Scream Queens Recap: The Hero Takes the Mall

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Keke Palmer as Zayday, Abigail Breslin as Chanel No. 5, Emma Roberts as Chanel, Billie Lourd as Chanel No. 3, and Lea Michele as Libby. Photo: Patti Perret/FOX
Scream Queens
Episode Title
Black Friday
Season
1
Episode
11
Editor’s Rating
3/5

Since I called Pete being the transgender Bathtub Baby killer weeks ago (a theory that might still come to pass), I should be the most excited that he confessed to Grace at the end of the episode that she doesn’t want to have sex with him because he’s a murderer. It would seem that all the evidence we got about Pete over the course of the episode would confirm that he’s the killer, but there is no way that he would have confessed it to Grace the way he did if he was actually the killer.

You saw the promo for next week — it’s all this hype about how the killer is actually revealed and blah blah blah. It wouldn’t lean that heavily on her identity if Pete had let the cat out of the bag at the end of the penultimate episode. And it’s not like he said he was the murderer, he said he was a murderer, which is very different. You know that once he explains it, it will be something totally innocent that we can just swat away like the security guards stationed at the door of Target on the day after Thanksgiving.

So, yeah, the episode started with Black Friday, which ultimately had absolutely nothing to do with the plot except that the Red Devil showed up and shot an arrow into Chanel’s shoulder, and we found out that Denise Hemphill is now the police chief because #TrueDetectiveSeasonThree. However, Chanel’s indictment of the ridiculous consumerism of the new American holiday was not only spot-on, it was also hilarious. But isn’t she just as bad as all the barbarians storming the gates at Walmart with her giant closet full of designer clothes? Isn’t her criticism a little empty?

There were a bunch of things about this episode that bugged me. Did Grace get blonder, or was it just the contrast of her hair to one of her ugly hats? Was Boone gay, or wasn’t he? And if he was, why did he have so much lube and a butt plug? I mean, straight guys can be into assplay too, but really? Would a bunch of 20-year-old girls really leave their product-placement Samsung phones on a table in some random Victoria’s Secret and not answer them? Today I saw a girl sitting on the floor of the Columbus Circle mall charging her phone in an outlet next to the front door and cradling it in her arms like it was the baby Jesus himself. And you think that these three are going to leave their mobile devices unmanned? Please.

But nothing bothered me more than how everyone just jumped on this bandwagon to kill Dean Munsch because they think she is the killer. I know this show is totally ridiculous, but come on. That’s just crazy. And then Grace gets on her moral high horse about it to Pete, saying how they have to kill to prevent her from killing again. Still, no one has any proof whatsoever that she did it. Grace says there is circumstantial evidence, but can anyone even point me to some of that? No.

After Grace changes her mind and decides not to kill the Dean, Zayday says that they still need to do it. She says, “Under these circumstances, I don’t know what choice we have.” Um, you have all of the choices. How about tell the police? How about tie her up and make her confess? How about set a trap like Scooby Doo and the gang would? How about posting the information on the internet and letting the sleuths of Reddit figure it out? How about an exposé in the paper that Pete is running? How about making a bunch of posters saying she’s the killer and putting them all over campus? I mean, you have to really rule out just about every single possibility before you get to prophylactic murder.

Still, it seems that nothing can kill Ms. Munsch anyway, not even poison, a cryogenic freezing chamber, or an exegesis on why Taylor Swift is the real feminist icon of our times. So maybe she is the killer? (She does have a killer body. Damn, that Activia sure is doing Jamie Lee Curtis a lot of good!) I don’t think so. Again, it seems too obvious, but really, her motive doesn’t quite make sense. This would not be the way to shut down Kappa, and I have a feeling she is going to get it early on next episode, when the Red Devil escalates his/her plan and starts really killing the people who matter.

I have two theories. It might be Chanel No. 5. Why? First of all, the surviving Bathtub Baby that is not Boone is a girl, so she has two X chromosomes going for her. Also, she’s totally nuts, hates the sorority but keeps coming back, was one of the few people around who could have disfigured Dorkus but also threatened the whole house this year, and she hates Chanel. Also, she’s survived multiple attacks by the Red Devil, which, ironically, makes her more of a suspect, since that sort of takes the scent off of her. Also, who would have more of a motive for killing those jerks Roger and Dodger than Chanel No 5?

