American Horror Story, Massacres and Matinees, review: Twisted yet weirdly compelling with hints of Glee

Yes, it’s depraved for the most part but strangely enough it has heart to it

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The Independent Culture

Forget about the killer clown, the dismembered cop and the psychotic dandy (we’ll get to him in a moment) and focus on the musical numbers and a group of outsiders trying to fit in. Remind you of anything?

It appears that the creators of American Horror Story, Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk, have infused the fourth season of their anthology series with elements from their other Emmy Award-winning show: Glee.

Despite the graphic violence, Freak Show is proving to be a compelling watch that draws viewers in and gets them emotionally invested in its characters – particularly if this week’s tragic conclusion is anything to go by.

For a show with such a high body count, it’s surprisingly moving.  


It isn't all touchy-feely stuff though, ‘Massacres and Matinees’ has its fair share of unadulterated horror. Twisty the Clown’s antics are becoming more warped.

In one scene he is offering a toy robot to a boy he is holding captive and in another he is entertaining Dandy Mott, before knocking him out with a bowling pin. But it's okay, they become “friends” later on.

It’s safe to say there isn’t an ounce of predictability to this show and that’s why it is so intriguing.

Watching Freak Show requires a jet black humour to avoid becoming utterly traumatised by the whole viewing experience.

There is so much going on with the multiple storylines and even more to contend with as more characters are thrown into the mix.

As usual, the repertory cast are superb but Jessica Lange and Sarah Paulson deserve special plaudits for their performances.  

If last week the curtain was merely raised, then now the show has really begun, Freak Show is so much more than just a gore or a fright fest - it has a real heart to it.