Caliban is a main male character in Showtime TV show Penny Dreadful. He is played by actor Rory Kinnear.



Caliban, or The Creature as he is often called, is the first humanoid monster created by Dr. Victor Frankenstein. His unusual birth left him tortured and anguished, leaving him a lonely and misunderstood outcast. For his pain, he furious with his “father”.


Caliban’s Episode Appearances

  • Episode 1 – no appearance
  • Episode 2 -Caliban brutally kills Proteus by tearing him apart. He then tells Frankenstein that his “first born” has returned.
  • Episode 3 – We see Caliban’s “birth” and abandonment by Victor. After Victor left him for dead, Caliban lived on the streets of London. He was regularly beaten and abused because of his disfigurements. Eventually, an old actor took pity on The Creature, and brought him to a theater where he could work as a stage hand. It was there he got the name “Caliban”. Caliban explains that he has returned to Victor because he wants Victor to create a bride for him.
  • Episode 4 – Caliban waits for Victor outside Van Helsing’s office and threatens to hurt him is Victor does not make him a bride. Later that night he works as a stage hand for the play that Vanessa, Dorian, Ethan, and Brona go to see.
  • Episode 5 – No Appearance
  • Episode 6 – Caliban kills Van Helsing and threatens Victor.
  • Episode 7 – Caliban stalks Sir Malcolm’s house.



Meet The Cast of Penny Dreadful


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Eva Green as Vanessa Ives:

The character, Vanessa Ives is played by French actress, Eva Green. Eva Green began her career on stage, starring in Jalousie en Trois Fax in 2001. In 2003, she began her film career with the provocative movie, ‘The Dreamers’. From there, Eva starred in many different movies such as ‘Kingdom of Heaven’, ‘Casino Royale’, ‘Dark Shadows’, and many more. Most recently, she has taken on the character of Vanessa Ives in the hit Showtime series ‘Penny Dreadful’.

Josh Hartnett as Ethan Chandler:

The lead male character in the series, Ethan Chandler is played by Josh Hartnett. Hartnett began his career in 1998, with a role in ‘Debutante’. He has been in a number of films since then such as, ‘Pearl Harbor’, ‘Black Hawk Down’, ‘Lucky Number Slevin’, ’30 Days of Night’ and many more.

Timothy Dalton as Sir Malcolm Murray:

Sir Malcolm Murray is another main character in the series, who is played by Timothy Dalton. Dalton began acting in 1968, and has been starring in Movies and TV series since. He took on the role as James Bond in ‘The Living Daylights’ in 1987. After his James Bond stint, he appeared in many other movies, including ‘The Rocketeer’, ‘The Informant’, ‘Cleopatra’ and many others.

Reeve Carney as Dorian Gray:

Actor Reeve Carney plays the character, Dorian Gray. Carney is not only an actor but he is also a musician. He was a guitar player at B.B. King’s nightclub and has had two bands, Reeve Carney and the Revolving Band and Carney. Most recently, Carney starred in the Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark Broadway musical.

Billie Piper as Brona Croft:

Billie Piper plays Brona Croft, who is one of the main female characters in the series. Piper is not only an actress, but she is also a very successful musician. At age 15, she signed a record deal in the UK and had a single debut at number one. In 2004 she began acting in films such as ‘The Calcium Kid’ and ‘Things to do Before You’re Thirty’. Billie also stars in the hit TV Series, ‘Doctor Who’.

Danny Sapani as Sembene:

The character Sembene is played by actor Danny Sapani. Sapani is an English actor, who has guest starred and starred in a number of films and TV series. He is known for his work in ‘Trance’, ‘The Oxford Murders’, and ‘Song for a Raggy Boy’.

Harry Treadaway as Dr. Victor Frankenstein:

English actor, Harry Treadaway, plays Dr. Victor Frankenstein’s character. Treadaway began his career in 2005, with the film ‘Brothers of the Head’. He has taken on many different roles in TV series and films since then. Some include roles in ‘Cape Wrath’, ‘City of Ember’, ‘The Lone Ranger’, and many more.


Sembene is a male character in Showtime TV show Penny Dreadful. He is played by actor Danny Sapani.


