Critical Condition: Penny Dreadful

Penny Dreadful returns for its third season tonight (SoHo, 8.30) on a creepy double-bill with Bates Motel, which reverts to weekly hour-long instalments from 9.30.

“Everything you’ve missed about Penny Dreadful — Eva Green, taxidermy, characters who say things like, ‘This whole country is built on skeletons. One would like a cup of tea, though’ — is back,” said Entertainment Weekly:

“In the wake of a season 2 finale that scattered its main players across the globe, the gothic drama returns with a few new tricks up its sleeve, but it expands to cover new territory without losing its old sensibilities.”

TV Guide observed all the old gang was back, some in new guises:

“Elegant, erotic, poetic and spooky, this Victorian horror thriller opens its third season with many of its tormented characters confronting their inner monsters — in particular Vanessa Ives (the marvelous Eva Green) who consults an ‘alienist’— the pre-Freudian term for a shrink — played by the formidable Patti LuPone, in a far different role from last year’s show-stopping Cut-Wife witch.”

According to The AV Club:

“Writer John Logan and director Damon Thomas have vastly expanded the show’s scope, and what was already a lavish production is taken to new heights. What was once pure Gothic horror adds elements of the Western to its palette, and the narrative moves fluidly from London to Africa to the New Mexico Territory and the frozen Arctic as it catches up with (most of) our regular characters and introduces a few new ones.”

The Boston Herald welcomed the bright oranges and yellows of the Old West after the washed-out blues and grays of Old London:

“Oh, there is action here. Next week Dorian Gray (Reeve Carney) and Lily attend a depraved gathering but turn its intent back on its guests. If only there was more urgency, a sense that something of value was at stake. All these delightful creatures of nightmare, is it too much to ask that they raise a little bloody hell?”

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3 Responses to “Critical Condition: Penny Dreadful”

  1. Really looking forward to watching this season of Penny Dreadful.

  2. Me, too, Mark. The premiere was terrific and pairing it with Bates Motel was a programming masterstroke.

  3. OK, TV One has given up on The Chase, so let’s move this game show over to TV2 and see what they can do. They may do way better.

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