"Afterbirth" is the twelfth episode of the first season ("Murder House"). It premiered December 21, 2011. The episode was 70 minutes long, despite previous reports stating that it would be 90 minutes long.
- Nine months ago
Ben calls out for the ghosts of his wife and daughter, wondering where they are.
Constance has been caring for the surviving baby but is reluctant and evasive in giving him up to Ben. Vivien's sister has arrived for the funeral and will be taking care of the baby. Constance warns Ben of the dire consequences of bringing the baby back into the Murder House, though Ben does not heed her warning. It finally becomes apparent to Ben that Constance is Tate's mother. He is angry that "she" destroyed his family, and threatens her.
Vivien and Moira chat about her adjustment. Moira informs her that Ben can't see her unless she wants him to. Vivien still believes Ben is a good father, but doesn't want him to see her or Violet, lest he wants to stay. Moira reminds Vivien that they are equals now, and implies they should be friends in this new phase.
Ben, distraught over the death of his family, and prepares to commit suicide with a revolver. Vivien suddenly appears and takes the gun, telling him she wishes he would leave the house and raise the child elsewhere. He acknowledges that it is probably not even his baby. Violet also appears, and they both plead with him to leave. Vivien kisses him goodbye, and they vanish.
Sometime later, Stacey and Miguel Ramos tour the still furnished house with Marcy. Marcy carries Hallie (whom she has adopted) around. They continue touring the house, while their son Gabriel skateboards around the dining room. However, his trip is cut short by the mischievous and troublesome twins Troy and Bryan. Stacy and Miguel are very excited and decide to buy the house.
Meanwhile, homicide detectives question Constance, who says she refuses to go back in the house after discovering Ben's body. The Harmons, all ghosts now, rejoice. Hayden refuses to hand over the living child, but Travis slits her throat, handing him over to Constance. The detectives are lead to believe Violet ran off with the child, when in reality the baby is being hidden in the "bad girl closet".
Violet visits Gabriel and criticizes his taste in music. She flirts with him and slyly hints at her ghostly existence while Tate watches, filled with jealousy and rage.
The elder Ramos' redecorate the kitchen, and grow intimate, watched by Ben and Vivien, who are keeping their presence hidden. Miguel suggests they have another baby. Ben, Vivien, and Moira plan to not allow the family to being subject to the pain and misery brought upon by the more malevolent ghosts who only wish to inflict their fate on the living.
Miguel awakens to the sound of faint whispers. Rubber Man attempts to rape Stacy. Gabriel awakens to find Tate sitting at the foot of his bed, and suggests he is dreaming about Violet, from whom he is still estranged. A frightened Stacy attempts to fight off the Rubber Man, while Miguel sleepwalks, and is drawn to the stove. As Stacy attempts to flee from the Rubber Man, Beau jumps from the attic, scaring her into the bathroom. Tate proceeds to fight Gabriel. Many of the spirits trapped within the house make their presence known. Gladys appears to Stacy, while a Younger Moira and a bisected Elizabeth appear to Miguel which causes him to snap out of his trance. He follows Stacy's screams to the basement. Vivien angrily guts Ben, and remarks how long she has wanted to do so. He responds by shooting Vivien in the head, with the same response. They collapse, giving the impression they are dead, and arise, urging the Ramoses to leave and never return. It was all an effort to scare them away, but Tate is not playing the same game. He actually wants to kill Gabe, so that Gabe can be with Violet and keep her company as the "normal boyfriend" that Tate could never be for Violet. He attempts to kill Gabe, but cannot bring himself to go through with it. The killer doesn't have it in him anymore. Violet stops his attempts by distracting Tate with a kiss. She wants a proper kiss goodbye, which gives Gabriel the opportunity to escape. When she vanishes, Tate begins breaks down weeping in his old room. The Harmons celebrate their success and decide to dedicate the rest of their existence, preventing anyone else from moving in and falling victim to the house's evil forces.
The Eternal Darkness Tour now covers the Harmon history, much to the consternation of Marcy. Tate confronts Ben, pleading for his forgiveness and mercy. Ben tells him that therapy never really works anyway and calls Tate out for being a psychopath, believing that he is incapable of feeling true remorse and is only putting on an act. Tate confesses to all his actual misdeeds, which includes setting Larry on fire, killing 15 of his classmates, murdering Chad and Patrick, and impregnating Vivien. Ben can't find it in his heart to absolve him, but all Tate asks of Ben is companionship.
Vivien resumes playing the cello for the first time in a while when she is suddenly alarmed by a baby's cries coming from the basement. Nora Montgomery rocks Vivien's stillborn baby, who actually lived for a few moments before dying. Nora strongly reminds Vivien the baby is hers (Nora's), and that "arrangements were made" to extract the baby from "help". Nora refers to him as, "Little Noisy Monster". Vivien quiets the baby with a song, and Nora decides to take a rest. She admits she probably is not cut out to be a mother. Vivien walks with the baby, trying to decide on a name.
Moira cleans the house, and Vivien shows her the baby. Moira laments that she might have made a good mother, and Vivien asks her to be his godmother.
Around Christmas time, the Harmons and Moira enjoy each other's company for the first time since moving in, and they no longer take each other for granted. Meanwhile, Hayden and Tate watch the family through the glass doors in the dark. Hayden tells him that Violet will never take him back, or even talk to him again. Tate responds resolutely that he'll wait for Violet forever if necessary.
- Three Years Later (2014-2015)
Helen, a beautician, greets Constance in her salon. Constance says that she has been housebound with her newly adopted baby from distant cousins in Virginia. She has named him Michael. She confides that she has always known she would be destined for greatness, despite her tragedies preparing her.
