ByJancy Richardson, writer at
To avoid fainting, keep repeating 'It's only a movie...It's only a movie...'
Jancy Richardson

Finally! American Horror Story episode 1 has aired, and 'Checking In' was as arduous and gut-wrenching as we could have hoped for. Seriously, I watch a lot of messed-up stuff and that scene was one of the most disturbing things I've ever seen (you know which scene I'm talking about!).

Here's a promo for Season 5 in case you haven't seen it.

You were possibly too busy being scared and delighted by the new AHS setting to notice some of the cool little nuggets hidden within the Hotel; check out 5 things you may have missed!

*** Spoilers for American Horror Story: Hotel Episode 1, obviously***

1. The Shining

Yup, you can't create a horror hotel without referencing The Shining, and the Hotel Cortez is full of little nods: first off, the iconic carpet design is remarkably similar, and two near-identical little kids appear and disappear at will... there'll certainly be more Shining references as the series wears on.

2. Other horror movie references

There are many references to horror movies in the first episode. There's the hand shooting forth unexpectedly (above) from The Evil Dead and Carrie, and we also have a couple lanced through (as seen in Bay of Blood and Friday the 13th).

Then there's the movie that Gaga and Matt Bomer go to watch; it's 1922 silent horror classic Nosferatu.

3. The Fifth Commandment

One of the first images to appear in the all-new Hotel credits is the Fifth Commandment, 'Honor thy father and thy mother.' We've already seen strong family ties -- from Kathy Bates's and Wes Bentley's characters in particular -- so perhaps we can expect more. Oh, and the fifth one appears first because this is the fifth season of American Horror Story.

4. The Dog

The Harmons' real estate agent, Marcy, appears to show Will Drake around the Hotel Cortez. She mentions something terrible that happened to her dog; the dog she's referring to is Hallie, who she adopted from the Harmons.

5. Hostel / Hotel?

As Gabriel (Max Greenfield) walks through the corridors, a guy pops his head out of a nearby room. He looks very much like the killer from Hostel in his full kill suit, right? I may be wrong, but the leather apron, the mask and the red sleeves seem pretty similar; a tribute, if not a direct appearance.

The Music

In case you were wondering about the musical choices in this week's episode, I've created a Spotify playlist for every song featured. I'll be adding to it every week as the series goes on.


Did you like the first episode of 'American Horror Story: Hotel' (and did you notice anything I may have missed)?

Source: Tunefind, Wikia, Youtube, Spotify


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