American Horror Story: Double Feature: The key to its success

American Horror Story: Double FeatureWe’re a solid four episodes into American Horror Story: Double Featureand can’t we say it’s one of the best seasons in a while?

To date, it definitely feels like there is a lot to love here, and there are also a number of reasons why this season is working whereas some others did not. It’s not a coincidence that we’re seeing a story so far that feels fast-paced, creepy, and also easy to follow.

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The first reason why this season is killing it so far (pun intended) is the pace: Things are moving along quickly! Even the flashback episode had some purpose. Because Ryan Murphy and the rest of the team realize they only have so much time to tell this story, there’s a little bit less fat. Because of that, they’re able to alleviate one of the other issues from past seasons: Too many characters. It doesn’t feel like Double Feature is overly stuffed. Ironically the most expendable character right now is played by Sarah Paulson, and her Karen may still have an important role to play down the road.

Then, there’s also the theme behind the narrative. So many seasons of American Horror Story meander about with ideas that don’t always make sense. This one has a very Faustian feel to it in that it’s about talent and purpose: How far will you go in order to achieve it? We’re seeing characters willing to sacrifice their own future for the sake of some element of “success” — and also the consequences of it. This is an idea that viewers can relate to; after years of going too big and broad, this franchise is finally remembering that amidst all of the chaos, viewers need to relate to a struggle. We’re getting that here.

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Are you enjoying the story of American Horror Story: Double Feature so far?

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This article was written by Jess Carter. Be sure to follow her on Twitter.

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