If a chilling non-linear account of horror in Victorian London is your thing, Penny Dreadful should be number one on your list.
Penny Dreadfuls were a series of 19th century British fiction publications (one even inspiring the original story for Dracula), featuring serial stories for a penny. Following its namesake, the show follows a series of literary fictional characters (Victor Frankenstein, Dorian Grey and others) on a journey into the shadows of supernatural 19th century London.
The supernaturally gifted Vanessa Ives (played by Eva Green) seems to be the central character of the show. Given Green’s blood thirsty portrayal of the Persian naval commander Artemesia in 300: Rise of an Empire, and her upcoming role in the Sin City sequel, A Dame to Kill For, we at Geek might have found our primary reason for tuning in. We don’t know much about her character as she shrouds herself with mystery, but you do get a sense that she has strong ties to the supernatural. We see her most of the time at the side of Sir Malcolm Murray (played by Timothy Dalton) a sharp ex-African safari hunter on a personal quest for vengeance.
The first episode is told through the eyes of Josh Hartnett’s character Ethan Chandler, a brash and unapologetic gunman from the States, who has been hired by Vanessa and Sir Malcolm for some “nocturnal work”. And though Vanessa and Malcolm are obviously key holders in the series, our eyes into this new supernatural world are through Ethan, experiencing animalistic vampire attacks and a first look at the other-worldly arrogant doctor, Victor Frankenstein.
The premiere episode leaves a lot of questions unanswered, so it’s hard to say how fantastic this show will be in the long run – but it’s certainly headed in the right direction. Be sure to check out the on-air premiere of Penny Dreadful this Sunday, May 11th on Showtime. And if you can’t wait till Sunday, Showtime has released the first episode online for your viewing pleasure. Check it out below…