American Horror Story

Season 2 Episode 13

Madness Ends

Aired Wednesday 10:00 PM Jan 23, 2013 on FX

Episode Recap

Four Months Ago

Johnny breaks into Briarcliff, listening to a book-on-tape reciting Lana's book. As he wanders through the ruins, Johnny hallucinates Lana sitting naked in a bathtub, insisting that she never wanted him and was glad to give her up. He then goes to the foyer and sees Thredson, while Lana watches from above. Thredson tells Johnny that he always loved him but it was Lana that kept them apart.

Shortly after, Theresa and Leo enter the asylum. Johnny is smoking crack in a cell and hears them coming. When Leo sticks his hand into the cell, using his cell phone for illumination, Johnny dons his Bloody Face mask and cuts off Adam's hand, and then emerges from the cell to wreak bloody havoc.


A camera crew has arrived at Lana's apartment to interview her for her receipt of a Kennedy Center award. The interviewer, April, talks about Lana's love life and the reporter-turned-writer introduces her lover, Marian. Marian leaves for her symphony rehearsal and April begins the interview. She wants to talk about Bloody Face but Lana refuses, insisting that she doesn't want to give the sick killer any further air-time. April reluctantly agrees and asks Lana about her Briarcliff expose.

The Past

Land takes her camera crew, Ted and Milo, into Briarcliff.


Lana admits that it was ambition, not a desire for justice, that led her back to Briarcliff. After writing her book, she realized that TV was the future rather than newspapers and went on a series of televised careers. Eventually she became the host of an award-winning investigative TV series.

The Past

Lana goes through Briarcliff with the camera crew filming her reporting on the wretched conditions. Patients are wandering the halls unattended, some naked, many starving, and Lana informs the viewer that the conditions have grown worse since the Church sold Briarcliff to the state. When they find an orderly, he admits that they don't have enough staff to take care of the patients. Lana demands to see Judy and the orderly takes her to the former nun's cell. Judy is cowering in a corner and Lana goes to her. She convinces Judy that she's there to help and the older woman recognizes her...


Lana tells April that she made the whole story up. She never found Judy at Briarcliff. Lana asks for a break and asks for a bottled water. Johnny, posing as one of the camera crew, hands her a bottle.

The Past

Lana goes to see Kit at his house several months later. He congratulates her on shutting down Briarcliff, and Lana asks where Judy is. Kit refuses to talk on camera but invites Lana in so they can talk privately. Lana explains that she went through the asylum records and found references to "Becky Drake," the alias Monsignor Howard used to keep Judy confined. The papers also show that Kit got Judy released into his custody a few months after he talked to Lana at the book signing. Kit wonders why she cares about the woman who abused her and Lana insists that it's her story and Judy's, and Kit's as well. She wonders why he went back and Kit explained that once he saw Judy there, he realized that there was still a spark of sanity somewhere there. After Alma died, Kit visited for Judy's sake and finally brought her home. When Lana wonders why, Kit admits that he was filled with anger and needed someone to forgive, so he chose Judy.

Kit sees Judy through the long days of detox. However, even after she recovers, she is still demented, raving at Julia and Thomas and thinking that she's back at Briarcliff. When Kit tries to calm her, she accuses him of being an axe murderer. Finally, Thomas and Julia take Judy out into the woods. When they come back with the former nun, she has her sanity back.

For the next six months, Judy helps Kit raise the two children, teaching them how to dance. But her health never recovers and the children come to visit her on her deathbed. She tells Julia not to let a man hold her back and to do whatever she wants, and Thomas to find something that he likes to do with his life and do it no matter what. Kit brings her soup but she says that she doesn't need it. Once Kit sends the children away, Judy tells him not to screw his children up. Kit promises to stay there with her until the end, but Judy looks at the end of the bed, where the Dark Angel has appeared to her, and says that she's not alone. The Dark Angel asks if they are finally done dancing and Judy says that she's ready for her kiss.

