Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Why The Cop From AHS: Double Feature Episode 1 Looks So Familiar

"American Horror Story" is now in its tenth season on FX, and by now, everybody knows the drill: because it's an anthology series, each season is basically its own little miniseries. The ensemble cast more or less stays the same, and many of the actors which fans know and love are returning for this season, but in new parts. Thankfully, this includes one occasional guest star who should look familiar to loyal fans of the show.

In the debut episode of "American Horror Story: Double Feature," the Gardner family experiences a disturbing incident while vacationing in the sleepy Massachusetts village of Provincetown. This scary event prompts them to call the police (which isn't exactly a spoiler — this is supposed to be an American horror story, after all). And from the moment that Chief Burleson shows up, viewers will likely recognize her face from dozens of different roles she's played over the years. 

Her name is Adina Porter, and not only has she featured on "AHS" before, as characters like Dinah Stevens ("AHS: Apocalypse"), Beverly Hope ("AHS: Cult"), and Lee Harris ("AHS: Roanoke"), but she's been all over the small screen since the 1990s.

Adina Porter got her big break on True Blood

Adina Porter has had walk-on or single-episode roles in numerous popular shows — "ER," "Glee," "House," and "Law & Order," just to name a few — but vampires proved to be her big break, when she starred on the HBO hit "True Blood" alongside Anna Paquin, Stephen Moyer, Sam Trammell, and Rutina Wesley. 

"True Blood" was based on "The Southern Vampire Mysteries," a line of paranormal romance novels by Charlaine Harris. The series follows Sookie (Paquin) as she jumps from one supernatural suitor to the next, ultimately ending with her assisting in her long-term vampire lover's death and marrying some mortal rando with whom she starts a family. Porter played Lettie Mae Thornton in the series, the alcoholic mother of Tara (Wesley). And she played the part so well that it's no wonder she went on to play much bigger characters in much bigger roles. 

Not only was Porter's performance spot-on,as far as embodying someone suffering from a severe substance abuse problem, but the emotional ups and downs between her and her daughter were captivating and often tear-jerking. If you haven't seen Porter as Lettie Mae, you're missing out on one of the best supporting actress performances in the history of cable TV drama. The show as a whole hasn't aged that badly, so it might be worth going back and watching if you haven't already done so.

Adina Porter helped inform the public on The Newsroom

"The Newsroom" was an American television series that ran on HBO for three seasons from the summer of 2012 to December 2014. It was produced by Aaron Sorkin and starred Jeff Daniels as Will McAvoy, an opinionated, right-leaning famous news anchor. One day, he goes off on a rant spouting some hard truths on camera at a college campus. The incident gets him effectively cancelled, but soon, his ex comes back into his life — in a professional context — to help improve his image and rescue his show from the brink of cancellation. Conflicts and drama ensue. 

On the show, Porter occasionally guest stars as booking agent Kendra James. She often butts heads with her co-workers — especially her fellow booking agent Gary Cooper (Chris Chalk). Despite the ups and downs, she remains fiercely loyal to her boss Will. Although she's not in every episode, she is in many of them, including the series finale.

Adina Porter helped sing the slaves to freedom in Underground

Another relatively short-lived show which Porter had a recurring role on — up to and including the series finale — was "Underground." The show was a fictional dramatization of the historical Underground Railroad, a network of routes dedicated to freeing slaves in the Antebellum American South. The main character, Noah (Aldis Hodge) is caught while trying to escape and happens upon a map to the Underground Railroad. He copies the map and makes it his quest in life not just to escape himself, but to take others with him to freedom. 

Noah recruits one man in particular, Moses (Mykelti Williamson), because he believes him to be one of the few literate slaves that existed at the time. But the truth is that it's not Moses, but his wife Pearly Mae (Porter), who is the literate one. She is unfortunately murdered halfway through the first season, but reprises her role in ghost-from to haunt the woman who killed her.

Adina Porter played Indra on The 100

"The 100" was a wildly popular dystopian sci-fi drama on the CW which lasted seven seasons between 2014 and 2020. It takes place 97 years after a nuclear apocalypse has destroyed the Earth, forcing mankind to evacuate into orbiting space stations to try and survive. Once life support systems start to shut down, one station in particular sends 100 of their healthiest, strongest, brightest inhabitants back down to the surface to see if the planet is livable — but if their mission fails, everyone they left behind will die in space. 

Porter's character Indra first appears in Season 2. She's the leader of an Earth tribe of apocalypse survivors called the Tondc who find themselves at odds with the "Sky People" (the 100). She is a fierce warrior and leader who establishes a tenuous alliance with protagonist Clarke (Eliza Taylor) over the course of the series. In the end, even though she has the choice to achieve "transcendence" — a painless, infinite, peaceful existence — she instead chooses to reject it in favor of living the rest of her mortal life on Earth with those she cares about the most. 

Adina Porter also plays a cop on Outer Banks

As it turns out, "AHS" isn't the only time Adina Porter has played a cop on TV — she also plays Sheriff Peterkin on the new Netflix series "Outer Banks." 

The show revolves around the drastically different lives of "pogues" (the dirty-poors) and "kooks" (the rich snobs) who live in and around the affluent coastal town of Outer Banks, North Carolina. The central plot in Season 1 revolves around protagonist John B. (Chase Stokes) and his missing father, Big John (Charles Halford), as well as an ancient treasure which Big John may or may not have hidden before his disappearance. Once Porter's Sheriff Peterkin discovers that bad guy Ward Cameron (Charles Esten) has committed murder, she tracks him down and confronts him on an airport runway moments before tries to flee the country. She holds him at gunpoint and tries to arrest him, but Cameron's son Rafe (Drew Starkey) fatally shoots her before she can apprehend the criminal. 

They hold a funeral for the sheriff on the show, so it's pretty safe to say she won't be coming back any time soon (unless they pull an "Underground" and have her play a ghost again). Nonetheless, it'll be interesting to see what kinds of interesting new roles Porter gets the chance to play in the future.