Dracula 1.03 "Goblin Merchant Men"

A tv review article by: Timothy Ashley

"Goblin Merchant Men" opens with a flashback to Dracula’s (Jonathan Rhys Meyers) past when The Order decides to kill him and turn him into a monster. Thinking back to the 1992 film with Gary Oldman, it was Dracula who decided to renounce God and condemn himself to immortality. This begs the question, if The Order knew he would be undead and all-powerful, why turn him at all? Oh right, they just figured that they would chain him up and torture him for all eternity, well that didn’t work out too well since he broke free and slaughtered the guard who was watching him; I don’t think he received the memo on the increased strength and blood lust.

Harker (Oliver Jackson-Cohen) and Mina’s (Jessica De Gouw) relationship was left in shambles at the end of Episode Two, and this time we see that Jonathan is avoiding Mina, but never fear, we have Lucy (Katie McGrath) to help cheer Mina up. We haven’t seen much of Lucy until now and she was a major character in the novel and movie, so it’s nice to see McGrath get some screen time. The two drink and party their nights away, and this cuts into Mina’s studies, which Van Helsing (Thomas Kretschmann) is not too pleased about; but Lucy just wants to have fun with her best friend. At one point during the episode it seems that Lucy may want more than just friendship with Mina, which will be something to keep an eye on for future episodes.

Dracula continues to tell Renfield (Nonso Anozie) that he will stay away from Mina, however he still keeps both Jonathan and Mina under his thumb. It is kind of hard to read Dracula’s character; it seems as though he wants Mina but then he turns around and offers both Mina and Jonathan some advice in order to mend their relationship. By the end of the episode, Harker proposes to Mina and she accepts, which brings a warm feeling to Dracula, but once again where does this leave him in the mix? For the last two episodes he seems to be very infatuated with Mina, but this episode makes it seem like he wants nothing more than for her to be happy with Harker; very confusing.

Lady Jayne (Victoria Smurfit) visits a psychiatrist to help her with the seers, since they had issues with their abilities in the last episode. The psychiatrist then goes to Van Helsing and asks him to put together a serum that would help the seers alleviate their issue; he does as required, but of course tampers with the serum, leaving the seers paralyzed and at his mercy with a hammer when he discovers their location.

After a little rendezvous at Lady Jayne’s, Dracula hears something that stirs him out of bed. He sneaks out and finds a hidden chamber beneath Lady Jayne’s home, discovering the dungeon where a young vampire is being held captive. Seeing the young vampire made Dracula tear up a little bit, but he still climbs back into bed with Jayne. It is kind of hard to believe that we see Dracula do more crying than killing.

Dracula’s plan from episode 2 has worked, and he now has the majority shares in the Order’s coolant company. Since Lord Laurent (Anthony Howell) was forced to give his shares over to Dracula he knew that his life would be forfeit by The Order at the hands of Browning (Lewis Rainer). Daniel Davenport (Robert Bathurst) however, didn’t take Lord Laurent’s death too well that he mentions in a letter as he ended up taking his own life in the process and blaming Dracula for this predicament. It will be interesting to see how Davenport retaliates against Dracula for the death of his son. Oh and with the death of the seers, London is now open to attack from vampires. I guess we shall see where the next episode takes us…

Timothy Ashley is an avid movie lover and tech junkie. When he's not reading up on new Android devices, he makes a little bit of time to check in on his start up production company, By Design. You can follow him @ByDesignVideo. He tries to write interesting posts.

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