'American Horror Story: Hotel,' Episode 7: Little mouse
A season full of blood-sucking immortals who feed on unsuspecting travelers wouldn't be complete without a nod to F. W. Murnau and his film masterpiece, Nosferatu.
And, if course, Countess has ties to the original vampire story.
Before she was the Countess - and before she turned- she was a small town girl with big city dreams. She had eyes for her hunky co-star in a black and white, silent film in 1925. His name was Rudolph Valentino (played by Finn Wittrock) and his adoring fans called him a god.
Pre-vampirism Countess is shy, naive and starstruck when Valentino invites her to his home for dinner. They dance and stare lovingly into each other's eyes, until they're interrupted by Valentino's soon-to-be ex-wife, Natasha, who calls Countess "little mouse."
Countess tries to leave, but they both beg her to stay. A relationship between the three blossoms; until Countess discovers Valentino's death while attending March's grand opening party at the Hotel Cortez.
In real life, Rudolph Valentino, silent screen heartthrob, died young. His bride, Natasha Rambova, died in her 60s in California. On American Horror Story, Valentino and Natasha faked their deaths after Valentino meets famed director Murnau. Murnau tells Valentino of his research for his film, Nosferatu, and the beauty of the ancient blood virus.
Countess is shattered by the news that Valentino is dead. She tries to leap from the window in the Cortez, but March grabs her saying "In fact, I might never let you go."
They marry soon after her rescue, but Countess admits she never truly loved March. She was drawn to the darkness in him, even more so when she discovers him brutally murdering an innocent man in one of the hotel rooms. He thinks she's disappointed in him, but she counters, "next time, I want to watch."
Valentino and Natasha reveal their immortality to Countess at his grave, explain the ancient blood virus and ask her to join them. She agrees, and waits excitedly at the train station for their arrival.
Little does she know, March kidnapped the two and had them sealed within the hotel behind bricks and steel. He overheard the conversation about their immortality, so his punishment is cruel. For 90 years, Valentino and Natasha aged slowly and dealt with the slow torture of agonizing hunger with no relief.
Until Will Drake's construction crew demolished the brick and steel barrier separating them from the outside world.
Your god: trapped within the walls of the palace I built for my queen.
Like any person who is seriously HANGRY, Valentino and Natasha attack and drain the first warm-blooded thing that crosses their paths. Unfortunately, it happened to be the two construction workers.
They feed on a few more guests -- including the trusty realtor and a group of oddly dressed frat boys -- slowly getting their true complexions back.
The two make their final escape from the hotel looking much fresher and with updated looks. They're the next two vamps hitting the streets of L.A., which reminds me --- whatever happened to all those blood-sucking school children?
We see the true nature of the relationship between Countess and March at their monthly dinner date in the Cortez in present day. He's a murderous psychopath, but it's obvious he really loves her. Too bad she doesn't feel the same.
She tells him of her plans to marry Will Drake, and how she might have found true love for the first time. March is hurt, and to hurt her back he reveals the fates of Valentino and Natasha.
Countess's reaction is one of the first times we see her lose her cool. Her distraught scream shows that, besides her demon baby, Valentino and Natasha were her true loves.
Where in the world is John Lowe?
Well, now he's asked Alex to check him into a hospital for some psych evaluations. He's having a bit of a rough time. His wife wants to leave him and his daughter is afraid of him. He's also been suspended from work because of setbacks in the 10 Commandments Killer case and erratic outbursts.
Oh, and he may or may not actually be the murderer he's trying to find (just a fan theory).
He chooses said hospital because he found out his former partner in the murder case visited looking for more information. Lowe then devises a flawless plan to sneak into the restricted ward, specifically room 153 where his partner visited.
Like a pro, he fakes sick, knocks out the security guard on duty and steals his keys. What he finds in room 153 is unsettling.
There's a young girl, Wren, who admits to being present and even helping with the recent murders. She was there in the church, she was there when he nailed tongues to desks and when he disemboweled victims.
She wants to take blame for the murders, and tells her own tale of woe from 1986. Her father was a skeezy fellow who made odd comments about making her his lover when she grew up. One day when he left her in a hot car while he drank at the Cortez, Wren was rescued by none other than Countess.
Because of her pale complexion and comments about feeding, Wren is obviously a vampire too.
Lowe begs her to take him to the killer and they both escape the hospital. Again, flawlessly. Lowe keeps asking her who the killer is, but she just gives vague answers.
"I hate to see it end," she says before running in front of a speeding car, killing herself.
Whoa. Whoa. Whoa.
I'm thinking John Lowe is actually the killer. AHS might be pulling a Twin Peaks move on us right now.
Other possibilities could be Will Drake. He's been mysteriously absent and not doing much except excavating 90-year-old vampires from the depths of the hotel. What about his son, Lachlan? That hair screams tiny serial killer.
Countess could be a possibility, but I think she has better things to do. James Patrick March definitely has something to do with it though.
Line of the night
"I couldnt pick my butthole out of a lineup." - Iris.
Because of the Thanksgiving holiday, the next episode of Hotel will be December 2, on FX.
Contact Chelsea Tatham at firstname.lastname@example.org and on Twitter @chelseatatham.