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Sunday 10:00 PM on Showtime
Now "Resurrection," that's an episode!

What helps is that a good part of the episode is the Creature's tale. While we don't have all the facts in yet, the christened Caliban is generally a sympathetic character. The one thing that doesn't seem to quite jibe is how he became so violent. One suspects there is a part of his story yet untold about what happened at the theater. He received nothing but kindness after his beating, but yet he turns extraordinarily violent against his "brother," insisting that he was sparing him pain. Caliban seems to have a pretty happy life after a rough start, so one gets the impression something recent has soured him after the kindness shown to him by Vincent Brand.

And Alun Armstrong is the best part of the episode, effortlessly conveying a drunken humanity as the actor who gives the Creature his name of Caliban, and takes him in despite his disfigurement. He rivals the blind hermit befriending the Monster from Bride of Frankenstein. Hopefully we'll see Armstrong again. Even it's a flashback showing him dying a horrible death that makes Caliban re-feel pain.

As for the rest of Caliban's tale, writer/creator John Logan expertly writes the narrative. He captures the essence of both the original novel and a creature who has learned his language from reading books of poetry. It's also a great performance by Rory Kinnear, along with some requisite nudity.

Speaking of requisite nudity... what's up with Billie Piper? It's Showtime, for pete's sake. If she doesn't want to do nudity, she shouldn't take a blatantly "nude role." Taking on such a role that so far has required nudity in two out of two episodes, and then bringing in a body double, seems kind of pointless. Not that I want to see Billie Piper nude. Heaven forbid! :) And the same for Josh Hartnett. It just seems like an odd career choice for Ms. Piper. The character herself is still no great shakes. She's the best-looking consumption sufferer ever, who two of the main characters want to have sex with, and something to give Ethan a motivation for rejoining the Society.

WARNING! No stars' faces will be seen atop naked bodies during the following sex scene.

The rest of the cast gets equal time, except for Reeve Carney who is missing in action for the second of three episodes. Granted, there isn't really much for Dorian Gray to do in this episode, but sheesh. You got eight episodes, and we're almost halfway through. What's he doing in the series?

Josh Hartnett probably gets the lion's share (wolf's share?) of the attention outside of the Frankenstein dynamic. He's the required "voice of humanity" in the group that otherwise seems content to follow Malcolm's orders without question. (What was Sembene's loss that brutalized him?) We learn a bit more about his past slaughtering Indians, and hints that he's either empathic with animals or has some wolf blood of his own. Some kind of Indian curse, maybe?

Kevin Costner, eat your heart out!

Timothy Dalton, Eva Green, and Danny Sapani are... there. Nothing earth-shattering, but none of them are overlooked and they each have their moments. Sembene gets to go out on a mission this time and draw a knife.

The plot moves on. We find out about the "Master," and get introduced to a partial-vampire teenager who is auditioning for the Renfield role. Creepy performance by Olly Alexander, and presumably the Master is Dracula. No mention of the Ripper murders this week.

Puberty often brings on skin problems.

Overall, I'd consider this the best episode of the series so far. Mostly for the Caliban scenes, which presented a neatly alternative take on the Frankenstein story. Lots of nice quotes (check the episode page), and overall an excellent episode.
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