This post contains major spoilers for Episode 3 of American Horror Story Season 6.
Last week, American Horror Story creator Ryan Murphy revealed that the sixth episode of Roanoke would unleash a plot twist packing such quaking force that, really, he had to consider the before and after as two distinct chunks of show. That's Season 6, by the way. Six is important: not only did the numerical symbol tie together each of the show's mysterious theme trailers, the curling icon even appears in the architecture of the main location. "6" is everywhere. "6" is key. 6. 6. 6.
Is Murphy preparing us for American Horror Story: Armageddon? The idea never dawned on me until Episode 3, when Leslie Jordan's Zelda Rubinstein-like medium "Cricket Marlowe" appeared on Matt and Shelby's doorstep with information on the disappearance of Lee's daughter, leading all three house-dwellers to learn the true nature of Kathy Bates' phantom character. Back in the 16th century, Bates' "The Butcher" was the leader of the Roanoke colony. Determined to stay put on the coast, her fellow man -- including her own son -- exiled her to the woods, left to die in a steel cage of despair. Or, that was the plan, until Lady Gaga's unnamed, crazy-eyed character crept out of the shadows to nurse her back to life with the succulent juice of a beating heart. "Surrender thy soul to me," Gaga tells her. The Butcher complies. Five hundred years later, she's still serving her master.
Her master... The Devil?
In Episode 2, Gaga briefly appears behind Bates, in an enfeebled position that suggested The Butcher was in power and the singer-actress' growling servant was lower on the totem pole.