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Kim Kardashian’s Acting Debut In American Horror Story: Delicate

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at UCF chapter.

In case you haven’t heard yet, Kim Kardashian added another talent to her resume with her debut in American Horror Story late last month: acting. Ryan Murphy is no stranger to introducing popular icons into the series, with Lady Gaga guest starring in the fifth season, Hotel, and Stevie Nicks appearing in the third season, Coven. Those are just two of many (others being Adam Levine, Naomi Campbell, and Patti LaBelle) throughout the show’s twelve seasons. 

So, the real question is: was Kim Kardashian the right choice for this role, or did her status and reputation detract from the grim, dark, and psychological horror we expect from American Horror Story?

The answer? Both are correct.

Kim Kardashian’s appearance in the series has received mixed reviews. Under the American Horror Story account’s (@ahsfx) recent Instagram post featuring the solo shot of Kim Kardashian’s promo, there are dozens of negative comments. Some of these are: “The true horror is Kim’s acting” from user @gsglass01, “I got suspended from Twitter for saying that I hope her character gets killed off immediately after introduction. That notion still stands.” from user @drawhk, and “I have to say, I’m disappointed to see Kim K in this. She’s never done anything with acting, and the role should have gone to someone who was a new actor or had actual talent. I will be shocked if any of it is good.” by user @jamiehersheys.

However, just because some audiences were against it, doesn’t mean Kim Kardashian’s acting skills were terrible. It means it will take a lot more for her than the average actor to win the approval of loyal American Horror Story fans. From my observation, her acting was surprisingly convincing.

Kim Kardashian plays the role of Siobhan Corbyn, the new publicist of Anna Victoria Alcott (played by Emma Roberts). Corbyn is confident, strong, beautiful, and witty—not too much, unlike Ms. Kardashian. I’ll admit, the first scene she appears in takes you back a bit. She first appears during a routine meeting with Alcott to discuss interviews, promotions, and marketing. It takes a moment for the viewer to separate who Kim Kardashian is from her character, but that’s not any fault of her own. I would feel the same if Taylor Swift decided to play a prominent role in any TV series. She could be the best actor you’ve ever witnessed, but she’s still Taylor Swift, and many opinions of her are already set as she’s been in the spotlight for over ten years.

Like most shows and movies, there’s always a beginning dialogue between the protagonist and a side character that states some of the protagonist’s back story, so the viewer is caught up in the present. Once you notice this pattern, it’s difficult for the dialogue not to sound cheesy or forced, especially if they are acting out a friendship. Unfortunately for Kardashian, this time was no different. Alcott’s and Corbyn’s friendship came off as a little cringe, even for an award-winning actress like Emma Roberts. 

The acting, however, significantly improves once you move past those first few scenes.

Kim Kardashian performs the best when she reflects personality traits closest to her real-life self, and I’m not the only one who noticed. Kardashian has received praise from various magazines, including Variety, The Daily Beast, USA Today, Rolling Stone, and People magazine. Kim Kardashian has been famously known for her sassiness, composure, and trend-setting, and her character closely resembles that. In several scenes, Corbyn is forced to whip Alcott into shape, and Kardashian’s natural passion shines through her role. Corbyn has unique, saucy, bold dialogue, saying things like “suck my clit!” “It’s exhausting being better than everyone,” and “I’m going to commit literal murder sue-y!” (suicide). It takes a particular type of actor to pull off nicknaming suicide “sue-y!” successfully.

Siobhan Corbyn (played by Kardashian) also shows us that she is a loyal friend and a feminist queen. Towards the middle of episode 2, we see her telling off a misogynistic, disrespectful producer who tries to undermine Alcott’s talents. When the producer asks Alcott’s husband, played by Matt Czuchry, “How does your wife keep getting hotter?” Kardashian’s character replies, “The real question is, how do you keep trivializing the work she does by focusing only on her looks? She literally saved your film.” The producer, then ironically, replies, “And that is why all of Hollywood is utterly terrified of this woman!” referring to Kardashian. Is it irony or subtle hinting at the power and status the Kardashians possess? Either way, you can feel Kardashian’s death stare and the attitude in her words through the screen. She definitely channeled her natural talents and killed this role.

The lesson here is to give someone a chance to prove their talents before you form an opinion about them. Kim Kardashian did great, maybe because she’s talented or perhaps because she practically played herself. Either way, her performance is worth watching in the new season of American Horror Story: Delicate.

Caysea Stone, a proud Orlando native, is a journalism major with a minor in women's studies at the University of Central Florida expected to graduate Fall of 2025. Her dedication to these fields is evident in her academic pursuits and personal interests, which include following a vegan lifestyle and a deep love for yoga, meditation, and feminism. She enjoys dissecting society and culture, from discussing trends to completing in-depth film analysis. Her ability to delve deep into these topics and provide insightful perspectives is a testament to her analytical skills and intellectual curiosity. Her ultimate aspiration is to become a writer for a renowned women's magazine such as Cosmopolitan or Bustle. But beyond this, Stone's true passion lies in empowering and inspiring younger women. She encourages them to prioritize self-kindness and actively work towards overcoming any internalized misogyny they may encounter, a mission that is both admirable and inspiring.