Early on in Carnival Row, Amazon’s fantasy drama in which magical creatures emigrate from their war-torn land to safer confines, a political figure argues that the “critch” should go back to where they came from. And mind you, this was filmed ages ago.
“It’s always great when art mirrors life like that, isn’t it?” series star Orlando Bloom notes, with a raised eyebrow, in the cast video above.
Spanning eight episodes and set for a binge release on Friday, Aug. 30, Carnival Row envisions a Victorian fantasy world in which mythological creatures have seen their homelands invaded by the empires of man. Now, these “critch” struggle to coexist with humans, namely in the titular section of The Burgue.
“It’s a commentary on ‘life with the other’ in some way,” says Bloom.
Bloom plays Rycroft “Philo” Philostrate, a Burguishman detective, while Cara Delevingne is Vignette Stonemoss, a refugee faerie who harbors a secret that endangers Philo’s world in the midst of his most important case yet: a string of gruesome murders threatening the uneasy peace that exists in the Row.
The cast also includes David Gyasi (Containment) as Agreus, a mysteriously wealthy faun; Tamzin Merchant (Salem) as Imogen Spurnrose, a young woman aiming to turn her family’s fading fortunes around; Karla Crome (Under the Dome) as Tourmaline, a quick-witted faerie poet; and Indira Varma (Game of Thrones) as Piety Breakspear, the cunning matriarch of a family that rules The Burgue.
Delevingne’s Vignette comes to the Row “against her will,” and yet on a mission. “She wants to make the best life for herself that she can,” says the Suicide Squad baddie, “but Carnival Row is brutal.”
Vignette’s arrival coincides with Philo’s investigation of a showgirl’s murder that “turns into a much bigger story,” Bloom teases. That mystery brings together, in Philo and Vignette, two people “who should not be together at all.”
Elsewhere in the video Q&A above, Merchant describes her Imogen as a “bossy bitch” who is alternately “really mean” to Vignette but prematurely sweet on the neighbor she has yet to meet. Gyasi’s Agreus, meanwhile, represents “the lowest of the low,” as faun are regarded even among critch. And yet, somehow, he has paid cash for the finest house in The Burgue….
Press play above to learn more about Carnival Row and its denizens, human and otherwise.