American Horror Story


The thing about American Horror Story is, it’s American Horror Story. It does what it wants, sometimes despite you, sometimes to spite you. It’s over the top, flamboyant, stupid and smart. It’s a pantomime, a love letter to horror, a second rate rip off. It’s anything it wants to be, which is why it’s so unique.

Season two is my favourite. It’s my favourite because its insanity in plot matches the setting, because for perhaps the only time the shows childish need to one up itself over and over, whether that’s by introducing the devil or literal aliens, makes sense thematically. But it’s also my favourite because it just keeps going.

I love the way seasons of American Horror Story end. The story wraps up in the penultimate episode, and then, in the real finale, it just keep going. For as long as they can be bothered. They become tales of broad strokes, where the gloves are off and consequences don’t matter. Whether it’s the fate of the Hotel Cortez is season four, or the fate of the world in season one, American Horror Story has a first ending which it just shrugs off, and a second, which it barely thinks about at all. And that’s great. Because it’s American Horror Story. It does what it wants.

Season two, my favourite season, is a whole thirteen episodes of not caring. It’s an entire season where anything can happen, because the writers don’t have to worry about how they’ll deal with it later, because they can just decide to drop in an alien to sort it all out. It’s insane. It’s bad plotting, not caring if it turns you away. It’s American Horror Story. It exists despite you.

American Horror Story is from the people who made Glee. I’ve never seen Glee, but I think I’d like it. It might not have a monster with a drill penis. It might do, but I’m guessing not. It probably has the sense of style though, right? The sense of theatre? Because that’s something I think takes a while to understand. American Horror Story is self-aware. Of course it is. There’s a serial clown murderer and a glitzy rendition of ‘Life on Mars’ in the same episode. Of course it understands. Every stupid thing that happens, every disturbing, insensitive moment, pushes people away. It doesn’t welcome us in, not at all. But if we can stand it, us vile viewers, if we can sit there and watch and watch and watch till our skin goes soft and our minds go blank, it’ll sure as hell put on a show.

It exists to spite you. It exists to upset you, to make you mad, to make you turn it off and stop watching. It’s exploitative and it’s insensitive. It might very well break you, might crack straight through bone and leave you sobbing. It might. But then again, it might not. So it’ll keep on pushing. Aliens, zombies, angels, breast milk loving serial killers with real bad daddy issues. It’s stupid. It’s dumb. It’s a waste of your time. But it’s the best waste of time you could possibly ask for. It’s one hell of a show, in every sense of the word. It might not be the best show, but it’s one you wont forget.

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