For five years now, American Horror Story has been offering us ultra creepy scenarios! But you can imagine that behind many of the characters and places in the series, there are some real facts and figures! Are you ready to hear more? Then let’s do it!
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At the launch of the first season of the series, the writers had fun adapting the story of the Black Dahlia, a nickname given to Elizabeth Short by the American press. To find out what happened, you have to go back to January 15, 1947, south of Los Angeles. Elizabeth is a 22-year-old actress who is found dead, in two pieces, with her body severed at the pelvis. Up to now, the murder has always remained unexplained.
The stroke of genius of Murphy and Falchuk, the two creators ofAmerican Horror Story , is to have imagined what really happened on that famous day. To avoid any SPOIL, we’ll just say that it’s not yet with this series that you’ll be rid of your fear of the dentist!
If you’re a die-hard fan of the series, and especially of the first season, you won’t be introduced to Tate Langdon, the 17-year-old teenager who is present in every season. Died in 1994 when he was shot by SWAT, Tate continues to haunt the house in which he lived and develops a relationship with Violet, the daughter of the new owners, who soon discovers his disturbing past. Indeed, with his psychological problems, Tate is going to be responsible for a mass murder at his high school. This episode is not about remembering the tragic events of Columbine. On April 20, 1999, two teenagers, Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold, decided to carry out a massacre in their high school, killing 12 students and injuring 24 others, as well as a teacher. In one sequence, Tate asks a student he is about to kill if she believes in God, as several testimonies state. This slaughter inspired Gus Van Sant with his film Elephant and Michael Moore for his documentary Bowling for Columbine.
Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold
In the second season, you discovered Oliver Thredson, a psychiatrist with an uncomfortable calmness that was totally the opposite of the behaviour of the rest of the Birarcliff medical team. He’s in charge of Kit Walker’s mental health.
Except the saying it’s the shoemakers with the worst shoes checks out with Thredson. Indeed, it is gradually being discovered that Oliver Thredson is not very sane after all. He developed an obsession with women in their thirties as a result of his psychological problems when his mother abandoned him as a child. Pretty soon, Oliver became a serial killer and used his victims’ skin to redecorate his house. Here, the writers were not inspired by Valérie Damidot (for the decoration) but by Ed Gein, who was also a serial killer and who had fun digging up bodies and would also have killed women to recover their skin in order to make decorative objects (curtains, lampshades, …), all that, following the death of his mother. Ed Gein inspired the writers of the film Chainsaw Massacre.
In season 3, spectators met Delphine Lalaurie, a New Orleans socialite who has the particularity of being sadistic, disturbing and racist! Here, the creators were directly inspired by the story of Madame Lalaurie, a Louisiana native who made history in the 19th century.
Behind her grand airs, Madame Lalaurie mistreated her fifty slaves, whom she loved to torture to death. It was after a fire that the police arrived on the scene and discovered that slaves were hanged, chained, dismembered … It should be noted that Lalaurie was never punished for his crimes. After being accused of killing over a hundred slaves, she fled New Orleans. Here, reality unfortunately exceeds fiction.
Among the monstrosities of the Freak Show in the fourth season ofAmerican Horror Storyis Twisty the Clown, wearing a costume and mask and practicing as a serial killer in the city of Jupiter. He loves to kidnap and lock children on a bus and sometimes even kill them. Why is he doing this? Because he wants to protect the children from their parents and try to win back their love…
Here, Twisty the Clown is directly related to the true story of John Wayne Gacy, an American serial killer, nicknamed The Clown Killer and who lived in the 1970s in Chicago. John used to dress up as a clown to host children’s birthday parties. At night, he responded to murderous impulses by killing 33 teenagers who had fled their homes or were prostitutes. The police discovered after wiretapping John Wayne Gacy and after complaints from his neighbours about a foul odour coming from his crawl space, that the bodies of the children, tied up with cloth in their mouths, had been placed there. At the time of his arrest, he said he had no recollection of how many people he had killed. One can only assume there must be many more.
In season 5, the plot takes place mainly in the Hotel Cortez. According to the statements of Ryan Murphy, one of the creators of the series, they were inspired by the Cecil Hotel in Los Angeles, which has a macabre reputation on its back. Indeed, many suicides and crimes are said to have taken place there, as well as paranormal phenomena. Now renamed the Stay on Main, the hotel was still the talk of the town in February 2013. Elisa Lam, a 21-year-old student, was found dead in a vat of water on the roof of the building. The police have concluded accidental cause.
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The hotel video footage shows the young woman in a state of shock, taking the elevator and waving her arms. The fact that the young woman was hidden in a corner of the elevator not visible to the cameras encouraged much speculation about the cause of her death.
In the last season to date, Lady Gaga played the Countess, owner of the Hotel Cortez. Dictator of fashion that is driven by sex and blood, there are many similarities with the life of Elisabeth Bathory, a 16th century Hungarian countess, known as the Bloody Countess. This woman started killing young women the day her husband died. Some testimonies speak of more than 650 victims. Rumour has it that she loved to bathe in the blood of her young victims. It seems she thought it would keep her young. Since there is no evidence of his crimes, many historians are questioning the charges since they are only testimonies obtained under torture. Because of its noble origin it has escaped trial and execution. However, she was imprisoned in her castle, where she remained until 1610, the year of her death.
The Bloody Countess
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