Dammit. Thoughts are all over the place, and I need to be up in five hours. Some very sketchy jottings on ghosts as handled in American Horror Story. Spoilers follow.
I’m working on the theory that the homicidal teenage boy and the housekeeper are the ghosts, here. I think the neighbour might be; John also thinks her daughter might be, although I am not convinced. The twins are obviously ghosts, and given the setting, whatever’s inside the rubber suit that Vivien has sex with probably is too.
First off, they’re pretty clearly tangible. This meshes beautifully with the setting; the entire house is the past dragged back and dusted off and then left to loom there in all its overwrought Gothic glory. (Pity the poor bastards who restored it.) Tate’s
effect assault on Violet’s bully and the suit’s sex with Vivien make that clear; while I don’t think we’ve actually seen Moira touch anyone, presumably housekeeping duties require her to tidy things up and move housecleaning supplies around.
…a rider: they’re pretty clearly tangible within the house. We haven’t seen any of them outside the house yet.
(I don’t think the house is a ghost. I do think it’s a haunted house, and this is distinctly different from a house that has a ghost or ghosts in it. Haunted houses are poison places with their own malevolent effects–and I use the word carefully. Malevolent, after all, implies volition.)
It’s interesting, I guess, because American Horror Story seems like something where it won’t matter who the ghost was; it’ll matter what they do to you. And when the ghosts have the option of affecting the physical world, I am left wondering… inside the house, does it matter who are the living and who are the dead? Horror stories are often about the unnatural intruding into the natural; if the house is an environment that doesn’t make the distinction, who’s intruding on who?
And who’s going to be stronger?