But she was one of the people attacked by the Red Devil at the mall, so it couldn’t be her. What if that was Pete wearing his Red Devil costume, and he was working with Chanel No. 5 all along to continue to throw people off of her trail? If it’s not her, what other female suspects are left? Grace? Zayday? Dean Munsch? Denise Hemphill? None of those seem like quite the right fit.

But there is still plenty of evidence for why Pete could be the murderer. (You didn’t see that twist coming, did you!) First of all, Boone left all of his things to Pete, maybe signifying that Pete is his twin who had gender-reassignment surgery. Either that, or they actually were gay lovers (I would like to watch that video, please), or Pete and Boone were just secret friends and Boone was feeding him information about Greek life on campus. I find that hard to believe.

Speaking of which, Pete’s relationship with the Dickie Dollar Scholars is quite interesting. They rejected him for having a crappy ab routine and not having enough John Mayer albums. More of them have died than Kappas. Maybe this is his revenge? Or maybe he was really trying to infiltrate them to expose the Greek system on campus. Either way, it was fishy.

Then Pete is quite complimentary of the killer, saying, “He’s cleaning all the mess and filth of this place in a way no dean or exposé ever could.” It’s like he’s complimenting himself. Then he says he dreams of working at “Slate.com,” which is what your grandmother calls it when she finds an article about why cuddling is actually awful or some other ridiculous Slate pitch like that. That is what an insane person would say!

Pete also dissuades Grace from killing Dean Munsch, either because he wants to do it because he’s the killer out for revenge or because he knows she’s not the killer and doesn’t want his half-sister Grace (whom he makes out with, gross) to go to jail for an unjustified murder.

Also, what was up with Pete’s conversation with Wes, where they find out that Gigi was actually the fourth girl in the bathroom’s sister who raised the Bathtub Babies on her own? That whole thing was weird, and it still leaves one person’s name on the list. Someone unaccounted for. Is that the lynchpin of this theory? Maybe that is Pete’s connection to the whole thing because, after all, he is Latino and Wes and the dead girl in the bathtub were not.

This all sounds like very killerific behavior. But then his phone conversation makes him sound more like an accomplice than a killer. “I’m leaving campus, just like you should,” he tells someone. (Chanel No. 5?) “Why do you want to keep taking this any further? The point has been made. Don’t you ever call me again.” Or what if he’s talking to Wes, and they knew he was Wes’s son/daughter all along? That would explain why he wouldn’t have sex with Grace even when she wanted to. However, would he really be knowingly kissing his half sister? (But also, if he is trans, he might not have had the complete surgery yet, which would explain why he demurred from getting naked.)

Would he not want to finish his plan if he was the real killer? Or maybe he is finally calling it off and there is one last killer out there? Maybe I’m just totally wrong? Guess we’ll find out next week, when all is revealed.

A Collection of Funny Lines Taken Completely Out of Context:

  • “A pair of mink albino boy shorts!”
  • “At first I was like, ‘What a weird turkey,’ and then I was like, ‘Damn, it’s a head.’”
  • “Go ahead and shoot me, hag. It will make me young and skinny forever, and you'll just be Oooollllld …”
  • “Why didn’t I shoot him when I had the chance? I was just talking so much.”
  • “Thank you, Talking Pumpkin.”
  • “Stop interrupting my dead gay friend Boone.”
  • “My HBO Go password goes to Pete Martinez.”
  • “Any friend and possible gay lover of Boone is a friend of mine.”
  • “Being a millennial feminist means growing up listening to Taylor Swift saying she doesn’t like to think of the world as boys versus girls.”
  • “The nurse said he told her that he usually does his nightly nude yoga before setting up a perimeter of Lego characters to guard his bed while he sleeps, but this time he decided to do it after, and he accidentally sat on Lego Captain Jack Sparrow.”
  • “When I was your age, I was thoughtless about sex. So thoughtless, I fathered twins with a girl whose name I can’t remember, and those twins would murder a bunch of people.”