American Horror Story (2011–…): Season 4, Episode 3 - Edward Mordrake: Part 1 - full transcript

Elsa defies superstition to rehearse on Halloween, summoning the spirit of Edward Mordrake and his ghostly band of freaks.

LILLIAN: The medical community
has always

been fascinated
by freaks of nature.

They highlight the strange
wonders of the human body,

and illuminate the horrors
of disease and disorder,


For these poor souls,

Halloween must have
come as a great relief.

The one ordained day they were
allowed to hide behind costumes.

And here at the American
Morbidity Museum,

we not only embrace
their differences,

we celebrate them.

So, please have some candy.

Enjoy that, enjoy the tour.

See you in the next room.

Dr. Mansfield.
Miss Hemmings.

Have you met my lab
assistant Miss Rothschild?


She may be my
brightest pupil yet.

Oh. That's not true.
Now, we don't mean to rush you,

but we do have a bona fide
offer that expires in an hour.

Did your appraiser
look at the specimen?

He has.

Let me go get him.

These poor people.

Doomed to lie here
and be gawked at all day.

Well, they were losers in life.

At least now
they have some value.


The Smithsonian offered me
$500 for that.

Then they're a bunch of fools.

I beg your pardon, sir.

I have a double degree
from Harvard University.

You can't talk to me like that.
Yes, about your double degree.

We called Harvard, asking
after a Sylvester Mansfield.

They have no record of you.

Did you know that it's a felony

to sell a fraudulent
medical specimen?

We have every right
to call the police.

And I will call

the New England
Journal of Medicine.

I'll tell them how rudely
we've been treated here.

I brought you an
authentic baby Sasquatch.

It is a fetal goat with the jaw
of a cat sewn onto it.

A what?! This is outrageous.

We're leaving.


Take your Sasquatch with you.

(clears throat)
You're obviously

inventive people.

If you brought me
something authentic,

something truly priceless, I...

Well, I wouldn't ask
many questions.

In fact,

my business is in trouble.

Without new exhibits,
even our most loyal patrons

would rather stay at home
and watch Ed Sullivan.

Where does this stuff come from?

All over.
Private collectors, and...

And, you know, I used
to get calls from freak shows

when one of theirs would pass,
but they're mostly gone now.

Just maybe one or two.


Coney Island and South Florida.

What's this over here?


The conjoined liver of famed
Siamese Twins Chang and Eng.

Just the liver?

How much is that worth?


That's fascinating.


we have to catch our plane.
Catch our train.


Have a lovely day.

You, as well.

Coney Island's a little
cold this time of year.

How about Florida?

CHILD: Trick or treat.
(man laughs maniacally)

(child screams)

Trick or treat!

Jessie, go up
and get some candy.

I want to wait.

(children screaming)


What was that all about?

She's terrified of clowns.

So guess what her
brother dressed as.

I had to drag her to come out

and go trick-or-treating.


It seems like a good
idea at the time.

Is it me, or is it

much more crowded this year?

It's those kids from Jupiter.

No trick-or-treating
because of the curfew.

Hmm. I thought
they caught the guy.

Some circus performer?

(brush rustling)



I saw a clown.
It was a really scary one.

Remember what we talked about?
How sometimes

we can get confused
because of our imagination?

He was real.

It's Halloween, Jessie.

There's clowns everywhere.

Now, come on.

Let's go get some more candy
with these kids.


I swear, I'll never
understand that girl.

I find clowns delightful.

(gate creaks)


(inhales sharply)

You're awful quiet.

That must mean the biopsy
came back positive.

Uh, yes.

You tested positive
for cirrhosis of the liver.

It says here that there's
a good deal of fibrosis.

Yeah, well, my liver's
tough as an old boot.

We can fix her up, can't we?

I don't think so.

Well, I ain't touched a drop
since Jimmy's 18th birthday.

Well, you could've had this
for a long time.

Cirrhosis can be sneaky.

Well, I ain't gonna die
anytime soon, am I?

I never liked that question.

I believe hope
is strong medicine.

I don't like to tell patients
to, uh, give up hope.

Eh, we're all hopeless, Doc.

We're all gonna die.

Pardon me, miss,
but the older I get,

the harder it gets for me
to deliver the bad news.

Never been good at it.

