Our very worst fears about Chad Radwell were confirmed in the opening scene of Scream Queens Season 2 Episode 4 – he's really, truly dead.
The rest of this installment proved that Ryan Murphy was pulling NO punches when he promised that this season would be far more deadly than Scream Queens Season 1. By the end of the hour, we'd shockingly lost at least one other major character (and left a second at death's door).
It was Halloween once again on Scream Queens, and in the show's typical fashion, they pulled out all the stops. "Halloween Blues" featured several aspects that are by now staples of Scream Queens' Halloween episodes.
The first was the return of Chanel-O-Ween.
Chanel was (understandably) distraught to find out after Chad's death that 1) Chad Radwell's entire family had died shortly before he died (in a plane crash en route to stop their wedding, no less!!), 2) Chad was the sole beneficiary of the Radwell fortune, and 3) he'd altered his will leaving everything he had to Dean Munsch and the CURE Institute.
Well, to be clear, she didn't so much care that Chad's entire family had died – it was the no-money-for-her part that ticked her off.
Her method of coping was to first violently attack Chad's poor lawyer (a silly, fun moment perfectly played by Emma Roberts, who was honestly born for this role) and then to celebrate the cruelest Chanel-O-Ween yet.
Chanel got me a bag of diseased whore hearts!!Chanel's fan [joyfully]
For those who don't recall – Chanel-O-Ween is the one day a year that Chanel "gives back" to her devoted (read: obsessive) Instagram followers. With last season's Scream Queens Season 1 Episode 4, Chanel's gifts were only underhandedly cruel. This time around, she was determined to let her followers know just how much she despised them – because, well, that's Chanel Oberlin's coping mechanism.
This Chanel-O-Ween sequence also featured the exact same song used in last season's Chanel-O-Ween, which was a great touch. The attention to continuity in this show, when it comes to small details and character traits, is pretty amazing.
Instead of snide notes and gifts, this time around Chanel went for straight up cruel notes and "gifts" pilfered from the hospital's morgue, i.e., a bag of "diseased whore hearts."
It was all so perfectly Chanel. As much as I miss Chad, I'm actually glad that they chose not to have Chanel wallow in her grief in an expected or cliche way. Standard grief wouldn't have fit, tonally, within the show or Chanel's character.
Chanel's version of grief is so much funnier. Beyond Chanel-O-Ween, Chanel also focused on battling Denise Hemphill, who'd revealed that she and Chad had never quite called things off and claimed that Chad loved her more than he'd loved Chanel. Denise also swore to find Chad's killer.
Chad and Denise were always a hilarious pair, so their romance "flashback" scenes on "Halloween Blues" were some of the funniest moments of the entire hour. Role-playing Brokeback Mountain, Denise's comment about the rose petals in the bath masking the smell of her farts during their American Beauty role-play – one moment was funnier than the next with those two.
Unsurprisingly, Chanel and Denise turned to the "Dark Arts" in order to make contact with Chad – primarily because they wanted a final answer on who he loved more, but also to get the killer's identity. Of course, the former was the priority, and they did get that answer (he loved Denise more).
But since we're only four hours into the season, we naturally got a goofy scene with Chad delaying telling Chanel who killed him until Zayday barged in and the human-spirit phone connection went dead.
As basically useless as that seance scene was in terms of the overall plot, it did give us what I'm guessing was one last hurrah for Chad (partially featuring Glen Powell in Denise's Daenerys costume, which was amazing). He informed Chanel that he was in heaven, golf bros with Jesus, and that he'd like Chanel to slaughter his goat Rammy for him, so he could have his lil' goat pal up there with him.
Chad's Ghost: Hello, Chanel. Oh, speaking of, do you mind killing him for me?
Chanel: What? Kill who?
Chad's Ghost: Rammy. Newsflash, Chanel, I'm super dead. And I really miss that little guy.
Beyond her issues with Chad's death, Chanel was firmly no longer Team Dr. Holt, in any capacity.
The reveal that he and Dean Munsch had been sleeping together was perfect. Chanel's anguish over continuously losing "her men" to "these middle-aged women" never gets old, nor does Munsch's bitchy attacks on Chanel's "underdeveloped" appearance (many of which were echoed by Denise).
First of all, I look amazing. And I'll admit, I was surprised when I tried it on and it fit like a glove, 'cause, you know, we've got different body types. My body type is "woman," and yours is "malnourished Victorian paperboy."Denise
Chanel had become suspicious of Dr. Holt (but was still turned on by him) when he insinuated that he might be the Green Meanie mastermind, but that suspicion morphed into full blown rage when Holt's viral infection treatment ended up "accidentally" turning Chanel blue.
Obviously, Dean Munsch and Dr. Holt are the two single most suspicious known characters at this point – well, next to Hester, of course.
