the superhuman effort makes its way into the local newspaper, it’s his foster parents who become a bit scared, because it’s clear they’ve been withholding some crucial information about their adopted son’s background.
“We made a promise,” the sad-eyed senior physician tells his wife when Robert is out of earshot, “that we would keep the boy away from the world, and the world away from him.”
And now, it seems, the proverbial cat — in this case, of a decidedly illtempered feline variety — is out of the bag
Back in London, an attorney named Max Utterson (Christian McKay) spots a brief item about Robert’s heroic deed in the newspaper, and immediately recognizes the name. After a bit of office banter that feels very much like a bit from a Monty Python sketch, the lawyer bangs off a letter and sends it to Jekyll, requesting that he travel to England to settle his family’s estate.
Robert is hesitant, and his foster parents are terrified, but somehow it’s decided that he must make the journey. And when he does, Jekyll and Hyde morphs into an odd combination of the original literary tale, The Incredible Hulk, Harry Potter, Downton Abbey and Penny Dreadful, in which London is awash in monsters that a top-secret government agency are trying to capture and control, and the inevitable Jekyll/Hyde shifts are the result of a genetic condition triggered by anger or anxiety rather than by the ill-advised consumption of a potion.
It’s all a bit silly and a bit hard to swallow, but this odd amalgam of onscreen attitudes also results in a style that can be engaging and entertaining in an unexpected way.
If you’re looking for an updated but respectfully faithful revisiting of Stevenson’s timeless exploration of humanity’s dark side, this new take won’t be for you. But if you’re open to an interpretation that’s a lot more loopy and a lot less literary, this Jekyll and Hyde transformation has the. potential to terrify you in all the right ways.
Tom Bateman stars as Dr. Robert Jekyll in new series that plays havoc with Robert Louis Stevenson’s familiar tale.