'American Horror Story: Coven' Recap: Stevie Nicks Is the White Witch - Rolling Stone
Home TV & Movies TV & Movies News

Stevie Nicks Is the White Witch on ‘American Horror Story’

Plus: Madison and Misty square off for Supremehood; Fiona finds out the source of Marie Laveau’s immortality

American Horror StoryAmerican Horror Story

Lily Rabe and Stevie Nicks on 'American Horror Story: Coven'

Michele K. Short/FX

I know what you’re wondering: did Queenie survive her grievous, ingenious gunshot wound, or has she passed from this world? Why either of us thought American Horror Story would spill the beans on her subplot just yet, I’ll never know. Word is still out on Queenie’s survival, but either way, Hank‘s hair salon massacre was enough to drive Marie Laveau straight into a truce with her mortal evil Fiona. “I’m ashamed to show you my weakness,” Laveau admits in an intense-bordering-on-erotic confession. The death of her closest friends could not have come at a worse time for Laveau either, because now is the time of year when she has to harvest an innocent soul to Papa Legba. Oh, you don’t know Papa Legba? Tall guy, big hat, loves cocaine and forcing his minions to sacrifice babies? Turns out, dark lord Papa Legba is the source of Marie Laveau’s immortality. She agreed to sell her soul to Papa centuries ago without clarifying what exactly he wanted in return, thus leading a horrible cycle in which she first sacrificed her own child, then must sacrifice an innocent soul every year. Note to self: When selling soul to malevolent spirit, make sure to specify what he or she wants in return (human sacrifice, handies, etc.).

Relive 10 Terrifying Scenes From ‘American Horror Story’

Because of this agreement, Marie Laveau must nip out to kidnap an adorable, terrified baby from the hospital. Seeing Marie’s angst and regret over her situation, Fiona is immediately interested and summons Papa to her. I don’t know about you, but watching Fiona haggle with the terms and limitations of Papa’s deal was getting my hackles up. Didn’t Marie just tell Fiona that if she became immortal now, she would always be dying of cancer? Does Fiona think her immortality would somehow cancel out the new Supreme? Turns out, I was getting all worked up for nothing. “You have nothing to sell,” Papa frowns when he tries to make good on his bargain. “You have no soul.” Ho ho! Well played, AHS. The Axeman appears to a stunned Fiona to console her (and do the rest of the ghost’s coke), but despite his kind words, it looks like it’s back to square one for ol’ FiFi.

That’s the theme of this season, after all. Even with magical powers and unlimited lives, people cannot keep themselves from returning to the exact same place over and over again. The ladies literally die and start anew, but cannot ever move forward except through great personal effort and the occasional visit from, ladies and gentleman, Stevie Nicks! In an effort to butter up presumed Supreme Misty Day (in the same way you butter delicious rye toast before devouring it), Fiona has her close personal friend the White Witch stop by for some piano playing and shawl sharing. Misty is utterly charmed, and Madison is utterly enraged. Turns out, Madison’s resurrection cured the heart murmur precluding her from becoming Supreme. Itching to prove herself, Madison lures Misty to a cemetery, where she raises a fresh corpse from his coffin. And you thought the two insanely-dressed white women following the funeral procession was conspicuous. After convincing her to symbolically throw Stevie’s shawl into the open coffin, Madison smashes Misty over the head with a rock, dumps her in the coffin and has her buried alive. Begin the season with an immortal in a coffin, end the season with an immortal in a coffin. No, I’m sure she’ll get out. If not, Misty will just resurrect over and over again for eternity. How wonderful. 

Meanwhile, after weeks of atonement, Fiona’s relationship with Cordelia has also reset to “extremely hostile” after Hank’s true identity is revealed. After totally losing her shit on her daughter, Fiona and Laveau cast an intricate spell against the witch-hunting Delphi Trust using white mice, a maze and stacks of hundos. While it seems prudent to take out a massive organization set on gunning down every witch on the planet, it’s sort of a moot point seeing as how the ladies are out to get each other anyway.  Is this season really about women tearing each other down? I guess I’m okay with that. Even Nan gets in on the action this week, using her newly expressed powers of mind control to force neighbor Joan to drink bleach to atone for Luke‘s murder. “You have to be cleansed,” Nan snarls as Patti foams at the mouth. R.I.P. Patti LuPone. You didn’t get nearly enough screen time, but I’m holding out hope they’ll bring you back again before the end of the season. Why wouldn’t they? There is literally no logical argument for why they wouldn’t. 

Watch Stevie Nicks on ‘American Horror Story: Coven’

This brings us to the saddest and most troubling part of last night’s episode. After Nan discovers Marie Laveau’s sacrifice baby in the closet, Fiona and Laveau decide to drown Nan and see if Papa Legba takes her instead. I know. Papa Legba shows up, and even he’s disgusted by what’s going on, begrudgingly taking Nan with him to the spirit world. “Anywhere is better than here,” she scoffs. Poor Nan!  

The saddest part of this plot turn, however, is not simply that Nan has died. It’s that Fiona has revealed herself to be profoundly and possibly irredeemably evil. “I am not the same as everyone,” she tells Papa Legba. She readily agrees to his horrific conditions (“Would you cripple your daughter? Murder an innocent?”), and when faced with her inevitable decline due to the flowering of the next Supreme, what does Fiona say? “I’ll just kill them all.” Look, I like an anti-hero as much as the next bitch, but throw us a bone here. The episode ends with Nicks playing a lovely rendition of “Has Anyone Ever Written Anything For You?” while Fiona cries softly to herself. What does a woman without a soul cry for? Only herself, ostensibly. Girl is going to have to sacrifice herself for Cordelia by the end of this season, or consider my heart hardened against her.

Previous Episode: Hunter and Prey


Powered by
Arrow Created with Sketch. Calendar Created with Sketch. Path Created with Sketch. Shape Created with Sketch. Plus Created with Sketch. minus Created with Sketch.