American Horror Story proved to be a breakout hit last year for FX, largely due to the family-in-a-haunted-house premise that was both intriguing and genuinely creepy – and, more importantly, not seen anywhere else on television.
Despite the success of season 1, creators Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk have opted to reinvent their own wheel by completely changing the story, setting, and characters for season 2. What we do know about season 2 of AHS is that it’ll be titled American Horror Story: Asylum, and as that heading alludes to, it will be set in an institution for the criminally insane in 1964.
A small crop of characters from the first season will be back, only with entirely different roles. Among the returning will be Zachary Quinto (Star Trek), and, most prominently, Jessica Lange, who played Constance in season one and will be the focus of season two (she was nominated for an Emmy and won both a Golden Globe and a SAG Award for her role as Constance) . Maroon 5 lead singer Adam Levine will also be involved, as one half of a pair called “The Lovers.”
Those details have been out in the open for a while now, but Murphy recently took to Twitter to hold a brief Q+A with fans, where he shed a bit more light on what the second season could entail.
Fan: “If I didn’t watch the first season, can I start watching now without being confused?”
Ryan Murphy: “Totally! It’s a completely new story.”
Fan: “Will there be ANY parallels to Season 1? Lines, paintings, details, anything?”
RM: “Not a single thing… except some of the actors.”
Fan: “I’m dying to know if Jessica Lange plays a villain or heroine…”
RM: “A little of both. : )”
Fan: “Are you planning on a Halloween/Christmas themed episode again this season?”
RM: “Yes! The second episode is our amazing Halloween episode.”
Fan: “Is Bloody Face a significant element in Season 2?”
RM: “Bloody Face is this year’s Rubber Man.”
Fan: “Is the ‘theme song’ from the opening credits last season still going to be used? It was perfectly eerie.”
RM: “We are shooting a new title sequence with the same team that did last year’s. The song may stay… not sure.”
Fan: “How many episodes will this season have?”
RM: “This season will have 13 episodes. 7 already written!”
Murphy didn’t say anything too groundbreaking, which isn’t unexpected given that the mystery element of the show really plays into the horror aspect and keeps viewers guessing. Murphy mainly used the chat to continue building hype for the coming season by referencing some of the highlights from the initial campaign. Discussing the Halloween episode will get viewers excited, as it’ll promise an extra dose of horror and weirdness, and alluding to “this year’s Rubber Man” will probably prompt an early debate as to who or what “Bloody Face” could be.
We certainly don’t know too much more about season 2 following Murphy’s Twitter interview, but if nothing else, he’s at least promising different or alternative takes on certain aspects of season 1 that really stood out. This should help to reassure fans that are still on the fence about the show taking the anthology approach and changing everything up season by season.
One thing that’s important for season 1 viewers to keep in mind is that the returning actors are playing all new characters, so they have to try and go in without thinking of Lange as Constance and Quinto as one of the earlier occupants of the Los Angeles “Murder House” who met an uncomfortable demise. That’s certainly one of the risks of bringing back the same actors to play new characters, but as long as they’re different enough from their previous counterparts, viewers shouldn’t worry about blending the two together.
Season 2 of American Horror Story debuts in October.
Source: Zap 2 It
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