ByAlisha Grauso, writer at
Editor-at-large here at Movie Pilot. Nerd out with me on Twitter, comrades: @alishagrauso
Alisha Grauso

I'm going to let you guys in on a little secret...lean in a little closer...



I'm not really much of a TV person.

I know, I know. "But Alisha, you're the Editor-in-Chief, shouldn't you be ON TOP of that?!" But, truth be told, it's just really hard for me to truly get into shows. It takes so long for stories to develop now, and while I realize there are a vast number of great series out there, they are a time investment that I just don't have. So I pick a few treasured series and then I watch the hell out of them.

Showtime's [Penny Dreadful](series:817319) is definitely one of them, and I'm counting down the days until Season 2. The first promo image has just been released and it's an interesting one to choose for the first image that audiences see.

Well, well, this teasing a potential romance between Ethan Chandler and Vanessa Ives that will blossom in Season 2? It might be...but it might not. Should we speculate? Yeah, let's speculate!

Warning: Mild spoilers ahead, so if you haven't already watched the first season, I suggest turning back now!

Romance WILL happen

All throughout Season 1, Sir Malcolm regularly treated Vanessa horribly, seeing her not as a human being suffering under a terrible burden of being possessed, but as a means to an end, regardless of whether or not it killed her. Dr. Frankenstein was too wrapped up in his own issues to really give much of a damn about anyone else (though he was horrified when Vanessa went full demon on them). Dorian Gray treated her kindly, but was more of a peripheral figure in the first season. It was only Chandler who ever seemed to truly care about her as a woman and person, putting himself in harm's way to save her at her lowest point, and regularly clashing with Malcolm about his treatment of her.


The blossoming attraction of the first season was definitely between Dorian and Vanessa, and deep love between Ethan and Brona Croft. But by the end of Season 1, Vanessa had pulled well away from Dorian as she realized he stirred up primal feelings that were dangerous for her, and Brona — at least for now — is no longer among the living. Essentially, the path is clear for Ethan and Vanessa to now explore a romantic relationship.

Romance WILL NOT happen

But Brona was not just a whore that Ethan was sleeping with - he truly loved her, and she him, and from what we've seen of Ethan, he's the sort of man who doesn't give his heart freely or often, so when he does, he means it. When she died at the end of Season 1, he was a broken man. That's not the sort of thing a character, particularly one as loyal as Ethan, just gets over easily or quickly.

Plus, it had always felt to me as if the feelings Ethan had for Vanessa were less romantic, and more of a protector-figure type. He recognizes Vanessa's fragility beneath her strength, and she respects his loyalty and bravery. But it feels like far less a sexual type of attraction and more a platonic friendship built upon mutual respect and care. He saved her life, but her feelings for him because of that revolved around the fact he was the first person to be unselfish and decent, who stepped up to do the right thing when everyone else was too weak and terrified to do what must be done.They're both people with dark secrets, but in a way, they are the most pure of their dysfunctional group, and that is something they mutually recognize in one another and gravitate toward.

What do you think? Will we see their friendship turn into love? Or will they simply continue to be one another's platonic ports in a storm?

We won't find out for another handful of months, so you have plenty of time to work on your shipping fanfic. Get on that, Tumblr.


Would you want to see Ethan and Vanessa start a relationship?


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