The Terror was, as I've written before, terrific. A true feather in AMC's cap, it told a dread-inducing tale of Arctic survival from the 1840s, dealing as much in psychology as in death. It was also a self-contained story, wrapping up nicely at the end of its ten-episode run with most of its characters [SPOILERS for a historical event] dead.
Now, AMC has renewed The Terror for a second season - and it's going the American Horror Story route. The show will continue as a seasonal anthology series, telling a new tale of historical horror each year. And what they've lined up for season two is a hell of a choice. According to Variety:
The second season of the show will tell the story of a specter that haunts the Japanese-American community during World War II in the homes of Southern California, the internment camps where many were held during the war, and in the Pacific theater. Season two is created and executive produced by Alexander Woo (True Blood) and Max Borenstein (Kong: Skull Island, Godzilla), with Woo serving as showrunner.
That's a compelling proposition. America's treatment of Japanese-American citizens in WWII is one of the darkest chapters in its history, and it'll be interesting to see it explored within a genre context. But it'll also pack an extra punch in today's climate, wherein the Trump administration creates internment camps of its own - this time, for the undocumented immigrants and refugees it deems unworthy of humane treatment.
Indeed, incoming showrunner Woo says his team hopes to “convey the abject terror of [that] historical experience in a way that feels modern and relevant to the present moment.” The cast will be a majority Asian and Asian-American, too, as it should be. Given the first season's balance of character work and tone, I'm thrilled to see what kind of drama comes out of this project.
The only odd thing about all this is that the first season's title was a play on words - "Terror" describes the show's tone, but it was also the name of the ship they sailed in on. I'm betting Season 2 brings in some sort of subtitle, as in American Horror Story. Hopefully this show sticks to its more dramatic tone and doesn't go off the damn rails like AHS, though. There's room for both styles to coexist.
And that's cool in and of itself! There are multiple horror anthology shows running nowadays. And at least one of them is digging deep into America's closet of skeletons. Well, I never.