The episode, first aired on Channel 4 on 18 February 2013, was watched by 1.2 million viewers and was very well received by critics, particularly for its writing and Middleton's performance. The story draws parallels with real murder cases, primarily the 1960s Moors murders, in which five children were killed. Its horror aspects have been said to be reminiscent of the 1970s film The Wicker Man and the video game Manhunt, while some similarities with The Twilight Zone have also been noted. This dystopian episode reflects upon several aspects of contemporary society, such as media coverage of murders, technology's effects on people's empathy, desensitisation, violence as entertainment, vigilantism, the concept of justice and punishment, and the nature of reality.
A woman (Lenora Crichlow) wakes up with amnesia, in a house where television screens are showing an unknown symbol. Turning the screens off, she finds photos of herself and a man (Nick Ofield), along with one of a small girl (Imani Jackman) which she takes with her. She leaves the house and pleads for help, but people ignore her while recording her on their phones. When a masked man opens fire at her with a shotgun, she flees and meets Jem (Tuppence Middleton). Jem explains that the symbol began appearing on television and mobile phone screens, turning most people into passive voyeurs. The woman and Jem are unaffected, but they are also a target for the \"hunters\", unaffected humans who act sadistically. Jem plans to reach a transmitter at \"White Bear\" to destroy it.
Many reviewers identified an allusion to the Moors murders, committed by Ian Brady and Myra Hindley, a British couple who killed children in the 1960s. The A.V. Club's David Sims emphasised the similarities between Victoria's video recording and the fact that Hindley audio-taped the torture of one of her and Brady's victims.
He committed the murders in order to punish Bishop, whose legal team had threatened legal action if Jecks had ever tried to contact him again. He states that in order to punish someone you have to kill those they love.
Assuming that Henry went to the hollow where his father died, Sherlock summons Greg and they rush to the scene. They find a delirious Henry Knight, about to commit suicide. Sherlock fortunately talks him out of it, explaining that the hound was just a hallucination and that his father was attacked by Dr Frankland, wearing a gas mask with red-coloured lenses and a jersey with \"Hound. Liberty, In\" written on it. Henry's memories were subdued as a result of the trauma but as he began to remember the incident, he had to be silenced as well. As another murder would arouse suspicion, Dr Frankland decided that driving Henry insane and therefore casting doubt upon his story would be the best alternative for getting away with what he had done. With pressure pads installed around the hollow which released a dose of the chemical compound, each time Henry attempted to face his fears he would be pushed further into a deeper state of madness. As Henry calms down, they all hear the howling of a hound, which had not been killed but simply abandoned by the innkeepers, and now appears at the edge of the hollow. In a fit of terror, Sherlock sees the image of Jim Moriarty descending upon him. As he grapples with the phantom criminal, it turns into Dr Frankland, who desperately shouts for them to kill the advancing hound. The hound leaps upon the party, only to be shot down by Greg and John. Henry flies into a vengeful rage and attempts to throttle Frankland, but the doctor escapes. After a brief chase, he runs into the Baskerville mine field and is blown up.
Bob Frankland was originally a friend of the team but was convinced that the drug would one day work, and continued testing it on people. Henry Knight's father realised what Frankland was doing and Frankland was forced to take action. One night, when the Knights were walking on the moor, Frankland dosed a young Henry Knight and his father with the drug, while staying safe due to a gas mask. With Knight senior disoriented, Frankland murdered him. Henry only saw the red eyes of the gas mask and Frankland's T-shirt-with the H.O.U.N.D logo on it and 'Liberty In'.
With the task posed by American Horror Stories to create a functioning horror story that fits into roughly 45 minutes, the details of each episode have to be strategic. What \"Aura\" does well is to include fragments of a character's life that are relevant to the atmosphere, but disables them from having a life of their own. The home invasion Jaslyn experienced as a child does nothing more than fuel her present anxiety. American Horror Stories could have designed an entire narrative around the intruder's freaky bunny mask coming back to haunt her, but it doesn't. On some level, it's a surprising choice given the turn \"Aura\" takes with Bryce's backstory, but it's a choice that serves \"Aura\" incredibly well. Last week, \"Dollhouse\" proved that American Horror Stories can use its platform to continue to explore previous seasons of American Horror Story, but \"Aura\" proves the series can also tell a compelling, original story.
However, the mask this American Horror Stories assailant wears is more in line with the Virginian legend of the Bunny Man. Most variations of this urban legend involve a man dressed in a bunny costume attacking victims with an axe or a hatchet.
