Epix’s Pennyworth series was a bit of a surprise. It’s not what many expected from Danny Cannon and Bruno Heller, the team that had brought us a very different Batman prequel with Gotham. Instead it was more akin to a young Michael Caine movie colliding with a Steed/Emma Peel version of The Avengers and a narrative grounded in a slightly askew, exaggerated and distorted Britain of the 1960s.
The series started strongly and though it lost its way just a little in later episodes, broadening out the canvas too much and perhaps losing something of its tightly-woven power, it was still an impressive and unexpectedly creative addition to schedules. Even if (or maybe because) it only had the most tangential link to the Batman mythos, it gave the lead Jack Bannon (as the young ex-soldier and entrepreneur Alfred Pennyworth, the man who will one day become the Dark Knight’s ‘butler’) a breakthrough performance without the typical ‘superhero’ aspects connected to the mythology. The series, which also featured Jason Flemyng, Paloma Faith, Polly Walker, Ben Aldridge and Emma Paetz resonated well in the platform’s ratings and also scored well with critics (here’s what we said…) and the fact that the show was not on a network allowed it to take some risks with language, violence and nudity that many didn’t anticpate.
Now EPIX have announced that a second run of the show will begin filming at Leavesden Studios early in 2020.
“Pennyworth has been a big hit for us, embraced by critics and fans alike,” Michael Wright, President, EPIX said in a statement. “It was the highest-performing original series ever to premiere on Epix, more than doubling the viewership of the shows that came before it. Bruno Heller, Danny Cannon and WBTV have delivered a brilliant, must-watch series. We can’t wait to work with this phenomenal cast and creative team on another exciting season.”
Pennyworth is broadcast on EPIX in the US and will be seen on SVoD service STARZPlay in the UK.