Especially for someone
like yourself,

who must have had a hard life

and seen the worst
in human nature.

Eh, I got plenty
to be grateful for.

Give it to me straight.

How long have I got?

Anywhere from six months

to a year.

Well, shit.

Shit. Shit. Shit.

Ain't nothing we can do, huh?

Keep the meat to a minimum.

And don't take

a single drop of alcohol.

That'll only accelerate things.

I'm sorry.

I just couldn't be more sorry.


You know what, Doc?


I ain't crying 'cause
you told me I'm gonna die.

I'm crying 'cause
you're the f...

you're the first doctor ever
treat me with respect.


I just c-can't help thinking

my whole life might have gone
different if I'd met you sooner.

(laughter, lively music playing)

PAUL: Hey, come on,
Suzi, have a go!



Whoa! (laughs)

Hey, come on, girls!

Between the two of you, you
could win this game in one dunk!

No, thank you.

We just washed our hair.

Where have you been?

I was digging a grave.

For Meep.

He was a child.

They all are.

I can't protect any of them.

You can't blame yourself.

Why not?

They needed a leader
and I failed them.


Stop it! What's
wrong with you all?!

(music stops)

Meep is dead!

Don't you care?!

You're being disrespectful.

Look how much pain Jimmy's in.

This is wrong!

We should remember Meep
by working even harder.

Maybe dedicating the show
today to his memory.

The show?

It's Halloween.

No freak performs on Halloween.

Any idiot knows that.

It's not fair. They're new.
They don't know

about that old superstition.

Not superstition.

It's true.

What is?

Why we don't perform
on Halloween.

On accounts of Edward Mordrake.


Edward Mordrake.

Aristocrat who lived
in the middle 1800s.

He was heir to all
kinds of titles.

Could've been a duke
or a lord or some shit,

things had been different.

Things are never different.

An Englishman of noble birth,

Edward was a young man
with fine attainments.

He was a scholar.

He was a poet.

Musician of rare ability.

So what was wrong with him?

ETHEL: He had another face
on the back of his head.

Hideous as a devil.

No one else could
hear what it said,

but it whispered
to Edward incessantly

of things
only spoken of in hell.

(indistinct whispering)

He tried to kill it.

(whispering stops)

(water gurgling)

Many times in many ways.

But it wouldn't die.

So what happened to him?

He went mad.

His family had him committed

to the crazy house at Bedlam.

Truth be told, they were
only too happy to have

the family freak
banished from sight.

In the crazy house,
he wrote poetry.

Worked on an unfinished opera.

Anything to keep his mind off

the demon whisperings,
but he never got any relief.

It was telling him to do things.

Commanding him.

One night,

Edward escaped the asylum.

And he ended up where we all do.

At the freak show.

They billed him
as the Two Faced Prince.

And he'd show off

all the refined skills
he'd learned as the scion

of one of England's
grand families.

And then he'd take a bow.


And he was happy?

He'd found a home
with others like himself.

There was no one like Edward.

He wasn't happy.

One Halloween night,

Edward snapped.

He murdered every freak
in the troupe.

And then he hung himself.

Legend has it
that even in death,

the demon face was smiling.

So, we don't perform
on Halloween night

out of respect?

Out of fear, darling.

If any freak performs
on Halloween,

they summon the spirit
of Edward Mordrake

and his demon half-face.

Once he appears,
he never leaves alone.

That whispering face
will choose one more freak

to take with him back to hell.

What a bunch of bunk!

What are you trying
to scare them for?

It's not bunk.

It's true.

I can swear to it.

In '32, when I was with Barnum,

they made us perform
on Halloween.


something visited
the circus grounds that night.

'Cause the next morning,
Clyde Hendershot,

the astounding human cannonball,

all three feet,
four inches of him,

was found hanging
in his caravan.


His head twisted clean around.

His dead eyes staring backwards.

A smile on his face.

Just like Edward Mordrake's
second face.




What the hell was
all that about?

Carny lore.

Not that.
The drinking!

Ma, you swore off the stuff.

Well, I'm swearing back on.

Why? What is it-- Dell?

You been on edge
ever since he got here.

You don't know shit!

Matter of fact,

I'm glad he's here.

We need a man around this dump.

Means you're free to go.

Oh, don't give me that look.

