American Horror Story : Season 1

  • Network: FX
  • Series Premiere Date: Oct 5, 2011
Season #: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6
User Score
8.1

Universal acclaim- based on 1015 Ratings

User score distribution:

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User Reviews

  1. Nov 2, 2016
    3
    Decent tv show but its so sexist its almost unwatchable at times. First season was basically bitter women hating men. If you can trudge through the bigotry theirs a good show but would you watch a show that said n i g g e r every 10 min because the other 9 min was good?
  2. Jan 29, 2016
    2
    If you're unfamiliar with American Horror Story, allow me to explain the entire show to you. Each season is a new independent story with exclusive characters, but the same cast. There is always a different supernatural origin for the magical happenings. This relatively understated premise is the only coherent thing about the show, however.

    The tone of the story varies widely from scene
    If you're unfamiliar with American Horror Story, allow me to explain the entire show to you. Each season is a new independent story with exclusive characters, but the same cast. There is always a different supernatural origin for the magical happenings. This relatively understated premise is the only coherent thing about the show, however.

    The tone of the story varies widely from scene to scene, going from what is trying to be abject horror to flip teen comedy. The scariest parts aren't scary, the funniest parts aren't funny, and in fact, usually these feelings are switched with one another. Parts that are supposed to be horrific are often unintentionally hilarious like you're watching an improv show, and parts that are supposed to be comedic are cringeworthy, like a trip to a fan fiction website.

    The brunt of the acting work is done by Taissa Farmiga, who is always the same angsty teenager, Evan Peters, who is always the same angsty teenager, and Jessica Lange, who looks like Bruce Jenner because they had the same plastic surgeries, all three of whom are of the caliber of a weekly patient on House, M.D. Other actors come and go - mostly has-beens with one-shot shows from the 1990s or 2000s. I believe in the cast, and trust that they could be award-winning given the right script - but they are not given the right script, and rarely have been, thus their presence on this show.

    Politically, the show commonly has an LGBT agenda, reaching out to closeted types who don't have anyone in real life to share themselves with. This social justice objective is somewhat undermined by various ham-fisted attempts at being Stephen King: straw-man bigoted characters are presented, but the plots often unintentionally are bigoted themselves (for example Gabourey Sidibe's character in "Coven" loves fried chicken; Jamie Brewer's presence and ability on the show are in direct contrast to her constant portrayal as a weirdo played up for horrific effect). The result is a "layered" presentation of gender issues as in Glee: a somewhat unbelievable, hackneyed middle ground between acceptance and hypocrisy.

    One aspect of note about the show is that the cinematography and direction, such as they are, are pretty good. The whole thing is well-shot and locations are rather attractive and memorable. Sadly, the writing is horribly embarrassing, to the point of comedy.

    I vote that the series be renamed to, "American Horrible Story."
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  3. Oct 12, 2015
    0
    parents, do not let your kids watch this crap. It is so blatantly disturbing and dark, why would you want to be exposed to that. How could a fine actress like Kathy Bates be a part of this? I love a good scary movie, but this is bullcrap. Take it off the air.
  4. Oct 9, 2015
    0
    I don't know where to start because this is too horrible to be explained, first of all they choose a pop star who makes music since she came out in the media and with no acting experience she gets a main role in a tv show, I don't know where to begin with her acting, she was acting bad but trying to be fashionable to cover up her bad acting, without her fans the views will be even lowerI don't know where to start because this is too horrible to be explained, first of all they choose a pop star who makes music since she came out in the media and with no acting experience she gets a main role in a tv show, I don't know where to begin with her acting, she was acting bad but trying to be fashionable to cover up her bad acting, without her fans the views will be even lower that it is, but the show would be better if they replaced Gaga with Jessica Lange Expand
  5. Dec 30, 2014
    2
    This TV series is bad, not scary and uninteresting. I'm wondering what's so good about this TV series. I realised that it was not as scary as the trailers described it. Overall, this TV series is horrible.
  6. Oct 9, 2014
    1
    The 2014 season is pitiful. Rather than introducing us to a cleverly written plot the show inundates us with unnecessary violence and sex during the first episode. This is the first season that I found myself annoyed by Jessica Lange. In all previous seasons she did a fantastic job. This season it feels like she is over acting and putting on a weak imitation of Meryl Streep with thatThe 2014 season is pitiful. Rather than introducing us to a cleverly written plot the show inundates us with unnecessary violence and sex during the first episode. This is the first season that I found myself annoyed by Jessica Lange. In all previous seasons she did a fantastic job. This season it feels like she is over acting and putting on a weak imitation of Meryl Streep with that awful German accent she is using. Expand
  7. Feb 2, 2014
    2
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I'm writing this review in the hopes that, if you have any inclination to watch it for similar reasons as I, you might be spared the misfortune of doing so. After the actual story was revealed and I wasn't just trying to piece together what exactly was happening, I finally realized that it was just another rendition of the same tired old mad scientist, possessed house, killer ghost, Antichrist, and eventually, I'll assume, all of the other yawn-inducing horror plots that I've come to loathe. And to think I'd expected, due mostly to the description, some sort of semi-philosophical consideration of evil. What are people's motivations when they commit unspeakable murders? What drives a rapist to rape? These were the questions I was hoping to have answered. "Satan told 'em to!" or "They're a man." or "They're going insane." is about the best you can hope for from this show. It's not an in-depth exploration of mankind's capacity for evil; it's a shallow rehashing of the same dismissive explanations that everyone resorts to when their brain has to work hard and they'd rather put an end to that because, gosh golly, it's just got so many other things to do! Or, at least, that's what it tells you so it doesn't have to second-guess itself or use logic, god forbid. There was only one character that I actually liked and I'm pretty sure I wasn't supposed to since he was a man. Did I mention that this show was written by feminists? The misandry is strong in this one. The writers did deprive me of enough information that I had to watch nine whole episodes to figure out what the show was going to be about. Tricking me into watching nine whole episodes of something I hate is a remarkable feat. For that, the acting, the costumes, and the possessed house itself (It's a pretty cool house. It's kind of a Victorian thing.), I give this show 2 out of 10 stars. Everyone did the best they could with what they had. Unfortunately, feces encased in gold is still feces. If you go any deeper than the epithelium of this show, you'll find that that's what lies beneath: boring, recycled feces. Expand
  8. Feb 3, 2012
    2
    This show is something on the lines of horrible with no clear direction where it wants to go. With some good acting and cheesy, cliche scares it is the worst FX has ever picked up!
  9. Dec 14, 2011
    1
    A potpourri of the horror genre cliches, helplessly aimless blundering embarrassment. Frantic - and deadeningly boring at the same time. A waste of everything invested in the project, including the viewers' time. I quit watching it midseason.
  10. Oct 7, 2011
    3
    Bored. Slow. Not scary. Nothing happens. No interest.Forced interpretations, especially Jessica Lange. Very little original argument. Flat characters.
Metascore
62

Generally favorable reviews - based on 30 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 15 out of 30
  2. Negative: 3 out of 30
  1. 80
    The show may be ridiculous, but the humiliation and panic feel real. And there's something to be said for surprise.
  2. Reviewed by: Matthew Gilbert
    Oct 5, 2011
    50
    American Horror Story, from Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk of "Glee" and "Nip/Tuck," is a very standard creep-fest, an aggressively stylized mash-up of familiar haunted-house movies including "The Amityville Horror," "The Haunting," and "The Shining."
  3. Reviewed by: Mark A. Perigard
    Oct 5, 2011
    91
    I loved the pilot, mostly because I could never predict where the story was going, a rarity in prime-time TV.