Capitalizing on the current popularity of American Horror Story, Showtime has decided to resurrect some classic horror characters and put them all together in a hodge-podge of sex, violence and Eva Green. The result is the new horror series Penny Dreadful, for which we now have the first proper trailer.
Showtime’s press release for Penny Dreadful calls the show a “frightening psychological thriller” that brings together iconic (and public domain) characters such as Dr. Frankenstein, Dorian Grey and characters from Dracula, tossing them all into a Victorian London underworld. Seeing as this is Showtime, bloodletting and orgies ensue. It’s an intriguing premise, to be sure; the show sounds something like a horror version of The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, or perhaps a more brutal version of some of the mash-up steampunk/horror novels so popular a few years ago, like Pride and Prejudice and Zombies or Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter.
Unfortunately, this latest trailer makes Penny Dreadful look like a Victorian rip-off of American Horror Story, with all the blood and guts and scantily clad ladies we’ve come to expect from “cutting edge” television. How many times are we going to see a guy bending his body into unnatural shapes, or ugly vampires emerging from dark corners? How many overhead shots of people having sex will we see before we stop caring? Yes, there’s blood and sex and insects crawling on things, but what’s so scary about that? Give me something new, Hollywood. Please.
On the plus side, Penny Dreadful does offer star Eva Green being cryptic, always a fun prospect. The show is being produced by Sam Mendes (Skyfall), whose presence could mean that the trailer is not quite doing justice to the actual show. As of right now, however, I am only mildly interested in what this show will offer.
You can check out the trailer for Penny Dreadful below and let us know what you think in the comments. Will you be tuning into Showtime at 1o pm on May 11?