You know you been
itching to take off.

(clock chiming)

I need your help.

It's almost sundown.

Why do I got
to be a bird this year?

Because Woody Woodpecker
is Dandy's favorite cartoon.

Have you practiced?

Woody Woodpecker's laugh)

That'll do in a pinch.

Do you think

this will cheer him up?

Here he comes.

Ask him yourself.

How was your nap, darling?

Are you ready
for some Halloween fun?

Yes. I can't wait to go

and terrorize the neighborhood.

There's a curfew.
No one's going out.

Curfews are for the poor people.

We can have
our own Halloween here.

We'll have a costume contest.

Can you guess who I am?

Doris Duke.


Dandy, you're so clever.


Bring out Dandy's costume.

Dora worked on it for a month,
with my guidance, of course.

Howdy Doody?

Howdy Doody!

You ungrateful little...
Dora, if Dandy doesn't

like his costume,
we'll make another.

There's no time
for that, Mother!

I'll go into town and buy one.

I think I can make it
if I still hurry.


Your mother might be

afraid of you, but I'm not.

Clean up this mess, maid.

I work for Miss Gloria.

♪ ♪

Halloween was Meep's
favorite holiday.

He loved to dress up.

Hear the screams of the...
of the kids when he'd sneak

the occasional chicken head
in their bag of candy.

It was the one day

he felt like he could be
one of them.

But we know this man.

And he wasn't one of them.

He was better.

We'll all miss you, Meep.

Here's to you, Meep.

It's a little something
to lighten the load

as you walk through
the valley of the shadows.




We're closed.

There's no show today.


I'm not a customer.

I'm looking for a job.


You made a mistake.

Believe me, you
don't belong here.

I came all the way
from Philadelphia.

My name is
Mystic Miss Esmeralda.

I'm a fortune teller.


(Bette crying)

I never agreed to this!

You're being selfish.

I have talent.

And a man who wants to marry me

and have babies.

It's all coming true.

But none of it is possible
with you here.

He'll never marry you.

Without me, you're just another

plain Jane with big dreams.

Oh, my God.
I've decided to use

the Luck Bone Saw.
What is that?

It's the first motorized
bone-cutting device

that can be
sterilized repeatedly

without damaging
the drive train.

Please no.
Oh, it'll be over

before you even feel anything.
I told you.

Tell her, Doctor.

Please don't!

I'm begging you!

Count backwards from a hundred.

Please don't.
(gas hissing)

Thank you, God,

for making me separate

and whole.

And please...

take good care of Bette.

Wake up, Dot.

Wake up.

Wake up.


I was having
the most beautiful dream.

Why did you wake me?

Because I was trapped
inside that dream,

and for me it was a nightmare.

You can't hold me
responsible for my dreams.

It wasn't a dream the last
time you tried to kill me.

Aren't you afraid you'd miss me?

I'd miss you.

Mean as you are sometimes.

Although sometimes I wonder

who you are since we came here.

I'll tell you who I am.

I'm someone who's not afraid
to do what it takes.

I'm going to work hard,
save my money and find a doctor

who will do that surgery.

This life isn't making
either one of us happy, Bette.

But one of us will die.

And one of us has
a chance at happiness.



(woman singing in German
over speakers)


Every fortune teller

I've ever met
came with a darker complexion.

She's not Gypsy,

but I think
she's the real thing.


You let me be the judge.

I'm not so easily distracted
by a pretty face.


So, you're a fortune teller?

I didn't choose the gift, Elsa.

It chose me.

Show me, Esmeralda.

Tell me my future.



Spirits are like shadows
at night.

Invisible without
a guiding light.

They only speak if they sense
a receptive audience.

Open your heart,


Listen to their words.


I see many dark tidings.

In the past,
you suffered a grave injustice.

A terrible wrong.

All because of greed
and jealousy.


A woman.

She looks like you.


Your voice,

so clear, so...

so strong. I can hear them now.

An ovation. (chuckles)

But not for you.


That bitch.

She stole my career.

You see that in the ball?


She's gone.

But I can hear another song now.

The future.


It's your song, Elsa,
and it's...

it's the most
heartbreaking music

I've ever heard.

(crowd cheering faintly)

They're cheering now.

The applause sounds
like thunder.

For me?

