The Ripper premiered on 16th December 2020. Directed by Jesse Vile and Ellena Wood, the 4-episode-long docuseries is around the most prolific serial killer of the late 19th century – Jack The Ripper!
Jack The Ripper
Serial killers, while being the worst human beings in existence, never fail to intrigue us as some of those fascinating people in existence who are almost untraceable and live off on murders of individuals. Whether it’s Ted Bundy, the educated maniac, or The Original Night Stalker, there is always something spine chilling and mind-numbingly gruesome on their hands and mind. With its latest docuseries The Ripper, Netflix brings forth the story about how a serial killer called The Yorkshire Ripper terrorized the County of York, northern England, during the latter half of the 1970s, killing women like a fearless and heartless maniac.
Jack The Ripper or The Yorkshire Ripper did most of his murderous deeds in the district of Whitechapel and the red light area around it which included kidnapping and eviscerating women at night and leaving them at a significant spot where they can be easily spotted and revisiting their remains. With 13 innocent women’s lives lost at his hand, the serial-killer was nowhere to be found for almost 5 long years. He mutilated women and skillfully removed their inner organs and everything bad you might imagine.
The series is presented in a chronological manner, which is a rare find in the true-crime series world. It is easier for viewers to make up their minds and form an entire timeline in their heads without the storyline moving like a pendulum. We get ample interviews from police, press and victims who survived in this docuseries which makes it a painful yet detailed journey.
I have read about serial-killers in the past but somehow had no idea about The Yorkshire Ripper, but the series makes use of its time and resources in such a manner that no mandatory and crucial detail is left untouched. You learn every inch of the case, criminal, victims, and the socio-political climate of the country here. We see the pressure mounting on the police, the domination of women, and the mistakes made by police, the most important one being not following the clues but fitting clues into their own set and conjuring narratives about the serial-killer.
The series points out the misogyny that this crime brought with itself, among other things. How curfews were imposed on women while a man was out there murdering and how men held the anonymous identity of the killer over women’s heads as a joke by saying I MIGHT BE THE RIPPER!
The fatal presumption made by the police was that the women in prostitution were the target of the killer. Furthermore, deceased women are described in a shameful manner in the case files. The Ripper case brought forth the perception of women and their lives carried by society and mostly men which are awfully downgrading. The police deciding to mislabel a few women as prostitutes with no proof is another example.
Overall, the series is engaging, short, and crisp and doesn’t beat around its plot. While the investigation moments are sometimes frustrating and angering, the series has a tight grip on its source and that is what makes it one good yet painful and scary ride.
Stream It or Skip It
STREAM IT! The Ripper was caught and punished with a background of psychotic illness but he was well-aware of what he was doing. It is fascinating how people you least expect are sociopaths and psychopaths with no mercy to show and no shivers to feel. There is a lot of conversation here, around what goes into the investigation and not just about the killer and his world, it’s well-written and executed and it worthy of your time.
The Ripper is now streaming on Netflix.
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