Penny Dreadful Television

Penny Dreadful “The Day Tennyson Died” Season 3

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Source: Penny Dreadful // Starz

The season 2 finale last year was beyond depressing. Everyone split apart across the globe. While Vanessa, even though she had on that particular battle with the devil, lost all her faith in God and in humanity.

So it’s no surprise that the premiere episode did begin on a cheerful note. It’s not stated exactly how much time has passed, but seeing as Ethan is well over into America and the mansion looks like no one has lived there a couple centuries (seriously all the cob webs!) I’m going to guesstimate around 3 months.

Vanessa is a complete wreck. It’s actually very sad and beautiful what John Logan has done here. He always manages to show mental illness in a way that feels true, but also doesn’t demonize it.

What we see here with Vanessa is severe depression. She doesn’t care about her looks anymore, or cleanliness. I’m fairly certain she hasn’t even left the house in all this time. It’s no wonder really, I mean she doesn’t even know that Ethan got arrested! She thinks he just really left for good. After her vision of perfect happiness last season involving him, you know that idea has to hurt.

Malcolm is still gone as well, off trying to have adventures in Africa after burying Sembene. Which that actually pisses me off. I get that he is upset but I’m angry that he also just left Vanessa so alone after everything last season.

You guys! She is literally constantly hunted by horrible things! Maybe don’t leave her alone forever? She needs a damn hug every once in awhile.

Luckily, the magical Mr. Lyle came to Vanessa’s aid. He knew exactly what is was like to feel this type of sadness and he made an appointment for her at the same Alienist that helped him embrace who he really was. I fucking love that. He didn’t tell her she was wrong for feeling the way she was or that she needed to suck it up and move on. He just hugged her and provided her with someone to talk to.

Mr. Ferdinand Lyle for Prez! <3

I loved everything about her therapy session. First off, hello heartbreak!. When Vanessa see Dr. Seward for the first time, the face she makes as she recognizes that its the same face as the cut-wife just tore up my heart.

I appreciate that the writers confronted that issue because I was confused how they were going to pull that off in a show that is usually so smart with its story lines. The explanation is that she is a decedent of the cut wife Joan Clayton! Please don’t be evil!! Vanessa seriously needs a female friend.

This Dr. Seward seems like she is damn good at her job too, she read Van like a book. She also gave her an assignment for the day. Go somewhere she had never been before. Thus started Vanessa’s journey to the coolest museum ever.

I do want to point out though, something I only noticed on my second watch, it’s super suspicious that the creepy vampire that was tailing her signaled for the even creepier vampire boy to stop her right in front of the museum.

As Vanessa wondered around staring longingly at stuff wolves (omg why would you do this to me show!?) and scorpions, she meets Dr. Alexander Sweet, a zoologist. I am immediately charmed. How he obviously loves his job and just rambled on and on about the animals and such is adorable and I love him already.

Moving on to our other characters, Malcolm appears to have lost his love for adventuring. We see that he is at least writing Vanessa to let her know he’s alive, but instead of talking about coming home he seems to be determined to find some kind of crazy to take part in. As he is leaving a bar it seems like he’s almost about to be the victim of a crazy gang mugging when my new favorite character introduces himself by saving his ass. Kaetenay, played by the AWESOME Wes Studi, apparently has some intense connection to Ethan as he implore Malcolm that they must go “save our son” He also seems to actually know whats going on with all these demons and stuff, or at least more than our lead characters do. Thus, automatic favorite.

I’m not sure if Ethan needs saving exactly, but I’m sure he wouldn’t say no to a friendly face. When he see him, still minus his beautiful hair, he is in a train car surrounded on all sides by US Marshalls. Also on board, is Hecate, everyone’s favorite stalker witch from last season.

It looks like Ethan is trying to find a way out when the whole train is just murdered by what looks like bandits. They seem to leave Hecate alive, though I’m going to put that down to she did something witchy instead of them being nice guys.

The bandits are actually more hired guns from Ethan’s father. Wow this guy really wants to get his son back under any circumstances. Normally I’d say that’s sweet, but I have a feeling his dad who is going to be played by Brian Cox later this season is going to be a giant jerk.

So yeah, he definitely needs help from his two awesome dads.

Next in the line up is a part that had my emotions all over the place. First, my little nerd heart basically exploded during this scene where Dr. Frankenstein and Dr. Jekyll said hello to each other. That is something I never thought I’d witness.

When he is first introduced to us, I loved him immediately. They were old med school buddies! Dr. J seemed to really care about his well being and he also knew about Victors ambitions.

Well, all that love came crashing down when, after Victor revealed that the reason he asked his old friend to come visit was so that he could help him destroy Lily for good. Okay, I get that, I don’t agree, but I understand. She is kind of evil now.

But instead of killing her, Jekyll wants to “tame and domesticate her”. EW EW EW EW. Why must these science boys be so gross? I want to love them. But then they say shit like that and I just can’t. I hope Lily kills the crap out of him.

Finally our ending scene also left me baffled and then over joyed, then feeling like an idiot that I didn’t see it sooner. First, we see Seward’s mousy assistant going out to shop for street girls. Which, okay that’s not that weird I suppose, but he was being super weird about it all so I was already rifling through all the serial killers I knew of from that time.

But then, the prostitute is killed and the secretary kidnapped! He’s taken to a warehouse full of vampires and I’m still confused. This one dude can not possibly enough to feed all of them.

THEN. THEN! DRACULA SHOW UP!

We don’t see him, but we hear his voice and wow, I could totally be terrified and seduced by that voice. He asks that secretaries name, and tells him that he will now spy on Vanessa for him. But who is the man, you ask?

RENFIELD. OH MY GOD.

Best season ever. Already calling it.

Article Submitted by Jenn Lueck

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