×

This episode of “American Horror Story” had everything: Lies, bellowing about abortion, Cheeto-colored men. Kidding, that was the other American horror story, the one that started at 9 p.m. This one was a little tamer, though the only thing this was missing was a Cheeto-colored man.

When “AHS” ended its fifth episode last week with the apparent conclusion of the tale of Shelby and Matt’s Roanoke nightmare, everyone wondered what was next. Well, let’s let Cheyenne Jackson’s slimy reality producer, the one who created “My Roanoke Nightmare,” tell you: “It’s like ‘Big Brother,’ but with scares!”

Apparently by the end of “My Roanoke Nightmare,” the show was drawing an absurd 23 million viewers and a 14.0 rating in the 18-49 demographic. (Fact-check from a ratings reporter: Nothing has done a 14.0 in the demo in a very long time.) There were magazine covers, fan sites, the whole kit and kaboodle that comes along with a hit.

And so “My Roanoke Nightmare” creator and producer Sydney Aaron James (Jackson) is pretty much guaranteed a 13-episode pick-up on the spot by a bunch of executives. Here’s the weird thing: Syd is filming the pitch to the network. In fact, he’s filming everything, because he believes the rabid “Roanoke” fans are hungry for footage of the process.

The 13 new episodes of “My Roanoke Nightmare” will be “Return to Roanoke: Three Days in Hell.” Syd bought the Roanoke house from Matt for half its worth, and they’re relocating it to Ojai, California. They’ll bring the re-enactors and their real-life counterparts together under one roof during the upcoming blood moon and film everyone freaking out for 72 hours.

Essentially, Season 6 of “AHS” has turned into a theoretically more terrifying version of Lifetime’s “UnREAL.” (But with scares.)

So now it’s time to check in on everyone involved in the original “Roanoke” project. Let’s start with Shelby: Shelby is having a rough time. People are leaving hatchets in her door, she and Matt have separated, and she had a weekend fling with Dominic Banks, the actor who portrayed her husband. “I settled for the cheap imitation,” Shelby says wryly, which is a fun joke about a guy played by Cuba Gooding Jr.

She wants Matt back, so she’ll do the show. But Dominic can’t be involved, she says. Anyone who’s seen a TV show knows Syd will ensure Dominic will be involved.

In addition to relocating the house to Ojai and making sure to inflict mundane pain on the future residents, Syd is making the crew rig sinks to explode with sulfur-tainted water, windows to shatter, and cabinets to explode.

His producer Diana is concerned about that level of psychological manipulation. “I’m interested in using horror to find justice,” Syd says. “I’m going to be the guy who gets Lee Harris to admit what she did.”

But things are already starting to get weird at the house: Some crew people find a ring of fetal pigs arranged behind a tree on the property. Naturally, they suspect…

Agnes Mary Winstead (Kathy Bates), who played the Butcher. “She’s the role of a lifetime. I felt a connection with her from the first moment I auditioned.” She was even nominated for a Saturn Award!

But so Agnes Mary went bugnuts and attacked people in Hollywood with a butcher’s knife after filming. She was sentenced to six months in a mental institution and diagnosed with schizoaffective disorder. “I dove too deep into the part,” she says, but she’s better now. She’s surprised to see the ring of fetal pigs. He brings in cops to serve her with a restraining order on-camera, which is an abominable way of telling someone she can’t be on the show. “The Butcher is not real,” he says. “We only want real people this year.”

“I’m a real person,” she says. He tells her to stay away, clearly goading her into showing up, because he is a Professional Garbage Person.

Matt’s sister Lee has signed on to do the show to clear her name — her mother-in-law is suing her for custody. Syd is concerned the show is liable if Lee murders someone. Good news: They’re not! But the show’s counsel is more concerned about their liability where the actress who played Lee is concerned.

Said actress, Monet Petusme (played by Angela Bassett, if you recall, and the director of this episode) has been in and out of rehab for the last few months for alcoholism, and therefore the show cannot knowingly give her alcohol. “Alcohol is the secret sauce of reality shows,” Syd whines, like we didn’t all already know that. But there’s more good news! If Monet happens to find alcohol on her own, they show’s not liable.

Finally: Some bad news! On set in Ojai, a chainsaw just lifted itself in a guy’s hand and chainsawed him to death. Syd is concerned for half a second, before wondering if they can continue production. They can! Diana quits in a blaze of glory and peels off in her car, which of course has a camera in it that she continues yelling at. Which is good for Diana, who, mid-rant, sees the Pig Man appears in her backseat. It murders her to death.

Update via text on the screen: Diana Cross’ body was missing for three months before cops found the camera.

But let’s move on. Sarah Paulson is Audrey Tindall, the actress who portrayed Shelby. There’s a fun “blooper” from the making of the reenactment where Audrey trips and Edward’s re-enactor Rory Monaghan — a ginger — asks her out. In a confessional, they reveal they’re married. Mazel, guys.

They’re probably going to die, not least of which because Rory answers the phone with “Herrro?” On their way to greet the rest of the arrivals, Agnes tries to bust in the window closest to them. (As though Syd didn’t know that would happen.) Agnes has also been torturing Audrey in the time between the original “My Roanoke” filming and present day because Audrey won the Saturn Award she was also nominated for, and so Audrey assumes this is just another part of Agnes’ campaign.

Everyone finally arrives at the house and gets a new phone, with special features en- or disabled as the producers have seen fit. Lee goes off on Shelby for basically making the world think she’s a murderer.

“I thought it was a little much,” Audrey says of the resulting blowup. The actors have reverted back to old bonds formed during filming, which clearly bothers the real people. “The Blood Moon is coming,” Matt intones. The actors don’t quite get it.

And then there’s a card informing the audience every since person who was in the house over that three-day period died… Save one.

Guesses as to who the “one” is? Depending on how just this version of Ryan Murphy’s world is, it could easily be Professional Garbage Person Syd.

Rory and Audrey are filming themselves making love in the hot tub. Matt takes up residence in the basement, like a fool, because he doesn’t want to share with his ex-wife. Monet has found some booze. Lee is being stalked by what looks like a flayed man.

Shleby goes down to the basement to try and talk Matt out of sleeping in a place that will obviously kill him. “We shouldn’t have come back,” Matt says. “I don’t know if we’ll survive this time.” Spoiler, Matt: You probably don’t.

Lee and Angela have a bit of a heart-to-heart about how Lee made Monet an alcoholic by being a murderer. “That’s how you played me,” Lee points out.

Dominic shows up. “It felt nice to finally meet Dominic in person,” Matt says in a confessional as footage plays of him pummeling Dominic. Shelby unleashes a torrent of expletives at Sydney through a camera, because seriously, that is low.

The Pig Man appears in a mirror behind Audrey. She doesn’t die, but instead runs screaming to Rory. In a fit of pique, he goes upstairs to confront Sydney for being that big a jerk, and instead finds the Murder Nurse Twins, who stab him to death. Chivalry really is dead.

Someone has painted “MURDER” on the wall. “‘R’ is for ‘Rory,'” Matt intones again. Matt, you keep talking like a serial killer child, people are going to suspect you of something.

So there you have it! “Return to Roanoke: Three Days in Hell” is the next part of this season at least. Place your bets on the “one” who will be left standing.