American Horror Story: Apocalypse Finale Recap: "Apocalypse Then"

Photo: Kurt Iswarienko/FX.
If you’re reading this, give yourself a round of applause. We’ve made it through the best and wildest season of American Horror Story, ever. By weaving together no fewer than three previous seasons of his anthology series, Murphy outdid himself with the masterpiece that has been Apocalypse. Despite being one of the shortest seasons, the eighth installment of AHS was nothing short of amazing. Without further ado, it’s time reshape history itself and travel through the past, present, and future to find out the fate of the world.
Episodes eight and nine of this season were lackluster at best, giving us very little plot development in abbreviated installments. But number 10, “Apocalypse Then” more than made up for it, giving us the backstory and murder we deserve. As the apocalypse looms nearer, the witches are busy laying the groundwork they’ll need to fix it. It starts with Myrtle (Frances Conroy) paying a visit to our poorly-wigged and apocalypse-ready friends from Silicon Valley, Jeff (Evan Peters) and Mutt (Billy Eichner). After exchanging insults with Wilhelmina Venable (Sarah Paulson), she puts all three of them under a spell that gives her full control of their will. Her mission is to make sure that CoCo’s (Leslie Grossman) family gets four tickets to Outpost 3.
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You see, Cordelia (Paulson) has decided that the best way to handle the apocalypse is to let it happen and prepare to deal with the fallout later. CoCo and Mallory (Billie Lourd) are going to be stashed in the bunker, right under the nose of Michael (Cody Fern), the antichrist who is bringing about the end of the world. The two young witches are placed under an identity spell that makes them forget who they are. Coco berates Mallory, making the up and coming Supreme her doubt herself and suppress her powers until the exact right moment. With this foundation laid, the rest of the season beautifully comes together to answer some of our lingering questions.
For example, CoCo and Brock (Eichner) met at the salon where Mr. Gallant (Peters) styled her hair. And the witches haven’t forgotten the betrayal of Dinah (Adina Porter) when she allowed Michael and his robo-mom Ms. Meade (Kathy Bates) to massacre the witches at Miss Robichaux’s. But more on that later.
As I mentioned before, Cordelia and the rest of the witches allow Michael to go forth and be great with his apocalypse plan. But she Madison, and Myrtle survive the blast and literally rise from the ashes to resurrect their recently-murdered witch sisters at Outpost 3, including Dinah. As CoCo and Mallory realign themselves with Cordelia, Dinah makes it clear that the voodoo queen is #TeamMichael. But the gag is: Dinah actually isn’t the voodoo queen. Cordelia made a deal with Papa Legba (Lance Reddick) to trade Marie Laveau’s soul (yes, ANGELA BASSETT IS BACK BITCHES!) for Dinah’s since the latter has an even darker heart. So Marie is back to claim her throne and kills Dinah on the spot.
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And this is just the beginning of the chaos about to unfold at Outpost 3. Ms. Meade steps forward to use her machine gun arm and Cordelia easily makes the artificial intelligence explode. Before Michael can launch into another one of his violent outburst, Madison shoots him up with Ms. Meade’s own gun. But this doesn’t kill him, but it knocks him down long enough for Mallory — who is as close to her full power as she can be while Cordelia lives — to perform tempus infinituum, the spell she needs to master to alter the course of history. Everything is going well until Brock, who has been hiding in Outpost 3, stabs Mallory because he’s still salty about not getting a seat on the plane to safety. Dude, let it go.
Anyway, Myrtle is so pissed at Brock that she sets him on fire. This distracts Madison long enough for Michael to get up and blow her head off. Marie steps in, trying to stop him and he literally rips her heart out and eats it. Mallory does her part by trying to stab Michael and he breaks her neck. Meanwhile, Mallory can’t seem recover from her stab wound, despite Cordelia and Myrtle’s best efforts. All my witches are going down and I’m stressed about it.
But ever the leader, Cordelia is ready to make a big decision just as Michael moves in to kill her: she’s going to kill herself first. When Cordelia’s body hits the cold floor, Mallory finally pulls off tempus infinituum and a hero is born. She travels back to Murder House here Constance (Jessica Lange) is fed up with teenaged Michael’s recreational killing. She kicks him out, he storms outside, and then BOOM, he’s hit by a car… that Mallory is responsible for. She runs him over twice more for good measure and Constance won’t allow him to die in the house to live on forever as a demonic spirit.
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Back in 2015 Mallory has to pretend not to know Cordelia and the rest of her witch sisters when she shows up at Miss Robichaux’s. Myrtle had no reason to be brought back since the and Mallory saves Queenie from staying in Hotel Cortez during her trip. Madison is back in hell. Nan (Jaime Brewer) and Misty (Lily Rabe) are back, apparently the demons owed Mallory a favor for killing their boss. Nan goes back to hell tho because she loves Papa Legba.
Now it’s 2020 and Emily (Ash Sanros) and Timothy (Kyle Allen) — ‘memba them? — are back! They meet at a coffee shop protest, get pregnant and have a kid with serious anger issues. Crows are circling their house, their toddler has killed the nanny, and then the Black Pope show up with two other followers of satan. You know what they say, the devil is always busy.
How I would have died in this episode: I would have been killed by the toddler antichrist 2.0 during my babysitting gig. I’m always trying to make a quick buck.
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