Sembene is the trusted confidant and friend of Sir Malcolm Murray. He has ritual scarring on his face from his time in Africa. He has the uncanny ability to look into someone’s eyes and know their secrets.

Sembene’s Episode Appearances

  • Episode 1 – We meet Sembene at Sir Malcolm’s house.
  • Episode 2 -Sembene accompanies Sir Malcolm to go meet a detective investigating the disappearance of a woman and her daughter.
  • Episode 3 – Sembene goes to the Zoo with Ethan, Sir Malcolm, and Vanessa to find the vampires who took Mina.
  • Episode 4 – Sembene accompanies Vanessa to the theater.
  • Episode 5 – Sembene tells Sir Malcolm that Vanessa is at the door. The two speak in an unrecognizable language.
  • Episode 6 – Sembene accompanies Sir Malcolm, Ethan and Victor to the vampire infested ship.
  • Episode 7 – Sembene guards Vanessa’s door while she suffers. He talks to Ethan about where he comes from.


Brona Croft

Brona Croft is a main female character in Showtime TV show Penny Dreadful. She is played by actress Billie Piper.


Brona Croft is a prostitute living and working in Victorian London with a dark and sordid past. She lives in a hotel by the Thames. Originally from Ireland, Brona’s name means “sadness” in Gaelic. She was once engaged to a man who abused her. Brona is unfortunately dying of consumption, but that does not stop her from becoming close to Ethan Chandler.

Brona’s Episode Appearances

  • Episode 1 – No appearance
  • Episode 2 – We first meet Brona drinking at a bar, where she meets and bonds with Ethan Chandler. She then does to Dorian Grey’s mansion, where he takes nude pictures of her. She starts coughing up blood, which intrigues Dorian, and the two end up having sex.
  • Episode 3 – Ethan and Brona have sex, when she tells him that she can’t afford the medicine for her illness.
  • Episode 4 –  Brona confesses to Ethan that she was once engaged to an abusive man. Trying to escape him drove her to a life of prostitution. Later that night she accompanies Ethan to the theater, where they see Dorian and Vanessa. Brona feels out of place, like she doesn’t belong in high society. She leaves the theater upset and tells Ethan she will no longer see him unless he’s paying her. She ends the episode curled up in a ball on the side of a road having a coughing fit, while all of London walks by her.
  • Episode 5 –  No appearance
  • Episode 6 – Brona is very sick. She gives Ethan a charm of St. Jude.
  • Episode 7 – No appearance.



Dorian Gray

Dorian Gray is a main male character in Showtime TV show Penny Dreadful. He is played by actor Reeve Carney.


Dorian Gray is a very wealthy young man with intoxicating beauty. He is totally reckless and usually drawn to dangerous risks. The character of Dorian Gray is based off of Oscar Wilde’s The Picture of Dorian Gray.

As the story goes, Dorian Gray was a man of such beauty that artist Basil Hallward became enamored by him. Basil made Dorian the subject of his portrait and gave it to him as a gift. When Dorian meets Basil’s friend, Lord Henry Wotton, he is fascinated by his hedonistic outlook. In the unrestrained pursuit of self-indulgence and beauty, Dorian wishes his portrait would bare the burden of aging instead of himself. He gets his wish, and as Dorian continues on his path of pure pleasure. But this life philosophy eventually leads to corruption and tragic consequences. His picture gets uglier and uglier after every indecent and wicked act. The portrait serves as a reminder of the sins that weigh upon Dorian’s soul.

Dorian’s Episode Appearances

  • Episode 1 – no appearance
  • Episode 2 – We first meet Dorian Gray when he hires Brona Croft to pose nude and for sex. He is unnaturally turned on by Brona Croft’s glaring illness. Dorian and Vanessa have a sexually charged introduction at Mr. Lyle’s party.
  • Episode 3 – no appearance
  • Episode 4 – Dorian hosts a big sex orgy party at his mansion. Afterwards he sits and stares at his changing picture in a secret room of his home. The episode ends with a sexual encounter between Dorian and Ethan Chandler.
  • Episode 5 – No Appearance
  • Episode 6 – Dorian goes on a date with Vanessa. They have a lot of fun.
  • Episode 7 – No appearance.



Ethan Chandler

Ethan Chandler is a main male character in Showtime TV show Penny Dreadful. He is played by actor Josh Hartnett.


