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AHS' Naomi Grossman Looks On The Positive Side Of Pepper's Death

Pepper became an instant fan favorite after her first appearance on "American Horror Story." The character initially appeared on "AHS: Asylum," but it would be "AHS: Freak Show" that firmly established her presence. In the latter series, Pepper is shown before the events of Briarcliff Manor. We learn that due to her being born with microcephaly she was abandoned. The events of "Asylum" portrayed Pepper as a murderer, but that was far from the truth — "Freak Show" revealed the character had been framed. Many viewers found her to be one of the bright spots in both of these seasons.

Fans have long felt that Pepper didn't get the ending she deserved, something that was discussed at length when Naomi Grossman did a Reddit AMA. When u/IvanLyon called Pepper's ending an "anticlimax" and asked Grossman if she would have preferred something more final, the actor replied: "Sure, it would have been great to have been bulldozed or whatever, but having one of my idols (Jessica Lange) crumble over news of my death was pretty freaking cool!" She continued to look on the bright side in her response to a comment from u/Gjpro. "No one wants to outstay their welcome," Grossman wrote. "I think Pepper's success just took everyone by such surprise... They hadn't expected the audience to resonate with her like that, and had too many other stories that were perceived as more important which needed wrapping up."

Naomi Grossman would love to play Pepper again

The one good thing about Pepper not getting a definitive ending is that there's a chance she will be brought back one day. She died off-screen, so it would be simple enough to reintroduce the character with a little bit of tweaking. Even if she's confirmed to really be dead, the show's paranormal elements mean anything is possible. If Ryan Murphy wanted Naomi Grossman back — be it as Pepper or another character — she would be more than happy to return to the "American Horror Story" fold. "Well of course," Grossman responded when asked if she was interested in making a comeback during a Gold Derby interview. "What fool actor wouldn't? I come when I'm called, you know? I would say yes. Where? When?"

Grossman returned for two episodes of Season 8 ("Apocalypse") as Samantha Crowe, and she has also appeared on the spin-off series "American Horror Stories," playing the character Rabid Ruth. However, she is yet to reprise the role of Pepper, who remains her favorite character from the "American Horror Story" universe. In an interview with TooFab, she revealed that she would love to play Pepper again. "Pepper has a very special place in my heart," Grossman said, though she admitted that it might be hard to pick up the story, given the emotional impact of her apparent passing. "Where do you go from there? And maybe you shouldn't, maybe it's perfect the way it is."