It’s been quite a while since fans got to dive into the chilling American Horror Story universe. After an excruciatingly long break, however, Ryan Murphy’s monsters have returned to the screen for Season 10. And while plenty of AHS alumni are on the cast list this time around, fans have been especially excited for the return of Evan Peters. The actor took a break from the series for a few years, but from the look of the American Horror Story Season 10, Episode 4 promo, Peters is once again thriving in Murphy’s world.
Spoiler alert: This post contains spoilers through AHS: Double Feature Episode 3, “Thirst.” ICYMI, the first two episodes of “Red Tide” introduced a mysterious black pill called The Muse that was wreaking havoc and unleashing talent in Provincetown, Massachusetts. Basically, these little black pills greatly enhance the abilities of people with artistic talent, but they come at a price: You suddenly develop a thirst for blood. The other catch is, if someone without talent takes a pill, they transform into a mindless, uncontrollable, zombie-like creature that haunts the town attacking the innocents. Not great.
Fortunately for Peters’ character, Tony Award-winning writer Austin Sommers, he had talent, so when he took the pill, his career blew up. Until now, fans have just seen Austin post-pill, but it looks like Episode 4 will give a peek at what the writer’s life was before he succumbed to The Muse.
The first three episodes were mostly centered around writer Harry Gardener (Finn Wittrock), his wife Doris (Lily Rabe), and their 9-year-old daughter, Alma (Ryan Kiera Armstrong). Now, however, it looks like viewers are going to learn the backstory not only of how the pill was created, but also how the rest of the characters came to discover it.
The Episode 4 promo shows Belle Noir (Frances Conroy) looking very different before taking The Muse from the chemist. When asked if she wanted to know about the side effects, Belle said “whatever it takes” before tossing a black pill back. From there, Belle seemed to blossom, because a later clip shows her in the local restaurant, The Muse, looking like her post-pill, glamorous self. It’s at the restaurant that Bella sees Austin performing a drag show and offers him a pill... which he presumably takes.
The first half of Double Feature has already proven to be pretty different from some of the franchise's recent installments, thanks in large part to its more subtly creepy, less campy vibe (which low-key feels like a throwback to Murder House days). And while this scene is also giving Glee vibes, I have a feeling there’s much more to the story of Austin — and Season 10 as a whole. Isn’t there always when it comes to Ryan Murphy?
New episodes of American Horror Story: Double Feature air Wednesday nights on FX, and then stream on Hulu the next day.