Penny Dreadful, Showtime’s perennially underrated gothic drama, is a rare series that just keeps getting better. Many shows come out of the gate with a great idea but can’t sustain it, but some of TV’s best dramas are ones that are able to keep building on themselves, creating deeper and ever more satisfying narratives, surprising viewers with each turn. Penny Dreadful is absolutely one of those, with Season 2 managing to improve on an already great Season 1. But with a new trailer for the upcoming third season, it looks like the show is again hoping to make a leap into even darker and more complicated storytelling.
Last season ended with the gang — Vanessa Ives (Eva Green), Ethan Chandler (Josh Hartnett), Dorian Gray (Reeve Carney), Sir Malcolm (Timothy Dalton), Brona/Lily (Billie Piper), Victor (Harry Treadaway) and the Creature/Caliban (Rory Kinnear) — all spiraling away from one another, literally across the globe. Season 3 will have to find a plausible way to reunite them, but the trailer also looks like it will be taking us to find them in America and elsewhere, first. Check it out below:
Set to Lesley Gore’s early 60s hit “You Don’t Own Me,” the characters tease bits and pieces to us: “I’ve conquered death,” “You think you know sin? I wrote the bloody book,” “I was in blood every step,” and so forth. None of these thing are news, but what Penny Dreadful is exceptional at doing is taking the expected — like these known characters from Victorian literature — and subverting or creating new aspects to them we couldn’t have predicted.
To that end, the voiceovers are united with striking visual images of Vanessa bathing in blood, the seemingly undead packed on top of one another and pressing through glass windows, and more. The show also cruelly suggests scenes where Vanessa and Ethan are reunited, but only as dreams. And then there’s the Creature … having sex? There seems to be more to explore in the show’s twisted world than ever (I just really hope that wasn’t the true end of Danny Sapani’s Sembene, because he was a character we were only just beginning to know).
“All the broken and shunned creatures, someone has to care for them. Who shall it be if not us?” We know Sir Malcolm’s Halfway House for Wayward Supernaturals will always be open for them, and soon, it will for us as well.
Penny Dreadful Season 3 debuts Sunday, May 1st at 9 p.m. on Showtime. For a full list of 2016’s premiere dates, check out our handy calendar.
And here’s the full synopsis for the upcoming season:
This season on PENNY DREADFUL, Tony® Award-winning star Patti LuPone (American Horror Story), who guest starred last season as the Cut-Wife, returns as a series regular in the new role of Dr. Seward, an American therapist who treats Vanessa (Eva Green) with an unconventional new approach. Wes Studi (Hell On Wheels) joins as a series regular as Kaetenay, an intense, enigmatic Native American with a deep connection to Ethan (Josh Hartnett) who also becomes an ally to Sir Malcolm (Timothy Dalton). The third season also adds Robert Louis Stevenson’s Dr. Henry Jekyll (Shazad Latif). Other guest stars include Screen Actors Guild® Award nominee Christian Camargo (DEXTER®, The Hurt Locker) as Dr. Alexander Sweet, a zoologist who strikes up an unlikely friendship with Vanessa; Sam Barnett (2012, Jupiter Ascending) as Dr. Seward’s mysterious young secretary; and Jessica Barden (The Outcast, Far from the Madding Crowd) as Justine, a young acolyte to Lily (Billie Piper) and Dorian Gray (Reeve Carney), and Perdita Weeks (THE TUDORS), as Catriona Hartdegan, a scholar with expert knowledge of the supernatural. Simon Russell Beale returns as Dr. Ferdinand Lyle. Rory Kinnear (as The Creature) and Harry Treadaway (as Dr. Frankenstein) also star.