For those who tuned into Penny Dreadful‘s third season finale this past Sunday, the finale definitely gave the impression that the show was wrapping up every storyline to the best of its ability. The finale delivered viewers the end of every major character’s storyline to some extent without giving much room to be left with the feeling that there was still more to come.
As it turns out, there was a very good reason the finale gave viewers that impression. As it turns out, Penny Dreadful is not coming back for a fourth season. Showtime CEO David Nevins and series creator John Logan both confirmed that Sunday night’s finale was indeed the series finale.
Before you go thinking that it was canned or axe in anyway, that is not the case with the goth-drama that has viewers enthralled since day one. The decision to end the show after its third season was already in the works since the show’s inception.
“I always knew it wasn’t going to be a really long-running show — John made that clear coming in. As he was laying out what he wanted to do this season, John came in and said, “This needs to be the end of Vanessa Ives. I know exactly how I want to end it. And when Vanessa Ives, when that character, is done, I think the show is done.” And I went through the usual stages of grief, of, “No, there’s lots of other great characters. You can keep going.” But eventually he persuaded me that that’s not the smart way to handle it, and that different shows have different rhythms and fit in different boxes, and that this was the right rhythm and the right box and the right ending. I told him, “You have to promise me that you’re going to make an incredibly satisfying ending.” And I think he really has,” revealed Nevins to EW.
As for Logan, he laid out the plan for Penny Dreadful all along and how the finale was shaped. “I knew well before David did, which is sort of midway through the second season, so two years ago. I was planning out the third season. Penny Dreadful is about many things, but for me it’s always been about one really simple thing, which is a woman’s journey of faith — a deeply religious woman who loses her God and then finds him again. I realized that’s where the third season was going to head. It was going to head to Vanessa sacrificing herself and reuniting with God. And that had to be the apotheosis for the character, the end of the character. I really thought about it deeply, because I love these characters so much, and I care about them so much, but it seemed that’s what had to happen. Anything other than that would be, for me, an act of bad faith, and the last thing I’d ever want to do is treat Vanessa Ives or Eva Green with anything less than completely good conscience and good faith. So I had the discussion with Eva, and then finally it just became apparent. I talked to David about it, and here we are.”
With the end of Vanessa Ives, it is only fitting that show end as her character was the driving force behind everything. Penny Dreadful was a rare show indeed, and it will be missed very much.
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