Ryan Murphy’s American Crime Story anthology series has already portrayed the O.J. Simpson murder trial and the murder of fashion designer Gianni Versace. The next edition is skipping the murder and instead heading into the world of politics, retelling the story of the scandal and eventual impeachment of President Bill Clinton that came from his affair with Monica Lewinsky.
Titled Impeachment: American Crime Story, the latest season has a tall order living up to its predecessors, which won a combined 16 primetime Emmys, including Outstanding Limited Series in both instances. Can it do it? Well here’s everything we know about Impeachment: American Crime Story.
What is the plot of ‘Impeachment: American Crime Story’?
American Crime Story offers dramatized versions of infamous true crime events. For anyone old enough to remember the Clinton/Lewinsky scandal much of what will unfold throughout this season will be familiar, with some extra/little known tidbits hopefully worked in. However, if you aren’t up to date on the details, here’s a quick overview.
In 1995, Monica Lewinsky was a recent college graduate who moved to Washington, D.C., to take an unpaid internship for then President Bill Clinton’s chief of staff, Leon Panetta. Working in the White House, Lewinsky soon formed a relationship with Clinton that would last for two years. In 1998, things snowballed as news emerged about the Clinton and Lewinsky affair, which would result in Clinton being impeached by the House of Representatives, but ultimately being acquitted by the Senate.
Some key figures and facts that highlighted the proceedings was Linda Tripp, a government employee that knew Lewinsky and ultimately got her admitting to the affair on tape; Paula Jones, another woman who accused Clinton of sexual harassment; Matt Drudge, the report and creator of The Drudge Report; and Ken Starr, who wrote the Starr Report that was submitted to Congress and contained details of the scandal.
The series is based on Jeffrey Toobin’s book A Vast Conspiracy: The Real Story of the Sex Scandal That Nearly Brought Down a President.
Who is in the ‘Impeachment: American Crime Story’ cast?
Headlining the cast of Impeachment: American Crime Story is Beanie Feldstein as Monica Lewinsky and Sarah Paulson as Linda Tripp. Feldstein is best known for her work in comedies like Booksmart, Lady Bird and Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising. Paulson, meanwhile, is a regular player for Murphy, having appeared in multiple seasons of American Horror Story as well as The People vs. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story, where she played prosecutor Marcia Clark and ultimately won an Emmy for her work.
Of course the Clintons will also be a big part of this story, and Murphy grabbed a pair of big names to play them. Clive Owen (Children of Men, Closer) is playing President Bill Clinton, and Edie Falco (The Sopranos, Nurse Jackie) is playing Hillary Clinton. Annaleigh Ashford (Paula Jones), Billy Eichner (Matt Drudge) and Cobie Smulders (Ann Coulter) are also playing prominent figures from the scandal.
Other confirmed cast members include Taran Killam and Margo Martindale.
When is the ‘Impeachment: American Crime Story’ release date?
Impeachment: American Crime Story is a 10-episode limited series that is scheduled to premiere on FX starting Sept. 7. The show will then feature new episodes every week. Episodes will be made available for streaming via FX on Hulu after they air on broadcast TV. So you can expect to stream the first episode of Impeachment at the latest on Sept. 8.
In the UK, Impeachment: American Crime Story will begin on BBC2 from Tuesday Oct. 19 at 9.15pm. Episodes run weekly on BBC2 every Tuesday and will be put on to the streaming service BBCiPlayer shortly afterwards.
Is there an ‘Impeachment: American Crime Story’ trailer?
FX is starting to ramp up its promotion of Impeachment: American Crime Story. In the last couple of weeks they have released two different teaser trailers. The first, which you can watch below, sees Monica walking through the White House to the Oval Office to see President Clinton, featuring eerie music and never actually showing us the face of any of the major actors.
The second trailer sees Feldstein’s Lewinsky and Paulson’s Linda Tripp on a collision course as they walk toward each other, with dialogue discussing the affair and the infamous blue dress playing over everything. Give that a watch as well below.
What's the buzz on 'Impeachment: American Crime Story'?
The American Crime Story franchise was well-received by critics for its first two seasons, and Impeachment is receiving a similar, if not as warm, reception.
As of the series premiere date, Sept. 7, Impeachment: American Crime story has a 71% score on Rotten Tomatoes and a 62 on Metacritic.
Some of the reviews praise the performances from the actors, but suggest that the series has trouble bringing all of its themes together in a satisfying way.
How to watch ‘Impeachment: American Crime Story’?
Airing on FX, if you want to watch Impeachment: American Crime Story live you will need some way to access the cable channel. This means either having a traditional cable subscription that includes access to FX, or subscribing to a vMVPD service that carries the network, which includes YouTube TV, Fubo TV, Sling TV and Hulu with Live TV.
If you want to stream Impeachment: American Crime Story, you can do so with a subscription to Hulu, which has deals starting at $5.99 per month.
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Michael Balderston is a DC-based entertainment and assistant managing editor for What to Watch, who has previously written about the TV and movies with TV Technology, Awards Circuit and regional publications. Spending most of his time watching new movies at the theater or classics on TCM, some of Michael's favorite movies include Casablanca, Moulin Rouge!, Silence of the Lambs, Children of Men, One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest and Star Wars. On the TV side he enjoys Only Murders in the Building, Yellowstone, The Boys, Game of Thrones and is always up for a Seinfeld rerun. Follow on Letterboxd.