'American Horror Story' Recap: Santa Visits Briarcliff
'American Horror Story' Recap: Santa Visits Briarcliff
Scott Taylor
Scott Taylor
Contributing Writer, BuddyTV

Even Briarcliff celebrates Christmas! What would American Horror Story: Asylum be without a visit from an insane Santa? "Unholy Night" gives viewers a guest appearance by Ian McShane as an insane Santa Claus. You may know McShane from the HBO show Deadwood, where he played Al Swaerengen. If you haven't checked it out you may want to. In the mean time, enjoy McShane as deranged Santa.

In the opening scene McShane murders a Santa outside a store and then visits a family and murders them. Money doesn't seem to motivate this insane Santa, but rather holiday injustices that are taking place during Christmas time.



How an Insane Santa Claus Began

Sister Jude makes a return to Briarcliff before being taken off the premises by Dr. Arden. Sister Mary Eunice must make sure Sister Jude doesn't cause any more problems, so she enlists the help of Santa.

We find that the inmate behind Santa came about after he was arrested for being a petty criminal. The jail guards went caroling throughout the jail cells and had their way with this inmate. This of course brought forth serious mental issues and caused a fascination with Santa and Christmas.

The Devil Inside

Before being escorted off the property, Sister Jude warned Dr. Arden about Sister Mary. Sister Jude knows the devil is possessing Sister Mary and she is determined to help her.

Dr. Arden gives Sister Mary ruby earrings that were once in someone's stomach. Once Sister Eunice gleefully takes the earrings, Dr. Arden knows that she is no longer the sweet, innocent nun that she was before being possessed. I'm sure there was probably a better way to figure this out, but as we have already learned, Dr. Arden's tactics are unconventional.

Dr. Arden has maybe the most poignant quote of season 2 of American Horror Story when he says to Sister Jude, "I don't believe in God, but I do believe in evil. I've seen it up close and personal." Briarcliff has never heard truer words.

An Alliance of Good

Dr. Arden and Sister Jude are coming together to help Sister Mary. Or so we think. I have to admit I thought Dr. Arden and Sister Jude were actually coming together to fight a greater evil in Sister Mary. Unfortunately, this is not the case.

Dr. Arden helps Sister Mary and sets up Sister Jude, who finds herself locked in her office with an insane Santa. The lines seem to have been drawn. Dr. Arden and Sister Mary (possessed by the devil) are the main antagonist characters, while Sister Jude is becoming more of the protagonist as she tries to save Briarcliff. The interesting aspect of American Horror Story: Asylum is how every character has their demons, but it's a question of which characters display some sort of good.

When Santa Attacks

The Christmas music playing in the background as Santa gets his revenge on Sister Jude is horrifying, yet brilliant. You almost have to feel for this inmate who was one of the many people abused and taken advantage of by Sister Jude. However, now that he is getting his revenge I find myself rooting for Sister Jude to overcome the constant obstacles thrown her way.

Sister Jude shows her badass side and stabs Santa in the neck before he was able to rape her. This episode leaves me confused. Who is good and who is evil? Or is it just that every single person involved with Briarcliff is evil? I'm left with a wide range of emotions and Santa Claus has just been stabbed to death by a nun.

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