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American Horror Stories: Season 1 Episode 4 – BA’AL Review

Greetings horror and spook fans! If you’ve been following my work here you’d know I am a massive fan of all things horror, gore, the supernatural and the little bit weird. I have thoroughly enjoyed reviewing American Horror Stories for the past few weeks and this post is no exception!

Episode 5 takes the form of “BA’AL” (which we soon discover is the name of the pagan god…or demon of fertility), the episode follows American Horror Story and Scream Queens alum Billie Lourd as she undergoes the constant trials and tribulations of conceiving a baby.

After several years and failed attempts of IVF and conception treatments, Ivy (Lourd) and her husband Matt (played by Ronen Rubinstein) are running out of options. Desperate to become a mother Ivy finds solace in the unlikely form of the receptionist at the fertility clinic. The receptionist hands her a mysterious totem which she claims would guarantee she would fall pregnant.

Originally sceptical Ivy succumbs to the intrigue and temptation and during a night of passion with Matt she places the totem under the bed following the instructions from the receptionist.

In the form of a flash forward we see that Ivy’s experiment was a success and she has become a mother however motherhood isn’t what she thought it would be as she does struggle to bond with her son Aaron.

What follows is a serious of supernatural encounters, shocking scares and an overall feel of paranoia as we are going through these horrors with Ivy but we can see everyone around her brushing it off as nothing.

After everything becomes too much for Ivy we then learn that the whole thing was a malicious and twisted plot from Matt and his friends to get her out of the way, claim her money for their own and fund their independent television dreams. Whilst Ivy is being treated for her mental health issues the greed of Matt and his peers is ultimately what sees their end as Ivy discovers a way to summon Ba’al to get her revenge.

In a final scene that can only be described as a bloodbath Matt’s friends are slaughtered at the hand of Ba’al, Matt is subsequently blamed for their murders and is sent to prison to pay for his crimes. The episode ends with Ivy visiting Matt in prison and he is begging her for a lawyer to prove his innocence, Ivy is understandably against the idea knowing what Matt did to her and because of this…she leaves, vowing never to look back.

In one shocking final twist it’s revealed that Ivy, due to the summoning spell, now controls Ba’al and his actions and before agreeing to set him free she has one final request: “give me another baby”.

Overall the episode was superb, I was really happy to see Lourd return to the show because she really is one of my favourite actors ever since I fell in love with her in Scream Queens. The writing again was top notch and I really didn’t expect such a cruel and unexpected twist in the narrative.

I have to say this is probably my favourite episode of the series so far, however I wouldn’t recommend eating your dinner whilst watching it because the gore is enough to leave even the most veteran horror fans a tad uneasy!

American Horror Stories is available to stream weekly every Wednesday on Disney+

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