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|“||The wrong son died that day, it should've been you!||„|
|~ Lavinia lashing out at her elder son, Benjamin|
Lavinia Ritcher, also known as the Woman of the White, is the overarching antagonist of American Horror Story: 1984 and presumably an alluded character in American Horror Story: Murder House.
Formerly a chef in Camp Redwood, then known as Camp Gold Star, Lavinia is the mother of Benjamin Ritcher a.k.a Mr. Jingles and the person who encouraged Margaret Booth into framing Benjamin for the 1970 murder, believing he should pay for the death of his younger brother, Bobby.
Lavinia was a widowed mother who lost her husband in World War II. After the war, she began her service at "Camp Golden Star" (the previous name of Camp Redwood) as a cook to maintain a fun summer for her two sons, Bobby and Benjamin Richter. It was shown that she favored Bobby instead of Benjamin, whom she neglated.
On a summer in 1948, Lavinia tasked Benjamin with watching Bobby while they went swimming. However, Bobby was left on his own after Benjamin chose to watch the lifeguard being intimate with a counselor in the woods instead. While swimming in the lake, Bobby was accidentally killed after swimming into a boat propeller.
Stricken by grief after hearing Bobby's death, Lavinia blamed the male counselors and lashed out at Benjamin for the death of Bobby. Out of vengeance, Lavinia killed all of the male conceulors claimed her own vengeance by slaughtering the male counselors in their cabin. When Benjamin witnessed the murder, Lavinia attempted to kill him to silent him. In a struggle, Lavina was accidentally stabbed to death by Benjamin, and her blood full of rage and sorrow accidentally spilled in the camp.
Henceforth, Lavinia became a ghost of Camp Redwood known as the Woman in White and became the source of its long-lasting curse. The death of his family haunted Benjamin in his entire life.
Lavinia stayed in Camp Redwood in peace for the next three decades, and slowly had a change of heart and remorse over her actions after accompanying the ghosts of both her sons by her side. During Bobby II's visit to Camp Redwood in 2019, he was attacked by the vengeful ghost of Margaret when, Lavinia, now having a change of heart in her personality, reappeared and saves Bobby II, from Margaret.
Disgusted by how far Margaret would go, Lavinia rebuked Margaret for her action and claimed that Bobby should like happy ever after. When Margaret dismissed such thing, Lavinia slashed the throat of Margaret and left her damaged soul to be imprisoned by the vengeful ghosts of counselors, amending the results of Lavinia's own actions more than forty years ago.
After saving her grandson, Lavinia remarked how handsome he was and how he looked just like his uncle would have looked as an adult. By the end of the series finale, Bobby II departs Camp Redwood at the insistence of the ghosts, sharing a tearful goodbye with his family beforehand. With a tearful smile and accompanied by Benjamin and Bobby, the redeemed Lavinia watched her grandson departed.
- The Woman in White legend is first mentioned in-series in American Horror Story: Murder House. In "Piggy Piggy", Derrick mentions that he is afraid of the Lady in White when asked by Ben Harmon about his fears.
- The Woman in White is based on La Llorona from Mexican folklore.
- Like other characters in 1984, Lavinia's characterization pays homage to several characters from American slasher films.
- For most of the part, Lavinia is presumably inspired by Pamela Voorhees from Friday the 13th series. Like Pamela, Lavinia murdered the entire staff of a camp after blaming them for her son's drowning in a lake.
- Lavinia revealing to Benjamin that she manipulated Margaret into committing the 1970 massacre is reminiscent of the "big reveal" in Scream 3, where Roman Bridger reveals to Sidney Prescott that he manipulated Billy Loomis into killing their mother.
- While Lavinia encouraged Margaret into framing Benjamin for murder, it was actually Margaret's idea to murder the Red Wood Camp conseulors in the first place. It was also implied that Margaret accepted Lavinia's idea to frame Benjamin for her own petty revenge, once he rejected her idea of killing the conseulors with her, implying that Lavina's manipulation only cemented it.
- In addition, Lavina later showed remorse over her action and was disgusted by Margaret's attempt to murder Bobby II, who had nothing to do with the entire event. This makes Lavinia actually much less evil and selfish than Margaret.
American Horror Stories