ByJack Carr, writer at
You are the Princess Shireen of the House Baratheon, and you are my daughter.
Jack Carr

Last week Sarah Paulson, the American Horror Story alum who is fast revealing herself to be one of TV's most versatile, daring and downright charismatic talents, sat down with IMDb and Amazon for a live video chat. As well as talking AHS, Paulson took fan questions on her excellent new series American Crime Story: The People vs OJ Simpson.

If you're one of the 12 million Americans turning into The People vs OJ, you'll probably have noticed that the Ryan Murphy true-crime drama has moments of considerable campness, just like virtually all of his shows - one glorious example being our introduction to Kris Jenner (Selma Blair) at Nicole's funeral...

When you consider the subject matter, and the fact that OJ's case is framed against a backdrop of growing racial tension and violence between black citizens and the LAPD, the theatrical element of the show might seem surprising - but playing a story straight simply isn't Murphy's style (and anyway, this really was one of the most theatrical court cases of all time).

With that in mind, I put a question to Sarah during the Amazon live chat, and was thrilled to see her answer it.

What in your opinion, Sarah, makes a director like Ryan Murphy, who has quite a high-camp aesthetic, such a good fit for a show which has some serious enduring themes like race and justice?
"That's a very good question. I think Ryan, like any real artist, is more versatile than anyone could really know until they're given the opportunity to do the thing that shows what they're really capable of. With Ryan, The Normal Heart [was] very different than Glee. Every season of AHS has a kind of operatic quality, to be sure, but in varying degrees, and all of that lends itself nicely to OJ actually. There's so much raw, real material going on, Ryan actually always knows where to go, for the heart of everything."

Paulson is not wrong about Ryan Murphy's versatility. Although AHS can sometimes put campy dialogue and sumptuous visuals before strength of story, this is a man superbly adept at adapting his style to the vehicle in his hands.

The People v. OJ successfully takes us into the heads of both Simpson's black prosecutor, Christopher Darden, and others in the black community who believe their national sporting hero is innocent, without feeling preachy, choosing sides or sacrificing its excellent sense of humor.

The man behind Simpson, Cuba Gooding, Jr., also spoke with People to tease the drama of the next few episodes.

"You'll see an episode that details the actual 911 tapes based on the domestic violence that Nicole experienced."

If what we've seen so far is any indicator, expect it to be tastefully done – but not without a wink and a bit of high-camp. American Crime Story continues Tuesday 16. Feb on FX.

Want more? Check out... 'The People vs O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story' Brings Fresh Juice To A Post-'Making A Murderer' World


Latest from our Creators