‘American Horror Story: Hotel’ Premiere Spoilers & Live Recap

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American Horror Story: Hotel premieres tonight with season 5 of the AHS series and we’ve got all our favorite cast members back in new roles. One big newbie, of course, is Lady Gaga whose character is The Countess. The Countess maintains her glamour and beauty by drinking human blood. In episode one, we all check in to Hotel Cortez, but will any of us check out? Tune in here for our live recap on the premiere episode we’ve all been waiting for … It all goes down at 10:00 p.m. ET/PT on FX.


The show opens in modern day outside Hotel Cortez with two female tourists making their way into the amazing, art deco-inspired hotel. They ring the bell at the front desk and comment on how quiet the lobby is. Iris (played by Kathy Bates) comes out and asks about reservations. The two women tell Iris that they are not fond of the hotel and would like their money back, but Iris tells them there are no refunds. The ladies are convinced to stay.

Walking down the hallways, the women hear moaning in the rooms. They ask about wi-fi and Iris says their is none. When one of the girls goes to get ice, she witnesses a maid steaming a blood-stained sheet. She then comes upon blonde children who seem to be directing her down the hall. A glittery chainmail glove reaches for the back of her head and when she turns around, she sees nothing. She returns to the hotel room and her friend complains of a bad smell, like a dead animal, in the room. They realize the smell is coming from the mattress and they see it has been stitched back together for some reason. The girls cut it open with a knife and a scary body of some kind reaches out. The girls scream and the credits air.

The women complain to the hotel manager Iris and she says that the police have been called and that she’s just as upset as they are. She takes them to room 64 and the girls keep trying to get a phone signal. The clock reaches 2:25 a.m. and music begins to play, waking up one of the women. She realizes her friend Aggie is no longer with her and she opens the bathroom door to see two little blonde children feasting on her friend.

In the next scene, Detective John Lowe is investigating a disturbing murder. A naked couple were having sex and were murdered in the middle of the act. Their eye balls are in the ashtray and the male’s tongue is with it. The male is still alive, but is in a lot of pain. The detective realizes the two victims are married but not to each other. The male has been crazy-glued inside of his dead lover and the detective comes to the conclusion that he’ll have to be cut loose.

The detective gets a phone call from his child and reads a bedtime story over the phone before leaving the office. As he’s leaving work, he gets a phone call from someone saying that he’s going to the Hotel Cortez and will kill again.

Hollywood junkie Gabriel rings the bell at the front desk and says he needs a room. Iris decides to give him room 64 and tells him that the elevator is out of service. He climbs the stairs and Hypodermic Sally watches him from the lobby. Sally tells Iris that she has dibbs on him and that she hasn’t “seen one that sweet in a while.” Walking down the hallway, Gabriel passes some interesting people, one of whom is Denis O’Hare’s character, cross-dresser Liz Taylor. Gabriel gets to his room to get high and gets confronted by The Addiction Demon who rapes him with a metal dildo.

Detective Lowe enters the hotel and he asks Iris about the occupant in room 64. She tells him that the room is vacant as he sees the key is missing. Iris calls out Liz Taylor to show the detective room 64. In the meantime, Sally enters room 64 and watches as Gabriel gets raped by the demon. She tells Gabriel that the more he screams, the more the demon likes it. She tells Gabriel to say, “I love you, Sally.” and that the demon will go away. Gabriel then appears to die with his eyes open.

Lowe enters room 64 to investigate. Gabriel, Sally and the demon are nowhere to be seen. Lowe lays down on the bed to get a feel for the room and closes his eyes. The camera pans down and Gabriel is shown gasping underneath the bed. The alarm on the clock wakes up Lowe at 2:25 a.m. and the little blond boy is at his side. The child leads him through the halls of the hotel.

We see The Countess getting dolled up and doing a line of cocaine as her lover, the sexy Donovan gets out of a bath. The two leave the hotel and walk through a graveyard towards an outdoor movie showing. This is known as Cinespia Cemetery Screenings, which is on Fairbanks Lawn at Hollywood Forever Cemetery. The two entice another couple to follow them to Hotel Cortez for what they assume is an opportunity for an orgy. Bomer is shown naked in the bed with the couple and The Countess reveals herself in sequin pasties and her thong. The Countess begins to have sex with the man while Donovan has sex with the woman. They then make them their victims, slashing their throats with their killer gloves. Donovan and The Countess bathe in their fluids, drinking their blood. They finish by having sex and laying with the bodies while smoking a cigarette. The Countess jokes, “And you didn’t want to go out tonight.” Donovan responds by saying, “It’s not the getting ready. It’s the clean up.”

