Neil Patrick Harris to Help Bring ‘AHS: Freak Show’ to Killer End

Neil Patrick Harris is about to make American Horror Story: Freak Show more petrifying than ever. With the show having just ended its 2014 run with a doozy of a midseason finale, viewers are now finally getting their first glimpse at Harris’s role in the final episodes of the season, set to air in January – and from the looks of the brief clip, his character has plenty of creepy tricks up his sleeve.

Harris has actually been connected to AHS for quite some time. According to EW, he and real-life husband David Burtka were asked to play a couple on the show’s first season, Murder House, but turned it down because they had only recently portrayed a similar part together in A Very Harold and Kumar Christmas 3D. Still, Harris has long since been a fan of the show and with his How I Met Your Mother duties now over, the actor decided to reach out to showrunner Ryan Murphy to see if there was a place for him in current seasons. He ended up landing a role on Freak Show after pitching a particular vision for his character to Murphy, who has since confirmed that Harris came to him with “very specific ideas about what he wanted to do.”

When his casting was confirmed back in October, not much was revealed about Harris’s character other than that he was described as a “chameleon salesman.” Now, thanks to this new trailer, fans finally have some more details. Harris will be playing Chester, the new owner of Elsa’s (Jessica Lange) show. As evidenced in the clip, he seems to take a liking to the conjoined twins Bette and Dot (Sarah Paulson). “We may be just off the farm, but we can tell when a man is flirting with us,” Paulson’s character tells him in the teaser.

Chester is also a stage magician, who uses the well-known illusion trick of sawing someone in half as part of his act. Only from the crazed look on his face and all of the blood captured in the trailer, it seems as if the trick isn’t an illusion and he may actually be sawing a real person in half. Viewers will have to wait to find out who ends up facing the other end of the saw, but it seems they can expect at least one death to take place at Chester’s hands.

In addition to being a likely killer, the trailer also makes it clear that Chester has an affinity for his ventriloquist dummy. In the clip, he is shown apologizing to Bette and Dot for the dummy, which he says “relaxes” him. That dummy is important for reasons other than just upping his character’s creep factor though. Season one and three regular Jamie Brewer will also be returning for Freak Show’s final episodes and it looks as if she’ll be playing the bizarre, real-life embodiment of Harris’s puppet.

It’s no surprise that Harris can hold his own among a crowd of terrifying characters. The actor might be known for his comedy, but he’s already put his dark side on display once this year in October’s Gone Girl. With his help, it seems clear fans can expect this season of AHS to go out with a murderous bang.

Harris will appear in episodes 11 and 12, while husband Burtka will also guest star on the season finale. AHS: Freak Show returns January 7, at 10 p.m. on FX.

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