American Horror Story: Double Feature, the tenth season and latest entry in Ryan Murphy's horror anthology series American Horror Story, recently wrapped up the first half of its season, titled "Red Tide," and now it's time for the good stuff. (No offense!) After so many seasons of wondering where the hell Murphy's been hiding the aliens, it seems like we'll finally be getting the extraterrestrials we've been asking for with "Death Valley." We've earned this!
Still, if your first love is for horror and things that keep you up at night -- or if you simply are just super into Ryan Murphy anthology series (hey, we all have our things) -- here are more series, from campy thrillers to deeply unsettling dramas, that should satisfy your thirst while you wait for the next episode of Double Feature.
Horror extraordinaire Mike Flanagan makes another appearance later on this list in the form of his anthology series The Haunting, but we also recommend checking out his latest venture, Midnight Mass. This one is set on a remote fishing island in New England that is shaken up by the arrival of a new Catholic priest (Hamish Linklater), who quickly gains a horde of devoted followers in the community as he seemingly begins to perform miracles. But nothing is ever what it seems on a Flanagan show, and it quickly becomes clear that there's a sinister threat looming over the island, each episode unfolding with a certain amount of gripping eeriness. American Horror Story is definitely altogether freakier and sillier than Midnight Mass, a show less concerned with things that go bump in the night than your average scary series, but it won't disappoint you if you're looking for more scares (and why would you be here if you weren't?). -Allison Picurro [Watch on Netflix]
Always looking to show off your gothic horror knowledge? You'll feel at home with Penny Dreadful. The three-season series, set in Victorian London, kicks off by following Malcolm Murray (Timothy Dalton) and Vanessa Ives (Eva Green) as they set out to rescue Murray's daughter and Vanessa's childhood friend, who's been kidnapped by someone or something sinister. Along the way, they befriend or battle lots of familiar faces for fans of gothic horror literature, like Dr. Frankenstein (Harry Treadaway), Dracula (Christian Camargo), and Dorian Gray (Reeve Carney). There are also witches, vampires, and other creatures that go bump in the night. It's gruesome and strange and full of an endless roster of interesting characters. [Watch on Showtime, Netflix]
If you're looking for an anthology series that's a little more psychological thriller and less, well, in-your-face-AHS horror, Castle Rock is a great option. It only aired for two seasons, but even within that short time frame it feels like a fully realized horror universe and that's because it came with an advantage: It has the works of Stephen King as its built-in mythology. Although each season tells a different story, both take place in the small town of Castle Rock, Maine, and both are filled to the brim with people, places, themes, and callbacks every King fan will recognize. Lizzy Caplan as Misery's Annie Wilkes in Season 2 is a real standout, and the Season 1 standalone episode "The Queen" is widely considered to be the series' best. [Watch on Hulu]
Well, if you're looking for a show to haunt your dreams, you've found it. Any horror show with creepy kids is already 10 times scarier than one without, and Servant definitely has that... with an even creepier twist. Servant, executive produced by M. Night Shyamalan, tells the story of Dorothy (Lauren Ambrose), a woman who's had a psychotic break after the death of her baby, and in an attempt to help her heal, she and her husband Sean (Toby Kebbell) use a lifelike doll that they keep in their home. Dorothy believes the doll is their actual son, so you know it's really pushing the boundaries of that creepy scale. But it's only once they hire a deeply unsettling nanny, Leanne (Nell Tiger Free), that things start getting really weird. Like, (SPOILER!) that-doll-may-be-turning-into-a-real-baby weird. And while the premise of the show has that shock value, it's the quiet, claustrophobic way in which the series is shot (the action mostly takes place within the couple's Philadelphia townhouse) that gives it that extra chill-inducing vibe. [Watch on Apple TV+]
Who doesn't love a good old fashioned ghost story? Netflix's The Haunting of anthology series has given us two thus far, but Hill House from Season 1 reigns supreme (although those melted face ghosts from Bly Manor will certainly leave an impression). It's not just the scares that set Season 1 apart -- although there are several moments that will have you jumping -- but how seamlessly the horror aspects work into the emotional story of the Crain family, forever changed the summer they move into the titular mansion in 1992. The story alternates between that time and the state of the family in the present, where the now-adult Crain siblings are haunted by both the supernatural and some very real world, internal turmoil that adds some heart and heft to the proceedings. If you remain unconvinced, just wait until you reach the season's high note in Episode 6, "Two Storms," an installment that is not only a technical wonder -- it plays out in a way that feels like one continuous shot -- but a perfect blend of horror and heartbreak. [Watch on Netflix]