Cameron Pell is a failed art student turned serial killer. He wears a hooded jacket and a menacing Mr. Punch mask. His modus operandi consists of slashing the throats of his victims with a machete or simply stabbing them to death. He enjoys taunting the police, even going so far as to send them live webcam feeds of his random killings. His first (known) murder took place outside a meat packing factory, showing a twisted sense of humour on Pell's part as Luther notes. Later he approaches a pretty young female photographer on a London street and begins enthusiastically telling her about the history of London but the photographer is put off by Pell's over-enthusiastic advances. When she wanders into a secluded area, Pell kills her whilst wearing his mask. Examing the body, Luther sees Pell in the crowd watching. As Pell turns to make his escape, Luther pursues him, tracking the madman to his underground lair where Pell attacks him wearing his mask and temporarily blinds him with acid. Luther bites Pell fiercely on the arm and Pell flees. Later when Luther breaks into Pell's expensive but sparse apartment, Pell phones him, watching a nearby rooftop. As the two speak, Pell explains his misanthropic philosophy, describes his admiration for Spring-Heeled Jack and says that his murders will shock humanity out of their apathy and they will start caring about each other more. He then states that he has a surprise planned for the evening before hanging up the phone, leaving Luther disturbed. Luther brings Cameron's ex-girlfriend in for questioning. A former art student herself, she shows signs of post-traumatic stress disorder and explains that Pell told her that was obsessed with Spring-Heeled Jack even as a child and eventually his parents had to get him to see a psychiatrist, who mocked and ridiculed Pell instead of helping him, causing Pell to grow up into the lunatic he is today. She asks for an escort back to her home which DC Ripley and DC Gray provide. However, while Ripley waits in his car, Pell is lying in wait for him.
Having captured and tortured Ripley, Pell phones Luther on Ripley's mobile to mock him but Luther hangs up, reasoning that attention is exactly what Pell wants and that once he feels he has it, he will have no further use for Ripley and will likely kill him. Pell phones the constabulary on their phone and communicates with them over the answering machine, ordering them to give him attention and becoming increasingly hysterical before Luther demolishes the phone. Alone with Ripley, Pell taunts him that his friends have thrown him to the wolves and lectures him on the banality of evil which he calls \"bourgeois fatuousness\", suggesting that Pell is a Cultural Marxist. He explains that he wants to become a legendary figure in the vein of Jack the Ripper, Hawley Crippen, Dannis Nilsen, Ian Brady, Myra Hindley, the Yorkshire Ripper and Fred and Rosemary West saying that murder immortalised them. Playing on Pell's desire for fame, Ripley says he'd like to write a book about him and asks him why he wears a mask. Falling for Ripley's trick, Pell admits that wearing a mask makes it easier for him to commit murder, suggesting the rudiments of a conscience.
Luther meanwhile ascertains that Pell, striving to become a legendary boogeyman would do what boogeymen in folklore do: abduct and kill children. Pell, not making the Bond villain error of bragging about his plan before leaving his prisoner to die, ties a plastic bag over Ripley's head before leaving him to suffocate while he goes to complete the final phase of his master plan. Disguised as a bus driver, he abducts a number of schoolchildren and moves them to a separate truck, reasoning that the police will be after him. He then drives the truck to an abandoned warehouse, climbs out, dons his mask and begins to pump the truck with gas. His plan is to gas the children to death before disposing of their bodies. Fortunately, Ripley manages to escape and joins Luther to search for Pell and the missing children. Ripley tells Luther that Pell can't commit murder without his mask. At the warehouse, one courageous boy named Tim escapes the truck and attempts to escape but is grabbed by Pell. Dauntlessly, the boy tears of Pell's mask and throws it. Before Pell can retrieve his mask, Luther's car crashes into the warehouse. Luther jumps out as Pell cowers behind his child captive, his machete to the boy's throat. Luther, knowing that Pell can't kill without his mask casually chats to Tim, completely ignoring Pell, knowing that being ignored damages Pell's brittle self confidence. As Pell becomes increasingly hysterical, Luther calls him a weak, little pathetic man and throws his mask over a fence. Pell breaks down into tears and releases Tim as the police arrive and free the children from the truck. As Pell attempts to intimidate the police by shouting about the murders he has committed, Ripley appears behind him and glibly says \"Cameron, no-one's listening\" before punching him in the face and arresting him. 59ce067264