American Horror StoryCalling all American Horror Story fans! You are officially a mere five days from the premiere episode of the third season, and if co-creator Ryan Murphy is to be believed, this is going to be the best season yet.

Of course, he sort of has to say that, but I'm crossing my fingers that early reviews declaring the first episode of American Horror Story: Coven to be the "most accessible" (IE, least fever-dream bizarro-land) of the series so far are correct. That was my main complaint with the show last season: it was just too disjointed and difficult to watch. Season 3 won't pull back on the creepiness factor, but Murphy says it's lighter in some ways: "Coven was designed to be scary, but more fun."

Murphy also says, "I wanted this year to be not so hard to sit through," but I suspect he's messing with us a little. I mean, have you seen the various skin-crawling teaser posters and video promos for Coven? GAH.

The main theme behind American Horror Story: Coven is, as the title suggests, witches. The season is set in modern day and the 1830s, and here's a quick description from Entertainment Weekly:

 Taissa Farmiga plays a teenager who discovers she’s a witch and is sent by her mother to a very special New Orleans boarding school for witches run by the rather wicked “supreme” (Jessica Lange) and her prim daughter (Sarah Paulson). Witches, we’re told, fled to the South during the Salem witch trials 300 years ago and established this school for the protection and education of gifted young women. (Expect a Hogwarts joke within the first hour.) Most of them have a single unique power (such as reading minds or telekinesis). We’re also introduced via flashback to Marie Delphine LaLaurie (Kathy Bates), who’s based on a real-life socialite and serial killer who tortured black slaves in the early 1800s.

I'm very intrigued by the setup and the cast -- Kathy Bates! -- and I absolutely LOVE the incredibly disturbing imagery FX is promoting the show with. Check out these Coven posters:

That last one sure is a mouthful, isn't it? The symbolism is so heavy-handed it reminds me of Captain Hammer:

In addition to the extended teaser FX released early last month, there have been a number of seriously messed-up 10-second clips for the show. I've collected a bunch here for your viewing discomfort:


Damn, there sure is a lot of phallic mouth action in the Coven ads. How about I leave you with a quick palate-cleanser:


Will you be watching American Horror Story: Coven when it premieres on the 9th?


Images via FX