Lana says that she knows what Judy meant.


When April starts taking notes, Lana realizes that the reporter is going to start asking difficult questions. April asks her about her next expose after Briarcliff: Cardinal Howard, and how Lana made enemies by going after a highly-placed member of the church.

The Past

Lana and her camera crew corner Howard in a parking garage after Easter Mass when he refuses to take her calls. She informs the cardinal that she has seen Arden's medical records and turned them over to the police, and that they detail all of Arden's experiments that the doctor conducted with Howard's sanction. Lana points out that there is no statute of limitations on murder and that the police have found human bones buried around Briarcliff. Howard simply wishes her a Happy Easter and drives off.


Lana assures April that when Howard took his own life by cutting his wrists, he deserves it and that he had deluded himself with his lies. April notices that Lana seems to be talking about more than just Howard and asks her what she means. Lana braces herself and then says that she lied when she claimed that her child by Thredson died in childbirth. She admits that she breastfed it once after it was born and then had the nurse take it away.

April wonders if Lana has contacted her son since 1964 and Lana admits that she tracked him to his school in the 1970s. She watched as a bully picked on him and then intervened. Once she made sure Johnny was okay, Lana tried to reassure the boy but he ran off. While she talks about wondering how her son turned out, Johnny listens raptly from nearby.

Lana explains that she grew closer to Kit's children because she had none of her own, and that Kit asked her to be their godmother. She was there when Kit married a girl named Alison from the co-op where he worked. When April wonders what happened to the family, Lana explains that Thomas is now a Harvard law professor and Julia is a neurosurgeon at John Hopkins. Kit developed pancreatic cancer at the age of 40 before they could confirm it, and took chemotherapy without results. Lana admits that Kit didn't die, however: one day he simply disappeared without a trace from his home. Julia and Thomas always insisted that there was no reason to mourn.

The Past

Kit is alone at home in his wheelchair, dying of cancer, when a white light shine through all of the windows. A few moments later, there's nothing left but an empty wheelchair.


April concludes the interview and thanks Lana for sharing her personal moments with her. Once April and her camera crew leave, Lana goes to the bar, pours a drink, and offers it to Johnny. He steps out of the next room and she tells him that it's time to get it over with.

As they drink, Johnny tells his mother that her life is about to end. She says that she knew that from the moment that she saw him, and wonders how he got in. Johnny tells her that he approached April's gofer, killed him, and took his place. He wonders how he recognized her and Lana simply says that she would always recognize her baby boy, without giving details.

The Past

Two police detectives visit Lana and ask her if she knows anything about a series of gruesome murders, including the couple that moved into Lana's house from 1964. They show her photos of Johnny but Lana claims that she doesn't know him.


Lana tells Johnny that he looks a lot like Thredson and asks how he found out his real identity. He explains that he knew something was strange when she came to the school and that he saw her on TV later and realized why she came to him. Johnny explains that he once thought she would come back for him, but then bought Thredson's confession tape on eBay and listened to Lana tells his father that she never wanted a child by him.

Saddened, Lana tells Johnny that she gave him up because she knew she could never love him, and that she wanted him to have the chance of normal life. Johnny doesn't believe it and screams at her that she did it for herself. He takes out his gun and says that he wants to make his father proud of him, but admits that he can't measure up. Lana tells him that Thredson was a monster but that Johnny is a better man. She gently takes the gun from him and says that she's a part of Johnny. He breaks into tears and Lana holds him, saying that it wasn't his fault. She then shoots him in the head and says that it's her fault.


At Briarcliff, Lana tries to get in to see Bloody Face and get her story. Sister Jude refuses to let her see the prisoner. When she talks briefly about her life, Lana says that she'd like to hear her story. The nun refuses and warns Lana that she'll face loneliness and heartbreak as a woman on her own, but Lana tells Jude that she has no idea what she's capable of. As she escorts Lana out, Jude tells her to remember that if one looks into the face of evil, then evil will look back.

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