Ethan Chandler is a charming American sharpshooter who has found himself in the dark shadows of Victorian England. He is a man of great violence and hidden depths, as it appears that he is running away from his past. For these reasons he is recruited by Vanessa Ives and Sir Malcolm Murray in their mysterious and treacherous journey.

Ethan’s Episode Appearances

  • Episode 1 – We first meet Ethan Chandler staring in a Wild West Show, where is displays remarkable sharpshooting skills. For this, he is recruited by Vanessa Ives to join herself and Sir Malcolm Murray in a dangerous quest. Later at night, Ethan joins the two as the venture into an opium den. There, they encounter and decimate several vampiric creatures thanks in large part to Ethan’s marksmanship skills. The next day, an intrigued Ethan speaks with Vanessa as he is searching for answers on what they encountered the previous night. Vanessa explains to him that those creatures have captured Sir Malcolm’s daughter. She warns him of the dangers of the quest.
  • Episode 2 – After waking up on the docks, Ethan stumbled into a bar where he meets Brona Croft. After having a drink with her, it is apparent Ethan has taken a liking to her. Ethan later finds a room and opens a letter from his father telling him to come home. The letter also states that all of his legal issues can be resolved.
  • Episode 3 – Ethan is first seen in episode 3 during a sex scene with Brona. After learning that Brona is unable to afford the medicine needed for her illness, he rejoins Sir Malcolm for work. With Sir Malcolm, Vanessa, and Sembene; Ethan journeys to a local zoo in search for clues. They encounter a group of terrifying wolves, but are put at ease when Ethan calmly communicates with them and sends them away. They later find a vampire servant named Fenton and take him back as a prisoner so that they can interrogate him for answers on Mina. However, it should be noted that Ethan strongly objects to the interrogation tactics.
  • Episode 4 – As they lay in bed together, Brona and Ethan grow closer. She explains to him about her past abusive marriage. Ethan later brings her on a date to theater, where she seems to enjoy herself. The couple later run into Vanessa and Dorian who are also at the theater. Jealous of Ethan interaction with Vanessa and embarrassed to see Dorian, Brona runs out of the theater. She berates Ethan and tells him their romance is not possible and if he wants sex from her, he will have to pay for it like everyone else. Ethan later leaves with Dorian in hopes to forget his troubles. They travel to an underground arena where people can bet on how many rats a dog can kill. Disturbed by this, Ethan leaves the scene and gets in a fight with some pretentious men. Back at Dorian’s mansion, the two drink absinthe and speak throughout the night. They then begin to make out and remove each other’s clothes.
  • Episode 5 – No appearance.
  • Episode 6 – Ethan returns home to Brona, who gives him a token of St. Jude to wear around his neck. He then accompanies Sir Malcolm and Sembene to the ship in the harbor where they fight off vampires and almost rescue Mina. He then returns to Sir Malcolm’s house, where the two have a fight. Ethan tells Sir Malcolm that he should trust Vanessa, and then leaves.
  • Episode 7 – Ethan goes to Sir Malcolm’s to help take care of Vanessa. The devil appears to Vanessa as Ethan. He ends up saving Vanessa by performing an exorcism on her, although we do not know how Ethan learned to perform an exorcism.



Sir Malcolm Murray

Sir Malcolm Murray is a main male character in Showtime TV show Penny Dreadful. He is played by actor Timothy Dalton.


Sir Malcolm Murray is an hardened African explorer who has spend most of his life on exciting quests. While his home is filled if magnificent artifacts, his constant journeys have cost him a life of family and love. With the help of Vanessa Ives, he hopes to right the wrongs of his life, including the daring rescue of his daughter, Mina, who has been mysteriously abducted.

