Penny Dreadful vol 1 is a precursor to the first season of the tv show. A full size graphic novel, or comic book, it sits at 128 pages, though the last few are just character studies and information about the effects and make up on the show, this was really fun to see and didn’t take away from the reading experience at all.
Now I’ve not watched all the show, I’m still only a few episodes away from finishing the first season, so I was really glad that this is not a continuation. I was really worried I’d end up with spoilers for how the show ended and I didn’t get that. Instead I got a bit of backstory on Sembene and how he and Malcom ended up together. You also get a bit more backstory into how Mina was taken by the Master (this is weird to sue and not be talking Doctor Who) and the first attempts of Malcom and Vanessa getting her back.
I thought it was really cool to be introduced to Jonathan Harker and his friends who seemed a tad nonplussed by the vampires living in his house. The story that Harker tells Vanessa and Malcom speaks quite distinctly to Dracula but he is never named that, which I kinda love. It adds to the idea of the shared universe of these characters we all know and love, and how they all work really well together.
The story itself, I don’t want to give too much away about. It was really well written, unbelievably well illustrated, and did the job it was meant to do. Draw me back into wanting to finish the tv series. Also, as a last note, I loved hearing that there was a prophecy about Ethan Chandler. I don’t know if it ever got brought up in the show, but it’s mentioned a few times in the comic and it really clicked for me, so I was glad to see it.
Penny Dreadful Vol 1 is available now.