After months of teases, hints, and blatant lies, last month saw the premiere of American Horror Story's hotly anticipated sixth season. Long known as simply ?6, the mysterious season 6 was of course finally revealed to be American Horror Story: Roanoke. Presented as though it was a real life paranormal documentary entitled My Roanoke Nightmare, AHS: Roanoke represented quite the shake-up for the anthology drama's format, and almost a complete 180 degree turn from last year's popular Hotel season.
Still, the numbers don't lie, and Roanoke's changes to the established AHS formula have seemingly gone over well with fans, who continue to tune in to each new episode in droves. Roanoke has also been another critical success for AHS, with the season maintaining a fresh rating on review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes.
With those facts in mind, it's not at all surprising that FX today opted to renew American Horror Story for season 7, which - if tradition holds - will premiere in either September or October 2017. Network CEO John Landgraf offered the following comments concerning the announcement:
"[Co-creators] Ryan [Murphy], Brad [Falchuk] and their team of remarkable writers have done an amazing job of keeping American Horror Story endlessly inventive, shocking and entertaining and we are honored to move ahead with them on the seventh installment. The sustained success through six installments only proves how intensely the series resonates with fans. AHS confronts our deepest fears with unmatched suspense and style. Each new installment is a cultural event, hotly anticipated for its theme, imagery, cast and twists. We thank the creators and their team, the cast and everyone who has continued to make AHS such an extraordinary series."
It's obviously way too soon to try and guess whether AHS season 7 will continue Roanoke's secretive marketing strategy, but considering how well that tactic appears to have worked, it isn't hard to imagine fans once again not finding out what the new season is about until the premiere episode airs on TV. One thing at least seems certain, and that's that season 7 will not be the recently revealed "secret season" that Murphy and an unnamed writer have been busy clandestinely working on; as Murphy said in that same interview that season 7's content and theme had already been decided upon with the network.
Outside of the plot itself, another aspect concerning American Horror Story season 7 that remains unclear is just how many episodes will be produced. Asylum, Coven, and Freak Show all ran 13 episodes total, while Murder House and Hotel ran for 12. Roanoke threw fans a bit of a curve ball in that department this year, with only 10 episodes being in the offing. Murphy has said that part of the reason for the trim was to avoid AHS' run extending into the less-appropriate holiday season, and keeping things confined to a tight, uninterrupted fall airing schedule. It'll be interesting to see whether Murphy goes the shorter route with season 7 as well.
American Horror Story: Roanoke airs Wednesdays at 10pm on FX. Season 7 arrives in 2017.