Scream Queens Episode 4 Recap: Murder House

Photo: Hilary Gayle/FOX.
Welcome back to Scream Queens, where the cadavers are propped up like quirky vintage decor and nearly every single character seems like a psychotic killer at this point. Come inside episode 4’s “Haunted House,” and let’s have a look at the damage, Heather.

All hell breaks loose when KKT presidential hopeful Zayday (Keke Palmer) and sitting-with-knives president Chanel No. 1 (Emma Roberts) decide to twist their interpersonal conflict into elaborate, competing social events that suddenly involve the entire community. What is this, The O.C.? I wish!

So, which campus fundraiser will the great unwashed student body (who can’t even vote) attend: Z’s haunted house for sickle cell anemia, or C’s haunted pumpkin patch for thick-Chanel bulimia? Sadly, we never make it to the second party thanks to the five dead (?) victims littering the first.

The body count: Ms. Bean the maid, security guard Shondell (who looks merely asleep), Chanel No. 2 (same), Coney the ice cream mascot (crucified for being soft-serve, might not be a real person in there), and the Red Devil’s newest victim, Mandy, hung out to dry on the porch with multiple stab wounds. Grace and Pete recently visited Mandy at her lush, super off-the-grid trailer to investigate her connection to the 1995 Bathtub Baby, so the killer(s) presumably followed them there. Well, either that or Pete is one of the killers and he drove all the way back to the island from Lost to take care of business, after he dropped Grace back at campus to accuse her dad of lying/mass murder.

Now, Zayday has been kidnapped — or is she in on her capture the whole time? And here’s what really bugs me: How do you throw a huge fundraiser without arriving at the fundraiser before it starts? What is happening with these freaks??? Julie Cooper would have a meltdown!

The New Suspects

Earl Grey: The haunted house fundraiser is his idea, and in funneling his political aspirations through Zayday, he can infiltrate Kappa’s inside track without losing face with his dumb-ass golf frat. Could he be working with Boone (Nick Jonas)? Where is Boone, anyway?

Jennifer: Who else could arrange those hundreds of candles so delicately around skulls and other candles than the wax-obsessed vlogger? Perfect mood lighting is too often overlooked as a clear indicator of murderous games.

Gigi (Nasim Pedrad): At episode’s end, we learn she was the “hag of Shady Lane,” or the woman who stood at the haunted house’s window and continuously moaned for years, presumably while raising Bathtub Baby. She could be responsible for two deaths involving the acquisition of milk and diapers.

Denise Hemphill: The Security Enforcement Solutions representative is not just Niecy Nash messing with us for the hell of it anymore. Thanks to Zayday’s super sleuthing, we now know Denise has motive to seek revenge on the KKT house. They refused to accept her as a pledge in 1988, despite her incredible look.
Photo: Courtesy of Fox.
Maybe her security guard outfit is another costume, and she’s only tormenting Zayday because she really hates her killer self. I hope not, though. I like her much better as clueless ’n’ confident. I do have a type!

Hester (Lea Michele), Now More Than Ever: She certainly seems to know her way around that haunted house — not to mention Ms. Bean’s pus-oozing leg — after inviting fellow dead-fetishist Chad inside to “attack the crack.” (No, Rachel Berry, no!) Plus, she announces how easy it’d be for her to kill Zayday and become Kappa president herself. Hester is determined to nail Chad, dead or alive, because she wants everything Chanel has.
Photo: Courtesy of Fox.
Even the fur jacket, which I believe is actually a Koosh ball that hasn’t been groomed since the ‘90s.
The Usual Suspects

Professor Dad: Wes is clearly lying to Grace — she may not be the bathtub baby (whom we know now is a girl), but he still won’t reveal anything about her mother, and is harboring some major conflict between his current hot-but-terrible-teacher self and his wicked “inner child, who at the end of the day, has all the power.” Wes had to be involved in the 1995 scandal; otherwise what is the point of him?

Dean Munsch: The woman who forces three girls to dig their friend’s grave while convincing them she's their guardian angel is certainly capable of texting Nick Jonas with instructions on how to execute her various death wishes.

Zayday: Where is her self-defense chainsaw from grandma when she needs it? Maybe she doesn’t need it because, on some level, she knows what's happening. On the other hand, that absurdly blasé 911 operator sounds a lot like a male version of Denise Hemphill. Hashtag cahoots, how the tables have turned…

Chanel No. 1: Girl’s got a sweet knife collection and 752 Instagram followers waiting breathlessly in headgear for the chopped-up body parts she mails them for Chanel-O-Ween. What’s not to suspect?

Pretty Much Everyone Else On The Show: That’s right, even glassy-eyed rag doll Ariana Grande, slumped against a cellar wall in her classic sunbathing splay. It’s very easy for this one to look lifeless but still be alive. Just check Instagram. She’s still posting.

Tricks Of The Night
Photo: Courtesy of Fox.
Chad Radwell’s strategically placed belt. Ew?
Photo: Courtesy of Fox.
Nice try, cotton ball diet. Don’t all non-eaters know that sauces are the most deadly of all the devil’s foods?

Treats Of The Night
Photo: Courtesy of Fox.
Diego Boneta’s rather flawless Matthew McConaughey impression and the entire premise that Pete and Grace should needlessly costume themselves as the power couple from How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days to visit a woman who’s lost touch with society. Now, that’s what I call journalism!
Photo: Courtesy of Fox.
Happy Chanel-O-Ween to all — and hey, Merry Swiftmas while we’re at it.

’Til next week, Screamers! You impress me with your frumpy spirit!

More from TV