It’s amazing to me that after the premier of Taboo, I felt the show was restrained in its use of violence. That entire episode, characters seemed on the brink of clashing but at the last moment would back down. Five episodes later this is most certainly not the case. Assassins and stalkers are roaming the streets of London, people are being held at knife point and bloody bodies are washing up on shore.
Though I should point out that the violence depicted in the show is not senseless, it’s a brutal reality in the time the show takes place. A prime example of this is in the amazingly done opening sequence where the challenge from last episode is paid off. It was bizarre in the best way possible when the “rules” of the duel were laid out. It’s reflective of something I’ve always found interesting about that time period. No matter how brutal things get, there remains a societal need to be proper. It’s something that Penny Dreadful excelled at highlighting as well.
Apart from discussing how the show’s universe depicts violence, this episode also did a lot in terms of moving things forward. Delaney is given a gunpowder ultimatum, thus moving his plan forward in such a way we’ve never seen before. Delaney finally has to change his overall plan for someone else, instead of the other way around. It’s interesting to see his character react, when he has been the one making others react to his schemes for so long. Though I still feel there is more to his plan than we have been seen, we’ll just have to wait and see.