American Horror Story
After having endured the Apocalypse in American Horror Story Apocalypse, Ryan Murphy felt a lighter tone was needed for season 9. Something where the stakes weren't as high as the end of the world, something with a little more humor. Something a little less bloody -- wait, scratch that last one. Bring on the blood bath!
This season some of the younger AHS alumni returned (Emma Roberts, Cody Fern, Billie Lourde and Leslie Grossman) as well as Dylan McDermott, Lily Rabe and Zach Villa, with elder veterans Sarah Paulson, Evan Peters and Kathy Bates sitting this season out. New this year most notably is former Glee star Matthew Morrison and his, um, appendage (!) and Olympic Gold Medalist Gus Kenworthy.
While AHS 1984 took us back to the eighties slasher film genre, setting up a Friday The 13th slashathon at Camp Redwood, 1984 also served as a “sequel” to American Horror Story Hotel with the return of real life serial killer the “Night Stalker” Richard Ramirez who was seen in the “Devil’s Night” episode of Hotel. Devil’s Night or Halloween, has been featured in many seasons of AHS and is the night of the year when the dead can walk the Earth freely…not trapped in one location such as Murder house, Hotel Cortez, or this season, Camp Redwood. With an abbreviated season of 9 episodes and most of Camp Redwood’s counselors bumped off by mid-season, the Richard Ramirez Night Stalker story line helped flesh out the season even if it did lend itself to some uneveness.
The highlight of 1984 was its campy sense of humor. They pulled some classic scenes from classic horror films to present a great horror homage for horror film buffs, such as the famous Jason Vorhees jumps out of the water and attacks the Final Girl in the boat.
Just as last season caused some controversy when religious groups demanded the show be taken off the air for its Apocalyptic subject matter (never mind that good triumphed over evil racking up a win for “their side”) this season came under fire for Matthew Morrison’s penis outline under his gym shorts which sent those who want to control television content all a flutter. There were also groups asking why gay Olympian Gus Kenworthy was playing a straight character. I can answer that one easily: he’s an actor, he’s acting. It’s not like casting Caucasians as Asian sleuths or super villains (Charlie Chan, Fu Manchu). Rock Hudson was one of Hollywood’s biggest ladies men yet he was gay (albeit in the closet). It’s really much ado about nothing. For me, the bigger issue is that the athlete could use some acting lessons.
Emma Roberts’ good girl was a nice change of pace from the bitchy characters she has played in the series. This season also saw Pose star Angelica Ross as the camp “psychologist”, and guest stars Mitch Pileggi (X-Files), Stephen Culp (Desperate Housewives), Tim Russ (Star Trek Voyager), and Finn Whitrock who made his American Horror Story debut in AHS Freakshow.
As season 10 has already been confirmed, the rumor mill has been spinning since before season 9 even premiered. One early rumor has it the Coven Witches returning next while recent rumors question if season 10 will be the last. And then there’s the usual “Will Netflix pick it up if it gets cancelled?” question, made more plausible with Ryan Murphy’s recent lucrative deal with the streaming service.
I love the "acting troop" approach to this series with actors returning each season in different roles and I think the series has much more life in it. It is without a doubt the best horror anthology on TV and has spawned a new revival of the anthology series format. I really am hoping that the Coven (and Sarah Paulson) will be back next season. Only time will tell.
American Horror Story 1984: Season 9 Review
Writing - 9/109/10
Storyline - 9/109/10
Acting - 8/108/10
Music - 10/1010/10
Production - 10/1010/10
User Review( votes)