'American Horror Story: Asylum' Gets 3 Distinct 'Happy Endings,' Says Show Boss

Creator Ryan Murphy previewed the FX show's season finale on Wednesday.

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The last we left Lana (Sarah Paulson) on Ryan Murphy's American Horror Story: Asylum, she had lost a little bit of her way. Or so it seemed. The strong, fearless, independent journalist who stepped into Briarcliff to expose its conditions and the criminals it was thought to house initially suddenly veered off. Consumed by fame, and probably a bit of anger, she spun the truth and ignored promises.

Lana was always driven, cunning, and focused, though. She had a plan, and though she was forced to deviate it from a bit, her intelligence was always the biggest in the room, and so was her ambition. Lana's desire to expose Briarcliff will therefore come back in a big way for the series finale episode, "Madness Ends," which sees Lana returning to the asylum once more -- this time with a camera crew.

"That’s one of the first things when I and the writers landed on the idea of Asylum — that period of time, those documentaries that were made — there was a very famous documentary that Geraldo Riveramade in that time period, and this is a loose homage of that," Murphy said of the finale that showcases Lana's "most controversial" work.

"Also there was a brilliant movie that we were inspired by for this last episode, this brilliant documentary called Cropsey, that was also about the unraveling healthcare system in our country and how so many people were dumped there and left to rot there. All those abuses that you see, we studied pictures of, and we recreated. We did a lot of research. But that was our jumping off point. In the beginning of the series, we knew we were going to have that character going there, becoming a prisoner…and then go back to tear the joint down."

Murphy acknowledged some of the anger fans felt after seeing Lana give up her quest for justice in a quest for fame, but he noted that was a story point designed to be a "meditation on fame" that would not be indicative of Lana's end.

"I know a lot of people were very furious with Lana after [“Continuum”] because they felt she left all those people to rot," Murphy said.

"Even after everything that Sister Jude has done, [Lana] does sort of go back to get her, and she does succeed in closing down the place. I thought it was very heroic."

American Horror Story: Asylum started as a mixture of a handful of horror elements that "shouldn't go together," but Murphy said he always designed the show to focus on three key characters: Paulson's Lana, Jessica Lange's Sister Jude, and Evan Peters' Kit Walker. The three of them will each have their respective stories wrap up, but not without further overlapping first.

The finale episode jumps back and forth in time to show how the Briarcliff chapter closed for good, if the aliens ever came back for Kit, and just how big Johnny's (Dylan McDermott) bite is, compared to his bark. He has certainly hurt a lot of people, but will he be able to actually kill his own mother, if he comes face to face with her at all? All of those answers are coming, though Murphy shared that he wanted to keep one particular arc somewhat open-ended and left to interpretation.

"I was always...fascinated [by] stories of people who had claimed to be abducted and were on the ships. Did that happen? I don’t know. But I’m fascinated that those stories came out right around the time of the Civil Rights era and the timing of that. To me, that’s what that was about, but I never even like to talk about that story because I like that that’s the one story where everyone can come to their own conclusion [of] where do they come from and why," Murphy said.

"I think Jude got a very great, happy ending, and I think Jessica felt that. And I think Kit got a very strange, happy ending...Sarah Paulson had so many dark days, but she loved it, and she was actually weepy when the show ended because she said ‘I’ve never had a character who’s had a beginning, middle, and end like that'."

But which characters will physically survive? Well, you'll just have to tune in to find out!

American Horror Story: Asylum airs Wednesdays at 10PM on FX.

How do you hope things wrap up for Lana, Kit, Jude, and the rest? Let us know in the comments below!

-- Danielle Turchiano

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