Penny Dreadful finale: 7 unanswered questions
Like Dracula’s army of vampires, Penny Dreadful backed into the shadows on Sunday night with a season 3 finale that doubled as the series’ end.
Series creator John Logan tells EW that his plan to wrap up the gothic drama has been in the works since “midway through the second season,” meaning that its final chapter played out exactly as he wanted it to: Vanessa (Eva Green) sacrificed herself to save the world, enlisting Ethan (Josh Hartnett) to pull the trigger. She’s at peace. But are we? The finale gave some of its key players more closure than others; in their honor, here are seven questions we still have after Penny Dreadful’s final hour.
What’s next for Lily?
It doesn’t take Vanessa’s gift for Tarot reading to see what’s in the cards for many of Penny Dreadful’s characters: Ethan and Sir Malcolm (Timothy Dalton) forge a new family together, Victor (Harry Treadaway) goes back to treating patients who’ve never died, the Creature (Rory Kinnear) disappears to the countryside with his books, and Dorian (Reeve Carney) carries on his hedonistic lifestyle with a new batch of beautiful and disposable friends. But Lily (Billie Piper), whose “great enterprise” is suddenly extinguished, is still learning how to walk the line between her human pain and her inhuman lifespan. She could go anywhere from here. Will she lend a hand to the suffragette movement? Champion the rights of Victorian sex workers? Find the one man who showed her kindness in life? We’re still pulling for a Lily-Ethan reunion.
When will Victor’s friends find out that he brought people back from the dead?
Feels like that would put a crimp in a few relationships.
Can anyone stop Dracula?
His swarm of followers perished in the finale’s climactic battle, but this season’s Big Bad lives on to — what? Go back to taxidermy until he meets the next woman who could bring about the apocalypse? Someone needs to shoot that guy.
How did Seward get away with murder?
Patti LuPone’s tough-talking alienist was a welcome addition to Penny Dreadful’s third season, an anchor to both Vanessa and the show. Dr. Seward was as comfortable drinking whiskey with her patient by the fire as she was using choice four-letter words on Dracula, because she’d already lived through something worse: She killed her abusive husband with a cleaver. How did Seward stand trial for the murder (in New York!) and get away with it? Miniseries, anyone? We won’t complain if it’s musical.
What is Cat’s deal?
Catriona Hartdegan (Perdita Weeks), a fencing thanatologist with a cool head, basic medical knowledge, expert fighting skills, and chemistry with absolutely everyone, rolled onto the scene with only four episodes to go. Why was our time with her so short? Cat is a cipher we’d have loved more time to crack.
Why were all of the forces of darkness converging on Vanessa?
The devil and his brother were so sweet on Vanessa that they waged war on the world in order to possess her soul. It makes sense: She was religiously devout but troubled by urges that had no place in Victorian society, and her supernatural abilities hinted at a connection to the Egyptian gods. But was there anything more behind her role as the fallen angels’ prophesied bride? What gave Vanessa the power to bring about the end of days?
Why didn’t Ethan and Vanessa get more time together?
Josh Hartnett and Eva Green’s chemistry, always sparking under the surface, proved electric in the one episode that let it burn: season 2’s “Little Scorpion,” which sent Ethan and Vanessa to a cottage on the moors. As fittingly tragic as the pair’s doomed relationship might be, we’ll never be over the fact that Penny Dreadful never gave Ethan any more opportunities to literally sweep Vanessa off her feet. (Rain optional, but encouraged.)