And now for the reason behind Delphine LaLaurie’s disinterment: Fiona wants to know the secret of her everlasting life. So Delphine takes us on a dark trip down memory lane, to the night when she awoke from the potion that Marie Laveau slipped her. An angry mob, led by the voodoo priestess herself, surrounded her mansion (historically accurate), having hung her family on an oak tree (not historically accurate) they forced Delphine into a coffin, where the potion granting her eternal life would hold her for all eternity (no proof either way). And you’d think that at some point this whole “trapped in a box while living forever” thing would go out of vogue as a revenge strategy, because spoiler alert: THEY ALWAYS GET OUT. Folks should really just kill people and be done with it.
Back at the morgue, Madison stitches together all the frat boys (kudos to the effects team btw; it looks amazing) while Zoe huddles in the corner like a first-year Hermione caught skipping class. When he is fully assembled (or close enough, I mean, everyone has a couple leftover nuts when they make their IKEA furniture, right?) Madison does a dark spell in which she promises herself and Zoe to Satan in exchange for Kyle’s life. The camera shakes, the lights flicker, and a mysterious voice laughs, but when the spell is over Kyle is still as dead as ever. Madison shrugs and goes outside to smoke a joint, but Zoe says a long goodbye to Kyle, planting a kiss on his lips. While outside, Madison spots a car coming and she speeds off, having fulfilled her sisterhood quota for the week, while Zoe cowers inside. The morgue attendee has just opened his mouth and is like “wtf is with Frankenstein?” when Kyle springs up from his gurney and throttles him.
OK, so can we talk about how Nan is the coolest, most together character on this show? She is trying to read a book—presumably about the difficulty of being the smartest person in a room full of people who constantly undervalue you—but is interrupted by the sound of Madame LaLaurie’s incessant thoughts. So, with absolutely no ceremony, she goes upstairs, releases Delphine from her bounds, and sends her packing. Since Delphine missed the civil rights movement, and probably wouldn’t have been changed by it much anyway, she clocks Queenie over the head as she leaves.
Across town in the ninth ward—y’all know there are other neighborhoods in New Orleans beside the French Quarter and the ninth ward, right?—Fiona pays a visit to Marie Laveau’s hair salon. This is actually a clever bit of writing, since Laveau was a hairstylist in her real, historical life, and also uses hair as the culturally loaded symbol of race and femininity that it is. Anyway, Angela Bassett struts out looking like this:
And Fiona and Marie have themselves a very interesting conversation about cultural appropriation.
Fiona: Hey lady, just wanted to introduce myself. I’m the Supreme, just overall HBIC.
Marie: Yeah I caught that. The smell of burnt sage and pretension preceded you.
Fiona: That might have actually hurt my feelings, but I find that silk and diamonds have a strange insulating effect from insults.
Marie: Super classy how you bought all that with magic you stole from Tituba.
Even when the dialogue is hackneyed, it is delivered with a delighted sort of venom that is a joy to watch, and also, find me another show addressing this very real cultural phenomenon. Anyway, Fiona says she wants Marie’s secret to eternal life, in exchange for some bit of leverage, which I imagine is either Delphine or Queenie.
Back at the school, Cordelia has her unholy copulation with Lumberjack Dave. There’s fire and blood and snakes and their eyes turn black, but I think the thing I find grossest is just the regular sex stuff.
That night, Zoe smuggles Kyle out of the morgue, and bro is in bad shape. Like, Angel on his return from the hell dimension bad shape. He starts banging his head against the dashboard of the car, and Zoe is about to start crying again, when who should pop up out of the back seat but Misty Day!
She takes Zoe and Kyle back to her bayou shack, and tells her about how she sensed Zoe’s presence when she resurrected Kyle. And tumblr basically exploded last night with how much Misty was hitting on Zoe, which is kind of squishy on account of their age difference, but still not as squishy as the sex between Cordelia and ‘ol Splinterface.
Misty promises to heal Kyle by keeping him on a strict diet of swamp muck and Stevie Nicks, definitely not because she wants him to die again so she and Zoe can be together.
Early the next morning, Fiona tracks down Delphine at her old mansion. And it’s kind of a perfect scene, especially if you have ever seen the light of dawn in the French Quarter. For all that New Orleans is a joyous city, that light, and the smell of vomit not yet hosed off of the stoops, just aches with weariness and regret. And that is the flavor of the reflections exchanged between these two villains. There is always something sort of bemusing in the self-pity of evil people. For all that we might wish them to be out-and-out monsters, they are capable of pain, and longing. Especially, for these two women, a longing for youth, the past, and the love of their long-gone daughters.
But their reflections, like the dawn malaise, can’t last forever. The sun comes up, the musicians take to their street corners, the liquor flows again, and the work of wickedness resumes.
So, how do you feel about the tension between Misty and Zoe? They’re 19 and 31 in real life, if that is at all clarifying.