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American Horror Story: What Order You Should Watch Each AHS Season

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American Horror Story Cult

American Horror Story has undoubtedly influenced television in the past decade, especially regarding horror-related shows. With the spin-off, American Horror Stories, having a second season this year, and the original AHS getting renewed for three more seasons, the show is nothing short of a major success. Creators Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk are truly impressive in how many things they were capable of producing one year after the other, always surprising the viewer with innovative and very different ways of being scary and extremely disturbing. However, when looking up close, it becomes clear that AHS is a lot more than merely different frightening stories every year: they are all connected.

American Horror Story is a horror anthology show. Every year is a different story and horror style in a separate location and sometimes different time period, and even the same cast plays new characters almost every season. However, these variations disguise the fact that there are many connections and consequences within AHS. Because all seasons are connected, it can lead to confusion on what order someone who is a new fan should watch the show. Here are how deep the connections are and what seasons should be watched in a specific order.

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Every season has a title that helps identify what the story is about. They are usually called by the title and not by the season number. These titles are heavily used in the marketing and promos for the series and become part of every year’s new identity of the show while also helping create the story’s tone and mood. Here is a list of every AHS season available and what they are called.

The show has an anthology format, which would allow the writers and producers to reinvent the series every year without having to be attached to the previous season. However, as the years went by and the series became extremely popular, connections started to happen. An example would be a character that is a part of a previous season who is mentioned or appears in a later season. This became somewhat common in the show over time and developed into seasons being completely connected, going as far as various characters making comebacks. Because of that, there are some seasons that, if the viewer watches in a particular order, they’ll have a better understanding and overall enjoyment of the characters and story. Overall this is not essential to the comprehension of the stories, but they are fun easter eggs available for long-time fans.

Related: How American Horror Stories Compares to the Original AHS

The major element when watching is to try to avoid any kind of spoilers that will ruin future episodes. That can mostly be done by watching the show in the order it was released. But some seasons happened before the events of a previous season, and the timeline can become a bit confusing. A tip would be to check when the seasons are in the timeline of the show. That way the viewer won’t get any spoilers from something that happens years later. For example, the fifth season, Hotel, has spoilers for a few characters that die in Coven and 1984. Therefore, here are the American Horror Story seasons in order of when they take place.

There are some appearances of characters or mentions of places that do not hinder the comprehension of the season if you don’t watch it in order. For example, the realtor who sold the house to the Harmon family in Murder House also appears in the fifth season of the show and transfers Hotel Cortez’s ownership. Briarcliff Manor, the hospice in Asylum, makes a quick appearance in 1984. The scary clown Twisty, a terrifying villain in season four, appears as a comic book character in Cult. The writers went as far as having the same coffee brand appear in different seasons. These small but pleasant connections make the series feel like a complete universe, even if the stories couldn’t be any different.

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