One week ago, Mad Men ended with the image of Don Draper smiling into the camera. On the other side of the screen my face, as two ancient Greek theater masks facing each other, was rather the opposite: the face of disappointment. What a lacking finale –if not a complete disaster–, to the point that our own Homecoming Queen, who actually confessed to like the episodes, preferred to discuss the latest Penny Dreadful episodes over the series finales of a series of the relevance of Mad Men. This fact made look back to this year’s fiction and wonder: are we having a bad year?
Penny Dreadful has always been between two worlds: fantasy and reality, television and literature, genius and boredom, Vanessa Ives and the Creature. But in its last episode both realities, the malignant witches from fairy tales and the proto-feminist witches from the medieval times, have come together and create a wonderful piece of TV.
A fly on the wall, a kidnapping, Tony Soprano’s talking fish dream, a battle on The Wall, a beach house, a sitcom episode form the 90s, Annie’s Boobs, every posible outcome of a speech, a flashback that shows the loss of a child in the 80s, a flashback that show the entire history of an island… These are all special episodes of our favorite series. Episodes that did not follow the scheme we have grown familiar with, episodes that focused on a simple, concrete storyline that did not continue the serie’s plot, but rather highlight a single idea or concept. And then there’s Louie (FX, 2010-?), could a show be only constructed from ‘special episodes’?