Warning: This article contains spoilers from American Horror Story: Roanoke.
American Horror Story baffled the world before the sixth season aired as the show creators refused to tell us what the theme would be. After the theme was finally revealed on premiere night, the hit horror show created a terrifying new world with Roanoke and the fictional #TV documentary within called My Roanoke Nightmare.
The first half of the season took us through a series of "dramatic re-enactments" of Shelby and Matt Miller during their traumatizing stay at the haunted Roanoke farmhouse. The #AHS documentary came to a terrifying end and in an unusual twist, we found ourselves totally baffled one again as a new chapter of Roanoke began — under the helm of Cheyenne Jackson's Sidney Aaron James, we were witnessing the production of another fictional reality series entitled Return To Roanoke: Three Days In Hell. This time, we will see both the dramatic re-enactors and their real life counterparts attempt to survive three days in the Roanoke house during the Blood Moon.
Check out the promo for next week's episode:
Although we've already had some casualties in this week's episode — mainly Evan Peters' character Rory Monahan — the next episode will continue on the story of the Return to Roanoke participants. As you can see from the preview above, the horror is only beginning for the cast of the show. However, just like last week, there is something incredibly interesting in the preview that could turn everything about the show on its head and if so, then the big twist that series creator Ryan Murphy promised us may have only just begun.
What Are Lee And Monet Running From In The Tunnels?
The latest episode of Roanoke ended with Matt realizing that the crazy nurse ghosts have murdered Rory, thus completing their mission. With this revelation, the participants of Return to Roanoke — specifically the non-believers — will have to come to realization that their lives are in danger. Moreover, the fact that murder is even possible means that the Blood Moon cycle has officially begun.
As we can see in the promo, Lee and and Monet are seen in the woods looking out of breath — perhaps they have been running from something or perhaps there was something murderous lurking in the house? Either way, both of them should know by now that the only place more dangerous than the house is the surrounding woodland.
However, the more interesting part of the preview occurs in the tunnels. The tunnels were first introduced to viewers several episodes ago during the re-enactment when Peters' Edward Phillipe Mott rescued Matt and Shelby by leading them through the tunnels and away from the Butcher. Although, I'm unsure of why Lee and Monet would go into the dark tunnels in the first place, something appears to be coming for them, prompting the real Lee to yell "run". When you get a closer look, it looks like the outline of the Butcher walking towards them, however if you pause the first shot of this shadow it looks a little different — almost inhuman.
This entity that is coming for Lee and Monet is not standing up right, but rather it appears to be on all fours — crawling towards them. At first I thought nothing off it, but upon a closer examination I thought it looked familiar to something that we've seen before. There are two possibilities.
Firstly, during the Roanoke Nightmare re-enactment, Flora was kidnapped by some freaky female creature that shimmied around the floor before trying to climb up the walls with her contorted limbs. It is possible that this figure approaching Lee and Monique is her. The other possibility seems more likely though and if it proves correct then it could turn everything we know about Roanoke on its head.
Let's do a little AHS history before I explain. Before the sixth season premiered, FX released several short teasers — like they do with every season of AHS — however this time around the intention was to throw fans of the show off the scent. Each promo would be completely different than the one before, some showcasing children while others suggested a Hollywood theme. None of the promos had anything in common. One of those creepy promos — in a literal sense — featured an usual contorted creature hobbling towards the screen like a spider.
You must admit, the thing approaching Lee and Monet looks a lot like this unusual looking creature. As said, many of the initial Roanoke promos had very little to do with the theme of the show, but this particular promo — which was titled "The Mist" resonated with so many people, particularly due to the scary creature. Also, there was a rumor suggesting that Season 6's subtitle would be "The Mist."
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Could The Mist Be Another Theme For Season 6?
The decision to not reveal the theme for season 6 of American Horror Story initially sent the entire fandom into a frenzy as many people tried desperately to work out what it was. However, Rotten Tomatoes briefly titled Season 6 of the horror show as "The Mist" which led to many people speculating that this was the theme for the season. The revelation of the Roanoke theme obviously put those rumors to bed, but now that the creature appears to be present in an actual episode of the show could this lead to a completely new Mist related theme?
If the promo does, in fact, feature this creature, then we know that The Mist promo was clearly getting at something more than just scaring us — it means that these creatures exist within the AHS shared universe and it's inevitable that we will see them at some point. Series creator Ryan Murphy has hinted that the final episode of Roanoke stands on it's own as a separate story so perhaps "The Mist" could be a prevalent theme in "Chapter 10."
The Real Butcher's Arrival?
Going back to the preview for next week's episode, after the apparent creature sequence it seems that Lee and Monet are running from what now appears to be the Butcher. There has been much speculation about why the Butcher has not appeared yet and which AHS actress will be playing the real version of the character. Some have even suggested that AHS legend Jessica Lange will return to play the role and a subtle hint to Lange's stint on Broadway in a production of Long Days Journey Into Night — for which she won a Tony — was dropped in the latest episode.
Could the Butcher have finally returned? Perhaps, but I have another theory — It's not The Butcher, it's Kathy Bates' character Agnes Mary Winstead who played the Butcher in Roanoke Nightmare. Not only has Agnes been stalking the house in her Butcher outfit, but there is an intimidating promotional photo of Kathy Bates in character as the Butcher and it's clear that the photo was taken in the tunnels. Check it out below.
As Winstead's Butcher never had any scenes in the tunnels, it's likely that this promotional photo was taken during the filming of the scene in question. Moreover, I find it hard to believe that The Butcher would use scare tactics and melodrama like darkened tunnels — from what we know about the character she would show no hesitation in confronting her enemies head on in daylight.
This makes me think it's just crazy Agnes pretending to be The Butcher, that is unless she's been possessed by the real Butcher? Who knows, this is American Horror Story we're talking about, anything could happen.
American Horror Story has started a new chapter with the Return to Roanoke series but as we know, only one person will make it out alive. With the colony approaching the house, who knows who will fall victim to the supernatural entities that live in the forest? The preview for next week's episode definitely insinuates that there is more to the big twist than meets the eye, but I can't shake the feeling that there will be multiple casualties. I guess we'll just have to wait and see.
American Horror Story: Roanoke airs Wednesdays on FX. What do you think lies ahead for the participants of Return to Roanoke? Tell me in the comment section below.