It is a sad day today. I just watched the 2 final episodes of Season 2 that will be the final Season of Carnival Row. I have really enjoyed watching this TV series from day one. It is also a happy day, because the show actually ends in a satisfying way with most subplots and stories falling into place. The ending was satisfying, while it also was open enough for more stories to be told at a later time in whatever form or media. You never know...
Carnival Row is a fantasy show with a thick steam-punk feeling to it and Season 2 follows in the footsteps of Season 1. The Police are still brutal bastards and the Fae folk are having a hard time in the locked-down Carnival Row, while the politicians are trying to trick each other with secret agendas and the awesome Madame Guillotine chops heads off left and right.
Philo (Orlando Bloom) and his Fae on/off girlfriend Vignette/Vini (Cara Delevingne) still have a complicated relationship. Dark magic is still at play, this time involving Vini's former lover Tourmaline (Karla Crome). A new shape-shifting Sparas monster terrorizes The Burgue, giving Philo something to figure out, with all the help he can get from his friends Millworthy (Simon McBurney) and Darius the Marrok/Werewolf (Ariyon Bakare). Vini struggles to choose sides between Philo, Tourmaline and the Black Raven rebels.
Season 2 is almost as great as Season 1, and the only thing I found to drag a bit was the Commie subplot involving Imogen (Tamzin Merchant) and her Puck lover Agreus (David Gyasi). Luckily, at least it paid off well in the end, showing just how evil and nasty Commies always are, no matter what universe they are in. There are lots of characters to follow in Carnival Row and lots of subplots to the main story, but it all fits together really well. The fantasy world the creators have built feels interesting and real. The actors and dialogue are just brilliant.
It's been a joy from beginning to end to follow a show of this quality. I had hoped we would get more seasons than the 2 we got, but the lock-downs following the Chinese Flu and all the delays may have played a big role in it. At least we got 2 excellent seasons, and we got a nice ending that should satisfy most fans of the show.