This is essentially what Heroes should have done right?
No, because they did try bringing in new characters, and most of them sucked because the actors didn't work out. Heroes
was an even worse case - they had a viable premise that could have been the basis of a strong series for many seasons, with that cast of characters, and they lucked out with the casting. A competent writing team should have been able to pull it off. They definitely couldn't depend on bringing in a strong cast every year to make up for bad writing (and why should the cast have to make up for the writing anyway?)
But in the case of AHS
, the writers have run the premise into the ground. The only place they have to go now is a story of the antichrist and how he somehow threatens the ghosts in the house (if he triumphs, they go to hell, maybe?) But that would require contortions to make work, and it's probably better just to switch the scene to Roanoke or wherever.
The way I read this, Ryan Murphy is simply admitting his limitations. He can't sustain a story over time. That was obvious the way he'd pull sensationalistic rabbits out of the hat - Tate raped Vivien!!! - with no regard to its impact on the story - that fucks up Tate and Violet's relationship permanently. So for the sake of a single zinger scene with Tate taking off the rubber man mask, an ongoing plotline that could have evolved into something interesting was destroyed.
If that's how he handles things as a writer, then fine. Let's see if his anthology idea will fly. But there's a reason anthologies are scarce on TV - there's a widespread (and largely untested) assumption that audiences latch onto characters and watch shows for those characters.
Keeping the same actors might actually accomplish the same objective, who knows. I'm more interested in seeing this cast than I am in seeing more of these particular characters and I'm certainly not watching for the writing, which is largely garbage.
Here's an interesting tidbit of info.
The other advantage in casting the series as a yearly anthology, Murphy added, is that it increases the potential talent pool of performers. “There are a lot of actors who have their own careers and don’t want to make a five-year commitment. This gives people who haven’t done TV before an opportunity. Our shooting schedule is like three or four months every season, so it’s like commiting to a film really. I get a lot of calls from film actors who want to dabble in TV but don’t know how to do it. Being on a series where all of the characters’ stories are done after a season is a way in for them. That’s been the plan from the beginning with this show.”
So major characters next season could be played by well known movie actors. Probably people like Lange, who are getting a bit old for the movie biz. That could turn out to be interesting. Nonetheless, they need to keep Lange and Peters at the very least.