8.1/10
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14 user 14 critic

Pilot 

Therapist Ben Harmon, his wife, Vivien, and their daughter, Violet, move across the country to Los Angeles to escape their troubled past.

Director:

Ryan Murphy

Writers:

Ryan Murphy (created by), Brad Falchuk (created by) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Connie Britton ... Vivien Harmon
Dylan McDermott ... Dr. Ben Harmon
Evan Peters ... Tate Langdon
Taissa Farmiga ... Violet Harmon
Denis O'Hare ... Larry Harvey
Jessica Lange ... Constance Langdon
Frances Conroy ... Moira O'Hara
Alexandra Breckenridge ... Young Moira O'Hara
Christine Estabrook ... Marcy
Jamie Brewer ... Adelaide 'Addy' Langdon
Shelby Young ... Leah
Andy Umberger ... Dr. Day
Bianca Lawson ... Abby
Christian Serratos ... Becca
Melanie Cruz ... Teacher
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Storyline

Vivien and Ben Harmon and their daughter Violet relocate to Los Angeles from Boston and buy a large old house. As required by law, the real estate agent discloses that the previous occupants were the victims of a murder-suicide. The Harmons think nothing of it and concentrate on repairing their marriage that has come under strain following Vivien's miscarriage and Ben's subsequent infidelity with one of his students. Ben is a psychiatrist and will meet his patients in the house. They meet the neighbors, the eccentric Constance and her daughter Adelaide. Vivien also hires a housekeeper, Moira, but Ben and Vivien don't quite see the same person when they look at her. Violet is bullied at school and befriends one of her dad's patients who has serious psychological problems. Strange events begin to occur. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Horror | Thriller

Certificate:

TV-MA | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

5 October 2011 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

16:9 HD
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Jessica Lange originally turned down the role of Constance in season 1, but finally accepted after creator Ryan Murphy repeatedly offered her the role. See more »

Goofs

When Ben goes to light the fireplace, he turns the gas valve clockwise. Gas valves, as with all valves, open counter clockwise. See more »

Quotes

Tate Langdon: You're doing it wrong. If you're trying to kill yourself, cut vertically. They can't stitch that up.
Violet Harmon: How'd you get in here?
Tate Langdon: If you're trying to kill yourself, you might also wanna try locking the door.
See more »

Alternate Versions

The DVD released in Britain has been cut to remove a detailed description of a suicide technique. The original showing and all subsequent repeats shown on British television are of the uncut version. See more »

Connections

References Twisted Nerve (1968) See more »

Soundtracks

Special Death
(uncredited)
Performed by Mirah
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Really good pilot, declares its intentions from the beginning
22 November 2011 | by david-tsbernardinoSee all my reviews

The thing that's best in American Horror Story is the cast. They are all very good and well known actors. Jessica Lange, Dylan McDermott, it's pretty rare to come up with such a good cast in a TV series.

The feeling that stays with us after seeing this first episode is it's weirdness. We can't really tell if any of the characters is seeing things, dreaming, or is just esquizofrenic. It's unclear if some sequences are real or a dream. Perhaps the pace for this pilot was too fast, with too much happening in just one episode. But sure it was pretty eerie and scary, exactly what you would expect from a horror show. For now it lives the expectations, and I'm confident it will deliver in the next episodes. This is one to keep track on.

Oh, and the fight scene was amazingly acted.


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