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The Ending Of American Horror Story: Double Feature Episode 10 Explained

"American Horror Story: Double Feature" has taken viewers from the cold shores of Provincetown to the scorching deserts of Nevada where we've met blood-sucking romance novelists, human-alien hybrids, and the poor souls who've been caught up in their madness. This week's episode, "The Future Perfect," brings the "Death Valley" story to a bloody and inevitable conclusion. However, before things wrapped up, we did get a few more last-minute twists.

In the past timeline, we learn just how much of 20th-century American history was affected by President Eisenhower's (Neal McDonough) treaty with the aliens. Everything from the Vietnam War to the Watergate scandal was shown to be part of a campaign by Valiant Thor (Cody Fern) to distract the public from the fact that thousands of Americans a year were being abducted and experimented on. While Ike has nothing but regrets about his involvement as he lies on his deathbed, Mamie Eisenhower (Sarah Paulson) is fully embracing the dawning of this new era.

In the present, said era has nearly arrived. While trying to find what happened to Cal (Nico Greetham) and Troy (Isaac Powell), Kendall (Kaia Gerber) and Jamie (Rachel Hilson) realize that they may have run out of time to prevent themselves from becoming the harbingers of a species that could go on to replace humans. However, another unexpected player in this cosmic game steps up to try and prevent humanity from total eradication.

Here's how the story came to a close in the finale of "American Horror Story: Double Feature."

It was the aliens all along

The opening sections of "The Future Perfect" are a flurry of revelations about how much influence the alien visitation had on US history. When Nixon (Craig Sheffer) starts to get out of line, Val orchestrates the Watergate scandal to get him out of office (he's concerned that they've already killed too many high profile politicians to off Tricky Dick without arousing suspicion). Mamie, now fully working with Val, is revealed to be Deep Throat, the infamous real-life secret source who leaked incriminating details about Nixon to investigative journalist duo Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein.

There's also another wrinkle to all this plotting. Henry Kissinger, Nixon's controversial Secretary of State, turns out to b a different kind of extraterrestrial. This species takes the form of humanoid creatures with lizard-like eyes and a darting tongue that Kissinger struggles to keep hidden. The show doesn't go into great detail about this new reptilian species, other than that they are in league with the aliens. Like the shadowy government conspiracies surrounding Area 51, though, this inconsequential storyline is obviously a nod to a not uncommon conspiracy theory about the existence of a secret cabal of reptilian humanoids that controls society.

The past portion of "Death Valley" concludes with Ike dying of natural causes and Mamie deciding she wants the aliens to make her immortal so she can continue her professional (and maybe romantic?) relationship with Val. After her "death," she's taken to Area 51. Once there, though, she realizes that while all of her plans may have come to fruition, that doesn't necessarily mean she's gotten what she wants in the end.

Jamie realizes just how right Kendall was

In modern times, Mamie is still living at Area 51, which has been sent into lockdown following the birth of Cal's facehugger baby. The chaos prompts Kendall and Jamie to go looking for their missing friends and while they do, Jamie takes a moment to commend Kendall for recognizing the dangers of technology long before they ended up in their current predicament.

"You were right, Kendall," Jamie says while they traverse the set of the moon landing. "I can't believe we traded the best parts of being human — our freedom, curiosity, our need to explore — all for microchip technology. And the ability to send memes around the world. What a sad race we turned out to be."

Well, the aliens couldn't agree more. After Kendall and Jamie find Cal and Troy's desiccated bodies, they are captured by Theta's (Angelica Ross) guards and brought to the birthing suite. Jamie's baby is not quite right and she and the infant are both unceremoniously killed. But Kendall's ends up being the perfect hybrid that the aliens have been striving to achieve for decades.

In a cruel twist of irony, Kendall is decapitated and her head is replaced with a large, metal orb that keeps her body alive so that it can continue to be used as an incubator. The one character in the modern-day timeline who recognized the insidious nature of technology ends up becoming a zombified cyborg whose only purpose is to birth alien-human hybrid babies. Grim.

Val fills Mamie in on the alien's real plan for humanity

Mamie learns about the birth of the perfect hybrid while glumly receiving a birthday cupcake from her longtime friend Calico (Leslie Grossman). In an echo of Jamie's comments, Mamie appears to have realized far too late that one of the things that makes a birthday so special is that it marks the passage of a year, something that means nothing to her now that she has removed herself from the natural aging process. Mamie traded in her humanity when she accepted the eternal life the aliens offered her and she's now having second thoughts about that deal.

When she later asks Val about the birth of the hybrid, he confirms the story and tells her it's time for phase two. They will produce as many hybrids as possible until they are able to replace humanity entirely with the new species. That second part is news to Mamie, who never quite realized the extent of the aliens' plans. When she pushes back, Val offers her a succinct metaphor.

"If you had a prize rose garden and the gardener let all of your roses wither and die, what would you do to him?" the robot emissary says. "Earth is the garden, humanity is the gardner. We're firing you."

Again, this calls back to Jamie's comments and the themes of "Death Valley" in general. Eisenhower traded American lives for alien tech believing that he was sparing the rest of humanity when he was, in fact, dooming them to eventual extinction. Kendall's arguments about the dangers of rapidly advancing technology from Episode 1 were warning of a similar outcome. In "Death Valley," the end result is humanity being overthrown by aliens, but you could call that a metaphor for climate change, social isolation, the spread of misinformation, or any other downside to our technological age.

Theta ushers in a new era of life on earth

Realizing that all of her dealings with the aliens were a terrible mistake, Mamie enlists Calico and Theta, whose human side she appeals to, to kill the hybrid messiah and avert the destruction of humanity. But while Theta might be part human, she is still 100% committed to the alien cause. She tells Mamie that she would never collaborate with humans because she has seen what a self-centered species we are. "Even if we wanted to live side by side with you we couldn't, because you're too selfish to share," Theta says. "You won't even open your doors to your own kind in a moment of need."

We could go deep on the hypocritical nature of the alien's ultimate plan (including, as some fans on Reddit have pointed out, that the only reason the aliens are on earth is that they likely made their own planet uninhabitable), but at the end of the day, they won the war and are making the rules. With that, Theta bursts Mamie's head, another hybrid child is born, and "American Horror Story: Double Feature" comes to an end.

If there is a connecting thread between both halves of the season, it is that each contained a strong warning about sacrificing one's humanity for the allure of something that seems like an easy solution to a massive problem. Both the advanced alien technology in "Death Valley" and The Muse's promise of fame and fortune in "Red Tide" turned out to be monkey's paw-style gifts. Each provided wonderful benefits in the short term. However, when the narrative played out to its eventual conclusion, those that took the deal realized that the horrible cost was not worth it in the end.