Scream Queens: 01×011, Black Friday (Review)

scream queens

Courtesy Of: FOX

We’re now post-Thanksgiving and diving into the dangerous realm of Black Friday shoppers – which Chanel couldn’t be more excited about on this weeks episode of Scream Queens. Chanel describes the event as an opportunity for “buying deliberately cheap, totally forgettable Christmas gifts for friends. The obvious cheapness of the gift makes them question our friendship and makes them way easier to manipulate as they try to get back on my good side!” Chanel also calls the event a great example of “whale watching” and bribes the workers to let her shop ahead of time to avoid the mayhem and create door buster jealousy. At the Kappa house, the shopping preparations begin for the Chanels, and Dean Munsch tries to advise against it until the police arrive to collect the last remains of Gigi. Chanel disregards Munsch’s attempt at parental advice, and the four proceed to leave for the deadly shopping extravaganza!

Grace, Pete, and Wes head to the police station to disclose the most recent murder (of a murderer) but learn that the unintelligent police force of their town has been fired. Yeah, let that sink in. During the shopping trip, Chanel realizes her minions have joined forces to purchase her a $13,000 gift and she undergoes a change in heart – leading Chanel to the conclusion she’ll buy them each matching pink jeeps! (What a lovely gesture from someone who hate-loves the other Chanels!) Before they can exit, the mall lights are shut down and the Red Devil appears with a crossbow in pursuit of the Kappa clique. The Chanels find a way out (after blaming #5) but Chanel stays behind to face-off with the killer (who she believes is Dean Munsch) and fill her position as Kappa president. She is shot in the shoulder by the masked killer, and tries to crawl away while she reloads her weapon – but a recently absent Denise makes her return in a police uniform with two officers at her sides. Denise takes the rare moment (while having the killer in her sights) to explain her new position after a precinct wide layoff, giving the Red Devil enough time to kill one of the officers and quickly escape. The attack leaves an impression that there is possibly another character under the Red Devil cloak, but I’ll keep that theory for the very end of this.

The remaining Kappa sisters (the Chanels plus Grace and Zayday) assemble with an injured Chanel who begins by telling them all major arteries were miraculously missed. Chanel then points her finger at Dean Munsch as the remaining killer, certain that her connection to the past and hate for Kappas is her major motive. In a surprising turn of events, Grace sides with Chanel on the notion that they will kill Dean Munsch (and both similarly respond that poison will suffice.) I can already imagine people are making assumptions that Chanel is the bathtub baby, but I’m not sold on that theory. Chad holds a reading of Boone’s last will and testament, in which Boone has left all of his belongings (including a few adult novelty items) to Pete – yeah didn’t see that coming. Pete tries to explain that Boone was his source for all things Greek at the university, but the random claim along with the fact that Pete previously tried to pledge the Dollar Scholars makes the Fraternity president question Petes involvement. Despite his concerns, Chad extends an invitation to Pete to join the Dickie Dollar Scholars saying, “Any secret friend and possible gay lover of Boone is a friend of mine.” However, Pete declines the generous offer which leads to Chad informing Pete that refusing membership will result in a life or death duel (Chad mentions all weapons from sabers to pebbles) and promises Pete that he will soon be “murdered to death.” 

A newly United Grace and Chanel make a trip to the dean’s office and claim they are there to talk feminism by referencing Taylor Swift, with the intention of poisoning Munsch by using her favorite beverage (based on a Facebook post of course). Dean Munsch hilariously responds to the Taylor Swift statement by saying “that’s not what feminism was about…” before finally drinking the apple cider laced with a vile of puffer fish poison. Munsch downs the cider like its nothing and begins an elaborately thought out feminist speech, and the only reaction the poison receives from her is a well timed belch. Consider attempt number one a massive failure! Grace vents her frustrations to Pete and he informs her that she isn’t a killer, but Grace feels morally obligated to save the ones she cares for – mainly Pete. The two kiss, and Pete then tells Grace about the fraternity offer, but ends up saying he sometimes understands why the Red Devil would clear out the “filth” of the Greek system. Pete then says he’s content with what he has (including Grace) and Pete hopes to finally sleep with her, but she tells him she’s just not in the right state of mind. Grace switches gears and returns to the topic of killing the dean, and Pete tells her that she can’t jeopardize her position as one of the legitimate “good guys” in the world. He leaves shortly after his attempt to persuade her to avoid killing, and Grace looks as if she has begun process his advice.

