Yes, "American Horror Story: Freak Show" has some great actors, some incredible real life "freaks" and a ton of buzz behind it... But it also has a murderous clown named Twisty who will haunt our nightmares forever.
So how do real life circus clowns feel about "Freak Show" - and Twisty in particular? After the season premiere, we talked to on-the-road Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey clown LaRena Iocco to find out how close the "Freak Show" experience is to IRL:
MTV News: To start off, how close was "Freak Show" to what happens in a circus? Close at all?
LaRena Iocco: In some respects, you could say the show was very close, in that the circus is a very tight knit family/community. We all look out for each other, and stick up for each other even though we come from different backgrounds and countries. Circus life is something that I think no "normal" person can really understand, so we develop a found family within the circus who truly understand what our life is like.
MTV: Yeah, but come on, what about the murder clown.
Iocco: As a professional clown I have to be a little upset by anything that further perpetuates the fear of clowns. Obviously, as a clown I don't understand this fear that society seems to have of clowns in general.
If you put someone in bloody make up and give them a knife, of course they're going to be terrifying looking, but I don't see how anyone can look at a modern 21st century clown and be afraid of my rosy cheeks, glasses and pigtails.
But people apparently can't separate the difference between something that is specifically designed for horror's sake, and something that is designed to bring happiness and laughter.
MTV: What about overall? Anything that separates "Freak Show" from your life on the road?
Iocco: I think it's important to remind people that what is depicted in "AHS" is a freak show and carnival, which is a distant cousin to circus. Yes, back in the 50s when the show takes place many were more intertwined than they are today.
But the modern circus and carnival are very different entities, and the freak show is almost extinct. People often seem to think that we are carnies - which I personally would not consider myself. We live a very different lifestyle.