In my review from “Dollhouse,” the AHS franchise has built a reputation for itself as a risk-based type of business. However, those who love Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk’s distinctive style of horror will love the show and welcome it all year long regardless of its imperfections. We accept what we’re given and — as some may say , we absolutely love the shows. However, it is always satisfying to see something you’ve been wishing for and defending over the years grow in ways that you believed that it could be.
“Dollhouse” began the second season of American Horror Stories a few weeks ago, with a clever and well-written version of an origin story of Spalding the AHS popular character among fans. Since then, viewers have been posting on Twitter and other platforms about how this year’s season has been superior to the first season. Three episodes, “Drive,” makes this claim an undisputed fact. Manny Coto, who has written every episode of season 2 so far, also served as the main writer on American Horror Stories season one. Between the time of season one and today, it seems that Coto has come to the conclusion that if the fans were committed enough to help us bury the bodies of the season one episodes that were flat the plot, we’d like to see new ideas from a sharpened perspective on writing that cuts like a well-balanced knife which is like an extension of your hand and feeds our thirst for new and fresh interpretations of classic horror films.
When I was viewing “Drive,” I found myself wondering where the show was headed in a really thrilling manner and not in an “Wow it’s just whatever they want here” sort of manner. The moment we encounter Marci (Bella Thorne) she is a stunning and gorgeous blonde who is who is in a single-sided, open union with the man she is married to Chaz (Anthony Del Torre) Then we’re revealed that she is a lover of going out to dancing clubs every evening to meet males and females in her vehicle, so initially, I believed that we’d been destined for an unsettling The Hunger-like situation in which she had to eat with fresh bodies to stay alive and fresh. Then, when the red Jeep drives away from the dance club and flashes its high beams and driving onto her, I was able to sense the story was moving into urban-legend territory. In the end, both theories were deemed to be part of a bigger whole and left me awestruck. Really shocked! by a television show in 2022! Imagine that.
The use of music in a manner that the AHS franchise hasn’t used since American Horror Story: Hotel which brought about a chilly and sexually sensual mood through songs such as “Neverland (a fragment)” from Sisters of Mercy, “Drive” includes tracks like “Battles” of Emika to bring viewers into the perspective of Marci as we follow her search for something that isn’t the way you (or I, if I’m speaking on behalf of myself here) would have.
Through news clips that Marci’s pal Piper (Billie Bodega) is a reference to, we are able to catch the idea that people are going missing from these clubs and that Marci may be in danger of becoming one or is involved with the disappearances, but in a different way. Piper and Chaz both Piper and Chaz are concerned for Marci but she pushes back, saying that she would like to enjoy herself and enjoy her sexy lifestyle. This scene caused me to think, Oh this is an urban myth, Marci quits a nightclub after a night out and is pursued by the red Jeep that is revving up its engines flashes its lights and then crashes into her. This scene is straight from the urban legend known as “killer behind the wheel” also known as “high beams” in which the exact incident occurs to a woman while the driver in front of her attempts unsuccessfully to warn her that someone is in the backseat who is ready to kill her. The urban legend of this particular one has been featured in numerous horror films in the past like The Halloween film by John Carpenter Black Christmas, and even The Curse of Chucky, however it’s not in “Drive,” it’s more than an unintentional red herring.
Following having her “killer inside the rear seat” scene, Marci uses the license plate that she recorded from her Jeep to trace the person who drove it, a young male identified as Paul (Nico Greetham) who works at the Crate and Barrel-like home-goods retailer. You might recognize Greetham from the second-half of American Horror Story: Double Feature in which he played Cal who is a homosexual who is forced into giving birth to an alien-human hybrid child. I’d say , in terms of context his performance is more favorable this time however, not much.
Infiltrating Paul’s home through a door that isn’t locked as he’s bathing We’re presented with a surprise when Marci discovers a variety of missing persons fliers, tacked on a corkboard above his desk. It’s a moment of doubt whether Paul is the one who killed the people on the list and then Marci injects a needle into the back of his neck and knocks him unconscious with a kind of tranquilizer for animals that isn’t effective enough. The two fight and then Chaz appears using a bat and tries to beat Paul down. True to what people say regarding marriages: couples can be successful when they share similar desires.
As the story was coming into place I was thinking back to the quote Marci said to a guy in the club earlier in the show: “I believe everybody should be a bit scared every sometimes.” The audience was offered clues about the dark side of Marci but we were told to wait for the cause. One of her faces has a dark birthmark. And when it was her youth, hot and popular men like Paul have made her miserable due to it. The desire she has in her later times isn’t for sexual gratification from these men , but to take a more bloody physical revenge. In a room that is sealed off within the wine cellar in her home she tortures her perfect bodies in the same way that they tortured her mentally by ridiculing them for having “flaws” in her physique.
The main idea behind “Drive” isn’t the desire for revenge but the concept of loyalty. Chaz was his husband, who stood with Marci regardless of what, loving her despite all her flaws and literally helping “hide the corpses,” demonstrated his ability to the kind of person who could ride or die in the way that most people want to be, or wish to be. Surprise! The story is an American Love Story!
If the story has a problem, it’s the final scene in which Chaz and Marci murder their first victim together, Piper. If Marci’s sole motive for killing was revenge, then why did she choose to target someone who apart the husband appeared to be her sole friend? It seemed like a cheap decision and a simple method to conclude the drama with an explosion. Piper could have been replaced by having someone come into the house to announce that the water will turn off in the coming hour while they fix the city’s plumbing, and it could have been a better alternative. If the show has a flaw in the second place it’s the selection of Chaz as a character’s name. (No offense to anyone who is that is identified as Chaz in the audience that is reading this.)