The Ripper Review
This was one Netflix series I was super excited to watch and thankfully it did not disappoint.
The Ripper tells the tale of Peter Sutcliffe, a notorious serial killer from West Yorkshire who over a span of five years killed 13 women and attacked many more.
But the interesting thing about this case is how it portrayed women and how the police work was so blindsided by their own thoughts and feelings that should not play into the law and bringing a criminal to justice.
The first woman found to be dead by the ripper was Wilma McCann. She was a mother to 4 children but would spend her evenings once they were in bed out partying and drinking etc. and so when she was found murdered the police immediately assumed that she was a prostitute despite there being little to no evidence that this was so.
As the Ripper continued his rampage he began killing prostitutes which for anyone with some common sense can see how that is an easy way to go to kill people. These are women who are helpless, alone, very easy to get into your car and take away with you, and easy to dispose of.
So immediately the police believed this was a prostitute killer, women who do not sell sex on the street corners were safe and so you didn’t have to worry and even when he does kill what the papers called ‘an innocent girl’, a 16-year-old, they still assumed that he thought this girl was a prostitute because she was out late at night when really she was just returning home from work.
But this is where the lines of the Ripper versus the police blur and shows that the police are so set on this prostitute storyline that even when the Ripper starts killing any women because they’re out alone at night the police still believe that ‘no, it has to be a prostitute killer, he won’t kill anyone’ until it gets to a point where the police decide to put a curfew on all women.
Looking at this from the side of lockdown it makes sense that you have to protect yourself and the people around you, but it is also quite misogynistic for him to be able to roam the streets as he pleases and for the women to have to be the ones who are told to stay home. What if it had been the other way round? What if they stopped all men going out after a certain time and women could still go out? Surely then it’d be easier to see who was being suspicious, because why would a man be out after curfew if he did not have bad intentions?
And this is the real kicker and the thing that annoyed me the most. The police on this case were so proud of themselves and patting themselves on the back when the Ripper was finally caught but he was caught by just some on duty police officers because his number plate didn’t match the car! He was not caught due to them compiling evidence and going out and searching, he was caught by a random act of chance and it’s so lucky that he was! For them to try and take the celebrations for it was disgusting to watch because they ultimately did nothing to catch him.
I think for this case it was so disgusting how the police played it. How they look down on these women as lesser humans because of their work choices and most women had to do this job because they couldn’t get an actual job themselves because they were single mothers or they didn’t have the right education. It’s such a shame that these women had to find such a horrible job to do just because they had no other choice and this man, this monster, took advantage of that.
And the final nail in the coffin was that Peter Sutcliffe was not interviewed just once or twice, he was interviewed nine times during his rampage! How can the police interview a man nine times? A man that is clearly being called up again and again because he seems suspicious and then still not catch him?! Plus on top of that his own work colleagues nicknamed him the Ripper as a joke because of how he looked and how he was being called out by the police so much and yet the police still did nothing to catch him! It’s disgusting and I cannot believe that they allowed this to happen.
Of course at the end of the day it’s the Ripper that is doing the bad deeds. He is the one committing these crimes but the police were so incompetent that I would almost wish they were punished too because of their negligence. 13 women died when so many could’ve been saved if they were just more aware of what was right under their noses. If they weren’t so blindsided with the fact that they thought it was prostitutes only, if they actually looked more into Peter Sutcliffe and his background, if they tried harder they could’ve save so many lives but they didn’t because I believe they just did not care enough.
This is a chilling tale and an absolutely horrible moment in British history and it’s such a shame. So many women lost their lives all because of police negligence and letting this killer kill for so long. There are so many other elements to the story that I have not included in this review so if you have not watched The Ripper on Netflix I really recommend you do because it’s so much deeper than what I’ve said here and we are just so lucky in this day and age to have the DNA and fingerprints and everything else that we have, to be able to catch killers quicker so that hopefully something like this will never happen again.
What do you think of The Ripper?
Until next time.