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The Sarah Paulson Star Signs Spooktacular

By Clare McBride & Sara Century
Sarah Paulson American Horror Story

In the beginning, there were alignments. Then there were Hogwarts Houses. And then there was BDE.

When it comes to judging your favorite characters, these are all very fine and worthy metrics, but isn’t it time we went back to the metrics that mattered? You know, the stars?

With their hands determinedly covering up the birthdates of your favorite characters, FANGRRLS Clare and Sara set out to assign star signs to all your faves, one franchise at a time.

In this edition, Sara and Clare celebrate the spooky roles of the spectacular Sarah Paulson on American Horror Story! Spoooooky!

Sarah Paulson as Billie Dean Howard in AHS: Murder House

Billie Dean Howard: Leo

Sara: If it isn’t the psychic who stole our hearts. The Sarah Paulson who kicked it all off.

Clare: I love a no-nonsense medium. And let’s be real, coming in hot with her own strong opinions about astrology? I do believe I sense a Leo.

Sara: If Lana Winters weren’t my favorite Sarah Paulson character then it would be Billie Dean. Her one-liners are beyond classic, and her deadpan delivery paints a portrait of a woman who takes herself incredibly seriously while being utterly hilarious. If there was any AHS character to meet for drinks, it’s got to be BDH.

Clare: Billie Dean is actually quite an inspiring Leo, managing to balance the Leo’s sometimes overwhelming self-confidence with practicality. People might not take her seriously, but she’s quite serious about her work, though she’s certainly not humorless. She doesn’t need to prove anything, because she’s already been validated by the spirit world.

Sarah Paulson in American Horror Story

Lana Winters: Aries

Sara: Beloved reporter wife. Dearest Lois Lane lesbian.

Clare: A plucky gal reporter out to make her next big scoop feels like a natural fit for ambitious Aries, but our judgment actually relies heavily on Lana after she’s gone through hell and back.

Sara: She’s like, this has been difficult, but let’s move into the “my career takes off, I’m on the top of the world” stage of my plan.

Clare: “This emotionally destroyed me, but we’re going to move onto the next bullet point on the agenda.” If there is anything Aries love to indulge themselves in, it’s personally motivated righteous vengeance. It’s the best of all worlds: we get to channel all of our fire and hurt feelings into a worthy cause, so nobody can actually tell us that we might be doing this for ourselves. Because we’re not! I mean, we are, but who could blame us.

Sara: Being an Aries is complicated.

Sarah Paulson as Cordelia Goode in AHS: Coven

Cordelia Goode: Virgo

Clare: Cordelia miiiight be my favorite Sarah Paulson character on American Horror Story? She just wants to do what’s right for her community, and she is willing to go the distance to do it, even if it means sacrificing herself. Now that, I respect.

Sara: You’ve got to give it up for a Virgo with mom issues who somewhat has her perfectionism under control but does not have her judgmental tendencies whatsoever under control yet who is there for her community. Sorry, I just described every Virgo.

Clare: The moment that convinces me most that she’s a Virgo is when the warlocks bring Michael to her for the Test of Seven Wonders. The witches are initially resistant to the idea of a man having the power of a Supreme (real, uh, real cissexist view of magic you got there, friends!), but when Cordelia denies the test, it’s because she doesn’t want to risk Michael’s life. There may be tensions between warlocks and wizards, but she puts the kids first.

Sara: Drawing lines in the sand and delivering full lectures about rushing into things half-cocked is literally the Virgo’s bread and butter.

Sarah Paulson as Bette and Dot Tattler in AHS: Freak Show

Bette Tattler and Dot Tattler: Pisces

Clare: Gemini feels like an obvious choice for contrasting conjoined twins, but the Tattler Twins’ highs and lows are so extremely high and low that they have to be Pisces.

Sara: All Pisces are basically a hopeful, attention-loving baby sharing a body with a reclusive 900-year-old with many hidden talents.

Clare: The much more prim and proper Dot might, at first blush, seem to lack the mystical, romantic depths of her sister, but it’s right there out in the open, in how moody and withdrawn she can get. Bette’s just so darn sweet we don’t notice.

Sara: They both exist within the ocean of their shared moods.

Clare: And to conquer that ocean… they must work together. Wait, hang on, that’s Waterworld, my bad.

Sarah Paulson as Sally McKenna in AHS: Hotel

Sally McKenna: Sagittarius

Clare: You know, after the… impact of the Human Centipede films, I’m surprised that Sally is the only fictional character I’ve encountered who has actually tried it.

Sara: I’m not surprised by that. Sally is 100% that person.

Clare: She’s just got… a lot going on. Obviously, she struggles with addiction, she struggles with abandonment, and she processes these feelings in extremely destructive ways. I mean, spending all day on Twitter is the healthy option for her, which I think says a lot about the progress she makes over the course of Hotel.

Sara: The happiest ending for any character in American Horror Story ever is probably when Sally falls in love with the internet at the end of Hotel and just makes a bunch of posts about how much things suck and gains a huge following that reignites her passion for living. After she terrorizes literally everyone for all the other episodes of that season. Textbook Sag.

Clare: She and the Internet are a marriage made in hell, and I’d love to catch that bouquet.

Sarah Paulson as Shelby Miller/Audrey Tindall in AHS: Roanoke

Audrey Tindall: Leo

Sara: Oh, no.

Clare: If Billie Dean Howard is prime Leospiration, Audrey Tindall is… not. Billie Dean’s got her eyes on the prize; Audrey’s got her eyes on herself. The high self-esteem of a Leo can curdle into narcissism and a conviction that you can do no wrong. And I’d say thinking returning to the scene of My Roanoke Nightmare is a sign of really, really bad judgment.

Sara: Leos can be very evolved people, of course (re: Billie Dean Howard), but Audrey is an example of a Leo that needs attention in a way that cancels out all logical sense. She is kind of a stereotype of a vain actor, but then again, so are some Leos.

Sarah Paulson as Ally Mayfair-Richards in AHS: Cult

Ally Mayfair-Richards: Cancer

Sara: Ah, beloved clown wife.

Clare: I had to ask Sara to explain to me how Ally went from afraid of the clown cult to joining the clown cult, which honestly speaks to the kind of enigma and mystery that marks Cancers.

Sara: All Cancers grow to someday become the clowns they once loathed.

Clare: The fact that so much characterization is crammed into “this lady voted for Jill Stein and it’s destroying her marriage” is particularly genius.

Sara: Probably not the only time that happened.

Sarah Paulson as Wilhemina Venable in AHS: Apocalypse

Wilhelmina Venable: Scorpio

Sara: Oh no, a character from my NSFW fanfiction has escaped AO3.

Clare: You know how, in the Fallout games, most of the fallout shelters turn out to be horrifying and deeply unethical science “experiments” conceived by scientists with a mid-century fetish? Wilhelmina is that deeply unethical scientist with a mid-century fetish.

Sara: Wilhelmina literally is a walking fetish and I for one am not mad about it.

Clare: We often don’t think of Water signs being as aggressive as, say, Fire signs, but you do not mess with Scorpios. If you cross them, they’ll drag you down to the watery depths.

Sara: Frankly, it’s what we love about them.

Clare: Scorpios do have a siren song… wait, has American Horror Story done mermaids yet?