According to executive producer Ryan Murphy at the Television Critics Association's winter press tour on Friday, the FX anthology series will no longer toggle between the past and present day, as many previous seasons did.
"[Season 8 of American Horror Story] takes place in the future," Murphy told the audience at the TCA, per TVLine. "It's still topical, but [set in] the future, which I’ve never done… I think people will like it. It's different from what we’ve done before."
American Horror Story is no stranger to reinventing itself. After losing its leading lady Jessica Lange after season 4, the series famously slated Lady Gaga in a main role in season 5's Hotel — which led to the "Born This Way" singer earning a Golden Globe for her vampiric part. Season 6, subtitled Roanoke, faked audiences out with mock promotional material before finally revealing a season that played upon our fascination with reality television. The most recent season, Cult, hit particularly close to home in a way that no other season of the series had, with a focus on the aftermath of the 2016 election.
Still, it's worth wondering: How will a future-set season of American Horror Story look? It's a bit puzzling, considering AHS has tended to explore the horrors of America's past. Coven, for example, explored the evils of slavery. Asylum, which was set in the '50s, showed the harsh realities of the mental health care system, as well as the injustices committed against those who fell outside of society's strict "norms." Even Murder House gave audiences a twist on the Black Dahlia murder. For a show that has famously acted as a commentary on America's past and present, setting a new season in the future is quite the turn.
That's not to say that American Horror Story must lose its societal commentary, just because it's commenting on events that have yet to happen. After all, The Handmaid's Tale is set in a dystopian future, yet feels just as relevant as ever. (Not to mention American Horror Story-levels of terrifying at times.)
Unfortunately, knowing how tightly wrapped Murphy and the rest of the American Horror Story crew likes to keep its yet-to-be-shot seasons, it may be months before we get any additional info on season 8. Let's just hope Sarah Paulson returns.