Da 5 Bloods
On the Record
I May Destroy You
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The unexpectedly subtle "Madness Ends" provides a satisfying ending to Asylum with a twisted sort of empathy and sensitivity, though attempts to underscore its harrowing socio-medical commentary prove unsubstantial.
This finale was palpably satisfying, like eating an entire pizza by yourself with no one watching.
If you can get past the roiling surface, I really believe that AHS, in its exploration of some deep American mythology, is one of most thoughtful shows on television, even if it sometimes gets lost in the murk.
If you were expecting insights about the devil or the aliens, not so much.
As an ending... I found the low-key finale to be ultimately satisfying. Like a haunted house, the terrors of Briarcliff were contained mostly within its walls. Once they escaped, its former inmates could move on with their simple lives.
Of all of the ways I expected American Horror Story's second season to end, I can safely say an elaborate homage to St. Elsewhere's classic two-parter "Time Heals" was not among the ways I considered.
This finale episode managed the odd trick of not really giving us what we wanted or expected and instead gave us something else; something we may have needed more than wanted: emotional closure.
You never realize how much you'll miss some of these characters until they're gone, and this final chapter in Briarcliff's story brings the whole thing to a bittersweet conclusion.
Once again, American Horror Story's magical mystery gore has come to a heartwarming-in-a-psychotic-way end.
Essentially, the finale... came off like they were trying too hard to heap the season's questions and examinations of mental illness and the roots of evil onto a relatively minor character whose introduction occurred more than half way through the season.
Crazy, crazy, crazy! American Horror Story successfully does it once again!
While this finale became drippier (and not in the gory sense) than I expected, it seemed fitting that pivotal characters got a lavish, operatic send-off. And, in some cases, a sorta happy ending.
"Madness Ends" was a solid and effortless conclusion to what has been, at times, a chaotic and frenetic show. Mostly every arc was satisfactorily ended over the course of the season and the strongest stories survived right up until the end.