Jack the Ripper
|“||Dear Boss, I keep on hearing the police have caught me but they wont fix me just yet. I have laughed when they look so clever and talk about being on the right track. That joke about Leather Apron gave me real fits. I am down on whores and I shant quit ripping them till I do get buckled. Grand work the last job was. I gave the lady no time to squeal. How can they catch me now. I love my work and want to start again. You will soon hear of me with my funny little games. I saved some of the proper red stuff in a ginger beer bottle over the last job to write with but it went thick like glue and I cant use it. Red ink is fit enough I hope ha. ha. The next job I do I shall clip the ladys ears off and send to the police officers just for jolly wouldn't you. Keep this letter back till I do a bit more work, then give it out straight. My knife's so nice and sharp I want to get to work right away if I get a chance. Good Luck. Yours truly Jack the Ripper||„|
|~ -Jack the Ripper's letter "Dear Boss".|
Jack the Ripper was a Victorian era serial killer, who was active in London. He was never caught and his true identity remains a mystery; his victims were women who earned their income as prostitutes. His victims throats were slit, and most of their bodies mutilated. He was never found or caught by anyone. His weapon of choice was a knife. Other names for him at the time were "The Whitechapel Murderer" and "Leather Apron". He was one of the most vicious and notorious serial killers in known history.
- Aaron Kosminski - The main suspect of the killings, a Polish Jew. Suspected of the killings because he lived in the Whitechapel area and was known to hate prostitutes. Died in an asylum in 1919. DNA evidence conclusively linking him to the murders has been disputed.
- George Chapman - The other main suspect, executed for murder in 1903. His description matched the man seen with Mary Jane Kelly (the fifth victim of the "canonical five") and the murders stopped when he left for the United States. Many investigators at the time believed him to be the Ripper.
- Montague Druitt - A teacher suspected at the time because he somewhat resembled the description of Jack the Ripper. Committed suicide in 1888 just after the final murder.
- Nathan Kaminsky/David Cohen - Suspected at the time because he lived in the Whitechapel area, was known to hate prostitutes and was skilled with knives. He was incarcerated in a lunatic asylum around the time the murders stopped.
- James Maybrick - Liverpool cotton merchant poisoned by his wife Florence in 1889. After his death, a diary purporting to contain his confession to the murders was discovered. The confession has been accused of being a forgery, although forensic testing was inconclusive.
- Michael Ostrog - Russian criminal suspected because he claimed to be a trained surgeon and was released from prison just before the murders. However he may have been imprisoned in France at the time.
- H. H. Holmes - Serial killer executed in 1896. Suspected by many because he had surgical training, resembled the description of the killer, had a similar writing style and may have been in London at the time.
Nobody knows for sure how many women were murdered by Jack the Ripper. It is generally accepted that he killed at least three women, most likely five, and possibly as many as seven or eight; but, as the killer was never caught, it’s likely the true number will never be known. However, due to contemporary autopsy reports and inquest transcripts, some educated guesses can be made on which of the Whitechapel murders were most likely committed by the same hand, and which were unrelated to the serial killer known as Jack the Ripper (the Jack the Ripper murders only make up a part of the larger official police file known as the Whitechapel Murders. These eleven murders, committed between April 1888 and February 1891, are a series of unsolved murders, all committed within the Whitechapel district. How many of those eleven murders were committed by the same hand is unknown; even which victims can be attributed to the Ripper is open to debate, and indeed even the police officials at the time weren’t always in agreement).
Today, five of the Whitechapel murders are generally attributed to Jack the Ripper, and while this number still stands to this day, the debate over how many women were actually killed by the Ripper continues to rage on. These five women are now known as the canonical five, and while most researchers agree that three were murdered by the same hand, the opinion over whether two of the victims (Liz Stride and Mary Kelly) were victims of Jack the Ripper remain divided and is often hotly debated.
The canonical five victims killed by Jack the Ripper were female prostitutes. Their names were Mary Ann Nichols (43), Annie Chapman (47?), Elizabeth Stride (44), Catherine Eddowes (46), and Mary Jane Kelly (25?). They were cut apart into pieces and parts of them taken. All the victims were found dead on the streets, except the last (Mary Jane Kelly) who was found in her boarding room, completely mutilated.
In popular culture
Jack the Ripper has since become the inspiration for many fictional villains. The very name Jack, which was once considered whimsical and endearing, is now enough to make a villain seem dangerous. Many serial killers from slasher-fiction can be considered a homage to the original Ripper.
- Jack the Ripper is an accomplice of Dio Brando in the anime and manga series JoJo's Bizarre Adventure
- Raiden from the Metal Gear franchise is nicknamed Jack the Ripper because of his violent past.
- The DC villain Vandal Savage is an immortal who is rumoured to have either been or worked with several real-life villains, including Jack the Ripper.
- Jack the Ripper is the main antagonist in the novel Savage by Richard Laymon. He reveals his name to be Roderick Whittle and his disappearance was explained as fleeing England to live in America. While in America, Whittle is able to continue his killings as he has assumed a position as sheriff and the locals are quick to blame any murders on the natives.
- Jack the Ripper is also the main antagonist in the Alan Moore graphic novel From Hell. He is played by Ian Holm in the film adaptation.
- Jack the Ripper appears as a boss and one of the main antagonists in the video-game Shadow Man.
- In the comic book series Doom Patrol, a cosmic being known as Red Jack claims to be both the Ripper and God.
- The anime series Soul Eater has a monster called Jack the Ripper.
- The video game series Waxworks also has a more fantastic version of Jack the Ripper, who is revealed to be a devil-worshiper as well as a murderer.
- Jack the Ripper appears in the 2015 video game Assassin's Creed: Syndicate, which is set during the period when his murders took place. Here he is depicted as a member of the Assassin Brotherhood recruited by the game's protagonists, Jacob and Evie Frye, and aftee they kill him, have his name erased from all records in order to protect the reputation of the Brotherhood.
- One antagonist from the Fansadox web comic series is known as Jack Ripley and his actions are depicted as those of a religious fanatic who believes that all women need to be punished with rape, torture and death.
- The main antagonist Jackson Rippner from the film Red Eye is a thinly-veiled reference. Despite this, Jackson is not a serial killer but instead a terrorist.