Former News Sentinel reporter Ryan Murphy's most acclaimed series — "American Horror Story" — is back for its second season this week.
Set at a home for the mentally ill, "American Horror Story: Asylum" (10 p.m. Wednesday, FX) wipes the slate clean. A new setting, new characters and a new time period are set for this latest tale.
Not everything is new, however.
Now set in 1964, "Asylum" brings back season-one fan favorite (and Emmy Award nominee) Jessica Lange as Sister Jude, who presides over, in one way or another, Briarcliff Manor. The place for the criminally insane has a notorious reputation, most of which is exposed in the opener.
Murphy, who co-produces and co-writes the series, is throwing almost every danger you can manage into the mix: Nazis, mutants, aliens and mean nuns.
The cast includes James Cromwell ("Six Feet Under"), Zachary Quinto ("Star Trek") and Joseph Fiennes. Guest actors include Frances Conroy, Chloe Sevigny, Adam Levine and Mark Consuelos.
Season one of "Story" was one of the most acclaimed dramas at this year's Emmys ceremony, including Outstanding Miniseries. Lange won its sole creative arts Emmy in the Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Miniseries or Movie category.
Murphy, 46, got his writing career started at the News Sentinel as an intern, where he first wrote about police and on-the-scene emergency stories. At his request, he was transferred to the features and lifestyles department, where he covered fashion trends.
Adventure Con — the annual pop culture show — ends today at the Knoxville Convention Center.
Around 60 venders will be set up, mainly with comic books, toys and assorted collectibles.
As of press time, eight celebrities were scheduled to appear, including Jon Bernthal (formerly of "The Walking Dead"), Ioan Grufford (Reed Richards of the "Fantastic Four" movies) and Chris Sarandon ("The Nightmare Before Christmas").
The celebrities also are participating in panels with question-and-answer sessions.
They charge between $25 to $30 for an autograph.
A contest has artists using Sharpies markers.
Adventure Con hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. today. Admission for ages 8 and under is free as long as they are accompanied by a paying adult (limited to one child per adult). Adult admission is $15.
In the ring.
World Wrestling Entertainment presents its "Raw vs. Smackdown" live (but non-televised) matches today at the Knoxville Coliseum.
Jefferson County resident Glenn Jacobs, known better in the ring as the man-monster Kane, will be one of the headliners.
The matches begin at 6 p.m. Tickets are $15 to $95.
Terry Morrow writes about television and celebrities for the News Sentinel.
© 2012, Knoxville News Sentinel Co.
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