Dakota Fanning tries to stop an execution in the season premiere of The Alienist
After hunting down a child serial killer in the first season of The Alienist, the victims in the second season of the TNT series are even younger. Someone is kidnapping — and killing — babies, and Sara Howard (Dakota Fanning), John Moore (Luke Evans), and Dr. Laszlo Kreizler (Daniel Brühl) are on the case.
EW has an exclusive preview (above) from the opening minutes of the new season — formally titled The Alienist: Angel of Darkness — where Howard, who's opened her own private detective agency, and Moore, now a New York Times reporter, rush to the execution of a young mother accused of killing her baby. The problem is, the infant's body was never found, and there's zero proof she did it.
"We have to stop this!" Howard exclaims as the woman is being prepared for death-by-electrocution, and a crowd of women has gathered outside to protest the execution. "This woman is innocent. This is an outrage! An abomination!"
After being chastised for participating in the "hooliganism" along with the other women by corrupt former NYPD Commissioner Thomas Byrnes (yep, he's still around, still working in the world of crime, but in a less official capacity), she reminds him of some of Thomas Jefferson's words: "A little rebellion now and then is a good thing."
While hunting down the latest killer along with Dr. Kreizler, the titular alienist (the former title for a psychiatrist), Howard and Moore are also fighting to take down institutional corruption and inequality. The series also shines a light on the treatment of women in society and the rising suffragette movement in the United States in the late 1900s.
The Alienist: Angel of Darkness debuts Sunday with back-to-back episodes starting at 9 p.m. ET on TNT.