The teasers for FX’s American Horror Story: Freak Show may have just turned a very dark corner.
Two of the three newest 10-second promos tease what may be a deal breaker for many AHS fans — and TV fans alike: Killer clowns.
Season four of the FX anthology from Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk starts in Florida, circa 1952, and centers on a “troupe of curiosities” that arrives at the same time that a dark entity emerges, threatening the lives of townsfolk and freaks alike. From the official description: “This is the story of the performers and their desperate journey of survival amid the dying world of the American carny experience.”
Jessica Lange stars as Elsa Mars, a German expat managing one of the last remaining freak shows in the country. Emma Roberts is set as Maggie; Sarah Paulson is Bette and Dot Tattler; Kathy Bates is the bearded lady Effil Darling; Michael Chiklis is the strong man Wendell Del Toredo; Angela Bassett is the three-breasted Desiree Dupree; and Evan Peters is Jimmy Darling.
Frances Conroy and Gabourey Sidibe will also return to the cast, which includes newcomers Wes Bentley, Fargo‘s John Carroll Lynch as the central villain and The Normal Heart‘s Finn Wittrock as well as the world’s smallest living woman, Jyoti Amge. Patti LaBelle will also appear in a four-episode arc, with Matt Bomer set for a guest stint. Murphy will direct the pilot, marking the first time he’s helmed an episode since the series debut.
The official cast poster does not offer any hints that the clowns will actually play a part, but the new teasers may indicate otherwise. The first features what looks like a normal clown with a killer smile; the second is an even creepier clown with a bigger dental issue; and the final one, thankfully, is clown-free and focuses merely on a sword swallower.
Now that the creepiest clowns ever are permanently ingrained in your memory, vote in THR‘s poll below. Are killer clowns where you draw the line? AHS: Freak Show debuts Oct. 8 on FX.