American Horror Story is well known for bringing back actors from previous seasons, but giving them new roles. In American Horror Story: Freak Show, however, we’ve got an actress reprising her role from season 2. Naomi Grossman played Pepper in American Horror Story: Asylum and now Freak Show will fill us in on what she was up to prior to being committed to Briarcliff.
A while back, there was an American Horror Story call sheet leak and the document had Pepper’s name on it, so there’s been talk of Pepper’s return for a little while, but now, not only did show co-creator Ryan Murphy confirm it, but FX also unveiled a brand new still of Pepper in Freak Show. Hit the jump to check it out. American Horror Story: Freak Show begins on October 8th and also stars Sarah Paulson, Denis O’Hare, Kathy Bates, Angela Bassett, Frances Conroy, Michael Chiklis, Jessica Lange and Evan Peters.
While addressing the Pepper rumor, Murphy told EW:
“She is in this [season].”
Having a character make the move from one season to another is a game changer for the show, so Murphy also noted:
“We thought about it long and hard and we decided that it was interesting to do.”
Part of the reason this really is an interesting choice is because the show has never addressed the fact that these worlds are connected in any way. However, Pepper’s involvement in season 4 changes that. Murphy further explained:
“What Elsa has done for 20 years is she goes around to hospitals and jails and rescues these ‘freak’ circus performers who are going to be shipped away to asylums and she signs the waivers and she becomes their guardians.”
Asylum took place in 1964 and now Freak Show is going back to 1952, so Elsa’s (Jessica Lange) hospitality clearly only keeps Pepper out of Briarcliff for so long. If you want to find out what it takes to turn Grossman into Pepper, check out the video below: