Every episode of American Horror Story will get you into the Halloween spirit, what with all the ghosts and ghouls and gore. But whenever creator Ryan Murphy opts to go all-in and does an official Halloween episode, it's clear that nobody does these seasonal celebrations better than the FX anthology. In fact, American Horror Story has been known to go so hard for its Halloween episodes that they wind up being two-parters!
Sadly, American Horror Story hasn't done a Halloween episode for every single season (Cult and Roanoke opted out, though at least Roanoke gave us the October-set Blood Moon episode), but there are more than enough beloved Halloween episodes in American Horror Story to inspire heated debate amongst fans as to which is the best of the best. So which American Horror Story Halloween episode rises above the rest? Check out our ranking below.
6. Apocalypse, "Forbidden Fruit"
American Horror Story's Halloween episodes are known for being when Murphy really lets loose with the insanity, and "Forbidden Fruit" might win the award for Craziest Twist given that the episode saw the entire ensemble cast killed off except Michael Langdon (Cody Fern) and Mead (Kathy Bates). The episode also gets bonus points for reintroducing the Coven witches, who arrive in the final moments of the episode to resurrect three of the deceased, leaving the rest of the cast of characters to rot away after eating a batch of poisoned apples.
5. Asylum, "Tricks and Treats"
The biggest issue with Asylum's Halloween episode is that it feels just like a regular episode. Only the second episode of the season, "Tricks and Treats" did lay a lot of groundwork for what came later, though, including the introduction of Dr. Thredson (Zachary Quinto), the possession of Sister Mary Eunice (Lily Rabe) and Sister Jude's (Jessica Lange) backstory. If it weren't for Wendy's (Clea Duvall) death taking place the night before Halloween, we wouldn't even classify this as Halloween-y at all!
4. Hotel, "Devil's Night"
Technically, Devil's Night is the day before Halloween, but this Hotel episode totally counts. In it, Mr. March (Evan Peters) hosts an epic soiree in which the ghosts of real-life serial killers join him and John Lowe (Wes Bentley) for a night of debauchery and murder. There was Richard Ramirez (Anthony Ruivivar), John Wayne Gacy (John Carroll Lynch), Jeffrey Dahmer (Seth Gabel), Aileen Wuornos (Lily Rabe) and even the Zodiac Killer (although Cult later asserted that Zodiac wasn't a single serial murderer but rather the S.C.U.M. collective). It was a weird but welcome reprieve from Hotel's slog of a storyline.
3. Freak Show, "Edward Mordrake Part 1" and "Part 2"
Freak Show had some serious issues, but credit where credit's due, it had a pretty dope duo of Halloween episodes. The two-parter introduced the legend of Edward Mordrake (Wes Bentley), an English nobleman who was driven mad by the whispering face on the back of his head until he eventually committed suicide. Now, the carnival performers refuse to perform on Halloween due to the superstition that the ghost of Mordrake will appear and take one of their souls with him. After Bette and Dot (Sarah Paulson) rehearse their performance, Mordrake appears and recruits Twisty (John Carroll Lynch) to his ghostly troupe.
2. Coven, "Fearful Pranks Ensue" and "Burn ,Witch. Burn!" Coven is easily the campiest season of American Horror Story, but the Halloween two-parter was truly outrageous, even for the show. Zoe (Taissa Farmiga) fights off zombies with a chainsaw, Spalding (Denis O'Hare) plays with Madison's (Emma Roberts) corpse like a doll, Cordelia (Sarah Paulson) is attacked with acid, Myrtle (Frances Conroy) is burned at the stake and the list goes on and on from there. These are not only great Halloween episodes, but some of the best in AHS history.
1. Murder House, "Halloween Part 1" and "Part 2"
There were plenty of things in Murder House that may have kept you up at night, but nothing was as scary as its Halloween episodes, if you ask us. With the ghosts only free to escape the boundaries of the house on Halloween, Tate (Evan Peters) takes Violet (Taissa Farmiga) on their first real date, which goes horribly awry when he's confronted by the ghosts of his classmates that he killed. The recently killed Hayden (Kate Mara) begins to haunt Ben (Dylan McDermott) and Vivien (Connie Britton), while the other Murder House residents get up to their own cruel forms of mischief. But in the saddest twist of all, poor Addy (Jamie Brewer) is struck down by a car, a death that is made only more horrifying by its complete lack of ties to the supernatural.
American Horror Story: Apocalypse airs Wednesdays at 10/9c on FX. Murder House, Asylum, Coven, Freak Show, Hotel, Roanoke and Cult are available to stream on Netflix.