Is there still a chance?

It's never too late.

You're like the aster

that blooms in the fall.

I see a man standing behind you.

Who is it?

An-an elegant, refined...


With dark hair and...

and piercing eyes.

An impresario.

Under his guidance,

he'll make you a star.





You're hired.


Trick or treat?



Oh, no, none for me,
sweet cheeks.

Got to stay sharp.



Looking good, sugar.

Ooh, coming down here
and taking over!



This place is gonna
be good for us.

I can feel it.



Oh, baby.

Ooh, I've missed you.

Oh, yeah.

Oh, yeah.

Ah, damn it.


Sorry, baby.

It's all the weight lifting

has got the blood rushing
to other places.

Not again, Dell.

I can't take this shit no more.

It's just...
you came on too strong.

You got to give me some time.

Heard it all before.

Too much hooch,
too tired, too cold.

I could get more satisfaction
from a doorknob.


You should be kissing my boots.

I deserve some goddamn respect!

If it wasn't for me,
you'd be in the gutter.

Get your paws off of me,
or you'll never see me again.



(door creaks, closes)

(organ playing in distance)

Son of a bitch!

Whew, somebody's mad
at somebody.

Fight with Triple Tits?


Don't you talk
like that about her.

Come on.

Sit down, share some hooch.

I need to talk to you anyway.

I got a favor to ask.

Drunk and asking for favors?

That's not the Ethel
I seem to remember.

What was the fight
about, anyway?

Couldn't get it up?

It's none of your business.

What was our problem, you think?

Well, you got a beard,
for starters.


So, when we conceived Jimmy,
you didn't love me at all?

Come on, Dell, fess up.



Don't you know
that men will jump

on the first available pussy?

I could've been a better dad.

Well, that's the damn truth.

Yeah, listen,

he is never, ever to
know you're his pa.


You got that?
You're a broken record, Ethel.

Whoa, whoa, wait a minute.

W-When we was talking
about moving to the burbs,

and I showed you that brochure
for Levittown...

...why'd you lead me on?

I led you on
for about five minutes.

I felt guilty.

Well, we...

we never would've made it
out there, anyway.

Cookie cutter was never
in our cards.

What's with all
the questions, Ethel?

What, is the booze
getting you sentimental?

Jimmy's lost.

Your son is floundering.

He's got one foot in this
life, one foot out there.

Well, from what I can see,
he listens to you pretty good.

Well... I'm dying.


With any luck,
it'll be sooner than later.

He's gonna need some guidance,

and preferably from a man.

Come on, can't you be decent?

Keep-keep an eye on him,

for Christ's sake?

Make him get out

in the world I was afraid of,

make something out of himself.


You know what I was wondering
this morning?

What it would've been like
if I'd have stuck around,

seen him grow up.

Seen him put on
his little Halloween outfit.

What did he like dressing up as?

He always wanted
to be the same thing.

He wanted to be a soldier.




(woman humming)

(humming continues)


You don't scare me.

I raised you
since you were this high.

I found those poor animals
you killed behind the house.

I told your mother all about it.

If it happens again,
I'm calling the police.

Do you hear me?

Now, tell me the truth.

Did you have anything to do
with that mess in town?

Oh, you gonna kill me?

Go on, do it.


Just like I thought.

You couldn't have possibly
killed those people.

You don't have the guts.

Shut your piehole, Dora!

Or I will kill you!

Oh, really?
Then kill me.

Go on!

I dare you!

I hate you, Dora.

I hate you, I hate you,
I hate you!

Believe me, boy,
I hate you, too.

(phone ringing)


I got to cut out.
I can't do this.

Hey. Calm down.

Did you do what I told you?

Yes. I'm in.

Okay. Well, what's wrong?


The freaks.

They're everywhere.

Pinheads. Stump girl.

Seal man.

Even when I close my eyes,
I still see them.

They give me
the heebie-jeebies.

You won't believe
what I ran into today.

Excuse me.

I thought customers weren't
allowed back here.

Well, they're not.
She's one of us.

Bette, Dot,

meet Esmeralda,

our new spiritualist.

Come by my tent anytime.

I'll give you a free reading.

I'm sure that's
not the only thing

you give away for free.

Come on.

Conjoined twins?

We hit the jackpot!