Detective Lowe gets home to his daughter and his stressed out doctor wife Alex. Alex leaves and Lowe takes his daughter out for sushi.

In the meantime, the two foreign girls from the beginning are being held hostage by Iris, who is trying to “help the girls heal” by feeding them intravenously. Sally interrupts Iris, who tells her to leave. Iris says that she’s stuck at the hotel because of Sally and that she’s done with her bullshit. She tells Sally that she can finish the job or she can explain to The Countess why they “taste like shit”. Iris leaves to “go feed that thing in room 33.” Sally commands the girls to “move her with their tears.” She tells one of the girls (Vendela) to run. She runs through the hotel in her underwear and Iris spots her. As she nears the door, The Countess stands in her way and immediately slits her throat. Iris nervously tells The Countess that she doesn’t know how the girl got loose. The Countess tells her that can never happen again.

While Lowe is out to a sushi dinner with his daughter, it’s revealed that they lost someone dear to them who seems to be Lowe’s son. Lowe then gets a text message from his wife with an address asking for help. He calls his wife’s phone and it goes to voicemail. Lowe then enters the dark house at the address that was sent to him. Outside the police stand by with Lowe’s daughter in the car. Lowe gets a call from his wife’s phone with the same person on the line that had called him about Hotel Cortez. The voice tells Lowe that he told himhe would “do it again.” His daughter Scarlett ends up getting out of the car and wanders into the house. In the house, she finds two disemboweled men hanging from beds and screams.

The next scene takes place in 2010 with Lowe, his wife, daughter and his son Holden. Clearly, this is a flashback to show how his son died. As Lowe puts his son on a carousel, he looks away to check his phone. When he looks back, his son is missing from the spinning carousel. He starts screaming for his son and cannot find him anywhere. The show flashes back to the present and Lowe tells his wife that he’s going to have her, along with their daughter, followed by security. He says he doesn’t want them near him while this is going on. Alex tells him that she’s upset because she secretly wants him to go and she says she loves him and she doesn’t blame him for Holden. She says “they took her little boy from her.”

In the next scene, Will Drake and his son are being shown the hotel by the realtor who is a familiar face to AHS. Drake is a fashion icon who says he’s moving there from New York to reestablish himself. Iris questions the realtor about the sale and introduces Drake as the new owner as Liz Taylor looks on. Drake’s son is terrified. They make their way to the penthouse and find a naked Donovan who is angry about the intrusion.

The Countess approaches Drake quite differently and commends him on his accomplishments in fashion. As Drake’s son snoops around the room, Drake tells The Countess about how he loves the energy of the hotel. While Donovan is clearly upset, The Countess tells him to show Drake a sculpture in the building. In the meantime, The Countess tells Drake’s son that she wants to show him something. She takes him to a random wall in the hallway, knocks on the wall and it opens like a door. He looks inside and finds blonde-haired children in a white room filled with video games and candy. The Countess comes up to one child and addresses him as Holden. She clearly has taken Lowe’s son. Holden asks Drake’s son if he’d like to play and the show cuts to commercial.

Donovan is leaving the hotel and is confronted by an alarmed Iris who reveals she is his mother and that she works at the hotel because she wants to see him every day. He tells her to let go. The show flashes back to 1994 with Iris watching Sally from her car. Sally is bringing Donovan into the hotel as Liz Taylor sits and watches from the front desk. Iris pleads with Taylor to tell her what room they’re in, saying she wants to stop Sally, a junkie, from giving her son drugs. The two get high and Sally convinces Donovan to share her needle. Iris bangs on the door to the room as her son lays high on the bed and Sally tries to put on lipstick. Iris asks Sally what she gave Donovan and Sally says she gave him China White. Iris cries as she holds her son and Sally leaves, stumbling down the hallway. She stands by a window and Iris pushes her out of it. Sally lands on the concrete and Iris cries as she walks back into the room where her son lies, appearing to be dead. She finds The Countess sitting with her son and The Countess says, “Your boy has a jawline for days.”

In the next scene, Detective Lowe is packing to leave and kisses his sleeping daughter goodbye. Lowe checks into the hotel and he’s given room 64.


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