There is no such thing as American Horror Story without Sarah Paulson. The incredibly talented actress has been an anchor of the series since she surprised us all in the first installment by playing her relatively tiny role as Billie Dean Howard to riotous perfection. From there she took center stage as the brave Lana Winters in Asylum, and it didn’t take long before she became the lynchpin in every AHS installment, all the way up to 2018’s Apocalypse.
For fans who’ve been with Paulson on this journey from Day One, who’ve seen every carefully crafted character in all eight installments of terrifying tales, it might seem impossible to pick a favorite. But, deep down, you know there’s one Paulson creation that just gets you. Think really hard (we’ll give you a minute), figure out who you adore the most, and then we’ll tell you what it says about you in the real world.
1. Billie Dean Howard from Murder House and Apocalypse
If you’ve ever found yourself fighting the urge to tap a complete stranger on the shoulder to tell them that you’ve seen their aura and it looks pretty blue, you’re probably a Billie Dean. Like the first-ever Paulson character to grace AHS, with her in-your-face manner and her bold psychic predictions, you’re always willing to rattle those around you.
2. Lana Winters from Asylum
If you’ve ever read a conspiracy theory and thought, “You know, I could totally go undercover and find the truth,” you’re probably a Lana. You’re ambitious as hell, and you’ll do just about anything to make your aspirations a reality. You probably grew up idolizing intrepid, take-no-prisoners, powerful women — especially women like Barbara Walters, Christiane Amanpour, and Gloria Steinem.
3. Cordelia Goode from Coven & Apocalypse
If you tend to be the leader of your friend group, who not only settles debates over where to go to dinner, but does all the planning and scheming for every girls' trip, you’re a Cordelia. You are a fiercely loyal and protective force in the lives of your friends and family and while you are kind and gentle, you will momentarily cross the line into darkness in order to keep your loved ones from harm.
4. Bette & Dot Tattler from Freak Show
If you’ve ever found yourself struggling to make a decision, so much so that you almost feel as if your entire body is being torn in two completely opposing directions, you’re probably Bette and Dot. You can sometimes struggle to make a decision, especially when selecting one option over the other means the loss of something else that matters to you. Luckily for you, Bette and Dot eventually managed to work out their differences, so you definitely can too!
5. Sally McKenna from Hotel
If you live for counterculture and you look damn good in a choker and an ostentatious fur coat (preferably leopard print), you’re probably a Sally. You’re also likely pretty creative, which is helped by the fact that your emotions run extremely deep. Just make sure you stay away from any nefarious activities — no one needs a run-in with the Addiction Demon, after all.
6. Audrey Tendall from Roanoke
If you absolutely live for the Oscars each year, you adore the fact that Maggie Smith will never deign to attend the Emmys, you just had to follow Nicole Kidman on Instagram the second she joined, darling, you’re probably an Audrey. You’re obsessed with the finer things, and finest actors, in life and you were beyond elated when you heard Sarah Paulson was doing an English accent for AHS’s sixth installment.
7. Ally Mayfair-Richards from Cult
If you still rock an “I’m With Her” bumper sticker, a “Nasty Woman” t-shirt, and never miss a chance to comment on the day’s political news on Twitter, you’re probably an Ally. But because you’re not a fictional character, you’re probably more inclined to buy way too many “feminist AF” tote-bags than you are to head up a secret feminist cult in crushed green velvet robes… or are you?
8. Wilhelmina Venable from Apocalypse
If you’ve ever found yourself having a midday revenge fantasy at work because your bosses are misogynistic imbeciles, and you live for a signature color (perhaps even purple), you’re probably a Venable. Just make sure you stop short of enacting those cruel mind games on real people. It’s not like it’s the end of the world, after all.
If you need more research on Sarah Paulson's many AHS characters, you can binge watch every single season, ad-free, on FX+