I actually think it is funny, that a group of clowns is actually targeting American Horror Story and blaming the character Twisty, portrayed by John Carroll Lynch on the fourth installment of American Horror Story: Freakshow.
The Clowns of America International, are taking exception to the portrayal of Twisty in the series, with the group taking exception to the portrayal of those are “everyday” clowns. This is what the president of the organization has to say about American Horror Story and Twisty (From The Hollywood Reporter):
"Hollywood makes money sensationalizing the norm. They can take any situation no matter how good or pure and turn it into a nightmare… We do not support in any way, shape or form any medium that sensationalizes or adds to coulrophobia or ‘clown fear."
Unfortunately one clown cannot, nor will it change the preconceived notion that some people are not going to like and are terrified of clowns.
They can take any situation no matter how good or pure and turn it into a nightmare…
Clowns are a part of society. Their faces immortalized and blazoned in bright colors that over exaggerate emotions. Most are happy, some can be sad. But there is nothing that is going to change the overall perception of clowns in society as a whole. Clowns are in fact, real people hiding behind the glamour of makeup to entertain. It is their job to don the costume, juggle, tell jokes, and and take any situation, no matter how frightening or mundane, and turn it into a happy song.
For fans of American Horror Story, and maybe horror on a whole, maybe we don’t support, in any shape or form any medium that sensataionalizes or adds to cherophobia, or fear of happiness.
There are other depictions of clowns in popular culture that I think would sensationalize the good work that clowns might have. How about the ever popular Simpsons with Krusty the clown, the guy who drinks, swears, and smokes – and is generally unhappy with life in general.
Reach back a little further in the horror genre and you find the immortalized Tim Curry as Pennywise the Dancing Clown – not a real clown really, but a demon unleashed on the small town in main – the clown was just the form the being “IT” took to bring the kids closer.
There is no doubt a tragic back story when it comes to Twisty, and I think as American Horror Story: Freak Show progresses, we will see Twisty join the Elsa Mars Freak Show, along with any other clowns that might be misunderstood for their talents. We will get to know why he covers up the missing portion of his face, and longs for the attachment of certain people, while killing anyone that gets in his way. We might even find out that he was a card carrying member of the same group that condemns him now.
You can go further back and read Edgar Allan Poe and see references to evil clowns. Evil men dressed as clowns dotted the drama landscape in the late 1800s as well.
You are not going to eradicate the fear of clowns by taking them out of popular culture and the media. People will always be afraid of clowns, dolls, bunny rabbits.
It just seems that the Clowns of America International is trying to get its day in the sun, maybe hoping for a boost in membership by condemning something they just don’t understand. Sure most clowns are just creepy, and Twisty takes that to a whole new level.