Ripper Street: Season 2
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68 of 71 people found the following review helpful
on December 16, 2013
********Update 26-Feb-2014....Ripper Street has been Saved. Season 3 will be aired on Amazon Prime*******

For those in the states who may not yet know, Ripper Street has been cancelled. Although not given to conspiracy theories, the big picture presenting itself behind the cancellation has an appearance of being contrived or political or possibly both. No one knows for sure. However, there are petitions being circulated to reverse the cancellation. One in particular is aimed at BBC America. I will send those links first and urge people to sign and share, or write BBC America or BBC One or both and let them hear how much you love Ripper Street. After posting the links, I will present Everything I witnessed leading up to the cancellation. Here are the petitions:

To BBC America
[...]
To BBC One
[...]

[...]

Now, many American fans who visited the Ripper Street page (or at bare minimum where able to find it) know the page has not been updated much and no info on an air date easily found. An initial release date of 01-Dec-2013 was announced to the Critics Association back in July 2013 [...]). While the date was published on the BBCA press page, it was not posted to the Ripper Street page. On top of it, it was slated to air on Sunday nights at 10pm against the Good Wife and The Mentalist. The premiere in the UK was slated for 01-Oct only to be moved to 28-Oct. when it did air in the UK, it was a Monday night at 9pm up against I'm a Celebrity, Get me out of here. Many Americans got off the Twitter and Facebook feeds because they didn't want spoilers. I watched the Twitter feeds because I did not care about spoilers. I saw posts by Ripper Street cast and crew who had absolute pride in their work. I also saw complaints from people who would miss the program because of work and would either watch it later by recording or BBC iPlayer. But during this whole time, nothing was updated on the BBC America website...no promos, no hints, and no mention of air date other than the press page. The weekend before the slated US premiere, still no promos, no teasers, no mention of whether Ripper Street would air or not ( this was the weekend of the big Dr Who simulcast...no mention of Ripper Street, but a teaser trailer and exact premiere date for Orphan Black....which won't even air until 19-Apr-2014 ). If you were lucky, you might have caught one obscure tweet by BBCA on 24-Nov saying Ripper Street would not air until Feb 2014. A tweeter named Kathy summed up my feelings entirely [...]

Several days later, without a word on the BBCA website, on 04-Dec-2013 Ripper Street was cancelled due to low ratings and before it ever even aired in the states. How that can happen when a Ripper Street was a joint BBC/BBCA production amazes me.

If you can't see something odd here, check your eye prescription. Please protest the cancellation and air date shell game of Ripper Street. Don't worry about how much time passes from the date this message was posted. Keep signing and sharing the petitions.

UPDATE 26-Dec-2013: BBCA has listed a premiere date of 22-Feb-2014! But their website lists a broadcast time of 10pm and their tv ad says it airs 9pm! Make sure if you are in the states that you get the correct air time!
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41 of 43 people found the following review helpful
on November 25, 2013
There is a lot to admire about these dramas if you can accept the dramatic aesthetic identical to that of the graphic novel or 'co-mix' which is now almost standard for 'action' films or thrillers these days, whether made for the cinema or for TV. This is certainly how most of this series comes across visually and in terms of narrative presentation. I have to admit I usually have a problem with this fast moving style, which is frequently dependent on sensational video editing, gruesome violence, and narrative short cuts or sleight of hand, BUT taking the series as a whole, it is perhaps the best justification for the co-mix style I have yet come across when taken to this kind of extreme where each story has to fit neatly inside an hour.

As in the first series there are plenty of interesting ideas taken from London history of the period. One of the episodes was about eugenics and featured the 'Elephant Man'; another about the London match factory women and the exploitation of cheap female labour; and another about the early electrification of London and the battle between AC and DC along with, in the same episode, a temporary truce with Irish Fenians when Parnell was the great hope for Irish independence. The finale of the series was an exciting sort of Shakespearian car crash with three of four story lines converging and mostly achieving some sort of closure - which is just as well if there wasn't going to be a third series.

My own special interest is in the attempt to achieve a dramatically useful and fairly convincing form of period dialogue which distinguishes itself from the usual embarrassingly flat late 20th century dialogue which is all that we normally get from historical dramas (e.g. the Ken Folett historical 'epics' such as The Pillars Of the Earth and its sequel World Without End, or the over-praised Game of Thrones). For this reason in recent years I have been very interested in, and much impressed by, the period dialogue of 'Deadwood' and 'Garrow's Law'.
As far as I know there has been very little said anywhere about the sort of dialogue one sometimes finds in 'graphic novels', co-mixes or, if you insist, comics. I have noticed that this dialogue is as singular as everything else about this genre and that one could often describe it as stilted and even pretentious by ordinary standards. But every genre deserves to be judged to a certain extent in its own terms and in this graphic medium the language does not jar in the same way it might arguably do elsewhere. I have very little interest in this medium myself but that is due more to either (1)the content or subject matter, or (2)the style of so much of the draftsmanship, than to the medium itself. I see no reason why the graphic novel couldn't have become a real art form - although in my view it hasn't - but it's obviously what we call a 'popular art form'.

