American Horror Story: Coven continues its streak of bringing strong female characters together on one screen with the addition of Stevie Nicks tonight. Check out our full recap below!
With the title, “The Magical Delights of Stevie Nicks,” American Horror Story: Coven gives us a performance by Stevie Nicks that is certainly a moment audiences will anticipate. Nicks delivers in this episode, but her performances round out another chapter of stellar scenes from the strong female cast.
Truce: After losing everything, who can you turn to but your enemy for help? In her darkest hour, for the last 300 years, Marie Laveau turns to the Coven for protection from the witch hunters she initially hired to do her dirty work. But revealing her weakness to Fiona is only the tip of the iceberg of troubles awaiting Marie that night. As twilight creeps over the Coven, Marie is visited by Papa Legba, the Haitian Creole voodoo embodiment of death and fertility.
In a flash back, we see Marie summoning Papa during child birth with her determination to keep herself and her baby alive through the labor. It is when she is at peace with her child that Papa appears. In exchange for one innocent soul per year, Marie will live forever. The first soul offered is that of her first-born, the following souls are “borrowed” from other parents. With a little voodoo assistance, Marie smuggles a child from the labor and delivery ward of the hospital for her dues.
Mouse Hunt: Cordelia, Marie, and Fiona discuss Hank’s involvement with the notorious witch hunting family. The other cheek that Cordelia turned towards Fiona is slapped away when Fiona berates her for being blind to the fact that a witch hunter lived among the Coven for so long. Marie interjects that she is also at fault for hiring Hank and reminds them that placing blame is not going to help ensure their future.
In their first act of equality, Marie and Fiona attack the Delphi Organization where it will hurt them the most: their finances. Watching the mice navigate the maze, the FBI mirrors Marie and Fiona with an invasion of the Delphi organization in Atlanta, halting all trade and keeping their leader from the resources. As the spell comes to a halt, Fiona is overcome with fatigue. Marie takes Fiona upstairs and listens to Fiona explain the ritual of the Supreme to her.
Everyday that the girls’ powers become stronger, Fiona’s cancer maintains a direct correlation. Fiona inquires about Marie’s deal with Papa Legba. Marie informs Fiona that if someone demands his attention enough, he will present himself.
Ashes to Ashes: Nan’s powers are showing much more promise beyond telepathy. Mind control becomes her weapon of choice to prove to Madison, in a racy manner, that her chances at being the next supreme are greater than she anticipated.
Nan and Zoe find out that Luke passed away at the hospital and pay Joan a visit to see if they can find his body, possibly to mourn, but more likely to bring him back. Death is not a… well, death sentence for these ladies anymore. Joan confides that she cremated Luke, and he will reside in their home. Nan’s anger cannot be controlled, and she takes her mind control out for a tragic test drive. Zoe watches helplessly from the corner as Nan forces Joan to “cleanse” herself by drinking a gallon of bleach.
An Innocent Soul: Fiona summons Papa Legba with an offering of cocaine and the intention to hand over her soul completely to him. With her current state promised for eternity in return, there is only one item preventing the transaction: Fiona’s soul does not exist. While Fiona has done nothing to prove her emptiness otherwise, it is striking to see her struggle with her new identity crisis. On the one hand, she is now free to kill all the ladies of the Coven, but on the other, her entire life has left her without anyone or any redeeming quality to take to the other side.
When Nan catches Marie with the kidnapped baby, Fiona devises a plan that may save Marie from murdering a child once again. If Papa wants an innocent soul, a tainted soul may do just as well. Marie and Fiona drown Nan in the bathtub with the intention to pay both of their debts with Nan’s soul. Papa is disturbed by the evil their partnership has sparked. He takes Nan with him to the other side, but this may not be the last we see of Nan haunting her past.
The Magical Stevie Nicks: Fiona’s intention of bringing Stevie Nicks to Misty Day was two fold: Allow Misty to feel the power that comes with being the Supreme, and show the other ladies of the house that not all hope is lost for them to prove their abilities. This trick works especially well for Madison. She is, after all, the reincarnation of Fiona’s youthful self.
Nick’s haunting performance of “Rhiannon” on the piano casts the perfect eeriness of hope in Misty’s soul for a future as a leader of women. However, Madison takes it upon herself to ensure that Misty is not too comfortable in her new glory. The ladies follow a funeral parade to a cemetery where Madison raises a man from his coffin to show Misty she is not as special as she thinks. The shawl she received from Stevie is nothing more than a piece of memorabilia from a life that she must now leave behind. As Misty bids farewell, Madison smashes her head in and closes the coffin on her. The grave diggers finish their job, placing the casket in a mausoleum. The running for Supreme is becoming a smaller race by the minute.
It’s been a day: The violence, greed, and ruthlessness of the episode kept the pace moving, but it is the final scene that slows the racing heart of the show and hits viewers the hardest. As Fiona winds down from her revolutionary day, she greets Nicks at the piano with an exhausted appreciation for her companionship. Nicks begins to softly sing, “Has Anyone Ever Written Anything for You?” as Fiona migrates to the couch and collapses slowly into the cushions. Having nothing and everything to live for sets Fiona against herself, which is the hardest battle to face alone.
Myrtle Snow (yet again): One of the lighter moments of the episode arrives when Cordelia questions her place in the Coven. No longer in her mother’s favor and tortured by her blindness to Hank’s sordid past, Myrtle offers her little comfort outside of the soothing sounds of her theremin and a quick comparison of Fiona to Hillary Clinton. Long live, Myrtle Snow.
Watch American Horror Story: Coven episode 11, “Protect the Coven,” Wednesday, January 15 at 10 p.m. ET on FX