Ten Things You Now Know About Witches, if you watch AMERICAN HORROR STORY: COVEN

Ten Things You Now Know About Witches, if you watch AMERICAN HORROR STORY: COVEN January 11, 2014

1. Witches have really nice clothes.

No, seriously. Designer shit. Expensive nice togs, impeccably tailored. Unless you’re black, in which case your clothes are more likely to be cheap, ill-fitting and garish, unless you’re Marie Laveau and have been pillaging rich white bitches’ wardrobes for 300 years. And if you’re an older witch, your style may be a bit eccentric or old-fashioned, but your duds are still of excellent quality.

2. Witches utter insanely clever dialogue.

To wit: “Can you imagine those poor Salem witches traveling all the way down here in covered wagons without a proper charcuterie platter or a bidet? Absolutely savage!” or “I do love a key lime pie, even more than an ile flottante. Call me a Philistine!” (both of these lines spoken by Myrtle, who, being the Roger Sterling of AHS: COVEN is given all of the best lines.) Or some in a more youthful, colloquial style: “Girl, you ain’t got no stomach, what are you going to do, chew it and shit it out of your neck?” (Queenie, on Madame LaLaurie’s state of decaptitude.) Or this one from Marie Leveau: “When I plant a fat-ass cracker bitch, I expect her to stay planted!” Or this one from  Fiona: “I’m not going to die bald and shriveled, begging for morphine. No. I’ve lived a disreputable life but I’ve done it in style, and I’ll die likewise.” (For more of Fiona’s excellent one-liners, and some of her previous incarnations on American Horror Story, check out this excellent blog post).

3. Witches are sexually insatiable.

Yeah, Kramer and Sprenger called this one. You know, those 16th century German dudes who wrote the witch hunting book, the Malleus Maleficarum, who claimed all evil stems from sexual desire in women. But yeah, witches are jonesing for it 24-7, if this show is to be believed. The young charges of Miss Robichaux’s Academy have done it with (or are trying to do it with) minotaurs, zombie frat boys, comatose frat boys, the hunk next door, you name it. Fiona has a history of seducing men like most women go through Q-tips.

4. Witches are super wealthy.

Unless, again, they’re black…Queenie used to work in a chicken shack. Voodoo priestess Marie Laveau (who the show seems to be portraying as a witchlike character, particularly now that she has initiated an alliance with Fiona) makes a modest living running a hair salon in NOLA’s 9th Ward. The blatant expression of the socioeconomic divide between black and white is almost embarrassing in its obliviousness.

5. Witches have supernatural powers and 6. use their powers to wreak mayhem and hurt people.

Queenie’s “human voodoo doll” powers seem mainly designed to torture or kill others; Madison’s telekinesis is used for a mass murder in the first episode; Nan’s clairvoyance triggers her anger at boyfriend Luke’s murdering mother; Zoe can literally fuck boys to death, and does, both intentionally and unintentionally. Fiona seems able to dispatch people with a variety of supernatural abilities (the “Seven Wonders” we’re still not clear on), and interestingly Myrtle, who does not seem to possess supernatural ability but is canny and clever, and uses her knowledge of herbs to paralyze the Council and procure their eyes with a melonballer. All of the witches have engaged in some form of violent assault, murder or dismemberment.

7. Witches don’t have to be productive members of society.

Nope, they can just hang out all day, maybe learning a bit of herb craft or practicing their Latin pronunciation if they feel like it, but mainly they get dressed up in fancy clothes and wander around town shopping, or eating; or they smoke and drink and do drugs and scheme against their enemies, or each other. Cuz, ya know, SISTERHOOD!

8. Witches don’t age.

Apparently, they can get very very sick once a sexy young thang comes into her powers and threatens to usurp her authority (the whole “Supreme” conceit which is not terribly well-explained, frankly…and please, let us not see a rash of teenage girls wondering if they might be the “next Supreme” like the ones back in the 1990s were finding ways to worship “Manon” the fictional god in THE CRAFT). But immortality seems fairly easy to achieve…if you’re willing to sell your soul. Easy peasy.

9. Witches do not make good BFFs.

It’s actually rather entertaining to watch the myriad ways these women sabotage, deceive and betray one another. I dunno about you, but where I come from, the word “coven” is associated with this idea of “perfect love and perfect trust” and generally benevolent deeds among its members. Then again, we all know how our lovely little witchcraft community is full of liars, charlatans and sociopaths, so maybe COVEN is onto something. Hmmm…

10. Witch hunting is more than just a job, it’s a calling…

And apparently it can be the basis for multi-billion dollar corporate wealth! But the witch hunters are rather unimaginative, if you ask me; I mean, you’d think these guys would use some interesting methods like burning or drowning or pressing with stones or poison or strangulation, you know, medieval type torture shit, but no, the witches do that kind of stuff to each other (who knew witch burning still happened in North America? or that it ever did?) and the witch hunters just use good old fashioned semi-automatic rifles. Seems like a very creative opportunity, wasted.


Next up: Ten Things You Now Know About Voodoo!


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  • Luis

    OMG thank you I love this lol

  • Aine

    This quote: “When I plant a fat-ass cracker bitch, I expect her to stay planted!” isn’t from Queenie, it’s from Marie Laveau :/

    • PegAloi

      Oops! I think you are right.

  • Myrtle is amazing. I want her to be what people think when they think of witches.

    • PegAloi

      I love Myrtle too! Frances Conroy is fantastic in that role.

  • Rayna Noire

    So no one sees this as encouraging stereotyping. The good clothes and wealth I wouldn’t mind…too bad I have neither.

  • Rayna Noire

    It reminds me of when I went to Britain in my 20’s, Everyone I met thought we lived like the Ewing family on Dallas. That television show was their only contact with Americans for some. By just being me, I could not convince them otherwise.