This is going to be a rough season for me, Killer Queens. Full disclosure, clowns wig me out. So do creepy dolls. Even worse, creepy clown dolls. So this one’s going to be a challenge.

I do this for you, and I do this kind of drunk.

The first episode of Freak Show starts with a lot of build-up. We see a milkman investigating the home of a customer who’s left their product out to go sour on the stoop. He finds the woman dead on her dining room floor, a half enjoyed dinner still on the table.

Following sounds upstairs, he finds something that terrifies him.

We see a whole slew of people, being disgusted by something we can’t see. Even a nurse throws up, and those chicks are battle-hardened.

There’s a lot of buildup, and I’m expecting at least a burn victim. What we get instead is Bette and Dot, conjoined sisters. Not upsetting at all. If that’s the joke, it’s not great.

Bette and Dot are rescued by Elsa, the ringleader of a freak show. 

This isn’t exactly Jessica Lange’s best character. Her accent, which is supposed to be German, is all over the place. Sometimes she sounds French, sometimes American. Sometimes, she even sounds German. When she does, though, she sounds like Frau Blucher from Young Frankenstein. 

The police are after Bette and Dot for killing their mother. A detective tracks them to the freak show and tries to arrest them. But Jimmy takes care of that. 

While the freaks are doing their best to survive, there’s a whole other story going on. An absolutely gruesome clown called Twisty is terrorizing the small town. We see him brutally kill several people, then kidnap a couple of kids.

Why does he want the kids? To perform for them, what else? They would rather not be there, but what does he care?

At first, these two stories don’t seem related. Until we see Twisty watching the freaks as they bury the detective.

I left this episode with two thoughts. One is that I need to know all about that godawful song Elsa sings and play it until my ears bleed.

The second thought is that this might not be the best season of American Horror Story. Maybe it’s just not comparing well with Coven. But I hope it gets better.

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