Sir Malcolm’s Episode Appearances

  • Episode 1 – When we first meet Sir Malcolm, he is on a quest to locate his missing daughter who has mysteriously vanished. With Ethan Chandler and Vanessa Ives, they journey into an opium den, where they encounter and defeat several vampiric creatures. Investigating further, they take the body of a creature to Dr. Victor Frankenstein and discover Egyptian hieroglyphics inside the dead monster. Later, Sir Malcolm officially enlists the help of the doctor, as he feels he will be of good use to him. At home, has an encounter with his daughter. However, the reunion is short lived as Mina flashes bright red eyes and screams a horrible sound before vanishing into the air. 
  • Episode 2 – After paying Dr. Frankenstein to examine some blood, Sir Malcolm and Sembene visit an investigator who is overseeing a recent mother-daughter murder. He informs the officer, that they are going about the hunt all wrong. He tells him “you are hunting for a man. You need to start hunting for a best.” Later, with Vanessa, Sir Malcolm heads off to a party of Mr. Lyle who is an expert on all things Egypt. There, they take part in a Seance, where Vanessa becomes possessed. The spirt inside takes the form of Sir Malcolm’s daughter and berates him in front of the stunned onlookers. Then next day, Sir Malcolm brings some hieroglyphics Mr. Lyle. After reading through them, Mr. Lyle warns Sir Malcolm to stop the quest as what he is searching for is truly evil and powerful. 
  • Episode 3 – With Vanessa, Ethan, and Semben; Sir Malcolm investigates the local zoo where he has a lead on the vampires. The group discover the vampire servant named Fenton, feasting on monkeys in their den. After failing to interrogate Fenton, the group pledge to do whatever it takes to bring Mina home. At this moment, Sir Malcolm reveals that it is Vanessa who the vampire master really wants.
  • Episode 4 – In the basement, the group are in the process of performing a blood transfusion on a famished Fenton. Sir Malcolm volunteers his blood, as Ethan refuses to do so. Later, we learn that Sir Malcolm once had a son who reminded him of Dr. Frankenstein, but he dies on a exploration in Africa. Alone in the house, the doctor and Sir Malcolm discover an escaped Fenton and the apparent master vampire in Vanessa’s room. The master escapes through the window as Fenton attacks Sir Malcolm. However, Fenton killed when he is thrown onto a broken window.
  • Episode 5– We learn about the events that led to Mina being captured. When Mina and Vanessa were girls, Sir Malcolm had an affair with Vanessa’s mother. After Vanessa had sex with Mina’s fiance, Sir Malcolm forbids Vanessa from ever seeing Mina again. We learn that Sir Malcolm took his only son, Peter, to Africa, where Peter died. At the end of the episode we see Sir Malcolm form an alliance with Vanessa in order to find Mina.
  • Episode 6 – Sir Malcolm implores Vanessa to consult the tarot cards to try on find Mina. On Vanessa’s advice, Sir Malcolm, Ethan, and Sembene go to a ship in the harbor to look for Mina. The ship is from Egypt and quarantined in the harbor. Once on the ship, they find vampires and Mina, but the master escapes with Mina. Sir Malcolm returns home, discouraged.
  • Episode 7 – Sir Malcolm does his best to keep Vanessa alive, although we find out it’s because he wants her to find Mina, not because he cares about her.



Vanessa Ives

Vanessa Ives is the female lead character in the Showtime TV show Penny Dreadful. She is played by actress Eva Green.


Vanessa is a mysterious beauty with supernatural power. She appears to be psychic, clairvoyant, and a medium all in one. Although it is unclear who or what Vanessa truly is, it is clear that she is a gifted spiritual and supernatural being who battles many inner demons.

