HomeEntertainmentTop American Horror Story: Ranking the Top Seasons

Top American Horror Story: Ranking the Top Seasons

Season 1: Murder House

The first season of the anthology series, Murder House, established the eerie tone of the show and is widely regarded as the best season thus far. Creators Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk captured viewers’ attention with a compelling storyline that included family trauma, restless spirits, a mysterious latex suit, and nosy neighbors, all set against the backdrop of glamorous Los Angeles. Additionally, the season introduced us to some of the show’s most prominent stars, including Evan Peters, Jessica Lange, and Sarah Paulson. The plot revolves around a therapist, Dr. Ben Harmon (played by Dylan McDermott), who relocates with his family to Los Angeles to escape his infidelity and deal with his wife’s miscarriage. However, upon moving into a strange and eclectic mansion, the family quickly discovers that the property is haunted by the ghosts of its former inhabitants, making their new home anything but a fresh start.

Season 3: Coven

Season 3 Coven

What’s not to love about the third season of American Horror Story? It features a gang of powerful witches in New Orleans who are descendants of the Salem witches, residing at Miss Robichaux’s Academy for Exceptional Young Ladies. The season stars a host of A-listers including Emma Roberts, Lily Rabe, Gabourey Sidibe, and Taissa Farmiga, led by Sarah Paulson as teacher Cordelia Foxx. Cordelia faces a challenge as she tries to lead the coven of misunderstood witches while dealing with her mother, Fiona Goode (Jessica Lange), who returns to rule the coven as Supreme Witch and rebuild her relationship with her daughter.

As with many other seasons in the AHS franchise, Coven draws inspiration from true events and people such as the Salem witch trials, Voodoo priestess Marie Laveau (played by Angela Bassett), and serial killer Delphine LaLaurie (played by Kathy Bates). While the season may not be terrifying, it captivates viewers with its intriguing storyline, campy drama, and serves as a source of inspiration for Halloween.

Season 8: Apocalypse

Season 8 Apocalypse

The eighth season of American Horror Story is a crossover season that connects two of the franchise’s most popular seasons, Murder House and Coven, along with some moments from Hotel. The season is set in a post-apocalyptic world following a nuclear fallout caused by the anti-christ. The initial episodes introduce a group of new characters who were randomly selected to survive the nuclear bomb. As the season progresses, the coven from season 3 is brought back, with Emma Roberts, Sarah Paulson, and Frances Conroy reprising their roles, to try and reverse the catastrophic event and stop the anti-christ, who is disguised as a powerful warlock named Michael Langdon, played by Cody Fern. The goal is to prevent Langdon from blending in and gaining more power.

Season 6: Roanoke

Season 6 Roanoke

Despite receiving criticism, Roanoke is a must-watch for true crime enthusiasts. This season of American Horror Story draws inspiration from true crime docudramas as it follows the experiences of a married couple, Shelby (played by Lily Rabe) and Matt Miller (played by André Holland), who move to North Carolina and settle in an old, secluded home in a rural area. The couple begins to experience strange events and discovers that their home has a dark past: It was built in the same area where over 100 colonists from Roanoke Island disappeared in the 1500s.

Sarah Paulson and Cuba Gooding Jr. play the couple in reenactments, as the Millers share their story. Later in the season, the cast, along with the real-life Millers, return to the home for a reunion-like special, where events take a dark turn. Roanoke stands apart from other seasons of AHS, but still manages to deliver thrilling entertainment with its all-star cast, including Kathy Bates, Evan Peters, Lady Gaga, and Angela Bassett.

Season 7: Cult

Season 7 Cult

Cult reflects the scariness of everyday life after the 2016 election and features a lesbian couple trying to cope with the aftermath. As Ally’s mental health deteriorates, an alt-righter named Kai forms a cult of followers and rises to power. The season explores the true horror of having the wrong person in charge and stars Sarah Paulson, Evan Peters, Alison Pill, and newcomer Billie Lourd.

Season 5: Hotel

Season 5 Hotel

Hotel is the scariest AHS season that focuses on a hotel in downtown LA with a dark past. The hotel is run by The Countess (Lady Gaga) and is known for its gruesome murders. The season has a complex storyline that follows a detective investigating the murders while The Countess throws avant-garde parties and sustains herself with human blood. The season’s creepy aesthetic, including blood-stained sheets and flickering lights, is inspired by the real-life horror story of the Cecil Hotel.

Season 4: Freak Show

Season 4 Freak Show
Freak Show

Freak Show portrays a group of misfits trying to achieve their dreams, but the season takes a dark turn. It is set in the 1950s and follows Elsa Mars (Jessica Lange) as she tries to make her troupe of performers famous. As a killer clown begins to terrorize the town, the group struggles to attract an audience. While featuring an impressive cast, Freak Show’s storyline can feel slow-paced and lacks closure.

Season 9: 1984

Season 9 1984

1984 takes you back to the 80s with a classic slasher film vibe. The story revolves around a group of camp counselors at Camp Redwood, where a past serial killer incident haunts the place. Brooke Thompson, played by Emma Roberts, joins the group, and they are led by Leslie Grossman’s Margaret Booth, the only survivor of the previous attack. While the season incorporates real-life events, including serial killer Richard Ramirez, it can be confusing with its multiple storylines and perspectives.

Season 2: Asylum

Season 2 Asylum

Asylum takes place in a mental asylum called Briarcliff Manor, located in an undisclosed town in Massachusetts. After Kit Walker (Evan Peters) is accused of being a serial killer named “Bloody Face” following the disappearance of his wife Alma (Britne Oldford), he is admitted to Briarcliff. The season deals with social issues and horror, and includes musical performances by Jessica Lange.

Season 10: Double Feature

Season 10 Double Feature
Double Feature

AHS’s latest season, divided into two parts, features Red Tide and Death Valley. Red Tide follows Harry and Doris, who move to Provincetown, Massachusetts, where Harry is given a pill that enhances his writing but causes a thirst for blood. In Death Valley, Kaia Gerber and her friends are abducted by aliens, impregnated, and used to create a new species to save the aliens from extinction. While both parts have promising storylines, they end abruptly with unanswered questions.

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