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What Plot Should a Ripper Graphic Novel Use?

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  • What Plot Should a Ripper Graphic Novel Use?

    As chronicled in

    This is your chance, folks. One of our new members, Ed Power, may produce a Ripper Graphic Novel. While From Hell was considered a good GN, we all know that the film sucked, and we are also awfully damned tired of Royal Conspiracies, rogue Freemasons, and Dr. Gull.

    So what plot SHOULD a Ripper GN utilize, and what should it and should not contain?

    You may vote multiple times in this poll.
    Known-suspect based
    Unknown-suspect based
    Off-the-wall plot, such as a cover for espionage
    One that explains all of the unknowns of the case
    One with a motive instead of just a reason like insanity
    A complicated plot that spans decades
    Some kind of love story
    An X-Files type plot that will give you the willies
    Royal Conspiracy, of course, only done right this time
    Who cares? - the bloodier the better

  • #2
    I find those fictional Ripper stories tiresome. Its about time someone created an Unknown-suspect story based on factual data from police files & witness statements, including those from the press.
    Even though we would all know how the story ends, the point should be to tell 'thee' story derived from what is known, as opposed to some silly fiction.

    Regards, Jon S.
    Regards, Jon S.
    The theory that the murderer is a lunatic is dispelled by the opinion given to the police by an expert in the treatment of lunacy patients......."If he's insane
    " observed the medical authority, "he's a good deal sharper than those who are not".
    Reynolds Newspaper, 4 Nov. 1888.


    • #3
      Completely with Wicker on this one. A good novel, graphic or otherwise, should have a little bit of everything, but the unknown suspect angle intermingled with the known facts and storylines, embellished or changed a little, would be a welcome and refreshing addition.

      I've also found that, in my own humble opinion, sometimes it's better for serious Ripperologists to steer clear of the Ripper fiction domain altogether, as it becomes very easy to fall into the trap of being too obvious.



      • #4
        A black magician would be nice - without any freemasonry

        That could provide good visual imagery and Jacob of Simla might turn up

        Otherwise, I think a gang scenario might be somewhat original

        Forbes Winslow should definitely be in it - lunatic asylums and lodgers

        (I haven't voted because I'd vote for them all)


        • #5
          One way of doing it would be about a known suspect but not necessarily from a police point of view, especially if they were not much involved anyhow.

          For example, you could do it about a teenage boy who has lost his father, and who has been sent to board at the Valentine school by a distant but affluent uncle -- who expects him to excel.

          The boy misses his mother, and discovers that the masters are thugs and maybe worse -- except for Mr. Druitt the young, handsome, sporty Classics teacher and legal eagle.

          Popular with his students, radical in his politics, and totally opposed to corporal punishment, he is seen angry -- almost to a demonic fury -- when he discovers the boy being thrashed for nothing and stops it, and then threatens the other man, who backs off frightened.

          The boy idolizes Mr Druitt and watches him play cricket, and so on, and hopes his still attractive, young mother and his protector will hit it off if he can engineer a meeting?

          Then the Ripper murders begin, on nights when the boy catches Mr Druitt absent from his night warden duties and dressed as a proletarian -- and covered in blood.

          Perhaps Druitt buys time by claiming to be trying to catch the fiend, and that explains his sojourns to Whitechapel?

          Perhaps Druitt is sacked by Valentine because he takes the boys on a day trip to see the squalor of the East End, which shocks the parents-clients?

          Of course the boy realizes the real truth and that Jack is going to switch to toffs like his mother -- maybe actually his mother> -- to force reform from the ruling elite he so loathes.

          Of course he is actually as mad as a March Hare, climaxing at the Thames.

          Something like that ...?

          A sort of hybrid of 'The Lodger', 'Tom Brown's School Days', and the early chapters of 'Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy'.

          Fiction based on fact, or inspired by fact, or at least inspired by an interpretation of contradictory sources (imagine that as the credit?)

          Or you could fictionalize the lot; making it about the Edwardian Hyde Park slasher, who turns out to be Mr Butterfield -- the handsome, young school master and champion tennis player.


          • #6
            All the known facts of the Ripper case could easily be incorporated into a fictional Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde scenario for graphic novel or movie purposes.


            • #7
              I voted for unknown suspect ( rank and file lodger or seaman, in that vein ).

              Good idea, Tim. Thanks for setting the poll up for Ed...and thanks to those who have taken the time to contribute their votes/views.
              To Join JTR Forums :


              • #8
                I liked the idea of a time traveller only this time the murderer is from the present and goes back in time, that's why he's never been caught. Gary (the ripper) Sparrow?


                • #9
                  "What Plot Should a Ripper Graphic Novel Utilize?"

                  It should certainly use the Royal Conspiracy. That plot line has not been much used.

                  Would the phrase "Done To Death" apply here?
                  Christopher T. George, Lyricist & Co-Author, "Jack the Musical"
         Hear sample song at

                  Organizer, RipperCon #JacktheRipper-#True Crime Conferences, April 2016 and 2018.
                  Hear RipperCon 2016 & 2018 talks at


                  • #10
                    I would like to see an amnesia story : well-to-do man in 1901 cannot remember his life before 1891. Gradually, little flashbacks and telltale clues reveal to him the horror of what he has done...


                    • #11
                      To Robert

                      I ike that idea very much: the investigator is his own chief suspect.

                      Sort of Whitechapel meets Oedipus.


                      • #12
                        Hi Jonathan

                        Well, he doesn't have to end up blind. But he finds the whole thing pretty hair-raising.


                        • #13
                          I always thought a vampire/monster killer amongst a factual story. A bit x files i know but , have the ripper crimes and the spring heeled jack sightings part of the same story.

                          Its already started with movies such as the modern remake of "the wolfman" with inspector Francis Abberline hunting the wolfman.


                          • #14
                            IIRC the amnesia story has been done before, but not in a Ripper context. It was in a film or TV movie made in about the 70's. I like the idea though but a lot of thought will have to go into making a satisfactory ending.


                            • #15
                              Hi Phillip

                              I seem to remember a non-Ripper story called The Moonlit Road by Ambrose Bierce which involved amnesia. Can't remember much about it, though, except it contained murder.