Vanessa’s Episode Appearances

  • Episode 1 – When we first meet Vanessa she is praying in front of a crucifix.  A spider crawls out from behind the crucifix and appears to possess Vanessa’s body. Later on, she recruits Ethan Chandler to help Sir Malcolm find his missing daughter Mina. She accompanies the men to look for the girl in an opium den. There the trio encounters a group of vampires. One of the vampires has taken Mina. Vanessa seems to be able to entrance the vampires. She later tells Sir Malcolm and Ethan that Mina being kidnapped is all her fault. The episode ends with Vanessa praying, this time next to an upside down crucifix with hundreds of spiders pouring out of it.
  • Episode 2 – Vanessa examines the corpse of the vampire killed in episode 1 with Sir Malcolm and Dr. Frankenstein. She later attends a party at Mr. Lyle’s house, where she meets Dorian Grey and takes part in a seance. During the seance she becomes possessed by two spirits: Sir Malcolm’s daughter and another, darker spirit. While possessed by the darker spirit Vanessa leaves the party and has sex with a stranger on the street.
  • Episode 3 – Vanessa continues to search for Mina with Sir Malcolm and Ethan. The group is chased by a pack of wolves. They find a servant of the vampire who took Mina named Fenton.
  • Episode 4 – Vanessa meets Dorian at a green house, where the two flirt and talk about flowers. Later, Fenton screams that he needs Vanessa, his “mother”. When she comes to him, he yells at her that he needs blood, so she give him a cat to eat. That night Vanessa goes to the theater with Ethan, Dorian, and Brona.
  • Episode 5 – Vanessa explains the events that led to Mina’s kidnapping. Mina and Vanessa grew up together as best friends. One night, Vanessa sees her mother and Mina’s father, Sir Malcolm, having sex. That night something changes in Vanessa. Mina and Vanessa grow up, and Mina becomes engaged to an officer. The night before their wedding, Vanessa has sex Mina’s fiance. In her despair and guilt, Vanessa becomes possessed by the devil, but her parents think she is crazy and send her to an asylum. But the asylum can’t help her, so they send her back home. While home, she meets the devil incarnate as Sir Malcolm and is seduced by him, unintentionally killing her mother. After her mother’s funeral she sees a vision Mina on the beach, where Mina tells her she’s been taken by the Master. Vanessa goes to Sir Malcolm’s house in London, where the two reluctantly agree to work together to find Mina.
  • Episode 6 Vanessa reads the tarot cards and determines that they might find Mina on a boat in the harbor. She then goes on a date with Dorian Grey and ends up at his mansion. Things get hot and heavy quickly. Vanessa hears the devil while she is with Dorian. She flees his mansion and heads to Sir Malcolm’s. Once there, she begins levitating.
  • Episode 7 Vanessa spends the entire episode posessed by the devil. Her friends vow to try to keep her alive. She fights for her life, but ends up being saved when Ethan Chandler performs an exorcism on her. She wakes up from her possession knowing where Mina is.



Victor Frankenstein

Dr. Victor Frankenstein is a main male character in Showtime TV show Penny Dreadful. He is played by actor Harry Treadaway.


Victor Frankenstein is a medical doctor fascinated with the connection between life and death. Although he is considered to have a tender soul, his research could turn out to have dire consequences. Dr. Frankenstein attempts to create a living monster out of different parts from various corpses, and, unfortunately, he succeeds.

Victor’s Episode Appearances

  • Episode 1 – Ethan, Vanessa, and Sir Malcolm bring Victor the body of a dead vampire. Victor peels back the skin of the vampire to reveal mysterious Egyptian hieroglyphs. The episode ends in Victor’s lab, where he is attempting to reanimate a corpse. Lightning flashes and the corpse suddenly springs to life.
  • Episode 2 – Victor allows his creation to choose a name for himself by randomly picking a page form Shakespeare and choosing the nearest name. His creation picks Proteus. Victor and Proteus go for a walk together along the water, where some of Proteus’s memories come back to him. When they return to the lab, Proteus is literally torn apart by a pair of unseen hands. A figure emerges, telling Victor that his “first born” is home.
  • Episode 3 -We learn that Victor’s mother and dog both died during his childhood. We also learn that Victor abandoned his first creation after its “birth”. The creature now goes by Caliban, and wants Victor to create a bride for him. Caliban threatens he will hurt Victor if he doesn’t do this, and then disappears into the shadows. Victor is present for Fenton’s interrogation. He is part of the group that pledges to find Mina.
  • Episode 4 – Victor brings a vial of the dead vampire’s blood to Van Helsing for analysis. While leaving Van Helsing’s, Caliban again shows up and threatens to hurt Victor and his friends unless he creates a bride for Caliban. Later, Victor attempts to give Fenton a blood transfusion to cure him of his insanity. The blood transfusion doesn’t work, so Victor gives him a cat to eat instead.
  • Episode 5 – No Appearance
  • Episode 6 – Victor goes out to dinner with Van Helsing. After dinner the creatuyre attacks and kills Van Helsing, and reminds Victor of his promise to make the creature a bride.
  • Episode 7 – Victor examines Vanessa and determines she’s suffering from a psycho sexual trauma. He then stays at the house to care for her and develops a morphine addiction.