. After all, how else do you send the devil back to the pits of hell? Dr. Arden decides to join her – WTF?! Really? Ouch!
And now for the best part of the whole episode (well, equal first with the Mental Asylum Idol number actually); Dr. Thredson uses Grace and her newborn as leverage to get Kit to reveal where he hid the tape. It works. Except Lana is one step ahead of him and she has replaced the tape with a children’s book. When he finds it, she uses their unborn child as leverage.
Nicely played Lana Winters, nicely played.
Oh, how the plot has deliciously thickened…