Where are they attached?

Do they have
four limbs or eight?

What's the difference?

The size of the jar

I have to get.

You never said
anything about murder.

I'm not spending the rest
of my life in jail.

Nobody cares what happens to a freak.

The only proper question is
how we display the body:

under formaldehyde
or vacuum-sealed?

Trust me, you do
what I tell you,

we are gonna break the bank
on this one.

I'll be there, but...

after I take care
of my business.

Shit on a stick, I got to go.

(siren wailing)

There's a curfew out tonight,

starting at 8:00.

Still got a good
ten minutes, bub.

One tick over, I'm hauling
you two right to jail.


I'm sorry, Officer.

I had to call my grandmother.

She has been awful sick lately.

I promise we'll
head home right away.

Look, you look like a nice,

Christian girl.
Take my advice.

Stop hanging around
with troublemakers.

Why are we getting rousted?

'Cause of Meep?

Or what you cops did to him?

Keep talking, motormouth.

My watch is running fast.

Cool it.

We're going now.

Right, Jimmy?

(engine revs)

Yeah, let's blow.

Place smells like
pig shit, anyway.

You know...


...I've never done it
with a Viking god before.

But, uh... aren't you
missing something, Thor?

What, a hammer?


A sword.

Come here. Now...

...take off

my pants.

Holy Christ.


♪ ♪

I can't wait for
Halloween to be over.

All the kids jacked up on sugar.

I'd rather that than
have them watch TV.

I swear, Dragnet is going to be

the downfall
of American culture.




Hey, give it back!

I might give you
some of my candy

if you promise to do
my chores for a week.

(quiet breathing)

And you call me Master Mike
from now on.

Say it.

"Master Mike, I promise to do

all your chores for a week."

What's the matter with you?



What happened?

Where's your brother?

The clown took him.

You don't come in
until here, stupid.

Well, I can't do anything right

when you talk to me so mean.

You're twenty minutes late.

We've decided it's a bad idea.

You never know what could
summon Mr. Mordrake.

Even a rehearsal
is risky business.

DOT: You carnies are
so superstitious.

He's a myth.

I am the only myth around here.

They're not concerned
about Mordrake.

I'm trying to tell...
Of course they're not.

Simply a superstition.

You two run along, now.

A clairvoyant has sworn to me

that a very important gentleman
will be arriving very soon

to reinvigorate my career.

So I must rehearse
some new material.

DOT: Well, you can rehearse
when we're done.

We're the headliners.

A bit of applause

for a two-headed girl
who sings a song,

and you think
you can push me out?

We should probably
discuss our salary,

since we are now
the star attraction.

How dare you?

I have been a star
for decades now!

You are nothing...

nothing but a two-headed freak

stumbling around the
stage, squeaking out

a crummy tune.

Go back to your tent
and stay there,

or I will take you
into the swamp

and leave you there.

What are you staring at? Hmm?

Do you value your jobs
around here?!

Then walk those long legs
up to the piano. And you...

pick up those drumsticks
and start banging.


♪ ♪

♪ In the land
of gods and monsters ♪

♪ I was an angel ♪

♪ Living in the garden of evil ♪

♪ Screwed up, scared ♪

♪ Doing anything that I needed ♪

♪ Shining like a fiery beacon ♪

♪ You got that medicine I need ♪

♪ Fame, liquor, love ♪

♪ Give it to me slowly ♪

♪ Put your hands on my waist ♪

♪ Do it softly ♪

♪ Me and God,
we don't get along ♪

♪ So now I sing ♪

♪ No one's gonna
take my soul away ♪

♪ I'm living like Jim Morrison ♪

♪ Headed towards
a messed-up holiday ♪

♪ Motel sprees,
sprees and I'm singing ♪

♪ Oh, yeah, give it to me ♪

♪ This is heaven,
what I truly want ♪

♪ It's innocence lost ♪

♪ Innocence lost ♪

♪ When you talk,
it's like a movie ♪

♪ And you're making me crazy ♪

♪ 'Cause life imitates art ♪

♪ If I get a little prettier ♪

♪ Can I be your baby? ♪

♪ You tell me life isn't
that hard ♪

♪ No one's gonna
take my soul away ♪

♪ I'm living like Jim Morrison ♪

♪ Headed towards
a messed-up holiday ♪

♪ Motel, sprees, sprees
and I'm singing ♪

♪ Oh, yeah, give it to me ♪

♪ This is heaven,
what I truly want ♪

♪ It's innocence lost ♪

♪ Innocence lost. ♪

(music ends)

(indistinct whispering)


(indistinct whispering)

My companions startled you.

