American Horror Stories: A New Take on An Old Favorite

American Horror Stories: A New Take on An Old Favorite

Nakylah Carter and Joseph Brown

Fans of the original anthology series, American Horror Story, are excited about the new spin-off series.

American Horror Stories, released Jul. 15, 2021, takes the concept of the original anthology series and delivers it in a more compact format. For the most part, each episode is a new premise, and many of the episodes can be watched independently of each other.

American Horror Story, which premiered on FX networks on Oct. 5, 2011, gave a new scary experience with every new season. From a house haunted by everyone that was murdered inside of it, to the inner workings of a witches’ coven, to an apocalyptic situation where most of civilization is wiped out, creators Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk take the audience on a journey through some of the scariest situations imaginable.

The original series averaged 79% on the Tomatometer for Rotten Tomatoes across seasons with the lowest score being 64% for the fifth season, Hotel. Critics have not been kind to American Horror Stories, with initial impressions varying wildly. Although the season has not reached its conclusion, the show has an average rating of 54% on the Tomatometer and 38% average audience score according to Rotten Tomatoes

The reviews show that experiences varied widely based on the critic, their views on horror and the original series. 

“If you’re a fan of the series and the deranged universe it inhabits, well, good news! All of those elements remain intact, sans the meandering narratives that seemed to stretch into eternity, and made a lot of us give up on past seasons,” L.A. Weekly critic Erin Maxwell said.

On the contrary, movie critic EJ Moreno told sources that the “final episode of the season summed up the entire experience: messy and trying so hard to hold onto the golden era of AHS.”

A&T junior criminal justice student Essence Goode, agreed with critic Moreno and told sources, “They could have kept the show. It is not as good as the original.”

The series condenses the idea of the original series and makes each episode stand alone as its own horror. In the first two episodes of the season, we see a familiar home from the first season of the original series, The Murder House.

This house traps the souls of those who have died in the home and is the premise for the first season of American Horror Story. This nod to this original series comforted fans and allowed the audience to understand these two series reside in the same universe. 

From a psychopathic killer impersonating Santa Claus to a forest full of cannibalistic creatures, to summoning a demon to have a successful pregnancy, this series in true American Horror Story fashion, lives up to its name. 

Along with having the same creators of the original project working on this new endeavor, American Horror Stories also features some notable names in its cast. Among these names are Paris Jackson, the daughter of Michael Jackson, and Noah Cyrus, the daughter of Billy Ray Cyrus and sister of Miley Cyrus. 

Although this show does have mixed reviews, if you are a horror fan it is worth checking out. American Horror Stories is streaming on Hulu.