Tate was born in 1977 to Constance and Hugo Langdon. Tate was the brother of Adelaide, Beauregard, and possibly one other unidentified albino sibling. Though he alone of the Langdon children has escaped visible physical defect, he is very mentally disturbed, perhaps owing in some part to his absentee father and neglectful mother. Though Constance killed his father, Hugo, for his infidelities, Tate believed his father to have run away when he was six years old. It is highly probable that Constance lied to him about Hugo's fate, though whether this was to spare his feelings or prevent her incarceration is unknown. Tate reached his breaking point in 1994 when he committed a mass shooting at Westfield High, taking the lives of 15 students.
Following the shooting, Tate returned home where he was killed by the SWAT team and since then has resided in the house as a ghost.
Personality and Appearance
Tate has a very grunge-like appearance, appropriate to a teenager in the early 1990s. Like his musical idol Kurt Cobain, his disposition is primarily solemn and weary. He has perpetual bags under his eyes, perhaps due to drug abuse. He has shaggy dirty-blond hair and brown eyes. Tate has a hatred for his mother, Constance, born out of her negligent parenting and the verbal abuse she constantly dealt him as a child in her drunken alcoholic rages. Despite her disapproval, Constance frequently makes excuses for him, calling him a sensitive boy. Tate can quickly become enraged when someone or something he cares about is threatened. To those unfamiliar with his past, Tate feigns ignorance of his current state of existence. In truth, he is aware that he is a ghost, but fears rejection if it is known, especially from his new friend Violet.
- See also: Tate Langdon/Media
Tate is first introduced in the Pilot episode, as Ben's teenage psychiatric patient. Tate has some severe psychological issues, telling Ben of visions/fantasies he has where he 'prepares for the noble war.' In these fantasies, he dons black leather clothing, a skull painted on to his face and neck, and his hair is slicked back. He kills people, and has no remorse. Tate claims that he kills people he likes, and he doesn't feel anything, because he thinks he is taking them from the 'filthy goddamn horror show' that the world is to a place that is clean and kind. He asks Ben if he thinks he is crazy for these fantasies, but Ben disagrees and says Tate is merely creative and that he has heard a lot worse.
Tate then has a rather strange and abrupt first meeting with Doctor Harmon's daughter, Violet. He appears in her bathroom doorway and catches her using a blade to cut her wrist over the sink. He tells her that if she is trying to kill herself, she should cut vertically instead of horizontally, because "they can't stitch that up." Violet is startled and embarrassed, asking him how he got into the bathroom. He replies that if she is trying to kill herself, she should try locking the door.
At Tate and Ben's second meeting, Ben realizes that Tate has not been taking his medication and informs him that if he deems Tate a threat to society, he will report him to the police, however he has not done it yet. Ben then tells him that everyone can get better, but Tate has a lot of psychological issues he isn't dealing with, and suggests that one might be fear of rejection because of his father leaving him. Tate then tells Ben that he didn't take the medication because he was afraid his 'big dick' wouldn't work, and that he had met someone (Violet).
Tate is then seen in Violet's room, assumably after his second session with her father, and they are bonding over their similarities. The two show each other their wrists, or the cuts on their wrists, and explain what each one was for. One of Violet's cuts was because her first day at Westfield High sucked, and Tate adds that he was kicked out of that school. They then realize that they have similar dysfunctional families and have the same taste in music. Tate then writes the word "TAINT" on her chalkboard, and she asks why he is seeing her father. He tells her to not ask questions that she already knows the answer to. Ben appears in Violet's doorway soon after, and demands that Tate leave because it is not appropriate for him to be in Violet's bedroom. Tate then says to Ben, "What's that thing you think I'm afraid of? Fear of rejection?" and storms out of the house, while Ben demands that Violet stay away from Tate.
Later on in Pilot, Tate is informed by Violet that she is being severely bullied at school by Leah. Tate tells Violet to kill her, and that she would be doing the world a service because it would be 'one less high school bitch to worry about.' Violet does not want to kill her though, and Tate says that she should scare her instead. They devise a plan to lure Leah to Violet's house, saying that she has the best cocaine in town. When Leah arrives, Violet takes her to the basement, where Tate is sat rocking in a chair with a shirt reading, "NORMAL PEOPLE SCARE ME." Leah is very confused, obviously realizing that Violet had lied about the cocaine. Tate tells Violet to turn off the lights, and then things begin to take a turn for the worst. In a fast-paced scene, Tate is seen cackling as the lights flicker on and off and there is a monstrous infant, later known as the Infantata, with black eyes, claws, and jagged teeth popping up every few seconds. Violet began screaming in fear; the monster then scratched Leah's face. In an instant, the lights were turned back on and the monster had disappeared, leaving the two girls and Tate, who was still rocking in his chair like before. Violet told Leah to get out, and then began to scream at Tate, because she was very scared and confused. She tells Tate that she never wants to see him again, and he screams after her, "I thought you weren't afraid of anything!"
