The concept for American Horror Story season 4 has yet to be announced, but many articles seem to be in agreement about the possibility of one concept: a carnival theme.
Publications like TVLine, TV.com and GeekNation have listed "Carnival/Circus" as a possible theme for season 4 of American Horror Story. A traveling circus or carnival has its fair share of creepy inhabitants, especially circus performers. As the series likes to take elements from history, the season could feature portrayals of real-life performers, such as conjoined twins, the Elephant Man, and General Tom Thumb.
American Horror Story co-creator Ryan Murphy recently told Entertainment Weekly that season 4 would either be filmed in New Orleans, La. or Santa Fe, N.M. He also said that it would not be contemporary. Assuming they film in Santa Fe, there is even more reason to believe that they will choose a carnival theme. The wide-open dusty landscapes of Santa Fe could be the perfect setting for a carnival-themed season.
Additionally, Murphy often puts in teasers for upcoming seasons in American Horror Story, such as the song I Put a Spell On You during Asylum that teased season 3's witch-themed Coven. Asylum also featured Pepper, a microcephalic with grotesque features. Naomi Grossman, who portrayed Pepper, said in a 2012 interview that Pepper was based on a real-life sideshow performer named Schlitzie.
Schlitze was one of the stars of the 1930s cult classic Freaks, a movie about circus performers, a film that Murphy loves, according to Grossman. This would lead even more support to the idea that a carnival theme will be featured in an upcoming season, if not season 4.
American Horror Story season 4 will likely premiere in Oct. 2014 on FX, assuming it takes on the same schedule as the show's first three seasons.