evan peters cult american horror story ahs season 10 theories
[Photo via FX]

It’s been four months since American Horror Story: 1984 ended, and we’re thirsty for season 10. Thanks to some cryptic teasers released by the AHS camp in the last few weeks, fans have a vague idea of the next edition’s themes.

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On Wednesday, show creator Ryan Murphy posted this creepy teaser:

View this post on Instagram

Things are beginning to wash up on shore…

A post shared by Ryan Murphy (@mrrpmurphy) on

We don’t know the title of the milestone season yet, but we know our cast list includes returning favorites Sarah Paulson and Evan Peters while introducing newcomer Macaulay Culkin to the gang. Sound crazy already? The fan theories on what to expect this year are even more surreal.

1. Lovecraftian horror story?

New Instagram post from Ryan from r/AmericanHorrorStory

The possibility of a massive (and probably super-complex) season centered around the otherworldly works of H.P. Lovecraft has been a huge talking point between fans ever since the first grayscale beach scene popped up on Murphy’s Instagram feed. We know from Freak Show that the AHS team isn’t afraid to dabble with special effects, so can we expect Culkin to play the monstrous Cthulhu? Kathy Bates dressed as Hastur? That may be a little extravagant, but we can dream.

2. Real creepy horrors ahoy

Could this be what season 10 will be about? from r/AmericanHorrorStory

American Horror Story is no stranger to reflecting true crime and urban legends as well as entirely fictional narratives. 1984 had Richard Ramirez, the Hotel Cortez and James March based on H.H. Holmes’ murder hotel in Chicago, and Coven’s Madame LaLaurie was, unfortunately, a real person.

This season 10 theory, based on speculation that the AHS team are shooting in Massachusetts, suggests a creepy Bridgewater Triangle theme. Along with the season’s traditional use of supernatural forces, this idea could tie in a much-requested return of an alien story arc, which we haven’t seen on AHS since Asylum.

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3. A hint we missed in 1984?

Season 9 episode 8, thought I’d bring this back up from r/AmericanHorrorStory

AHS mastermind Murphy stated at the Episode 100 party that there’s a hint of season 10’s theme in 1984’s eighth episode. “Rest In Pieces” saw the young Bobby Richter leap from Camp Redwood’s lake to drag his brother Benjamin from a boat. Of course, he’d been at the bottom of that lake for many years, so he didn’t look like an angelic young boy anymore, Bobby emerged more like a sea monster. The boy’s appearance wasn’t mentioned at all afterward, so this may be a not-so-subtle hint that monsters from the deep feature this year.

4. The Little Mermaid strikes back

New Instagram post from Ryan from r/AmericanHorrorStory

Mermaids and merpeople are some of the few mythological human creatures American Horror Story hasn’t tackled yet, and it seems fans are desperate to see that dream unfold for season 10. Could this aquatic-themed season bring us an interpretation of life in Atlantis? 

With the live-action remake of Disney’s The Little Mermaid heading into production this year, AHS could be bang on trend if the anthology’s newest season picks up an unusual underwater vibe.

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5. Aquatic noir

He posted new pic for new AHS season 👀👀👀👀👀👀 theories on theme? from r/AmericanHorrorStory

We know American Horror Story likes to push the boundaries of TV expectations, so we could be facing an entire AHS season shot in black and white. The freaky aesthetics of the anthology season’s teasers can sometimes carry into the season itself, especially if you look at every season’s title sequence, so it’s possible that the miserable grayscale theme of the season 10 snippets so far could bleed through to the show. Also, setting a season in the 1950s might be a breath of fresh air after the pastel-clad 1984 last year.

6. We’ve known about this since Roanoke

Way back in 2016, AHS dropped their usual mind-bending teasers for the sixth season, Roanoke. However, there’s one teaser that never emerged in the season itself. It focuses on the beach and an infected human washing up on shore, which isn’t far from what we’ve seen in the two season 10 teasers so far. 

Were Murphy and co. hinting at the future long before it reached our screens? We’ve seen weirder things happen on this show.

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7. Salem witch trials

He posted new pic for new AHS season 👀👀👀👀👀👀 theories on theme? from r/AmericanHorrorStory

If you’re not a fan of Coven and Apocalypse, then you won’t like the suggestion that yet another witch-centric season may be in the cards. So far, this is mere speculation on the shore-based teaser and the rumored filming locations that could be hinting at the use of Salem. 

That said, fans are intrigued by the idea of a political commentary season not far from the likes of Cult to explore the mysterious 1969 crash on Chappaquiddick Island, Massachusetts, involving Senator Ted Kennedy.

8. Ghosts return…again

AHS10: Ghosttown? from r/AmericanHorrorStory

One fan has gone head-on into the theories about the hint dropped somewhere in AHS: 1984 to rake up yet another ghostly concept for season 10. Paranormal phenomena and the undead have been a focal point of most American Horror Story seasons so far, but considering last year’s edition turned into an ’80s-themed ghost fest, this theory might just be a stretch too far for Murphy and the AHS crew.

9. Broadchurch + Gracepoint = AHS: Seaside?

New Instagram post from Ryan from r/AmericanHorrorStory

Devolved from the bleak Scandi-inspired dramas circling around at the moment, one fan theory suggests a connection to eerie British drama Broadchurch starring Doctor Who’s David Tennant, which we saw hit the States as Gracepoint in 2014. 

The original season focused on an English seaside town with a murderous secret—it’s a long shot that the AHS minds could really be planning a similar season, but we’d never complain about a Tennant cameo. Murphy and Falchuk, the fans have spoken.

10. None of the above

American Horror Story has never been all that predictable, and few fan theories have actually come true with each season that passes. Fans might be reading too much into it, expecting an over-complex plot for a show that writes and records in a relatively short time (to the point where 1984 was still shooting its final episodes when the season had already started airing) and getting carried away with fantastical theories. Either that or Murphy and co. are trolling us all with fake promotional teasers.

Whatever happens, we’ll be glued to AHS season 10 this fall.