American Horror Story
This is no top-ten-listmaking best-show-of-the-ages type show, but it’s a hell of a lot of pulpy, batshit-insane fun.
Run by Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk, the writers who brought you Glee and Nip & Tuck, the first season followed a down-on-their luck yuppie family as they moved into a haunted house and suffered the consequences. The second season kept a handful of actors (Jessica Lange, Zacchary Quinto, Evan Peters) but threw out everything else, including the setting and period. Now it’s “American Horror Story Asylum”, and is set in a mental asylum in the 60s. Well, I suppose it kept its general pastiche approach. We are four episodes in and already we’ve had: an exorcism, zombies, a sadistic Nazi doctor, an alien abduction, a masked serial killer, and copycat masked serial killers. To mention the number of naked asses and whippings just seems like overkill at this point.
It’s essentially Twin Peaks as directed by Russ Meyer. The editing is furious and fearless, the characters are sex-crazed and violent, and the writing wouldn’t know subtlety if it bit it on the ass. You should be enjoying it.