I felt sorry for episode 4 of Penny Dreadful. It was very good but Episode 3, ‘The Cut Wife’ set the bar so high for the rest of the season. I still can’t get over the acting triumvirate that was Eva Green, Patti Lupone and Helen McCrory. – that face off with Vanessa Ives, Joan Clayton and Madame Kali was amazing!

Okay, back to episode 4! Vanessa and company continued discussing the evil that may be after her. Dorian Gray (Reeve Carney) took a stunning Angelique (Jonny Beauchamp) to play Gossima tennis (later in history to be become ping pong). Now we know that Angelique is a trans-woman which can’t be easy for the gal in Victorian London, it ain’t even easy now. Dorian could care less, he is enthralled by Angelique. You can see it in Dorian’s dreamy eyes which made it all the more fun when she destroyed him at ping pong.

Victor asked Vanessa to help shop for his “cousin” which made for a nice respite of fun from the intense storyline. Vanessa loosened up and even laughed. Victor went home and gave his new creation (and crush) Lily (Billie Piper) the clothes. She put them on and basically said, in Victorian terms, ‘How do women wear this shit?’ Pretty soon I imagine, this storyline will be crazy when Victor’s other creation, the creature-come-John Clare (Rory Kinnear), finds out about Victor’s feelings for Lily. Oh dear.

Ethan (Josh Hartnett) was almost fooled by Madame Kali’s witch daughter, Hecate (Sarah Greene) when she tried to pretend she was a helpless American girl in the big streets of London but he saw right through that.

Then some super scary stuff happened. Madame Kali’s three witches sneak into Sir Malcolm’s (Timothy Dalton) mansion and camouflage themselves against the walls with their branded bald bodies – super creepy, super eerie – then they basically beat up every single person. Hard. Vanessa starts incanting words which scare them off but not before one grabs Vanessa’s hair to help Kali out with her voodoo doll. If you were able to breath during that entire last sequence then you are a brave brave soul.

On the next episode, it looks like it’s lock down time at the Malcolm Mansion. The evil-fight gang will have to protect themselves from another attack with “every weapon at our disposal, every superstition, every ritual, we can’t let ourselves be infiltrated.”

Here’s the official synopsis.

Hecate returns to her mother with a gift; Evelyn works on a new totem; the mansion is attacked; the Creature grows impatient with Frankenstein; Rusk interrogates Ethan; Vanessa and the Creature’s friendship deepens; Angelique is humiliated while out with Dorian.

Penny Dreadful is on Sundays on Showtime.

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Audrey Kearns