'American Horror Story' Adds a Few More 'Freaks' to the Show (Recap)

Michael Chiklis, Angela Bassett and Patti LaBelle join the cast of the FX drama

Photo: Frank Ockenfels/FX

If anyone can take on a powerhouse like Jessica Lange, it would have to be someone with the physical prowess of Michael Chiklis.

As a “strongman,” Chiklis made his American Horror Story: Freak Show debut Wednesday night and lived up to his title in more ways than one.

Wendell “Dell” Toledo (Chiklis) arrives at the camp of the titular Freak Show along with his wife, Desiree Dupree (Angela Bassett), a hermaphrodite with three boobs. With credentials like that, Dell thinks they should be shoo-ins as the new headliners, but Elsa Mars (Lange) is strapped for cash and hesitant to hire “The World’s Strongest Man.” However, she is eventually persuaded by his manly strength and his promise to help lead her band of merry misfits.

Dell quickly begins throwing his weight around camp and particularly butts heads with Jimmy “Lobster Boy” Darling (Evan Peters), who doesn’t know it but is actually Dell’s son with Ethel (Kathy Bates), a.k.a “The Bearded Lady.” Jimmy even attempts to frame Dell for the murder of a cop who was killed by Jimmy and his fellow “freaks” a few nights prior in order to protect conjoined twins Bette and Dot Tattler (Sarah Paulson).

Dell discovers Jimmy’s plan and when the police arrive to search the camp, the cop’s badge is found in the possession of the mentally handicapped Meep the Geek (Ben Woolf) rather than Dell’s trailer, where Jimmy planted it. Meep is carted off to jail and Dell remains at the camp. He continues to assert his power by going against Elsa’s wishes and mandating that all shows be matinees until the new city-wide curfew is lifted.

Now, why is there a city-wide curfew? Well, there happens to be this creepy clown going around killing people.

Twisty the Clown (John Carroll Lynch) is met with disgust by most residents of the sleepy Florida town, but socialite Gloria Mott (Frances Conroy) comes across Twisty walking down the road and has another emotion entirely – elation.

Gloria brings Twisty home and offers to pay him to become a “new friend” for her bored (full-grown) son Dandy (Finn Wittrock). This new addition to the household is met by sideways glances from Gloria’s maid (Patti LaBelle), but Dandy doesn’t seem to have a problem with Twisty as long as he keeps him entertained.

Twisty, on the other hand, is not as amused. He clocks Dandy over the head with a bowling pin and hits the road back to his trailer where he is keeping a young boy (Major Dodson) and a teenage girl (Skyler Samuels) captive. The girl and boy break free, but Twisty catches the boy, and Dandy (who secretly followed Twisty) grabs the girl and brings her back so he and his new friend can have more “fun” with them.

Back at the show’s campsite, Bette and Dot have seamlessly stepped in as the new headliners. Bette (and Elsa) are more than a bit jealous that Dot is being showcased as the lead singer, but the matinees are going well and life at the camp seems to be looking up. That is, until the cops show up to dump off Meep’s body.

The fuzzy-hat-wearing man had been killed by his fellow inmates and his fellow “monsters” can only gather around to mourn the loss of their friend.

American Horror Story: Freak Show airs Wednesdays (10 p.m. ET) on FX.

Want more stories like this?

Sign up for our newsletter and other special offers:

sign me up

Thank you for signing up!

Related Articles