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American Horror Story is an American horror TV drama presented as a anthology series, with each season introducing new characters, portrayed by both returning and new cast members, unique settings and a self-contained storyline. Since its premiere in October 2011, the series has garnered a fan following on Tumblr, DeviantART and elsewhere online.
The show was created by Brad Falchuk and Ryan Murphy. It premiered on FX on October 5th, 2011. As of March 2014, three seasons and a total of 38 episodes have aired. It was renewed for a fourth season, which will take place in a carnival, on November 6th, 2013.
Season 1: Murder House
Ben (Dylan McDermott), Vivien (Connie Britton) and their teenage daughter Violet (Taissa Farmiga) move into a house where the previous occupants died in a murder suicide. Violet quickly develops a relationship with her father’s teenage psychiatric patient Tate (Evan Peters), while her parents become friendly with their neighbor Constance (Jessica Lange) and her daughter Addie (Jamie Brewer). The house is full of the ghosts of the people who have died there, including Tate, who was a high school shooter. Tate rapes Vivien, who becomes pregnant with twins, only one of which was fathered by Tate. Another ghost that joins the house is Hayden (Kate Mara), a woman Ben had an affair with who is murdered by one of the house ghosts when she comes to confront Ben. Violet becomes a house ghost after she commits suicide, Vivien becomes a house ghost when she and one of the twins die in childbirth, and Ben becomes a house ghost when he’s murdered by Hayden. They remain in the house to scare off other potential buyers, while the live twin is raised by Constance, who was Tate’s mother and thus the boy’s grandmother. The series ends with her discovery the three-year-old boy, prophesized to be the anti-christ, had murdered his nanny.
Season 2: Asylum
Sister Jude (Jessica Lange) and Sister Mary Eunice (Lily Rabe) run Briarcliff Mental Institution in 1964 with Dr. Oliver Thredson (Zachary Quinto) and scientist Dr. Arthur Arden (James Cromwell). Thredson is a serial killer who pins his murders on Briarcliff patient Kit Walker (Evan Peters), who is accused of murdering his wife Alma Walker (Britne Oldford), who he believes was abducted by aliens. Arden is a former Nazi who performs medical experiments on the patients. Another patient is journalist Lana Winters (Sarah Paulson), who is committed by her girlfriend Wendy (Clea Duvall) when Sister Jude threatens to make their relationship public. Walker begins a relationship with accused murder Grace Bertrand (Lizzie Brocheré). Bertrand and Walker have a child together and the family is released, when they find out Kit’s wife is alive and they also have a child. Winters is able to expose Thredson as the serial killer, but not before he rapes her. In the present day she is a successful reporter, and the season ends with her child by Thredson, Johnny (Dylan McDermott), who she gave up for adoption, holding her at gunpoint, though she’s able to take charge of the situation and kills him instead.
Season 3: Coven
Cordelia Foxx (Sarah Paulson) runs a school for young witches in New Orleans, where she lives with her mother, Fiona Goode (Jessica Lange), who is the coven’s Supreme, or most powerful witch. As the season begins four new witches arrive-Zoe Benson (Taissa Farmiga), who can cause men to have brain hemorrhages by sleeping with them, Queenie (Gabourey Sidibe), a human voodoo doll, Madison Montgomery (Emma Roberts), who can move things with her thoughts, and Nan (Jamie Brewer), who can hear other’s thoughts. Goode is desperate to beat her incurable cancer, which is seen as a sign that a new Supreme will rise soon, as the old Supreme’s power weakens as the new one rises. Goode resurrects Delphine LaLaurie (Kathy Bates), who killed and tortured slaves in the 1800s, to annoy Marie Laveau (Angela Bassett), a voodoo priestess who cursed LaLaurie. LaLaurie becomes a maid at the school as the girls develop their powers while waiting to see who will emerge as the next supreme. When it appears Goode has been murdered they hold a competition among the girls to see who the next supreme is, but during the competition it becomes clear Foxx is the new supreme. Goode returns briefly before dying of cancer, while Foxx makes the Coven public and continues to run the school with the girls who survived the test (Queenie and Benson).
American Horror Story received a score of 8.5 on IMDB and a rating of 65 on Metacritic. It has been nominated for four Golden Globes, winning one in 2012 for Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Series, Mini-Series or Motion Picture Made for Television (Jessica Lange). It has also won four Primetime Emmys including ones for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Miniseries or a Movie (Jessica Lange), Outstanding Hairstyling for a Miniseries or a Movie, Outstanding Sound Editing for a Miniseries, Movie or a Special, and Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Miniseries or a Movie (James Cromwell).
As of March 2014, American Horror Story’s official Twitter account has over 490,000 followers and its Facebook page has over 6.9 million likes. The first two seasons are available to watch for subscribers on Netflix. Fans can also access episode guides and character sketches at the American Horror Story Wiki and the shows IGN Wiki guide.
There are numerous fan-run Tumblr blogs dedicated to the American Horror Story fandom including horrorstorygifs, ahsfans, american-horror-story-fangirling, and ahs-official. Popular Tumblr tags fans use to tag their content include has and american-horror-story. Multiple Tumblr blogs also exist to discuss possible hidden meanings in the show including a-h-story, which examines possible hidden meanings in the theme song, littleahsthings, which points out strange details in the episodes, and americanhorrorstoryrefs, which explains references in the plot . Fans also gather to discuss the show on the Reddit thread /r/AmericanHorrorStory/, which has over 20,000 subscribers as of March 2014. As of March 2014, there are over 790 American Horror Story fanfiction submissions on Fanfic.net and more than 5,400 fan art submissions for the show on DeviantArt.
AHS Coven Roleplay
The most recent season of American Horror Story, Coven, has inspired a lot of role playing on Tumblr, or Tumblr users pretending to be characters from the show. Those role playing on Tumblr often use the tags ahs-coven-rp and ahs-coven-rpg. Tumblr blogs that organize the role playing groups and audition and assign roles to interested Tumblr users include ahs-coven-rpg, americanhorrorstoryrpg, american-horror-story-rp, chill-american-horror-story-rp, and covenofsinandmisery-rpg.
“Surprise, Bitch,” not to be confused with James Doakes’ “Surprise, Motherf**ker”, is a catchphrase associated with the character Madison Montgomery (played by Emma Roberts) in American Horror Story: Coven.
On Tumblr, the phrase has been paired with GIFs depicting the return of a character once thought to be dead.
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