TV Show Review

TV Review: PENNY DREADFUL: Season 3, Episode 6: No Beast So Fierce [Showtime]

Reeve Carney Billie Piper Jessica Barden Penny Dreadful No Beast So Fierce

Penny Dreadful No Beast So Fierce Review

Showtime’s Penny Dreadful: Season 3, Episode 6: No Beast So Fierce created situations that brought characters closer together while others drove characters further apart.

Teaching prostitutes how to kill their customers was a curious tactic to teach but it has led the viewer to more scenes with Justine (Jessica Barden). Justine is the best new character on Penny Dreadful because of the internal power / rage of her character and the portrayal by the actress bringing her to life. Justine oozes hatred toward men, even to Dorian, one of her two benefactors.

Justine’s dialogue during the knife training scene dove straight into her traumas and the woman that she was because of them. No Beast So Fierce featured an empowered Justine, one who would not take orders from any man ever again, not even Dorian.

A confrontation between Dorian and Justine is brewing.

Dorian has been alive for a long time and must have grown in wisdom through trial, error, and reading. If he killed impudent Justine, he may have alienated Lily, who was growing increasing fond of the girl that was her mirror reflection. Instead, I suspect, Dorian will do something infinitely more clever. Dorian will call in his debt on Dr. Victor Frankenstein, will have Justine kidnapped, and taken to Dr. Henry Jekyll’s laboratory in the Bethlem “Bedlam” Royal Hospital. Dorian will have Frankenstein use his serum on Justine. Once Justine’s traumatic memories have been erased, she will be a completely different person. She will be as normal and as docile as any other man or woman during that time period.

After Justine has been rendered normal, she will be completely useless to Lily. Dorian will fain ignorance. Dorian will not even be blamed, accused, or suspected. Lily will blame Victor and Victor only. She will never suspect Dorian had any part in the “taming” of Justine.

When the Lion in Justine is extinguished, she will not be suitable for Lily And Dorian’s master plan. Dorian will use his vast, accumulated wealth to send Justine away to boarding school then to university. He will set up an account for her. She will want for nothing. Lily will have a tearful goodbye with Justine, wishing her well, happy that Justine is no longer burden by her terrible past but sad that her chief retainer and sister-in-degradation is gone for good.

Justine’s ‘treatment’ and ‘recovery’ will also show Lily the validity of Frankenstein’s claims about his newly discovered serum. The new Justine will be a walking, talking testimonial to its effectiveness: happy, beaming with light, and smiling with her whole life in front of her. After seeing that, Lily may reconsider Dr. Frankenstein’s offer, a side effect that Dorian will not have considered.

Dr. Victor Frankenstein (Harry Treadaway)’s Lily kidnapping scheme was as nonsensical and unplanned as his due diligence and research was after one of his experiments had been successfully completed.

The Creature (Rory Kinnear)’s confrontation with reality regarding his family was inevitable. The acting between father and son in the scene was effective, both emoting what needed to be seen by the viewer. What the boy saw when he opened his eyes was monstrous and terrifying, a twisted image of what his father had been in his former incarnation.

His recollection of what he saw will be written off by his mother as a nightmare, not real, it never happened.

The Creature realized in No Beast So Fierce that even though he loved them, he could never have his family back. His face, its damage, and his complexion would not allow it. As The Creature cried in the alleyway, he knew it as well. That didn’t mean, however, that he could not continue to provide for them as an undisclosed benefactor.

Catriona Hartdegen (Perdita Weeks)’s introduction into the series was not the most memorable. That title belongs to Justine, second only to The Creature’s intro. That being said, Catriona’s intro may have been the most entertaining, revealing a character whose dark pursuits match Vanessa Ives.

Regarding dark matches, Vanessa Ives (Eva Green) ‘letting in’ Dr. Alexander Sweet / Dracula (Christian Camargo) was bittersweet. Seeing Vanessa making herself vulnerable again, crying in happiness, and opening herself up to love again was wonderful to see but it was to absolutely the worst creature on the planet. Dracula is far more clever than his vanquished brother was during his ‘courtship.’ Instead of creating trepidation and fear in Vanessa, Dracula has created love.

The most entertaining and humorous section of No Beast So Fierce was the dinner scene at the Talbot ranch.

The prayer at the dinner table that Ethan Talbot (Josh Hartnett) gave was something Hecate would have given. It was like Hecate was speaking through Ethan’s mouth. At that moment, the two of them were closer than they had ever been. At the end of the prayer, when Hecate gave a quick quip (a harbinger of things to come for humanity), completely in sync with Ethan, what happened next was truly hilarious. Someone at the dinner table got killed and Hecate and Ethan began eating as though nothing had happened, cutting into their steaks, and chewing, both enjoying their meal. It was the laugh-out-loud moment of the episode, a rarity for a series that takes itself so seriously.

The brief back and forth between Ethan and Hecate Poole (Sarah Greene) during the prayer was like the back and forth between Magneto and Mystique in X-Men 2 i.e. an ‘inside’ conversation between themselves held out in the open that everyone could hear.

When a certain character died on top of the dinner table, the viewer was sad. Seeing what this character did for another character, what this person brought out in the other, the viewer was looking forward to seeing that continue, to seeing that relationship continue. The viewer wanted to see where that went but can take solace in the fact that a relationship (between the two of them) did happen for a brief moment.

Sir Malcolm Murray (Timothy Dalton) tried to teach temperance to Jared Talbot (Brian Cox), for the benefit of Ethan and Jared’s relationship, like Oscar Schindler tried with Commandant Amon Goeth. By the end of No Beast So Fierce, Mr. Talbot had reverted back to his old ways (like The Commandant) but Ethan had proved that he was not the monster many had assumed that he had become.

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About the author

Rollo Tomasi

A Political Science and MBA grad who started FilmBook during an eCommerce B-School course in 2008. Cinema and TV addict. Former writer at Empire Movies, Blogcritics, and Alternative Film Guide. In addition to writing for FilmBook, he also edits the copy published on the website, manages its writing staff, manages the back-end operations, site finances, its social network accounts, and works with publicists, actors, and companies on press coverage and promotions. He has also created and Trending

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