Munsch was the sole beneficiary of Chad's fortune, which he bequeathed to her VIA PHONE CALL TO HIS LAWYER shortly before dying. That's totally, totally sketchy. Could Munsch have killed Chad in order to steal his money, so that she could pour the funds into finding a cure for herself? That seems like an appropriately Dean Munsch-y thing to do, if you ask me.
I also wouldn't be shocked if Holt and Munsch were in cahoots. He's just as suspicious, if not more, than she is. He obviously had motive – he actively disliked Chad and hated that Chad had "stolen" Chanel away from him. Logically, Holt and Munsch are the prime suspects for the Green Meanie's identity (or identities) at the moment.
Poor Chanel #5 had a really rough go this time around. Not only did she get falsely accused of attempting to murder Chanel (when Chanel's attacker was actually a released Hester in her own Ivanka Trump costume) – she didn't even have the same costume! She was accused literally for nothing, because she didn't realize that Ivana and Ivanka were two separate women. Poor, stupid #5.
#5's life was also hanging in the balance in the closing scene – but Denise Hemphill is, by all appearances, straight-up, fully dead. Which is a travesty. My two favorite Scream Queens characters were killed off of the show within two weeks of one another? What is this madness?!
I'm starting to feel as if the writers have embraced the show's poor ratings and are now just banking on it being canceled after Scream Queens Season 2 concludes – and so they're figuring they might as well go all out with the legitimately shocking character deaths.
Denise and #5 wound up in their precarious predicament after the Green Meanie thought up a pretty ingenious distraction – he or she poisoned the water in an apple-bobbing barrel at a costume party elsewhere, sending a flood of dozens of patients into the woefully understaffed CURE Institute.
Oh, come on, Chanel. Are you seriously going to kill me over a Halloween costume, when we have an ER full of Lin-Manuel Mirandas and they're all tripping balls?Chanel #5
I continue to not understand why these folks didn't end up at a REAL hospital, but whatever, suspension of disbelief and all that.
Holt continued to be a deeply mediocre doctor once again, getting upstaged by Zayday, who was able to get to the bottom of the real malady the costume partygoers were suffering from. If she hadn't figured out the real cause, Holt could have seriously harmed the patients with his misdiagnosis and mistreatment – which I'm starting to think might be purposeful.
As much as I'm not looking forward to Holt being as obvious a villain as he's been made out to be, I am loving Zayday being a physician-wunderkind. You go, Zayday Williams!
Zayday was also the only one to piece together the fact that the Green Meanie's goal wasn't to kill the partygoers, but rather to cause a distraction, allowing him/her to kill one of their own – which they (apparently) did, offing Denise by electrocuting her with a defibrillator.
I was not expecting Denise' death whatsoever. Once #5 was stabbed, I was a little surprised but, to be honest, there's only so much longer that Chanel's hatred of #5 could continue being amusing. I expected #5 to be the sole victim of this installment.
Instead, it seems that #5 might actually survive and that Denise is the sole victim. At the very least, I doubt they'd let #5 die off-screen – she was alive when "Halloween Blues" ended – so if she does die, it'll be of her injuries on-screen on the next installment.
- Chanel's classic pink Jackie Kennedy suit made its triumphant return during her grieving-violently-over-Chad scene in the morgue, which was hilarious.
- In the same scene, Billie Lourd definitely almost broke character during Chanel's monologue about peeing in the potted plants. Can't say I blame her.
- Loved the reference to Chanel #2, who Chanel referred to as a gaslighter who was being motor-boated in hell by Genghis Khan. Ah, Chanel #2, we miss you. Well, maybe not Chanel.
- The group's Halloween costumes were perfection. There was Chanel as Smurfette, #3 as Death, Cassidy as Ryan Lochte, Zayday as Isis, Holt as the Batman v. Superman script ("a hot mess"), Dean Munsch as Hamilton, Chamberlain as Mario, Denise as Daenerys Targaryen from Game of Thrones, and, of course, #5 as an accidental Ivana Trump.
- I'm not big on bringing political commentary into my reviews, and I am fully aware that some readers may not have been amused, but I personally did find the Ivana/Ivanka/Donald Trump jokes very funny. Particularly the jab that Ivanka could be elected the "Minister of Propaganda" any day now.
- I continue to love Lea Michele's Hannibal Lecter-inspired performance of bat-shit crazy Hester. Denise releasing her from custody was obviously a huge mistake, logically, but will totally pay off plot-wise.
- I was a little surprised that Hester didn't care AT ALL about Chad's death. She had a huge thing for him throughout the first season, which didn't seem to be a complete act.
What did you think of "Halloween Blues"? Leave me a comment below and watch Scream Queens online anytime here at TV Fanatic!
Caralynn Lippo is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.