Bostonians Ben and Vivien Harmon (Dylan McDermott, Connie Britton) and their teen daughter, Violet (Taissa Farmiga), move into a haunted LA. mansion in the series premiere of a violent, erotically charged horror story about a troubled family. Ben and Vivien are seeking a fresh start following a miscarriage and marital infidelity, and they got the 1920s Victorian-style house for a song. But the previous occupants died in a murder-suicide, and that's only sign No. 1 that something's amiss.
Vivien and Violet get caught in a dangerous situation strangely similar to one from the house's past. Meanwhile, Ben returns to Boston to put an end to a dark chapter in his life. But first, he sees a patient who has nightmares about being cut in half. He also refuses to treat Tate anymore because of the teen's feelings for Violet.
After deciding to sell the house, Vivien learns about its first residents. Meanwhile, Ben's visitor causes him to unravel even more; and Constance and Moira's histories are revealed.
It's Halloween, and the line between the living and the dead blurs at the mansion, where two previous residents (Zachary Quinto and Teddy Sears) offer the Harmons advice. One suggestion: get rid of the gazebo in the back. Meanwhile, Tate fills Violet in on some of the house's history; and Addy decides that she wants to go to the Harmons' Halloween party as "a pretty girl."
Before Halloween night is over, Tate comes face-to-face with his past (and Violet gets a glimpse of it), and Ben and Vivien are haunted by a new houseguest. Vivien also has an unpleasant encounter with Chad (Zachary Quinto). And Ben has it out with Larry Harvey in front of the gazebo.
Constance enlists Violet's help in dealing with Tate while Ben helps a new patient (Eric Stonestreet) confront his fears.
Moira persuades a prospective buyer to make an offer, but Constance and Larry try to undermine her efforts. Meanwhile, Vivien and Luke (Morris Chestnut) grow closer.
The identity of the man in the rubber suit is revealed.
The Black Dahlia (Mena Suvari), a famous Hollywood murder victim from the 1940s, visits the house. Meanwhile, Constance discovers more of Tate's bad behavior.
Violet learns about the rules of the house; the explanation for Larry's condition emerges; and Constance is questioned by police.
Vivien has her baby; Tate and Violet attempt to rid the house of some of its ghosts once and for all.
Constance schemes to raise Tate's baby as her own in the Series 1 finale.