The Real American Horror Story: Hotel Serial Killer Might Be A Giant Twist

Potential spoilers for American Horror Story: Hotel below.

As is generally the case after the first handful of American Horror Story episodes, Hotel currently has about 1,001 different character wheels spinning around one central location. One of those storylines involves Wes Bentley’s detective John Lowe seeking the Ten Commandments Killer, which sets up him inside the Hotel Cortez, where there is an endless assortment of distractions. There’s one fan theory going around about John that would not only be a solid twist, but would actually explain quite a lot about his character.

What if John is the Ten Commandments Killer?

It’s not on par with Fight Club or Psycho or anything else Ryan Murphy was inspired by, but revealing John to be the serial killer that he himself is hunting would add some insight into several things we know about John. For one, John was the only still-living person dining at the table during last week’s “Devil’s Night.” (There were that victim, but...) I get that Aileen drugged him, and that the entire affair was possibly all in his head, but we accept that this hotel has a yearly dinner between architect Mr. March and a handful of America’s most iconic killers, and if John isn’t also a serial killer – his stilling living-and-breathing status notwithstanding – then what was he doing at that table?

Not enough for you? What about how, in each of the scenes with the killer’s victims, John is able to wax Sherlock-ish about all of the facts and motivations behind each murder. Sure, that’s how detectives normally do shit in TV shows, but John doesn’t seem to be that great at his job. It’s much more likely that he’s able to hit these points because he’s actually just describing himself, even if he doesn’t know it.

He’s also obviously got certain addictions, since Hypodermic Sally and the Addiction Demon are all up on his jock. As his wife let us know in that one scene, he’s not an alcoholic; although her decision to take the immortal route from Countess in order to see her son again doesn’t speak so highly for her detection skills. John clearly isn’t a druggie of any kind, and doesn’t appear too OCD on any level, so his addiction MUST involve chopping people’s tongues and eyeballs out, right?

When asked about it by Vulture, Bentley was predictably cagey and it’s not even clear if he knows where it’s all going.

Hmmm. It’s kind of like when someone who is married dies, the spouse is the first suspect. You look at who is closest to them. But there's also an element with these deaths — are these real? Is that even real? Are those real events taking place in his life, or a manifestation of the struggles he's having? Is it possible that these things are happening around him, or that he's even a part of the investigation?

And hey, it might also explain Bentley’s detached-from-reality performance that hovers between bored and sleepy.

We know that parts of Hotel will tie back into Murder House, so why can’t one of those ways be “the twist semi-ending” as that season did with revealing everyone is dead? What do you guys think?

Nick Venable
Assistant Managing Editor

Nick is a Cajun Country native and an Assistant Managing Editor with a focus on TV and features. His humble origin story with CinemaBlend began all the way back in the pre-streaming era, circa 2009, as a freelancing DVD reviewer and TV recapper.  Nick leapfrogged over to the small screen to cover more and more television news and interviews, eventually taking over the section for the current era and covering topics like Yellowstone, The Walking Dead and horror. Born in Louisiana and currently living in Texas — Who Dat Nation over America’s Team all day, all night — Nick spent several years in the hospitality industry, and also worked as a 911 operator. If you ever happened to hear his music or read his comics/short stories, you have his sympathy.