When she returns home, she looks through her bloodied house to find her murdered housekeeper, presided over by a smirking and bloody Michael sitting on a chair, looking very pleased with himself. "Now what am I gonna do with you?", she croons, showing her satisfaction as the "mother" of the prophesied "Anti-Christ".
Jeffrey Harmon is the son of Vivien Harmon and Ben Harmon, and the brother of Violet and Michael. He was conceived in "Pilot". He was believed to be a stillborn (in "Birth"); after birth, he managed to take one breath, dying seconds later, making him one of the house's spirits. Nora Montgomery hustled him away but proved unable to care for him. Nora didn't name him, preferring to call him "Noisy Monster". Vivien posed as a nanny, soothed him with a song and took him upstairs where she named him Jeffrey. Later she asked Moira to become his god-mother. Jeffrey is with his family at Christmas time, finally in a happy environment.
Miguel Ramos and his family move into the Murder House shortly after the death of Ben Harmon. The Harmons, along with the other good ghosts, band together to scare the Ramos family out of the house so that they can avoid the same fate as the Harmons and other families before them. That night, Lorraine Harvey causes Miguel to sleepwalk to the stove, in a similar fashion as Ben did. Soon, Miguel is led into another room by the younger Moira, where he sees the dismembered body of Elizabeth Short on the table. Miguel and Stacey soon run into the basement where Vivien and Ben (in the Rubber Man suit) corner them. Vivien disembowels Ben, while he shoots her in the head. This is the last straw for Miguel and Stacy as they flee the house.
- Miguel is the first character portrayed by Anthony Ruivivar. For a complete list of his characters, see Cast.
Stacey Ramos moves into the murder house with her husband Miguel and son Gabe after the death of Ben Harmon. The Harmons and the other good ghosts in the house conspire to scare away the new family so that they avoid the same fate as they and the families before them. While Lorraine Harvey makes Miguel sleepwalk into the kitchen, Ben goes into Stacey's room disguised as the Rubber Man in an attempt to scare Stacey. Stacey manages to fight him off and run out of the room where she runs into a multitude of good spirits such as Gladys and Beauregard. Eventually, Ben and Vivien corner Miguel and Stacey in the basement where Vivien disembowels Ben, and Ben shoots Vivien in the head. The Ramos, who have had enough, flee from the house.
Gabriel Ramos, or Gabe for short, moves into the Murder House with his family and comes off as a typical skater guy. He interacts with Violet, who criticizes his taste in music, and hints at her ghostly nature. Tate becomes jealous of how "normal" Gabe was and wants to bring him over as a ghost for Violet's companionship. However, when Tate is about to kill Gabe, Violet arrives and kisses Tate, giving Gabe a chance to escape with his parents. He manages to escape with his parents.
Helen is Constance's hairdresser. She hasn't been visited by Constance for quite some time, explaining the reason for her absence is taking care of her new child, Michael (which in fact is her own grandson). She is the person that Constance confides to about her realization that her reason for existence is being the mother of Michael.
- Hayden: "Grow a pair. She's not into you. You're not getting back in her, she'll never talk to you again."
- Tate: "I'll wait... Forever, if I have to."
- Ben Harmon: "You're a psychopath, Tate. It's a mental disorder, and therapy can't cure it."
- Contance: "Now... what am I going to do with you?"
Cast and Characters
- Connie Britton as Vivien Harmon
- Dylan McDermott as Ben Harmon
- Taissa Farmiga as Violet Harmon
- Evan Peters as Tate Langdon
- Frances Conroy as Moira O'Hara
- Kate Mara as Hayden McClaine
- Jessica Lange as Constance Langdon
- Jamie Brewer as Adelaide Langdon
- Lily Rabe as Nora Montgomery
- Alexandra Breckenridge as Moira O'Hara
- Christine Estabrook as Marcy
- Michael Graziadei as Travis Wanderly
- Mena Suvari as Elizabeth Short
- Celia Finkelstein as Gladys
- Azura Skye as Fiona
- Kyle Davis as Dallas
- Rebecca Wisocky as Lorraine Harvey
- Charles S. Dutton as Detective Granger
- Malaya Rivera Drew as Detective Barios
- W. Earl Brown as Phil Critter
- Kai Schulz as Bryan
- Bodhi Schulz as Troy
- Anthony Ruivivar as Miguel Ramos
- Lisa Vidal as Stacey Ramos
- Brennan Mejia as Gabriel Ramos
- Denis O'Hare (Larry Harvey) is credited but does not appear.
- It's been said that the episode would be cut down from 120 minutes to a 90 minute special due to scheduling issues. However, when it was broadcast, it was actually cut down to 70 minutes. There has yet to be an explanation for this.
- Seven babies were cast to play baby Michael Langdon, but the one used in the end was Ocean Maturo.
- Constance mentioned that she was related to the DeLongpres of Virginia. DeLongpre is the last name of a former Supreme in "Coven": Mimi DeLongpre, the predecessor to Anna Leigh Leighton.
- The episode ends with Constance coming home to find that a 5-year-old Michael has killed his nanny, marking the end of the first season and the Murder House plot. The audience does not get to see what happens to Constance and Michael immediately after this discovery until 7 years later, in the Apocalypse episode "Return to Murder House", which returns to this story and continues immediately where the first season left off.
- Commentary: Stack, Tim (2011-12-22). Ryan Murphy talks the game-changing season finale (en). Entertainment Weekly.
- Andreeva, Nellie (2011-11-18). 'American Horror Story' Two-Hour Finale Will Be Trimmed To 90 Minutes. Deadline Hollywood.
- (Cry only)
- Spelling confirmed by the mother of the baby who was used for the show for both Jeffrey and Michael on her Twitter
- Episode: Pilot