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'American Horror Story: Freak Show' spoilers: Denis O'Hare's intriguing new role

Denis O'Hare played Spalding on 'American Horror Story: Coven' on FX.
Photo by Jason Merritt/Getty Images

American Horror Story” enjoyed its highest ratings with its third installment, “Coven.” Fans are already buzzing about the Emmy-winning anthology series fourth season, subtitled “Freak Show.” On April 18, “Vulture” posted an interview with AHS recurring cast member Denis O’Hare in which he divulged some interesting tidbits about his role next season.

O’Hare said his character will be at “cross purposes” with series lead actress Jessica Lange’s character and he will play “a collector of freaks.” Color us curious. Just what, pray tell, is a freak collector? Does he seek them out and showcase them in a trophy room?

O’Hare has certainly made an indelible impression with both of his “American Horror Story” characters. Who can ever forget Constance Langdon’s estranged lover Larry in season one? He was accused of torching his wife and two daughters and subsequently imprisoned for their deaths. He killed Constance’s disfigured son Beau at her request and then Beau’s disturbed surviving brother Tate (Evan Peters) doused Larry with gasoline and lit his face on fire in retaliation. Hence, Larry received the nickname “Burn Man.”

Larry went on to blackmail the series main character Ben Harmon (Dylan McDermott). Larry remained besotted with Constance despite her wicked ways. He even became imprisoned again after taking the fall for Travis’ murder. Talk about an unhealthy obsession. Creepy doesn’t even begin to describe this guy.

O’Hare didn’t appear in season two’s “Asylum” but made a memorable season three “Coven” return as the silent and skulking butler Spalding, who was once again smitten with Jessica Lange’s character Fiona. He also had an incredibly disturbing doll fetish. The freakiest of them all being dead Madison (Emma Roberts) before she was brought back to life. He would prop her corpse in a corner as an honored guest at his dolls’ tea parties. Shudder.

Finding Denis O’Hare at odds with Jessica Lange in “Freak Show” will undoubtedly prove to be an interesting shift in the co-stars’ onscreen dynamic. O’Hare definitely has a knack for delivering all sorts of bizarre character eccentricities and seems undaunted by grueling hours spent in a makeup chair, if necessary. And, he dives right in to unimaginable tasks like when Spalding cut out his own tongue to protect the woman he loves in “Coven.”

There is literally no telling what sorts of outlandish antics O’Hare will have up his sleeve in collecting freaks in the upcoming fourth AHS installment. This kind of activity begs all sorts of questions: What is his motivation? Does he collect freaks to save them and hide them away from judgmental society? Is he cruel to them, like Kathy Bates’ evil slave-torturing character Madame LaLaurie in “Coven?” Does he get his jollies on Freaky Fridays? The possibilities are freakishly endless!

Denis O’Hare joins returning “American Horror Story” cast members Jessica Lange, Kathy Bates, Angela Bassett, Emma Roberts, Evan Peters, Gabourey Sidibe, Frances Conroy and Jamie Brewer. Jessica Lange will play the German freak show manager. Plus, Emmy and Golden Globe winner Michael Chiklis is also joining the freak-fest as Kathy Bates’ ex-husband and Evan Peters’ father. Imagine what an interesting family trio these three will make.

American Horror Story” returns in October 2014 on FX.

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