Ryan Murphy’s American Horror Story premieres tonight, and Glee it is not. The story of a family who moves from Boston to Los Angeles following the husband’s affair with a student is getting critics VERY fired up. Did we mention this new home is haunted and every past resident seems to have been brutally murdered?
The very dark, sexual and scary drama stars Dylan McDermott (The Practice), Connie Britton (Friday Night Lights), Taissa Farmiga (Vera’s kid sis), Jessica Lange (Blue Sky) and Frances Conroy (Six Feet Under) to name but a few — truly an all-star cast. The reviews, however, are perhaps the most polarizing of any television show. Ever.
Take a look at what some critics love, and some hate, about American Horror Story.
“Despite the (largely) fine performances, there’s something a little shallow about American Horror Story. Both the miscarriage and adultery subplots are rather predictable and undeveloped. And while Britton is able to sell her grief to viewers, McDermott struggles to make us care at all.” –Slant
“When a show is this far off the rails in its opening episode, it’s pretty much telling you what kind of ride you’re in for. This is, after all, the kind of story where the next-door neighbor Constance (a completely fabulous Jessica Lange having a romping good time) can tell someone, ‘Don’t make me kill you again,’ without anyone blinking an eye.” — USA Today
“American Horror Story has the potential to be a lot of fun, if that style and cleverness can be eventually coupled with characters we care about and a narrative that feels less like a haunted house sampler, stitched with threads of Stephen King, Hammer Films and Lars von Trier’s TV series The Kingdom. — New York Times
“Infused with a Dark Shadows and Rosemary’s Baby vibe, American Horror Story is one scream after another. So much creepy stuff happens in the first episode that viewers will be left asking: Can I possibly watch an entire series of this? Followed, of course, by a more obvious question: Why do they stay in that house?” — Washington Post
“Even if it isn’t the scariest series ever, “Horror Story” still has tasty performances by several characters, chief among them Lange and Conroy. When they have a scene together, it’s TV magic. O’Hare and Peters are also pretty terrific. McDermott and Britton have the toughest job here, though, because they have to be the “normal” ones, marital difficulties notwithstanding. Both actors are adequate, but they are sometimes asked to make their respective characters believable in unbelievable situations.” — San Francisco Gate
“It is so far over the top that the top is a microscopic speck in its rearview mirror, and so full of strange sounds, sights and characters that you likely won’t forget it – even though many of you will wish you could.” — HitFix
Reviews be damned, we are definitely watching the show just to see the most talked about scene in the premiere that finds Britton (no longer playing America’s greatest mom/principal/confidant Tami Taylor) having sex with a leather clad man she believes is her husband. Safe to say subtlety is not going to be this show’s strong suit.