Let's talk monsters, shall we? And that's both supernatural monsters and monsters of the human kind, because HBO's Lovecraft Country, based on Matt Ruff's novel of the same name and adapted for television by Misha Green, tackles both. Set in the 1950s, the series follows Atticus Freeman (Jonathan Majors) as he travels through Jim Crow-era America in search of his missing father Montrose (Michael K. Williams) with his uncle George (Courtney B. Vance) and friend (and show-stealer) Letty (Jurnee Smollet). Along the way they fight racists and monsters and monsters who turn into racists. And then things get weird. [Watch on HBO Max]
If you're not already watching Evil, you're doing it wrong. The series hails from the never boring duo that brought us The Good Wife and The Good Fight, Robert and Michelle King, and just as you'd expect, Evil provides the unexpected. It's a weird and wild procedural that follows a team of three assessors investigating possible demonic possessions and miracles for the Catholic Church: Kristen Bouchard (Katja Herbers), a forensic psychologist and a mostly non-believer; Ben Shakir (Aasif Mandvi), a contractor, techie, and resident skeptic; and priest-in-training, a man of faith and turtlenecks David Acosta (Mike Colter). Yes, Evil provides some truly wild and terrifying cases of the week -- many making thought-provoking and biting social commentary as is par for the course with the Kings -- but it's also building a complex and creepy mythology that continually adds layers to the series. There's demons and angels and unhinged children and hairy horned beast therapists. In short, there's something for everyone here. [Watch on Netflix, Paramount+]
Season 4 of American Horror Story was the Freak Show edition and it focused on a whole bunch of horrifying things that went down at a circus, which makes sense because the circus is inherently creepy -- I'm not interested in what you're selling, clowns, OK? For more weird stuff happening under the big top, there's HBO's Carnivàle. The series follows a traveling circus during the 1930s Dust Bowl and strikes a startlingly different tone than American Horror Story. It's dense, with a complicated and continuously growing mythology. It's surreal, full of characters having visions, and other-wordly, seemingly impossible, many times sinister events taking place. It is both bleak and biblical as it grapples with real-world problems of life following the Great Depression and the epic on-going battle between good and evil. If any of that sounds good to you, you're in for a treat. [Watch on HBO Max]
There's a healthy amount of shows about witches out there (Charmed, A Discovery of Witches, Motherland: Fort Salem to name a few of the more recent witchy outings), but perhaps the one that comes closest to the camp of American Horror Story: Coven is Netflix's Chilling Adventures of Sabrina. Based on the characters from the Archie comics and wildly different from the other Sabrina TV adaptation, the more wholesome Sabrina the Teenage Witch, this version of the part-human, part-witch story, led by Kiernan Shipka as the titular Sabrina, embraces the dark side of the Sabrina universe. Yes, there's still Aunt Hilda (Lucy Davis) and Aunt Zelda (Miranda Otto) and at one point a love interest named Harvey (Ross Lynch), but there's also a lot of Satan worshipping and ruling over hell, and battles between good and evil forces, too. So, like, a little different from the Sabrina you might be familiar with. [Watch on Netflix]
For fans of Ryan Murphy's anthology series format who are ready to take a break from horror for a while (it's for your health), American Crime Story should fit the bill. Each season, American Crime Story does a deep dive into a different true life event. Season 1, The People vs. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story, told the story of, you guessed it, O.J. Simpson's murder trial from all sides and includes standout performances by Murphy regular Sarah Paulson as prosecutor Marcia Clark, Courtney B. Vance as "if it doesn't fit, you must acquit" defense lawyer Johnny Cochran, and Sterling K. Brown as co-prosecutor Christopher Darden, among others. The second season turned its focus on the 1997 murder of fashion designer Gianni Versace (Édgar Ramírez) at the hands of serial killer Andrew Cunanan (Darren Criss). If neither of those true crime stories do it for you, perhaps you'll be interested in the long-awaited third season of the series, Impeachment, covering Bill Clinton's (Clive Owen) White House sex scandal. Beanie Feldstein takes on the role of Monica Lewinsky, who also happens to be a co-producer on the series. That iteration of the anthology arrives September 7. [Watch Season 1 on Netflix, Season 2 on Netflix]
American Horror Story is streaming on Netflix. American Horror Story: Double Feature premieres Aug. 25 on FX.