The Ripper and the Whoniverse, Part 2

Analysing Doctor Who: Matrix, Continued –
When the book’s narrative first moves to the ‘Autumn of Terror’ (page 63), East End local, Jed Barrow has been following “shadows” in the fog for months, and had even heard the “strangled screams” of the second Ripper victim at Hanbury Street [2] (we can actually dismiss the trademark ‘pea-soup’ fogs because it was never foggy during any of the slayings). Jed also watched the police search of the yard at number 29, and even “found two gold rings”. In fact, two brass rings were apparently taken by the killer from Chapman’s left hand, but never recovered (two similar cheap rings were discovered amongst suspect Francis Tumblety’s belongings after his death in 1903).
Jed later meets Jacques Malacroix, the tyrannical circus-owner, at Mitre Square, as the police remove Eddowes’ [4] body. Malacroix wants to find the Ripper to display with his other freaks, and so employs Jed as his “eyes”.
There had already been a murder that night, the first of the so-called ‘double event’ when a prostitute had been “cut from ear to ear”. This was the victim’s only injury because the killer was supposedly disturbed by Louis Diemschutz, and he needed to sate his bloodlust by seeking another kill. The murder of this third canonical victim [3] has led to further speculation that she wasn’t slain by the Ripper at all, but by a copycat killer (or that this single murder was hidden amidst the series).
Nearly six weeks later, Jed witnesses the arrival of the TARDIS at a Thameside wharf, and recalls similar magical scenes at Mr Jago’s Palace Theatre (p. 69, see The Talons of Weng-Chiang). Coming under immediate mental attack, the Doctor explains to Ace that according to the distorted version of history (studied from Barbara Wright’s books in 1966), a sixth Ripper murder, one that should never have happened, occurs on the very wharf where the travellers have landed (p. 72).
Coincidentally, John F Plimmer is convinced that the Ripper was based in docklands (In the Footsteps of the Whitechapel Murders, Book Guild, 1998), and Trevor Marriott later named the German merchant seaman, Carl Feigenbaum, as the killer (2005). In channel Five’s Mapping Murder (2002), however, geographical profiler David Carter speculates that Jack’s lair was in the Middlesex Street area – the actual location of Ripper ‘diarist’ James Maybrick’s London rooms.
This would-be victim, a young woman wearing a cream dress (presumably the one that Ace changed into at Gabrial Chase, see Ghost Light) was never identified, and the subsequent ‘Jacksprite’ incidents spiralled out of control. Interestingly, the Ripper episode of The Outer Limits (1999) features a victim credited only as a “woman in [a] cream dress”. ITV mini-series Jack the Ripper (1988) also includes a sixth (staged) murder attempt, whilst From Hell (2001) reinterprets the fifth canonical killing by presenting the murder of a French prostitute mistaken for Kelly [5].
KEY – Canonical Murders:
[1] Mary Ann Nicholls – Buck’s Row, Friday August 31st 1888
[2] Annie Chapman – Hanbury St. Saturday September 8th
[3] Elizabeth Stride – Berner St. Sunday September 30th
[4] Catherine Eddowes – Mitre Square, also September 30th
[5] Mary Jane Kelly – Miller’s Court, Friday November 9th

About ecklefecken

Whovian/Pethead/Tartan Noir reader/Ripperologist/Blogger
This entry was posted in 'Jolly Jack', The Whoniverse and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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