A few things we’ve known about this season of American Horror Story: First, it’s going to be the first season based on something, in this case Delicate Condition, a horror novel by Danielle Valentine; second, it’s the first season not solely helmed by Ryan Murphy; and third, as well as most importantly, Kim Kardashian is playing a major role.
True to AHS tradition, the first few teasers have mostly been #vibes only. Which for this season means spiders, pregnancy imagery, pale women, and creepy lullabies. But finally, we have an actual trailer for Delicate, one that definitely wears the Rosemary’s Baby influence on its sleeve.
Emma Roberts plays Anna Alcott, an actress who wants a family just as much as she wants stardom. Her life seems pretty blissful, at least in the first 15 seconds of the trailer, before she notices a strange woman following her. Then things start to get weird. Though the weirdest thing is maybe how not weird they get.
As Anna slowly spirals, there’s a distinct lack of leering monsters or leather-clad gyrating figures creeping out of dark corners. AHS tends to lean heavily on creative monster designs and unhinged serial killers, so seeing the trailer focus more on Anna’s psychological breakdown is an interesting pivot. It’s less about blood and faceless creatures and more about Anna staring in the mirror and watching her hair fall out, while the men around her laugh and tell her to calm down.
Meanwhile, the women in the trailer don’t seem to have Anna’s best interests at heart either. Kim Kardashian’s character feels like she has some hidden menace, as she eggs on Anna’s ambition and then ends the trailer with stroking Anna’s hair and singing a creepy rendition of rock-a-bye baby. And that’s not even mentioning the strange woman following Anna around.
American Horror Story: Delicate premieres on FX on Sept. 20.