“American Horror Story: Hotel” recap (5.12): Checkout Time

on

For all it gleefully embraces the macabre—no, for all it frog-marches us through a horror house of the worst human impulses, American Horror Story is a sucker for a happy ending. And it reliably ends, not with a climax, but with an hour-long denouement. The happiness of these ending varies by degree, of course; Asylum stayed gory til the end, Coven inexplicably plowed through most of the prospective Supremes, and Freak Show bizarre musical number bit. But of all of them, this goriest season has turned out to come the closest to “and they all lived happily ever after.” (Of course, the “living” thing doesn’t really apply, but you can’t deny that they get farther into “ever after” than most characters.)

So now, let us bid a fond farewell to the characters we’ve come to loathe/love/attempt to parse out the value of their queer representation over the last few months. The first, and truly the main character, is the Cortez itself, which falls into the hands of Iris and Liz, who make some desperately needed renovations.

ahs12.1CHECK OUT? WELL SHIT, NO ONE’S EVER MADE IT THAT FAR BEFORE.

They woo hotel critics (I want that job) but, in spite of the high-end toilets and free wi-fi, it’s hard to keep your Yelp ratings up when the reviewers keep dying at the hands of vengeful ghosts.

ahs12.2

Frustrated, the new owners call a meeting of the ghosts (hey Swedish girls! Hey gay lumberjack! Hey…other guy.) and demand that they stop killing the guests. After all, if the Cortez goes bust, it’ll probably get turned into a combination Soul-Cycle/juice bar, or some other Los Angeles monstrosity. The other ghosts agree to haunt more gently, but Will and Sally need some extra persuasion.

So what’s to be done with Sally? I mean, where can you put someone whose psyche is a bottomless well of need for approval, attention, and concern. Oh, that’s right: Twitter!

ahs12.3ETERNITY FEELS LIKE EXACTLY ENOUGH TIME TO GET MALLORY ORTBERG TO FOLLOW ME.

Sally becomes a social media celebrity, which may have been intended as a dig at those of us who find our favorite communities on the internet, but Sarah Paulson (who is herself quite the Twitter maven) makes Sally’s eyes sparkle with genuine joy as she racks up followers. She even trades in heroin for her new social media addiction. Adieu, Sally! May your happiness outlast even your perm!

Next up is Will Drake, who continues to design fashion (actually I love his post-mortem collection) from within the Cortez, though he leaves the day-to-day operations of his company to Liz Taylor, who was born for it. So long, Will! Thank you for saying the word “bisexual,” I guess!

As for Liz herself, she experiences quite a renaissance. First, she triumphs in the world of fashion, then she celebrates the birth of a granddaughter, but then she is tragically stricken by cancer. Rather than become a vampire (still the only character who has not murdered for sport!) Liz asks her ghost family to kill her, that she might join them in haunting the Cortez forever.

ahs12.4START SPREADING THE NEWS, I’M LEAVING TODAY/BUT ALSO NEVER LEAVING EVER.

More you may like