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Penny Dreadful “Glorious Horrors” 

Photo Credit: Jonathan Hession/SHOWTIME
Photo Credit: Jonathan Hession/SHOWTIME

Is it weird that I like Rusk? Like, really like him? He’s a serious threat to Ethan, but I feel like his interest in what happened at the Mariner’s Inn and whatever he thinks about Ethan’s role in that massacre, it makes Ethan all the more motivated to remember what did happen. Of course, it doesn’t help that Roper has shown himself and threatened everyone under Sir Malcolm’s roof. Or maybe it does, because those two threats are what spur Ethan to ask for Sembene’s help.

Ethan’s transformation into a wolfman is no surprise — to us. We’ve already seen Ethan turn, but I didn’t realize it was so closely tied to a full moon. Or maybe I did, but didn’t give it much thought. I’d actually been wondering why Ethan didn’t turn when he and Vanessa were attacked by the Nightcomers. I thought maybe Ethan turning was part of a defense mechanism against a perceived threat. Although, thinking back to the massacre in the first season, that can’t be true. Those people did nothing to Ethan, so they must have just been collateral damage. So the fact that a full moon coincided with Ethan’s run-in with the Pinkerton’s men at the Mariner’s Inn is just serendipitous — for Ethan; not for all the men who were killed that night.

I wonder when we’re going to learn more about what made Ethan this way. Is this why his father is so desperate to have Ethan return home? Is this why Ethan is so reluctant to go? Clearly ignoring the problem isn’t making it go away, but I do like that Ethan is realizing he needs to learn more about whatever is going on and I love that he asked Sembene for help.

Because of that, Vanessa’s invitation to Angelique’s coming out is rejected. I like the relationship between Vanessa and Ethan and I like that they’re both cautious. Both have recently been burned by love and I think it’s wise that they’re taking things slowly. I do, however, like that Vanessa arrives at the ball without an escort. Even if she knows the rules of polite society, she does what she wants. And I like that she and Dorian are still friends. Is that even the right word? Whatever they are, I like it when they interact and I’ve been waiting for Dorian to be drawn back into the main storyline.

Photo Credit: Jonathan Hession/SHOWTIME
Photo Credit: Jonathan Hession/SHOWTIME

When Vanessa picks up on the tension in their little group, she does what she can to smooth is over. But the problem is that Dorian and Lily feel like they may have known each other “in another life.” I was wondering if Lily would start remembering anything from her life as Brona. As we know, she’s been in that room. In fact, she’s had sex with Dorian and there’s photographic proof of that somewhere in Dorian’s house. Lily might look different, but I like that they both still felt a connection, an attraction. And it wasn’t hard to see how their interactions affected both Victor and Angelique.

The only person who seems to genuinely be having fun at the ball is Sir Malcolm, but that’s only because he’s fallen so deeply under Mrs. Poole’s spell. He treats his wife’s suicide as an inconvenience and he shaves his beard off. Ethan isn’t concerned about Sir Malcolm’s behavior, but Vanessa and Sembene have known him long enough to know his behavior is off. They’ve both watched him lose family and he’s never been like this. And we know Evelyn has made a Sir Malcolm fetish. So whatever plans she and the rest of the witches have for Vanessa, they seem to include killing him.


  • When will The Creature realize Lily loves Victor and that he has no chance with her? Will he punish his creator?
  • Will Victor do something to put a stop to Vanessa’s burgeoning friendship with Mr. Clare?
  • How will Sembene help Ethan reconcile himself with what he is? When and how will Ethan tell everyone else?
  • Why did the witches give Vanessa that horrifying vision and what does it mean? It’s it merely a warning or a preview of what’s to come?
  • Will Hecate make a move against Evelyn? She seems impatient for her time to shine.
  • Will Lyle go against the witches and try to help Vanessa and the others?

Penny Dreadful airs Sundays at 10/9c on Showtime.

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