Later on in the series, Violet and Tate's relationship begins to flourish, the two obviously falling for each other. In the Halloween episode, Tate decides to take Violet on a real date instead of just meeting up with her in the basement of her house. They go to the beach, where they kiss until Violet says she wants to have sex with him, but Tate says he does not want to yet. Then, a group of high school students showed up, seemingly dressed up in gore-ridden prosthetics and clothing. The students acted as if they knew Tate, asking him 'why he did it,' but Tate acts as if he has no idea what the people are talking about and says they are just rowdy high school jerks causing trouble.
In a later confrontation in the next episode, the students chase Tate alone back to the beach where they had first confronted him. They continually asked him why he did 'it' - 'it' being, killing them. One girl, a cheerleader, says that she should be in her 30's and married with kids but because of Tate she is dead and stuck forever. Tate still claims to not know what they are speaking of, asking why he would do something like that.
Violet found out in Piggy Piggy that Tate had actually killed the high school students that had visited them on Halloween. She went online and found a picture of him, and an article speaking of how he had killed 15 students at Westfield High in 1994. It was also revealed that Tate was killed by the S.W.A.T. team in Violet's (formerly Tate's) bedroom, following his mass murder. She then went to the high school, asking the librarian that had survived the shooting about Tate and why he killed those people, saying that good people didn't just start shooting people. The librarian informs her that maybe Tate wasn't a good person.
Violet went home after this and she was overcome with sadness after the realization that Tate was a mass murderer and a ghost. She entered her bedroom and saw that he had written, "I love you" on her chalkboard, and she began to sob, as she took a large amount of sleeping pills, trying to kill herself.
The scene changes over and Tate is dragging Violet's seemingly lifeless body across her house, screaming, "Don't you die on me, Violet!" He then laid with her in the bathtub, running the water over her head and sticking his fingers down her throat in an attempt to make her throw up the pills she had taken. She begins to cough and throw up, and then starts to cry because of what has happened.
In Smoldering Children, Tate overhears Violet's father planning to send her away, as she has been extremely depressed and not attending school as of late. Tate devises a plan for Violet to overdose on pills (She did not know she was dead at this point) so she could be with him forever, "like Romeo and Juliet." Violet seems to agree at first, but then runs throughout the house screaming frantically for her parents. After various attempts to leave the house, she is dismayed to realize that each time she leaves, she comes right back into the house somehow. Tate then tells a confused and hopeless Violet that he needs to show her something, and he leads her beneath the house into a crawl space, where her rotting body is revealed to have been hidden. Violet becomes overcome with sadness when she finds out that she is dead, and Tate tries comforting her by saying that although she died crying, she died safe and loved.
It was revealed in a previous episode that Nora Montgomery wanted a baby, because hers had been turned into the Infantata, and Tate guaranteed that he would give her one. Although he had failed at giving her one with former owners, he was able to trick Vivien into thinking he was her husband, and raped her. Later, Nora asks for her baby, but Tate refuses because he is in love with Violet and couldn't do that, as the baby was her brother. Nora informs him that she will take the child for herself, then.
In Birth, Chad reveals to Violet that Tate is the father of one of her younger siblings and that he had raped her mother. Violet immediately confronted Tate, telling him of all the horrible things he had done. She told him that she thought he was like her, attracted to the darkness, but Tate was actually the darkness itself. She said that despite the fact that she loved him, she could not forgive him, and that she wanted him to go away. Tate was overwrought and began shouting, "You're all I want! You're all I have!" However, Violet continued to tell him to go away.
In Afterbirth, Tate is seen with Hayden as they watch the deceased Harmon family setting up a Christmas tree. Violet seems happy, until she meets eyes with Tate, and her smile falters. Hayden tells Tate to give up, but he says that he will way forever for Violet to forgive him if he has to.
- to Ben Harmon: "I prepare for the noble war. I'm calm, I know the secret. I know what's coming and I know no one can stop me, not even myself. I kill people I like. Some of them beg for their life. I don't feel sad. I don't feel anything. It's a filthy world we live in. It's a filthy goddamn helpless world, and honestly, I feel like I'm helping to take them away from the shit, and the piss, and the vomit that run through the streets. I'm helping to take them to somewhere clean, and kind. There's something about all that blood man. I drown in it."
- to Violet Harmon: "If you're trying to kill yourself, cut vertically. They can’t stitch that up. And if you're trying to kill yourself, you might also try locking the door."
- to Violet Harmon: "Something has changed in you. Towards me. You're distant, cold. I don't know what I've done, but I'll leave you alone from now on if that's what you want. Is that what you want? You know why I'd leave you alone? Because I care about your feelings more than mine. I love you. There, I said it, not just on some chalkboard. I would never let anybody or anything hurt you. I've never felt that way about anyone."