With just two episodes remaining in The Fall of the House of Usher, we can imagine that all our questions will finally be answered. What did Madeline and Roderick do all those years ago that made them so paranoid? More importantly, why does Roderick think he killed his children when clearly they all died due to circumstances, none of which involved Roderick directly? The Pit and the Pendulum is a dark tale of torture and leaves an eerie mark on the reader. Now, will it be Frederick who gets tortured to death? Or will he torture someone else?
There Is No Good Usher
Now we know that Roderick betrayed Auggie, but up until now, the story goes that Roderick was doing everything in his power to support him. They even rehearsed together in the wee hours of the night to make sure Roderick wouldn’t mess up the trial. At this time, Roderick started showing significant changes in his behavior, becoming impatient with the kids because of all the stress he was going through. In 2023, Auggie tells Roderick that he only trusted him because of Annabel. He thought if a sweet woman like Annabel, a pure human being, could trust Roderick, then so could he. Oh, how wrong he was. We know that Roderick lost her later, but we are not sure how just yet. Auggie claims that there was only one good Usher, Annabel Lee, but Roderick reminds him that there is Lenore too.
Madeline Takes The Crown
At this point, Roderick has started to act strange and stopped caring about the business, and the board wants to remove Roderick from his CEO position. Frederick is the last vote, but Madeline has the idea of replacing Roderick as CEO through her algorithm pitch, and she asks Pym to take up the task for her. To tell the board that she’ll be perfect, keeping the business in the family.
Frederick’s Torture Chamber
Now Frederick has plastered the walls of Morelle’s room with pictures of them and their marriage. He wants her to see what she’s lost by going to Perry’s party. He’s still giving her the drugs, leaving her paralyzed and unconscious for the rest of the day. He knows Tamerlane has taken her own life using a fireplace poker, which confuses the heck out of him. Now, he’s been taking too much cocaine, making him highly charged and especially evil. His plan is to torture Morelle by removing her teeth. Her smile is what made him fall for her in an instant, so he can’t bear to see it anymore. As in, an “I don’t have you, so no one can” kind of situation.
The factories that were supposed to be destroyed still stand tall, and Roderick is at the end of his rope. He tells Frederick to get on it immediately because he’s in charge of them now and there’s nothing else that Roderick is relying on him for. Roderick reminds Frederick that Perry’s blood and a huge crime scene with their family name all over it still stand, so something has to be done ASAP. On the other hand, Juno asks her doctor about the withdrawal symptoms of giving up Ligodone.
Frederick returns home to Morelle, and while he’s tending to her drugs, he calls the demolition guys on the phone. Something strange happens during his conversation, where he goes completely blank and Morelle looks at him strangely. It definitely looks like something caused by the drugs he’s ingested. Then, Frederick brings a pair of pliers, gives Morelle her dose, and gets to work on her teeth (he doesn’t even know why she went!). Lenore is the only sane person in the family, and she’s had enough of her father’s shenanigans. He doesn’t let her see her mother, and there have been no “specialists” since she’s been brought back home.
Outside the room, Lenore finds her dad and raises her voice at him, urging him to do something about her mother. She tells him he’s been acting strange and even smells weird, and Frederick completely loses it. He tells her that just because she’s his daughter, she can’t speak to him in whatever manner she likes. His hubris has addled his mind, and he’s going the extra mile thanks to the cocaine. He leaves, and Lenore heads to the room where Morelle is. The doors are locked, and she breaks them open.
Auggie Wants To Leave
At this time in The Fall of the House of Usher, Episode 7, we’re back in the room where Roderick is making his confession. Auggie is losing his patience too. He was here for a confession, but all he’s getting is a deluded man’s story about his children’s deaths. Roderick admits to having hallucinations of his children, claiming that next while he’s talking to Auggie, he’ll see a vision of Frederick the way he saw the other kids. But in actuality, he sees Annabel Lee with baby Tam and four-year-old Freddie. He picks up the little boy in his hands, but before he knows it, Freddie’s body splits into two in his hands. Auggie watches as he sees nothing in Roderick’s hands.
