Finale Fallout: 8 Lingering Questions American Horror Story: Delicate’s Ending Failed to Address

American Horror Story: Delicate failed to properly conclude the horror anthology season, leaving audiences with more questions than answers.


American Horror Story: Delicate has ended, but the season failed to resolve many of the ideas it introduced. Over the last several years, the popular horror anthology series has struggled to return to the heights of success it reached with earlier seasons. In an effort to try something new, AHS season 12 has adapted a story from a novel for the first time instead of creating an original story, but while the source material has received a lot of praise for it’s compelling 400-page story, the nine episodes of AHS: Delicate have ended with more questions than answers.

AHS: Delicate draws inspiration from Delicate Condition, a novel by Danielle Valentine which was released just a month before the season began airing. In both, the central character is Anna Alcott, a young and successful actress who becomes pregnant through IVF. However, while the book may fill in some of the blanks from the season, the show failed to effectively tell the story, and left viewers with more questions than answers. Some details introduced in the final episode appeared out of place, but several other loose threads were introduced earlier in the show.

8What Was Happening With The Dolls?

Aerial shot of Anna Victoria Alcott surrounded by 5 Barbie dolls while looking at her cellphone in American Horror Story: Delicate season 12 ep 6

Image via FX

Throughout the season, Anna found various dolls that resembled her popping up in odd locations. When she tried to dispose of the dolls, another would appear, and it quickly became a source of major distress. While the show revealed some details of her life being altered and played with by Dex’s secret girlfriend, the dolls appear to have been planted by those in the cult close to Anna.

This would have been an easy thing to set up, and could simply have been a way to make Anna more scared and anxious, but the show failed to offer any explanation about them in the finale. Kim Kardashian’s character, Siobhan, is seen holding a doll, which suggests that the cult was behind this stunt, but there was no further explanation as to why they were there. Speculation about voodoo dolls was floated around earlier in the season, but the show fails to give any clear answers.

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7Who Were The Ashley’s?

Siobhan Corbyn taking a selfie with two of her assistants in American Horror Story: Delicate season 12 ep 6

Image via FX

Before the mid-season break, the Ashley’s were revealed to be two prominent members of the mysterious cult of women. They were shown to pop up in history with other women who traded children for wealth and fame, and returned to do the same with Anna. Despite their central role in the first half of the season, they are mostly absent from the second, and even a large portion of the finale.

Ashley and Ashleigh worked with Siobhan, both at her PR agency, and in the cult to procure children from pregnant women. However, whether their role was significant or not is minimized by their lack of involvement in the final four episodes. In the finale, Anna wakes up with all of the women she met who have been hidden members of this cult, except for the Ashley’s, and it isn’t until they enter a different room a few scenes later that they suddenly appear with the rest of the group.

6How Did Anna Beat Siobhan With A Chant?

Siobhan surrounded by mysterious haze begins to age in American Horror Story Delicate season 12 ep 9 (FINALE)Image via FX

One of the most baffling details about AHS: Delicate was how simply the grand villain was defeated. Siobhan is shown to be the mastermind behind everything in the final episode. She instigated and coordinated everything that has happened to Anna up to the point of the series taking place, and she is clearly a powerful force with special gifts.

However, in the final few minutes of the already brief 31-minute episode, she is easily defeated by a simple chant from Anna and the deceased Adeline. Adeline was scared of her group in life, but she did utter this same chant in her restaurant. Why was it powerful enough when Anna used it to stop Siobhan in her tracks, and completely wipe out her entire group, which also was not shown, but seems implied by Anna walking out freely with no one else there.

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5What Happened To The Baby?

An old man and Siobhan in her ceremonial attire carry Anna's baby in American Horror Story Delicate season 12 ep 9 (FINALE)Image via FX

Anna gives birth to a child that is clearly different from the average baby. When she finally gets a chance to hold the baby after it was withheld by Siobhan and the others, she sees it has sharp black talons, and sharp teeth. However, when Siobhan disappears, so does the baby. The rapid fire exposition that dropped as many details about what was happening during the season clarified that Anna originally had twins, and the normal infant was killed in order to let the creature live.