My sincerest apologies.

A good All Hallow's Eve
to you, madam.

Edward Mordrake.

At your service.

Well... I didn't summon you.

It matters not who summoned us.

Only that we have been summoned.

And now, sadly, we are here

and cannot leave this place
until we have added

to our coterie
of freakish companions.

You say "companions."

You-you mean "victims."

It is not in my heart
to make you

or anyone else a victim,
my good woman.

But the visage is unrelenting.

I am its slave.
(indistinct whispering)

Silence! We have intruded
upon this lady uninvited.

Show some courtesy.

You can't take me with you.

There's so much
I have left to do.

And my time is short as it is.

Would that it were in my
power to grant reprieve.

But if the vile countenance
a-judges you a pure freak--

corrupted of flesh,
befouled of soul--

there can be no petition.

Yes! You are vile!

Vile and malevolent!

I am sorry.

There are questions
which must be asked.

As indelicate as they may be.

And you must be candid.

If you lie...

it will know.

(indistinct whispering)

You were not always in such

a degraded state as this.

You have fallen.


The story of your fall.

It would hear it
from your own mouth.

It's true.

I have fallen.

More than once.

And this backwater
ain't the worst of it.

I had an act once.

Slick as anything in vaudeville.

I'd surround myself

with the prettiest girls
I could find.

And then I'd dare the audience
to look at anything but me.

And they loved me for it.

I was the biggest thing
to come out of Baltimore

since Wallis Simpson.

Now, she landed
herself a monarch.

I ended up
with something else-- Dell.

I think maybe he really...

he really did love me at first.

I know I was crazy

about him.

He became my manager.

Put all kinds of ideas
in my head.

Told me I shouldn't be
doing popular tunes

and playing for laughs.

He said rich folks
don't pay for low comedy.

They want culture and art.

He convinced me
to leave the three-ring

when the show went to Paris.

He'd manage me exclusive
and we'd make a million.

Me as the bearded Bernhardt.

(crowd booing) Romeo, Romeo!

Wherefore art thou, Romeo?

Deny thy father
and refuse thy name...

(booing continues)

But if thou wilt not...

be but sworn my love.

Well, nobody wanted
to see some hairy broad

reciting the classics.

They laughed all right.

This time I wasn't
in on the joke.

I was the joke.

How dreadful for you.

(indistinct whispering)

What's it saying?

It knows you have a deeper pain.

A darker shame?


When you returned to the States,

what happened?

We were penniless.

I was carrying Dell's child.

We couldn't find carny work.

And I couldn't do my act--
not in that condition.

So, Dell arranged...

...a different kind
of command performance.

DELL: Grab some peanuts
on your way in, sir.

Thank you so much.

Step right up, folks.

It's the marvel of the century.

A live freak birth.

Something like you've
never seen before.

Right before your very eyes,
a live freak birth.

Right this way, sir!

Right before
your very eyes, folks!


(baby crying)

WOMAN: Look at his hands!
It's a monster! (gasps)

It's two bits to hold
the monster baby!

Two bits! Would you
like to hold him, sir?

Two bits!

You, ma'am!
Hold the monster baby!

It's a freak!

My poor boy.

How could I have
done that to him?

He's never known anything
but exploitation

right from the start.

I cursed my own child.

Thank you for your pains,
dear lady.

I'm sorry you had to relive

any of this.

I relive it every day.

(indistinct whispering)


I'm ready.

Take me to hell with you.

I deserve it.

(demonic whisper):
Not the one.

(footsteps approaching)

♪ Trick or treat? ♪

♪ Trick or treat,
trick or treat? ♪

♪ Find me something
good to eat ♪

♪ Trick or treat,
trick or treat? ♪

Trick or treat?

Trick or treat,
trick or treat, trick or treat?

Trick or treat?

Trick or treat, trick or treat?

Trick or treat?



Too short.

Not for long.


That'll do.


(footsteps approaching)


More fun.