Back in 1979, Roderick sat in the witness seat to talk against Fortunato’s wrongdoings. But, like a chameleon, he changes his colors, telling the jury that he in fact signed those papers and nothing was forged. Madeline and he have basically fooled Auggie into thinking that they were going to help him, but their whole plan was to make it seem like that and get on the good side of Rufus. Roderick even tells the jury that he was coerced by Auggie, who harassed him and his family, because he may have had a personal vendetta against Rufus. Roderick is now the hero of Fortunato, and they’re basically unstoppable. Annabel waits outside where the trial is happening, but Roderick gets arrested for perjury. This is the end of the straw for Annabel, though, because none of the money in the world is going to mend her relationship with Roderick after the trick he’s just pulled.
Madeline And Verna
Sometime before Frederick’s death, Madeline finally goes back to the old house to meet Verna, who is waiting for her. The conversation they had with her back in 1979, a faded memory for Roderick, is fresh in Madeline’s memory. She wants new terms for a “deal” that she made with Verna back then. Verna tells her that she’s asking for the impossible, reminding her that she’s not a woman. In episode 7 of The Fall of the House of Usher, we finally learn that Verna is Lady Death. A grim reaper, if you will. She tells Madeline that if they hadn’t made that deal many years ago, her life may have turned out completely different. Verna tells Madeline that she’s always been one of her favorites because she pushes boundaries and tries her best to get on top, no matter the consequences.
Like Roderick said, there’s one good Usher, Lenore. Lenore saves her mother after seeing her mutilated face, calling her father an abuser. She chooses to save her mother, not keeping her mouth shut about her father for the sake of the Usher name.
Juno and Roderick
Juno tells Roderick that she is done taking Ligodone and she’s going to get herself off it. He tells her that’s a stupid decision because not only would it be 3 years of agony, but the world would also wonder why Juno Usher would toss aside their own drug. Juno realizes it was a mistake marrying Roderick, and he clarifies this when he calls her beautiful when she was bedridden by a terrible accident and could take a lot of Ligodone with no side effects. The most any patient has ever taken.
In their conversation all those years ago, Verna gave Madeline and Roderick a way out of their sad lives, and now she offers Madeline clarity through a poem. She recites Edgar Allen Poe’s The City in the Sea. In episode 7 of The Fall of the House of Usher, Verna explains how she, Death herself, has always ruled over the Ushers all these years. She compares their family to hell itself, calling them more evil than the underworld. An inevitable fate that awaits them. Whatever they’ve achieved, whatever they’ve done, is waiting to be exposed the second their family is done for. As high as the walls get and as rich as they get, the more they become a doomed city. Like us, at first, Madeline doesn’t get what she means, but she looks at Verna with teary eyes, having a deep melancholic feeling from within.
How Does Frederick Bring On His Own Death?
Frederick goes to the building where Perry died. He tells the guys who are ready with their wrecking ball to destroy the building to wait 5 minutes for his signal. He goes inside and takes another hit of what he thinks is his cocaine. He pees on the spot where Perry died, but before he can zip up his pants, he falls to the floor, paralyzed. Remember when Morelle looked at him strangely? Verna was behind him, telling him to pack Morelle’s drug in his cocaine packet. He lies on the floor, pants unzipped, and Verna shows up, telling him that this is not how she wanted to do it, but he went and tortured his wife with the pliers, so he deserves the worst death possible. Freddie’s big dream was always to prove to his father that he was good enough, being the first son and all. Freddie always wanted love, but instead, he got pressured and pushed away. Sins of the father, they say, but Freddie picked up the pliers himself. A metal beam with a very dangerous-looking base oscillates over Frederick, dangerously close, as he watches the building fall apart with Verna talking to him on the side. Finally, it reaches his body, slicing him slowly and painfully in half (ew!).
At the end of The Fall of the House of Usher, episode 7, Madeline comes to Roderick at his spot in the basement. Madeline reminds Roderick that Verna had said they come into the world together and go out together; only then can there be a deal. She reminds him how much she loves him and that he’s being a hero, “saving them all”, not quite sure why considering everyone is already dead (except Lenore). She gives him Ligodone, telling him to take a bunch at once, tricking him into dying alone, it seems. Roderick is too caught up with everything that’s happened and actually follows through. He falls to the floor, presumably dead, but Verna returns, telling him she won’t let him go so easily.