Last night, the long awaited fourth season of American Horror Story made its debut. Written by series co-creators Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk and directed by Murphy the premiere episode of Freak Show was titled “Monsters Among Us” and offered a glimpse inside Elsa Mars’s (Jessica Lange) sideshow attraction. I think it might be important to note that Murphy hasn’t directed an episode of the hit series since the pilot back in 2011 when the whole thing began. While I had voiced my reservations about the series as a whole in an article on Nerdist.com yesterday, I have to say I was thoroughly impressed with the episode that set up multiple stories yet still managed to stay focused. Could this be because Murphy and Falchuk are taking a more active role in this season? Warning! Episode spoilers ahead…
The episode began with Sarah Paulson’s Bette and Dot, conjoined twin sisters at the end of their rope, fed up with their abusive mother whom they are accused of stabbing to death. When Mars gets wind of a potential new act that could save her fledgeling Freak Show, the last one in the country, she seeks them out to try and persuade them into being her main attraction.
Meanwhile, in a sunny field and on a picnic, two young kids find themselves at the mercy of John Carroll Lynch’s Twisty The Clown who saves the young lady in question (The Nine Lives of Chloe King‘s Skyler Samuels) but massacres her boyfriend. Twisty also murders a little boys parents but saves the boy, holding the two left alive in a cage of sorts in a secluded trailer. Twisty is terrifying, doesn’t speak (yet) and is clearly dangerous.
After Dot and Bette join the Freak Show, a police detective tracks them down and confronts them to put them under arrest for the murder of their mother, something that Jimmy Darling (Evan Peters), the Lobster Boy doesn’t take too kindly too, slitting the detectives throat after he hurls insults and slurs at the group.
The extended premiere appears to set up the struggles of the season with the signature American Horror Story style. Visually, the show is gorgeous, the make up and costume are stunning, and so far no one has gone over the top or off the rails yet. Silly to say I know, but this is American Horror Story we’re talking about and restraint has not proven to be their strong suit over the years. For those who are wondering, no, I don’t count a rendition of David Bowie’s “Life On Mars” as over the top. This is American Horror Story, after all. We also still haven’t met a lot of the big name cast members yet (Emma Roberts, Dennis O’Hare, Michael Chiklis and Angela Bassett have yet to appear) and since this is reportedly star Jessica Lange’s final season, something tells me we’re all in for something really crazy.
What about you? What were your thoughts on the season premiere? Will Freak Show live up to the expectations? Let us know in the comments!
American Horror Story: Freak Show airs Wednesday at 10PM on FX.