Chanel and the other Kappas gather again to come up with a new plan to kill Munsch, but Grace now decides to back out and tries to get the others on the same page. The Chanels and Zayday disagree, so Chanel kicks Grace out of the sorority – and Zayday decides to stay to finish the job. Grace has had very bad luck in the last few episodes, and I increasingly feel pity for the girl who struggles to find female companionship after growing up motherless. Now, after losing her “sisterhood” Grace returns to her father (who happens to be accompanied by Pete) and they begin to share with her the information they gathered on Gigi. As it turns out, Gigi was actually the sister of the Kappa who took the babies in 1995. Gigi was admitted to the asylum when her sister committed suicide, and ultimately ended up raising the children born on the night things went all wrong. Pete leaves after they exchange the new Intel, and Grace goes to her father for advice on “expectations” of a relationship. He gives her the best pep talk a dad in that situation can, and tells her that if she’s not feeling ready – she probably isn’t. 

The Chanels (plus Zayday) take Dean Munsch to a cryosauna, a place Chanel says is basically used freeze away your skin issues or lupus, and tells Munsch, “you know what they say, age before beauty!” while sending Munsch into the chamber first. They change the temperature to the coldest setting and leave her in the room for a large chunk of time. “We’ll pull bitch-popsicle from the freezer, throw her in the trunk, and make tracks.” Chanel tells the others before opening the cryosauna to a frozen – but still very much alive Dean Munsch. Attempt number 2… Also a failure (thank goodness!) Pete is now back in his dorm room and packs his belongings in a rush, but he also takes a mysterious phone call and tells the person he’s leaving the campus while he can, as should the unnamed caller. Pete claims that he feels guilt over what “they” did, and tells the person to never call his phone again. (My first guess is Wes, and you’ll see my thought process at the end of this piece.)  

When the Kappas meet again to discuss how Munsch is alive after yet another attempted murder, my personal favorite explanation goes to Hester’s extremely detailed monologue on the history of Rasputin (summarizing that Munsch could be simply be unstoppable). Lea Michele once again impresses as her zany character – providing me with the utmost sensation of love for the latest Chanel. Piggybacking off Hester’s theory, Chanel tells the others that she will notify them via post-black Friday smartphones when to meet at the pool to drown Munsch, “Just like Rasputin.” When the time comes, the Chanels are too distracted with shopping issues of their own (and are each equally entertaining) so Chanel is left to deal with the plan without the aid of her Kappa sisters. When Munsch arrives, she clearly doesn’t believe her odd invitation and exits after slyly intimidating Chanel. So this is three attempts on Munsch’s life, each completely failing. Grace later finds Pete with his bags packed, and he claims he’s just temporarily leaving. She offers to accompany him for a romantic getaway before telling him she’s ready to sleep with him – because Grace decides she’d want her first time to be with a good guy. A reluctant Pete tells her she hardly knows him and doesn’t accept the romantic gesture (and her actually admitting she’s in love with him) telling Grace she shouldn’t be with a killer… 

Overall Grade: Scream Queens episode 11 was both comedic and serious, creating a hilarious dynamic between the Chanels and Munsch, with a spotlight on Hester’s hilarity and the sad developments for Grace and Pete. I also began to return to my thoughts on Grace being a killer with a twist (the elaborate conspiracy will be below) and that alone made me yearn to discover the killer’s identity even more. Finally, Chanel’s Black Friday introduction was the equivalent of Chanel-O-Ween, and a great moment on the episode that I’d give an “A-” 

Aedan’s Final Thoughts:

-This will be my last chance to predict the remaining killer for the season so here goes nothing…

  • I think that there is a slim chance of this, but if Grace were to be a killer, I’d assume she would have either developed a split personality or some coping mechanism to live with her actions; an even slimmer possibility would include Pete discovering the truth about Grace and fighting to protect her as a potential accomplice. That could also mean Pete clued in Wes during this episode and would possibly explain the ominous phone call. Like I said, I’m totally going conspiracy theories because of the ongoing mysteries and I don’t mind one bit. 
  • My only other guesses would be Hester or #3/5, but that would definitely mean there was a fourth killer in play, and that would be harder to identify an extra killer’s motives. (and it’s hard to pick one over the other because they all have been on my radar so often.) #5’s family has yet to be shown but we know her mother was a former Kappa, and her odd interactions with Boone early on could be another sign. #3’s family situation, choices, and occasional placement during attacks could give her a connection to the killer, and Hester – well, she’s Hester. There are too many signs pointing to Hester being the bathtub child, so I’ll spare you the long list of explanations. Just know that she’s still on the list of suspects going into the final two episodes.

-Scream Queens is quickly coming to an end, and I sincerely hope that there will be another season of horror and humor to keep the slasher genre alive.

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