AHS: Roanoke returns to North Carolina for one final blood moon in the season finale. Is there anyone left to kill out there in the woods?
The Roanoke nightmare is officially over! AHS: Roanoke turns a deep character study into Revenge of the Polks with Lana Winters playing mediator. And that was just in the first half hour!
Once you recover from the whiplash and the nausea as the camerawork settles, it’s time to ask yourself — what the f— did I just watch? From the first episode straight through to the last second, this season has been about Lee Harris and her daughter Flora. It is about Lee’s ultimate sacrifice for her daughter.
Unfortunately, that deeper story got lost.
There was never a doubt that the hauntings were a myth to the audience at home. But the audience in the bubble of My Roanoke Nightmare and Return to Roanoke felt different. They questioned the accuracy. They denied the existence of spirits. In fact, they even thought producers were out to trick them!
Okay, that’s not too far off from the way I examined this season. I was agitated by the two episode streak of brutal assaults that offered nothing to the season. The iPhone camerawork made it seem as if a bunch of YouTuber vloggers offered a one hour training course to the cast. In fact, I’m still not exactly sure I get the point of this season.
The season finale attempts to pull all the loose ends of Lee Harris’ story together. It takes four new television segments, a hostage situation, and one finale murder to close the doors to Roanoke.
The crack’d segment takes a true crime approach to the trail of Lee Harris.
What went through the district attorney’s mind? She’s guilty.
What went through the jury’s mind? Well, maybe she was on some hallucinogenic drugs from the Polks. And maybe the idea of watching someone pickle an ear and cut up your leg is enough to send someone into a psychotic state.
Verdict: Acquitted on all charges.
What is STILL going through the district attorney’s mind? “This woman confessed to killing her husband. SHE IS GUILTY. We got her on the original crime — killing her husband.”
What the new jury thinks: Flora Harris takes the stand as the only eye witness. While her confession is compelling, it contains a few too many words about ghosts to gain any traction for a conviction.
Verdict: Cleared of all charges.
The Lana Winters Special
“In fighting monsters, she became one herself.” Lana Winters addresses the camera directly to kick off her return to television for a one night only live special featuring Lee Harris. A Conversation with Lee Harris takes the hard-hitting journalistic style of 60 Minutes and gives it the energy of a live broadcast.
But why did Lee choose to speak only with Lana Winters? There is a certain kinship between the two women. After what Lana went through with Bloody Face, Lana not only knew that each crime could have extenuating circumstances, but would also cause a media frenzy.
Lee chose a live platform in the hopes that her appearance might somehow reach Flora. She wanted Flora to know that in her darkest times, her daughter kept her alive. Unfortunately, Lee and Flora now live in a world tainted by the media coverage that paints Lee as a murderer and Flora as a liar.
Lana Winters, of course, does not waste time before revealing that Flora was reported missing one hour before the production began.
Before Lee can react, a stray Polk brother finds his way to Lana Winters’ special. He shoots down the production crew, knocks out Lana, and goes after Lee. Luckily, the cops arrive in time and shoot him dead.
Nothing like live TV, folks!
Ya’ll ready to catch some ghosts? A ghost hunter show hosted by two frat bros, Bob and Dave, take on the abandoned house with special guest Ashley Gilbert (Cricket!). As the ghost hunt unfolds, the supernatural thrill seekers quickly realize they are in over their heads. Between the doors slamming, sheets flying, and spirits who are hellbent on murdering under the blood moon, none of the team make it out alive.
However, one uninvited guest remains — Lee Harris. Of course! Priscilla!
Lee finds her daughter in the midst of the bloodshed and is able to survive one more night in the presence of the vengeful spirits.
Now for the news at 11
It is hour 14 of a standoff between the police and Lee Harris. Jumping across programs, we check in with William Van Henderson, the actor who played Elias Cunningham. His big news is that of course he was asked to return to Roanoke, but he chose not to go.
National treasure Lana Winters, at home and recovering from her assault, says that she and Lee have the curse of singular thought. They will do anything to see it through and we are about to see how far Lee will go for her daughter.
Flora returned to Roanoke to protect Priscilla. It is a noble mission, but one that requires Flora to die and the house to burn. Lee renews her commitment to giving her daughter the life she deserves, even if that life does not include her mother.
In the end, the house burns to the ground and Flora sits in the back of a squad car. Lee sacrificed her life to become a mother to Priscilla. If she cannot protect her daughter in the real world, she can protect a surrogate one from the Butcher in another.
As the camera pans out, the house burns and the villagers descend upon the house for their second night of reckoning under the blood moon.
What did you think of the ‘AHS: Roanoke’ finale?
AHS returns to FX next season.