American Horror Story Returns with “Double Feature”

by The Cowl Editor on October 7, 2021

Arts & Entertainment

American Horror Story Returns with “Double Feature”

Hit Show Promises To Scare Viewers in More Ways Than One

Olivia Riportella ’25

It has been two years since the hit series American Horror Story brought a new tale to the small screen. The much anticipated 10th season finally premiered earlier this year on Aug. 25 on FX and Hulu.

This season, producer Ryan Murphy has taken on yet another unique American Horror Story narrative. The season is split into two separate storylines—hence its name, “Double Feature.” While not much was known about the new “story” for quite some time, trailers teased the appearance of sirens and aliens, and viewers have seen these elements appear in the new season.

Many of American Horror Story’s most beloved cast members have returned this season. Sarah Paulson, Evan Peters, Finn Wittrock, Lily Rabe, Frances Conroy, and Leslie Grossman are some of the familiar faces that appear in its first part, “Red Tide,” which “takes place by the sea.” Many of them are also speculated to make an appearance in “Death Valley,” the second half of the season that takes place “by the sand.” 

Interestingly, Macaulay Culkin, most famously known for starring in Home Alone, is making his American Horror Story debut in “Red Tide.” While Culkin is perhaps the most well-known addition to the cast, there will certainly be other new faces appearing on screen in this new season as well.

The first part of “Double Feature,” “Red Tide,” takes place in New England. It is set in Provincetown, Massachusetts, and follows struggling writer Harry Gardner (Finn Wittrock) who moves his pregnant wife Doris (Lily Rabe) and daughter Alma (Ryan Kiera Armstrong) to the beach town of Cape Cod to seek inspiration. Harry quickly discovers that there has been a series of disturbing murders in Truro, the next town over. Soon enough, the culprits, who are some of the town’s more chilling residents, begin to make an appearance.

It is speculated that this part of the season is inspired by true events that have taken place in New England. For instance, one of New England’s most famous serial killers, Antone Charles “Tony” Costa, committed numerous murders in Truro, the town referenced in Red Tide. Costa was dubbed the “Cape Cod Vampire” because he left bite marks on each of his victims. Similarly, in “Red Tide,” the Truro victims are left dead in seemingly animalistic ways. Such real-life horror stories make this season of American Horror Story all the more sinister. 

The second part of the season, “Death Valley,” takes a turn into a 1950s black and white timeline, where President Dwight Eisenhower is confronted with an alien invasion and subsequent tests on the strange new species. Part two also depicts a group of present-day college students that is faced with the recurrence of these horrors decades later. 

Although it has yet to air, the ending of “Double Feature” will certainly be jam-packed, since part two is restricted to just four episodes. The final episodes of the season will be released in the upcoming weeks of October, with “Inside” airing on Oct. 6, “Blue Moon” on Oct. 13, and “The Future Perfect” on Oct. 20. The season finale, whose title has yet to be announced, is set to be released on Oct. 27, so American Horror Story fans will have something spooky to watch right before Halloween.