For those who don’t know, singer Dory Previn wrote the song “Beware of Young Girls” about the affair between her husband, Andre Previn, and a young Mia Farrow—an affair that ended with Mia’s pregnancy, Andre and Dory’s divorce, and Andre’s subsequent remarriage to Mia.
Casting Tavi Gevinson, sporting a fully Farrow-esque blonde pixie cut, as the Kappa sister who stole Dean Munsch’s husband is subsequently a mini-stroke of meta genius, and a fun way to reenter the Scream Queens universe after a week spent at its polar opposite: the World Series. We’ve got séances, we’ve got American Horror Story callbacks, we’ve got potential bestiality—it’s a grand ol’ time!
We begin with Chanel No. 2’s funeral, held at the Kappa house because her parents are off celebrating her death with a cruise. Main Chanel has decided it’s time to crack down on her minions, even if they’re technically dead, so she mourns the loss of “a back-stabbing bitch [who] got what was coming to her” before sending her off via space burial. There’s some more cringeworthy dialogue about race (“It’s a shame you had to die before we could find out what ethnicity you are!”), made all the more cringeworthy by the notable absence of both Denise Hemphill and supposed Kappa co-president ZayDay this week. Isn’t skipping out on the funeral of one of your sisters kind unprofessional?
The Chanels, meanwhile, decide to have a bonding night over a ouija board, as you do. Dead Chanel No. 2 proves talkative, happily answering questions about whether No. 5 really does have teeth in her vagina (yes—also GET. A. WOMAN. IN. THAT. WRITER’S. ROOM.) and how many tampons No. 6 has in her bag (nine—AS. SOON. AS. HUMANLY. POSSIBLE.). But rather than help catch the killer, a project in which she should theoretically be interested given how she died, Chanel No. 2’s ghost is mostly there to wreak havoc. During the first séance, she claims Chad is cheating on Chanel; during the second, she claims it’s Chanel who’s murdering everyone.
The first revelation’s almost definitely true—and even if it isn’t now, it certainly was in the very recent past, given Chad’s funeral sendoff. Still, it leads to yet another boring, pointless confrontation between Chanel and Chad, with an only slight twist in the form of Chad’s lactose intolerance helper goat. Emma Roberts can only whine and buy Chad’s increasingly insane excuses for so long before it becomes boring to watch, and we hit that threshold around episode two.
The second leads to a more interesting dynamic, both because it’s probably true figuratively, if not literally; Gigi and the Red Devils’ motives may be unclear, but they obviously have something to do with targeting Kappa in general, and possibly Chanel in particular. But Chanel No. 6 is already looking for an opportunity to unseat her mentor/tormentor, so she seizes her chance to rally her co-minions against their leader. Their plan to murder Chanel via bowling ball and/or poisoned Prunex, however, is foiled by the ghost of No. 2, who seems to be playing both sides of the field here. We end the episode with Chanel firmly reinstated as leader, not to mention the only Chanel with a proven track record of effectively killing people—and, out of nowhere, focused on bringing down Grace and ZayDay.
Speaking of! Gigi takes her sorta-stepdaughter’s quest to de-’90s her wardrobe as a chance to do some misdirection. Not only does Grace fail to quash her dad’s girlfriend’s taste for high waists and power jackets, she also spends an entire episode chasing a dead end lead, investigating the timely death of Feather’s Beatles 101 professor/Dean Munsch’s ex instead of the other seven murders that have gone down this season.
Dean Munsch is the first, most obvious suspect, and she’s carted off to an insanely luxe mental hospital that exists to remind us of Asylum, Ryan Murphy’s one objectively good show when not graded on the Murphsanity curve. (I’m exaggerating, but only slightly.) She’s not in any hurry to leave given all the time she has to design formalwear and yell at orderlies, but she still points Pete and Grace in Feather’s direction. They find her DNA on a bo-lawg-nuh sandwich at the scene of the crime, and Tavi’s Incredible Matching Outfits are retired permanently.
Of course, it’s a frame job, and Dean Munsch celebrates getting both her husband and his erstwhile student by feeling her oats over a glass of wine, a ritual I’m not in any place to take issue with. And thus concludes an episode of Scream Queens that’s mostly place-setting for an intra-Kappa confrontation to come, but features a self-contained subplot that’s more entertaining than most. Until next week!