However, the ending sees Anna walk into another room, picking up Siobhan’s black winged cap, and finding another baby. This baby appears to be hers, and indeed has no claws or teeth, but nothing about how or why this happens is made clear. Anna picks up her baby and her Oscar, and walks out with her head held high, having gained everything she wants, but it’s a complete mess of an ending.

4How Far Was Dex Involved?

Cora, the fertility nurse, is about to kiss Dexter Harding Jr. in American Horror Story: Delicate season 12 Ep 8
Image via FX

The finale also revealed significant connections between the AHS: Delicate cast, with Dex being Siobhan’s son. Siobhan and Dex’s father had an ongoing relationship for the purpose of breeding new creatures, and Dex was bred as being the optimal male in her future experiments. He was also murdered by Ivy, on Siobhan’s own orders. Siobhan suggests that this was her Abraham and Isaac story, and she was testing Ivy, but in the biblical story, God intervenes and stops Abraham from killing Isaac at the last minute.

Siobhan clearly suggests her position in the story is in the place of God, but she is also outraged at Ivy killing her child. Dex thanked Siobhan in the finale for calling him when Anna went into labor, but his involvement is still not entirely clear. Siobhan used him for his sperm, but also loved him, and ordered him dead. Altogether, it just makes for a confusing and inconsistent narrative. Additionally, Dex was in a relationship with Adeline, who turned on her cult. So was he also rebelling against his mother, or was he clueless about what was happening?


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3What Was The Spiders Thing About?

Emma Roberts' Anna cradles her baby and her Oscar in American Horror Story season 12 episode 9

The marketing for AHS: Delicate prominently featured spiders, but most of the nine episodes did not include anything remotely related to spiders. In the finale, this changes when Anna steps into her healthy babys room, and steps on a spider, killing it instantly. However, while this shot is framed as being a significant moment, it comes from nowhere, and the payoff fails to land in any meaningful way.

Spiders only appeared in the marketing up to the finale. The baby was not a spider-like creature, and none of the cult members appeared to have anything to do with spiders. If this moment was intended as some sort of symbolism, it failed to deliver because nothing was done to connect the moment with Anna stepping on a spider to anything else in the season. It may have made for a pretty shot, and the marketing looked interesting with prominent images of giant spiders, but it ultimately felt completely unimportant.

2Why Do They Chant In Latin About Greek Gods?

Aerial shot of Anna on a stretcher with her dress soaked in blood, surrounded by the Delicates at the center of a pentagram drawing in American Horror Story Delicate season 12 ep 9 (FINALE)Image via FX

While the cult dances around and performs their satanic rituals, they chant a repetitive prayer. This chant is Latin, and essentially translates to praise for Satan and invoking a child. However, in the final sequence with Adeline and Anna, the pair use a slightly altered version of the same chant with another name in place of Satan’s. “Ava Hestia” is both the chant in this final scene, and the title of the episode where Adeline’s backstory and death are properly revealed.

Hestia is the Greek goddess of the hearth and home. She appears to be a protector, and both Anna and Adeline pray to her in order to invoke some power that destroys Siobhan. However, she is a Greek goddess, and the chant is Latin. It may appear trivial, but it doesn’t make a great deal of sense to pray to a Greek goddess in Latin, the ancient language of the Roman Empire, when the two kingdoms and languages were completely separate, with entirely different mythologies and deities.

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1Why Anna Alcott?

Anna frightened, with a Delicate on each side in American Horror Story Delicate season 12 ep 9 (FINALE)Image via FX

Finally, the biggest question that remains is why on Earth did they choose to use Anna Alcott. The finale suggests that Anna has been manipulated from birth to become the perfect vessel to carry a child, but it does not state why. It could have been that she was randomly selected for the experiment, but that appears anticlimactic. She could have come from some sort of historical lineage, but nothing in the season suggested that. Anna Alcott grew up to be a beautiful young woman, with a talent and passion for acting, and also a desire to have a child.

This could have all been through the cult’s influence over decades, but the show does a poor job of suggesting or detailing if this happened to her for any reason at all. Throughout history, the group collected women who were in place to give birth to these special children, but none of them were good enough to give birth to this special child. Anna didn’t appear special, and she considered joining Siobhan to be with her child, so clearly she was not in better standing than the other women who chose to do the same in American Horror Story: Delicate.

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