The BBC has commissioned a new eight-part drama series called Ripper Street, slated to go into production early next year. The Jack the Ripper-inspired tale is set in the East End of London in 1889, and takes place during the aftermath of the Ripper murders.
According to the BBC press release, “Ripper Street explores the lives of characters trying to recover from the Ripper's legacy, from crimes that have not only irretrievably altered their lives, but the very fabric of their city. At the drama's heart our detectives try to bring a little light into the dark world they inhabit.” Cue suitably edgy and dramatic music!
The Guardian’s coverage of the new drama suggests that, with Ripper Street, the BBC is attempting to capitalize on the worldwide success they’ve found with the recent revival of Sherlock. To be fair, that’s probably true; so don’t be too surprised if some of the main characters turn out to feel fairly familiar: my guesses include an innovative-but-rude Victorian police officer who loves science, or perhaps a dogged sidekick type who has extensive experience with firearms and really likes tea. Though, personally, I rather fail to see the bad in that… At any rate, the setting’s fantastic. And aren’t we all a little fascinated by that era of history? (Thanks, early sensationalistic press!) Ideally, this would end up being a mash-up of the cleverness of Sherlock with the period feel of Downton Abbey. (Well, if I ran the world, at any rate. Or at the very least the BBC.)