The opening title sequence for American Horror Story: Cult has just been released, and it prominently features Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton masks. So why exactly are the 2016 presidential candidates in this new sequence at all? What role will they play in the upcoming season?
— AmericanHorrorStory (@AHSFX) August 21, 2017
Creator Ryan Murphy has previously said that in the seventh season of American Horror Story, the 2016 election serves as an allegory.
“Horror Story is always about allegory, so the election is allegory,” Murphy told E! Online. “It’s our jumping off point. It is about the election we just went through and what happened on that night and the fallout of that night, which to many people, from all sides of the camps is a horror story.”
Cult will begin on November 8th, 2016 and the story will take off from there, with something terrible happening to the main characters as the election unfolds, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
“The show begins with election night and the national conversation and both the euphoria and fear,” Ryan Murphy told The Hollywood Reporter.
Murphy has suggested that it’s only the very beginning of the season that is related to the election, though, telling E News, “The first 10 minutes of the season, this season, takes place in a very eerie macabre way on election night and there’s something terrible that happens in the lives of our characters on election night as they’re watching it all go down. Which in itself was a horror story, so it’s like a horror story upon a horror story.”
American Horror Story executive producer Alexis Martin Woodall said that after the premiere, the rest of the episodes have more to do with “what’s going on in our world around us, the idea of paranoia,” according to Variety.
No actors will be portraying Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton in American Horror Story: Cult. Instead, Murphy says that viewers will see footage of the two candidates playing on television.
Murphy also says that while exploring the election in Cult, he wants to look at all sides of the equation.
“What needs to happen in our country now is for people to listen to each other – we may not always agree with each other and we may be horrified by what the other side is doing but we have to move toward understanding,” Murphy told The Hollywood Reporter.
American Horror Story: Cult stars Sarah Paulson, Evan Peters, Cheyenne Jackson, Billie Lourd, and Alison Pill. It will premiere on FX on September 5th.