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The Nan Detail That Has American Horror Story Fans Confused

Ryan Murphy's horror anthology show American Horror Story is one of the most successful scary shows of recent years. With nine loosely connected seasons (and a tenth season on the way), the FX series has built a huge horror universe in which its creatives can play. Murphy's tendency to base every season on a specific horror movie trope means that AHS offers something for everyone — but when it comes to the season that's most important to the show's mythology, it's hard to top American Horror Story: Coven. The creepy yet campy season 3 puts women front and center: franchise mainstays like Sarah Paulson, Kathy Bates, Jessica Lange, Emma Roberts and Taissa Farmiga star in a witchcraft-themed tale of minotaurs, madness, and mayhem. 

One of Coven's most memorable characters is Nan (Jamie Brewer), a young clairvoyant who can sneak into the heads of other people. Nan's ability to read minds makes her something of a walking treasure chest of secrets and hidden knowledge. Unfortunately, this very trait — and Nan's relative innocence — leads to her demise at the hands of voodoo high priestess Marie Laveau (Angela Bassett) and one-time Supreme witch Fiona Goode (Lange).

As central as Nan's clairvoyance is to her character, some viewers have pointed out that her supernatural abilities somehow managed to miss a pretty important plot element. Here's the Nan detail that has American Horror Story fans confused.

Nan's clairvoyance seems to gloss over an important AHS character

One of the many twists of American Horror Story: Coven is that headmistress Cordelia Goode (Paulson), Fiona's daughter, is married to a pretty dangerous dude. Under his affable surface, Hank Foxx (Josh Hamilton) is actually Henry Renard, a deadly witch hunter who works against the witches in league with Marie and the Delphi Trust. 

This comes as a shock to many — but several AHS fans have argued that one person should have been aware of this twist all along: Nan. Not only is she a powerful clairvoyant who's able to uncover everyone's deepest secrets almost casually, but she's also one of Cordelia's students at Miss Robichaux's Academy. Shouldn't Nan have been clued in to Hank-slash-Henry's true nature from the beginning? 

As one fan on Reddit asked, "If Nan was clairvoyant, why didn't she know from the start that Cordelia's husband was a witch hunter? Didn't they all live in the same house together? Wouldn't she have heard his thoughts?"

It's a pretty good point. However, others argue that Nan's control might not be that strong to read the mind of a witch hunter, or that Marie might have masked Hank's secrets with some magic of her own, seeing as though the literal Supreme Fiona wasn't aware of his hidden agenda either.

"I believe Nan was still learning how to control her abilities, which means it wasn't something she could always turn on (or off) at will," one commenter wrote on Reddit. "Also, I'm sure Marie Laveau used magic of her own so that Hank would go undetected by the witches." 

Others noted that Nan might have been perfectly aware of Hank's deepest secrets from the start, but simply decided to roll with it in order to see what would happen. After all, American Horror Story: Apocalypse confirms that Nan loves stirring up trouble. After her death, Nan became one of death spirit Papa Legba's (Lance Reddick) favorite assistants in Hell — and she's been thoroughly enjoying her gig ever since.