American Horror Story Characters Ranked: From Cult Leaders to Coven Members & Everything in Between

It's time to update our ranking of the characters played by each of Ryan Murphy's main actors over the years!

By Billy Nilles Nov 15, 2017 6:23 PMTags
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Over the course of seven installments, American Horror Story has introduced the world to all manner of crazy characters, from witches to vampires to insane cult leaders and everything else in between. And we do mean, everything.

Now that American Horror Story: Cult has come to its conclusion (with nary a supernatural being in sight, to boot!), the time is right to revisit our roundup of all the main actors in Ryan Murphy's troupe who've performed multiple characters over the years and update our ranking. Yes, that means Sarah Paulson, Evan Peters, Cheyenne Jackson, Frances Conroy and, of course, Jessica Lange—as well as newbies to the list, Adina Porter and Chaz Bono—and their characters from Murder House, Asylum, Coven, Freak Show, Hotel, Roanoke and Cult.

Which Paulson character reigns supreme? And which among Peters' leads the pack? Read on to find out!

American Horror Story Characters Ranked (By Actor) From Worst to Best
American Horror Story Characters—Ranked!

Each year, the American Horror Story characters are dealt a new hand to play. They'll go from angel of death to campy witch and murderer to coked out model as AHS reboots for another chapter. But let's face it: some characters pop more than others. In honor of the AHS: Cult finale, we ranked each actor's characters from best to worst. Click through to find out each actor's best character now!

Adina Porter's No. 2. Lee Harris, AHS: Roanoke

Lee wasn't the most likable person, but she was the last one standing when all was said and done.

Adina Porter's No. 1. Beverly Hope, AHS: Cult

Was there a more powerful woman in Cult than Beverly? Sure, she may have fallen under Kai's sway, but she woke up when it mattered most. 

Chaz Bono's No. 2. Lot Polk, AHS: Roanoke

Bono didn't have a ton to do but look menacing as the reenactment's version of the cannibalistic Polk.

Chaz Bono's No. 1. Gary Longstreet, AHS: Cult

As Kai's most loyal servant, Gary never had too much to do, but he sure was willing to promote the cause no matter the cost. (Hint: His life.)

Lily Rabe's No. 5. Nora Montgomery, AHS: Murder House

A sad ghost with a penchant for baby taking, Nora is the weaker of Lily Rabe's AHS characters.

Lily Rabe's No. 4. Shelby Miller, AHS: Roanoke

She was an adulterer, a murderer, and a Yogi. But worst of all about Shelby? She was a whiner.

Lily Rabe's No. 3. Aileen Wuornos, AHS: Hotel

Yes, Rabe played real-life serial killer (and inspiration for the movie Monster) Aileen Wuornos in an over-the-top performance in Hotel for one episode. Eat your heart out, Charlize Theron!

Lily Rabe's No. 2. Sister Mary Eunice, AHS: Asylum & Freak Show

Sister Mary Eunice was Rabe's most developed character. She was sweet and innocent...until she was possessed. Lots of opportunity for Rabe to do a variety of emotions here.

Lily Rabe's No. 1. Misty Day, AHS: Coven

The shawls, the Stevie Nicks obsession...Misty was fun!

Lady Gaga's No. 2. Scathach (Reenactment), AHS: Roanoke

Not as much a character than a plot device, the fact that the most exciting thing about Scathach (the fact that she was the original Supreme in Coven) was revealed in a Ryan Murphy interview rather than onscreen isn't good.

Lady Gaga's No. 1. The Countess, AHS: Hotel

Glam, sensuous, and with a pressing thirst for blood? That's how we like our Gaga.

Matt Bomer's No. 2. Andy, AHS: Freak Show

Sure Matt Bomer showed some skin, but his gay rent boy character was offed straight away. No development there.

Matt Bomer's No. 1. Donovan, AHS: Hotel

He's showing skin, his killer hair and an actual story arc? We're sold.

Cheyenne Jackson's No. 3. Dr. Rudy Vincent, AHS: Cult

Nice twist revealing that Rudy was Kai and Winter's older brother, but the character never really felt all that developed.

Cheyenne Jackson's No. 2. Will Drake, AHS: Hotel

Will was gay, but then he fell in love with the Countess? We love Gaga as much as everyone else, but that was wildly unbelievable—which is saying something, considering this franchise.

Cheynne Jackon's No. 1. Sidney Aaron James, AHS: Roanoke

Was Sidney a total sociopath? Sure. But was his unwavering devotion to keeping his reality show alive, blood moon and murderous ghosts, absolutely hysterical? You betcha.

Emma Roberts No. 3. Serena Belinda, AHS: Cult

She was nasty to Beverly and she paid dearly for it. 

Emma Roberts' No. 2. Maggie, AHS: Freak Show

A con artist who really didn't do much to endear herself to viewers, compared to Emma Roberts' Coven character, this is very easy to call.

Emma Roberts' No 1. Madison, AHS: Coven

The unapologetic attitude, the magic powers, the "Surprise, bitch" meme ... need we go on as to why Madison Montgomery is Roberts' tops AHS character?

Wes Bentley's No. 4. Ambrose White, AHS: Roanoke

If he'd only supported his mother, Tomasin would've never turned into the Butcher and no one in Roanoke would've been in the miserable mess they were in. Way to go, Ambrose.

Wes Bentley's No. 3. John Lowe, AHS: Hotel

Ugh, there was nothing redeeming for Wes Bentley to do with him.

Wes Bentley's No. 2. Dylan, AHS: Roanoke

Dylan might've been the most sensible person on Roanoke. Naturally, he only lasted an episode. But his calm use of his Army skills to at least try and get the remaining survivors to safety was admirable. RIP Dylan.

Wes Bentley's No. 1. Edward Mordrake, AHS: Freak Show

Dude had a little head on the back of his own! He was creepy and helped usher Jessica Lange out of her last AHS.

Finn Wittrock's No. 3. Jether Polk, AHS: Roanoke

1. You don't hire Finn Wittrock and hide his pretty face under all that inbred aesthetic. 2. If you do, you make him stick around for more than an episode.

Finn Wittrock's No. 2. Tristan, AHS: Hotel

Sure we got to see Finn Wittrock shirtless (a lot) and make out with, well, everybody. But Tristan was just pretty annoying.

Finn Wittrock's No. 1. Dandy, AHS: Freak Show

His first American Horror Story role and best American Horror Story role. Dandy was a sociopath and you could tell Wittrock had a great time sinking his teeth into the gig.

Mare Winningham's No. 4. Alicia, AHS: Coven

Mare Winningham has played a lot of pretty awful people on AHS, but her worst one yet has got to be Kyle's sexually abusive mom.

Mare Winningham's No. 3. Rita, AHS: Freak Show

Is Alicia worse than Pepper's sister Rita? They're both pretty awful.

Mare Winningham's No. 2. Sally Keffler, AHS: Cult

We would've loved to have spent five more episodes with Winningham's badass alt-right fighting, joint rolling Sally. Alas, Kai and his goons made sure that would never happen.

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Did the right Sarah Paulson character come out on top? How about our choice for top Evan Peters role? Sound off in the comments below!

American Horror Story will return for its eighth installment on FX in 2018.