American Horror Story: The Pilot Recap

Just in time for Halloween, FX’s highly anticipated new show “American Horror Story” premiered last night and all I can say is, What the hell? Glee director, Ryan Murphy, brings us this season’s spookiest new fall show starring Dylan McDermott and Connie Britton. In short, the premise is about a highly dysfunctional family who unknowingly move into a haunted house.

The pilot episode began like many scary movies or TV shows – with a flashback. This time, we have two young boys who go creeping around the, typically large and scary, old house. After a quick tour, the boys are now in the (token) dark/scary basement where they meet their fate. It’s unclear what kills them, but I have a feeling we’ll be seeing this “thing” in many of the future episodes.

From there, the show managed to cram an amazing amount of information into a short hour.

After catching her husband sleeping with another woman and suffering a miscarriage, Britton’s character, Viviven Harmon and her husband Ben (McDermott) decide a new location will be the best bet to save their marriage. Along with their young daughter, the family move into a house with a very mysterious past.

A favorite of mine, Jessica Lange, also stars in the series as the kleptomaniac neighbor, Constance. So far, this character seems to be the one with the most knowledge about what’s actually going on in the house – but also seems to be a possible threat to the family.

During the pilot, we were introduced to a number of other characters as well: The Harmon’s daughter, Violet – an angsty teenager, who immediately was intrigued by the house, Tate – a possibly psychotic boy who finds Violet’s cutting habit very attractive, Larry Harvey – a ‘Harvey Dent’ look-a-like who was the previous owner of the house until he killed his family in it, and Moira the housekeeper – whom we see both the older AND younger versions of. If you’re lost already, that’s ok. My idea is that the Harmon’s new home has a spirit (or creature?) living in it that will possess all living things inside AND that some of the characters know more about it than they’re leading on.

Judging by this first episode, “American Horror Story” seems to be an attempt at a Showtime or HBO type show, but on cable. There were a couple sex scenes as well as a guy in a bondage suit, a housekeeper “pleasuring” herself and even Dylan McDermott’s bare ass! Though I can’t say I love the show right off the bat, I will definitely be tuning in next Wednesday to see how the story plays out.