‘Penny Dreadful’ season 2, episode 8 review: The curse of Dorian Gray

Penny DreadfulWe are amazed in many ways that Dorian Gray has not been used even more frequently in pop culture than he has, mostly because of the fact that this is one of literature’s most interesting, complicated characters. Does he perhaps want others to know his true self? It is possible, but for one reason or another there is something continually holding him back, and that is something he has not been able to reconcile. It’s almost a powerful, or a refusal to let someone glare into the other side … especially in the “Penny Dreadful” universe.

Tonight, this urge took hold as Angelique fell to the floor, with Dorian’s own image become almost that of an old, feral animal casting ire upon him for his actions. She seemed at least willing to give him a chance after discovering his secret, but unfortunately for her, he seemed less than willing to accept any terms other than to act quickly and harshly. This to us marks one of the biggest scenes of the episode, and that is saying a good bit given what we have elsewhere.

Should we spend a lot of time discussing Lily and the Creature? We really could, but we feel like many of their scenes tonight truly speak for herself. We talked about some of her carnal, violent side last week, and by joining with the Creature tonight and forging a new plan of darkness, these two should be important figures to watch over the final episodes.

Vanessa, meanwhile, may be preoccupied somewhat by trying to figure out how to retrieve Sir Malcolm now from the clutches of Evelyn, who is turning him almost into a walking marionette and trapping him at this point.

As we get near the end of this season, “Penny Dreadful” is starting to become more and more intense. Victor’s creations are reaching terrible potential, Dorian’s convoluted sense of self is leaving behind bodies, and we’ve got a lot to tie together in the final two episodes. Grade: A-.

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