Listen: If you have Nathan Lane as a hardboiled detective in a period-appropriate mustache saying “Welcome to homicide” while looking at a gruesome murder scene, I’m going to watch your show. And the first trailer for Penny Dreadful: City of Angels boasts this delightfully grimy image and much, much more. Even if you haven’t watched the original Penny Dreadful, the dearly departed Showtime genre series starring Josh Hartnett, Eva Green, and Timothy Dalton, you’ll find stuff to enjoy in this spinoff, as it tells a brand new, self-contained story.
Daniel Zovatto stars as a new detective on the Los Angeles homicide beat in 1938. When he and Lane are assigned a gruesome murder case, they bust wide open a series of horrifying circumstances that implicate many powerful folks in LA — with promises of authentic Mexican-American imagery, some shockingly gnarly depictions of violence, and yes, Nazis. The show will be directed in part by Spanish horror director Paco Cabezas, and also stars Natalie Dormer, Jessica Garza, Johnathan Nieves, Adriana Barraza, Kerry Bishé, and Rory Kinnear in a brand new role. If you’re digging the detective-cum-horror vibes of HBO’s The Outsider but wish it had more of a classic noir vibe, Penny Dreadful: City of Angels is just what the doctor ordered. Plus, it’s awesome to see horror on television that comes from a non-white perspective, boasting Latinx inclusion and representation. If the show is as good as this trailer promises, this will be my new appointment TV.
Check out the trailer and synopsis for Penny Dreadful: City of Angels below. The show airs on Showtime April 26. For more spooky TV stuff, here’s our review for The Outsider. Plus, our fave horror shows of the 21st century thus far.
A spiritual descendant of the original Penny Dreadful story set in Victorian-era London, Penny Dreadful: City of Angels opens in 1938 Los Angeles, a time and place deeply infused with social and political tension. When a grisly murder shocks the city, Detective Tiago Vega (Daniel Zovatto) and his partner Lewis Michener (Nathan Lane) become embroiled in an epic story that reflects the rich history of Los Angeles: from the building of the city’s first freeways and its deep traditions of Mexican-American folklore, to the dangerous espionage actions of the Third Reich and the rise of radio evangelism. Before long, Tiago and his family are grappling with powerful forces that threaten to tear them apart.