American Horror Story, the creepy anthology TV series created by Ryan Murphy, began its fourth installment, Freak Show, on Wednesday.Flying in the face of conventional wisdom, American Horror Story has actually grown its audience with each season: Freak Show premiered to the series' highest Nielsen ratings yet.
Reactions, defined as tweets containing an emotion, have also increased dramatically as the show has gained traction. In fact, there were more than twice as many reactions to the Freak Show premiere as there were to the season three premiere of American Horror Story: Coven. In terms of overall Twitter volume, Freak Show was the first American Horror Story premiere to break one million, inspiring 1,095,074 tweets during the first episode.
- The show is consistently loved. "Love" was the most common emotional reaction to each premiere, and Coven (season 3) had the highest share of "love" conversation with 35.5%.
- Fans have gotten used to the show's avant-garde sensibility. The share of fans saying premieres were "crazy" has decreased every year. "Crazy" reactions comprised 18.4% of reactions to the first season, but by season four, "crazy" had fallen to only 10% of total reactions.
- Social fans no longer doubt the quality of American Horror Story. During the premieres of the first two seasons, a small percentage of the social audience expressed that they were "unsure" about the show--4.1% for season one and 3.3% for season two. By the third season, this conversation had disappeared entirely.
For more insight into the social phenomenon of American Horror Story, check out the graphic below and head over to our editorial partner,Lost Remote.