When we last saw American Horror Story: Asylum, the present day Bloody Face was unmasked as the son of Dr. Thredson and Lana, Johnny Thredson (Dylan McDermott). Her attempt to self-abort the baby was presumably unsuccessful, though with American Horror Story nothing should be taken at face value.
After "The Coat Hanger" aired, McDermott spoke with reporters about the reveal. He transitioned from playing the psychiatrist, Ben Harmon, in the first installment of American Horror Story
to portraying a killer and in need of one in Asylum.
Who is your character and where do you hope he ends up at the end of the season?
Well, Johnny Thredson, obviously he's a troubled man; so where I hope he goes and where he goes are two different places, but I think he's got a sole purpose in life and really that is, he feels so scorned by his mother. Everything is about his mother. The reason he's doing all these horrible things is because he was rejected so harshly by his mother, obviously aborted. His father was a serial killer. His mother aborted him and he still lives. So his whole trajectory in life is really about her.
Last year's story had this wonderfully, neatly tied up ending, at least for most of the characters -- for yours especially. Does this year's have a similar kind of closure to it?
Yes, without giving anything away, I think it does. I think that you'll be satisfied in terms of what happens. All the characters will definitely -- you'll have closure with all the characters. It's hard to wrap up the season in one show, but I think that having read it and now performing it, I think that you're going to be satisfied for sure.
What has been the most fun aspect of this year's role for you?
I think because it's so radically different from last year. Playing the psychiatrist role, a white collar guy, and going to a blue collar guy who's a serial killer and has these enormous problems with his parents and the way he feels. I think that's been fun to play, for me, personally. The idea of diving into his past and creating this guy, this sort of like wounded person who is just lashing out at the world; so I refer to both of these characters in American Horror Story as twin brothers with a different father.
Is there anything you can tell us about what's coming up in the next three episodes that you're in?
I mean, I think we're going to look into what -- he really is after some sort of closure with his mother. I think he can't understand, he can't wrap his head around why someone would want to throw him out, throw him in the trash. So I think we're going to peek into his psychological world in the next three episodes and then we're going to have closure with his character in the finale. But it's really--it goes into the psychology and the pathology of who he is.
He's not just like a serial killer and out there on the run with no reason. I think we really get into the reason of Johnny Thredson. People behave badly and people are in prison and people are on death row and there are no excuses for everybody's behavior, but most people are coming from abuse. I think Johnny is not alone in that. I think he just really suffers from an enormous amount of abuse and there's a reason he's doing the things he's doing and that's not justified, but we're going to peek into his world.
I was wondering if there is anything about this particular character that you added to the role that wasn't originally scripted for you?
Yes, you'll see him in, I think in the next episode, I started smoking some crack. I don't think that was in it. I wanted him to be -- I needed him to have an outlet for it and then when I started smoking crack, they started putting it into scenes. So that was an important thing that I wanted him to be high because a lot of these guys are high and a lot of people do, obviously, terrible things on drugs. It was important for me to have him to be a drug addict as well.
The scene where you're talking to this therapist, that set looks a lot like your office from Season 1. Was that the same set?
People have mentioned that. It's not the same set, but you're right. It does have a similar mood and theme to it. It's funny enough that you're not the first person to say that. I think there's an image to many things in that scene, obviously. The first being the reversal of the doctor and the patient and then maybe the office looking very similar, so there are many things going on in that scene. So if you did an essay on it, I think you could find a lot more.
American Horror Story: Asylum returns tonight, Wednesday, January 2 at 10 pm ET on FX.
(Image courtesy of FX.)