While the cast and crew of “American Horror Story” are gearing up for Season 10, which is scheduled to begin filming in October, one person who’s not busy memorizing her lines is Frances Conroy. That’s because the legendary actress wasn’t asked back for this 2020 cycle … though we’re still hoping she’ll pop up as a guest star. (See the Season 10 cast list.) With the coronavirus pandemic keeping us all at homes watching reruns of FX’s anthology series, it’s the perfect time to look back at Conroy’s contributions to the franchise. Below, we’ve ranked all six of her “American Horror Story” characters from worst to best — does YOUR #1 choice match ours?
Conroy is a six-time Emmy nominee for “Six Feet Under” (2002, ’03, ’05, ’06), “AHS: Murder House” (2012) and “AHS: Coven” (2014). Whether she’s cleaning up deadly secrets as a ghostly maid or defying death at the stake as a red-haired witch, the actress brought style, grace and humor to her six different characters. Here’s hoping one day Conroy returns to entertain us again on “American Horror Story” — sooner rather than later.
Captions by Kevin Jacobsen
6. Bebe Babbitt (“Cult”) — Conroy had a two-episode arc as Bebe Babbitt, a radical feminist who wants to unleash female rage by bringing the misogynistic Kai (Evan Peters) to power. Unfortunately, her storyline was too rushed to really develop a strong connection with Bebe so Conroy did not get to properly sink into her character like others on this list.
5. Mama Polk (“Roanoke”) — In “Roanoke,” Conroy appeared as a special guest star, portraying an actress playing Mama Polk in the docuseries “My Roanoke Nightmare.” Mama Polk was the matriarch of an inbred family who made a devilish deal with a colony of ghosts. While we never got to know the name of the actress playing Mama Polk, she was quite terrifying and almost unrecognizable, but the role was too brief to rank above other characters.
4. Gloria Mott (“Freak Show”) — Gloria Mott, a mild-mannered socialite and mother to a psychopathic son, Dandy, (Finn Wittrock), inadvertently caused some of the most significant destruction in “Freak Show.” Her constant spoiling of Dandy involved her hiring the murderous clown Twisty (John Carroll Lynch) as well as Bette and Dot (Sarah Paulson), aiding in Dandy’s entitlement that led him to become a serial killer.
3. Shachath (“Asylum”) — Shachath, a.k.a. the Angel of Death, was a supernatural being dressed in funeral garb that appeared to individuals who were close to passing away to provide them with a kiss of death. She may not be the most boisterous of Conroy’s characters but her haunting presence in “Asylum” was always striking in her brief moments onscreen.
2. Moira O’Hara (“Murder House” & “Apocalypse”) — Moira O’Hara was Conroy’s first “American Horror Story” character, a ghost maid who is trapped living in the Murder House. Her shapeshifting abilities, being able to appear as her seductive younger self, as well as her desire to be with her mother in death made her one of the most fascinating characters in the show’s first season.
1. Myrtle Snow (“Coven” & “Apocalypse”) — The most fabulous character to ever appear on “American Horror Story,” Myrtle Snow was a fashion icon and a zinger extraordinaire. First introduced in “Coven,” Myrtle was a witch who told it like it was with strong convictions and devotion to her sister witches. Conroy has yet to play anyone on “AHS” as bold and hilarious as Myrtle, stealing every single scene she’s in.