06 October 2011

Where is the story in AMERICAN HORROR STORY?

What did I just watch? It was hard to process watching American Horror Story.

My expectations were low because:
  • Before watching the pilot, I knew a lot of TV critics didn't like it. 
  • Horror is the last genre I'd pick to watch over anything else.
  • I am not a fan of Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuck, the creators of this show. It seems a lot of people are aware of how they do programs, where it starts out really promising and then it gets ridiculously bad. Case in point: Glee. Case in point: Nip/Tuck. Case in point: Popular.

And yet somehow, watching this with the awareness that it was gonna bad...FELT. SO. GOOD.

My emotions are conflicted. Because there was NO story with what I just saw. Really, it made no sense. There were PIECES of the story. But it was all over the place.

However, it did manage to shock me.  It did manage to be repulsive. (I wanted to gag at one point!)

Ryan Murphy said in an interview that, unlike Glee's feel-good moments, American Horror Story was gonna be a "feel-bad" show.  They had plan on it being disgusting. They thought of putting everything scary, so that the show appears scary --- from bothersome images, to eerie sound effects and disturbing camera-work, to the location (a haunted house, so cliche!).

Somewhere inside my head, a voice was begging me to just stop watching.

And yet I could not.

And I don't know why.

It certainly wasn't the plot that was holding me. Because, as mentioned, its story line and writing? Paper thin.

It certainly wasn't all those images. Because I scare easy and I hate those. Although the mood of the show reminded me of stuff TV people do to Stephen King novels, or that movie The Others.

Why could I not stop watching?

Maybe it's Connie Britton. She instantly had a her shining moment here and my admiration for her grew ten-folds more. It was not easy to see this amazing actress go from Friday Night Lights to this show. But because she's awesome, I think she can carry this to a full season.

Maybe it's Jessica Lange. Or Frances Conroy. They can be so creepy, these old women. Or maybe it's Alexandra Breckenridge, who I kinda loved watching on The Ex List and Life UnexpectedAmerican Horror Story has a solid cast of women. Including that kid who plays Britton's daughter.

And once again, I'm conflicted.

 Because I don't know how far these talented women can go, with what little story they are given to deliver.  A shame if, judging by the creators' track record, this would all go to waste.

But the scariest thing is...you know what? I'm gonna watch again next week!!!

American Horror Story's official synopsis:
American Horror Story, co-created by former Nip/Tuck executive producers and current Glee co-creators/executive producers Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk, revolves around The Harmons, a family of three who move from Boston to Los Angeles as a means to reconcile past anguish. The All Star cast features Dylan McDermott (The Practice) as "Ben Harmon," a psychiatrist; Connie Britton (Friday Night Lights) as "Vivien Harmon," Ben's wife; Taissa Farmiga as "Violet," the Harmon's teenage daughter; Jessica Lange (Tootsie, Blue Sky, Grey Gardens) in her first-ever regular series TV role as "Constance," the Harmon's neighbor; Evan Peters (One Tree Hill) plays "Tate Langdon," one of Ben's patients; and Denis O'Hare (The Good Wife) as "Larry Harvey." Guest stars for the series include Frances Conroy (Six Feet Under) as the Harmon's housekeeper; Alexandra Breckenridge (Dirt) as the Harmon's housekeeper; and Jamie Brewer as Constance's daughter.
The show is aired on cable channel FX.