American Horror Story, Freak Show

FX

American Horror Story's fourth season could be its freakiest one yet. See what we did there? American Horror Story: Freak Show premieres on Oct. 8, but you don't have to wait that long to take a look at the cast in all their sideshow glory.

This season follows Elsa Mars (Jessica Lange), the owner of a "freak show" that has seen better days. Ethel Darling (Kathy Bates) is her second-in-command and also the show's bearded lady. Jimmy Darling (Evan Peters) is Ethel's son, who appears to have claws. Things get more complicated when Dell Toledo (Michael Chiklis), Jimmy's father, and his new wife, Desiree Dupree (Angela Bassett), join Elsa's band of merry misfits. The cast also includes Sarah Paulson as conjoined twins Bette and Dot Tattler, Frances Conroy, Finn Wittrock, Denis O'Hare and Emma Roberts.

American Horror Story, Freak Show

FX

"I have to say, Freak Show is really scarier...I read the script and I was having nightmares," Roberts told E! News.

American Horror Story: Coven was campier than previous seasons. Bates and Lange took home Emmys for their roles, one a resurrected sadist, the other a supreme diva witch.

Guest stars this season include Matt Bomer, Patti LaBelle and Wes Bentley. American Horror Story: Freak Show holds the distinction of being the only show to have a character who originated in a previous season appear. Naomi Grossman will reprise her American Horror Story: Asylum role and play Pepper, a member of Elsa's group. Yes, Pepper is back!

"We thought about it long and hard and we decided that it was interesting to do," Ryan Murphy told EW.

And this year's scary villain? John Carroll Lynch will play a clown. Seriously.

Need more Freak Show? Check out this twisted poster and this character teaser video. See the cast portraits below.

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