Penny Dreadful
"Penny Dreadful" returns at 10/9c May 1 on Showtime.

Josh Hartnett strips for ‘Penny Dreadful’ poster

With Season 3 of “Penny Dreadful” set to debut May 1, Showtime has released new poster art showing what appears to be a nude Josh Hartnett posed to look like a skull.

The series, which is created, written and executive produced by John Logan, mashes up horror genre creatures and characters with brand new characters. Hartnett plays Ethan Chandler, the American cowboy who fans know is a werewolf in the psychological horror drama. The upcoming season promises to reveal more about that part of his life, as a new official trailer suggests.

The trailer tells fans to “Embrace your dark side.” It shows Ethan breaking chains and turning into a werewolf. “I’m made for the dark,” he says. It’s one of many quotes from key characters in the trailer.

Josh Hartnett
“Penny Dreadful” returns at 10/9c May 1 on Showtime.

Sir Malcolm Murray (Timothy Dalton), one of Ethan’s partners in supernatural investigations, is shown in Ethan’s old stomping grounds of the American west. He presumably will meet a new character there, Kaetenay (Wes Studi), a Native American who knows Ethan.

I didn’t see Dr. Seward, another new character who will be played by Patti LuPone in a different role than the Cut-Wife, which she played last season. Dr. Seward, an American therapist, will treat troubled Vanessa Ives (Eva Green) with an unconventional new approach.

“I have been touched by Satan,” Vanessa says in the clip, and later, “If we’re to continue, you must know how dangerous this is.”

I’m not sure if she’s talking to Dr. Seward or the powder-faced young man—possibly Dr. Seward’s young secretary (played by Sam Barnett)—who nuzzles her neck. Or someone completely different.

Whoever it is, Vanessa’s going to be as interesting as ever. Let’s hope that new therapy works, Dr. Seward!

And if it does, maybe she should treat Lily (Billie Piper) and Dorian Gray (Reeve Carney), who it seems will be hosting a lot of parties that end in mass murder. Jessica Barden joins the cast as Justine, a young woman who will assist Lily in her villainous new ventures.

Frankenstein’s Creature (Rory Kinnear) also finds a new companion, although it’s not clear who the woman is in the promo. One thing is clear, Dr. Victor Frankenstein (Harry Treadaway) is not in bed with them. We do see him in a lab, either his or someone else’s.

The trailer shows bunch of creepy creatures breaking into the mansion and dozens of men swarming a body in the streets. Either group could be Hecate’s minions, because the witch (Sarah Greene) will be back this season along with Dr. Ferdinand Lyle (Simon Russell Beale), the scholar she and her mother manipulated last season.

Other new cast members include Shazad Latif as Robert Louis Stevenson’s Dr. Henry Jekyll; Christian Camargo as Dr. Alexander Sweet, a zoologist who strikes up an unlikely friendship with Vanessa; and Perdita Weeks as Catriona Hartdegan, a scholar with expert knowledge of the supernatural.

My guess is that either Sweet the zoologist utters the trailer’s scariest quote: “All the broken and shunned creatures—someone’s got to care for them. Who shall it be if not us?”

Masquer’s haunting cover of “You Don’t Own Me” accompanies the trailer, with lyrics such as “I’m not just one of your many toys” and “Don’t try to change me in any way” and “Don’t tie me down ’cause I’d never stay.”

Pair those lyrics and Sweet’s quote and we might have a good idea of what’s coming up in Season 3. No one truly wants to care for the creatures; only they can care for themselves.

The third season of “Penny Dreadful” will premiere at 10/9c May on Showtime.