In respect of language the 5th episode ('Threads Of Silk and Gold') was again, as in the first series, more interesting than any of the previous ones which may have had different writers. I can well see that it was the kind of writing likely to make the average critic respond with the predictable cliche about lines that no actor could speak convincingly and to point to the actors looking uncomfortable to prove his point. But what may escape most viewers is that when the language is working well it amounts to a kind of verse drama. Admittedly there is something of an experiment about it all but I'd say it's well worth doing, and of course people might well look like this when choosing their words carefully and trying deliberately to distance themselves in a class-conscious Victorian way from the brutal events and squalid milieu of such story lines.
It's not just a matter of period dialogue for its own sake, nor is it a matter of its historical accuracy. It's more a matter of the dramatic effectiveness of a heightened and more dramatic dialogue which earlier, and yes often more educated, forms of speech make possible. Above all it's intelligent and goes a long way towards convincing you that the 'graphic novel style' that we have here is also intelligent in some way - as for example the recent BBC serial 'Hunted', or 'Dr Who' (both also in the 'graphic novel style) DO NOT. That is one reason why this kind of dialogue offers such opportunities to the writer. It allows the writer to make the characters more articulate and therefore more conscious of the issues which are driving the drama.

But this episode which was the story of a homosexual prostitution ring based on the new telegram service of the Post Office, financial fraud at a major Bank and its justification in order to prevent a larger collapse of the system, both weighed in the balance against any kind of human love you fancy, had much more than period dialogue to offer.
Although this episode was a powerful self-contained story it undoubtedly gained from our having seen the earlier episodes suggesting a relationship might develop between Reed and Jane Cobden the social reformer, and which turned out to be another example of the interesting organic symmetries in this episode.

For a very thought provoking discussion of the subject of literacy, language change and education over the last 150 years see 'Doing Our Own Thing: The Degradation of Language and Music, and Why We Should, Like, Care' (2003) by John McWhorter. He argues and provides evidence for the level of education (or practical aspiration) in the 19thc, and later, as enabling even the 'lower classes' to express themselves in an impressively articulate and even 'literary' way, especially in personal letters; and equally capable of understanding what they heard or read, on an intellectual level more like the Guardian Review than the Sun.
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36 of 38 people found the following review helpful
on December 18, 2013
The narrative is set in the late 19th century and the story begins with the tail-end of Jack the Ripper's terrifying reign of murder in the East End of London, however, the drama went on to examine multifaceted human motivations, to dissect the central characters and their lives beyond the police station. There is examination of what it means to be malevolent and/or human. The drama looked at the lives, and social ills of the people who lived in the area, and this was done through making the look and feel of the era in a really striking framework. For me the direction, writing and performance given, came together to make really interesting and finely tuned drama. It is really sad that the powers to be at the BBC could not/would not fight try to keep this very good show going, I am sure it would have sold well in North America and Australia. It seems to extremely poor judgement to cancel the show. I guess in its place will be another repeat set of programming, which seems to be the unfortunate main stay of the BBC today - all rather sad really.

--------------------UPDATE--------------------------------------UPDATE-----------------------------

11/20/2014

The third series has been made with the help from Amazon, however, it is currently only being shown in the UK on Amazon Prime.
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30 of 32 people found the following review helpful
on January 1, 2014
RIPPER STREET fans -- the BBC has cancelled this great show after only two seasons, before Stateside fans have even had a look at Season Two (coming on BBC America in February 2014). If you want to show your support for a return of this show, please visit: change[dot]org...search RIPPER STREET and REVERSE THE BBC. Over 33,800 fans have signed already, from inside & outside the UK. Tweet, e-mail, spread the word -- we will #SaveRipperSt, (voted the best show of 2013 in the UK Radio Times Viewer Poll.)
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on February 28, 2014
Ripper Street will indeed go on for at least a third season, as announced on Feb. 26, 2014, via a streaming deal between Tiger Aspect Productions, Amazon Prime and the BBC. Great news!
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on November 8, 2013
I love this series, I have ONLY seen season ONE! But if the writing and plot lines stay somewhat the same any fan of Victorian London will be ever so happy. The three detectives are well acted and quite smart. This is NOT handing the answer's to you on a plate. One must follow the story line and in the first eight episodes, they took the Whitechapel area out of the Rippers hands and delved into all the other odd things that were happening at that time. Not to let a spoiler go but an on-going mystery heads through all the detective work. Its almost finished in episode eight. I presume it will pop up next season ? This is the BBC doing a HBO drama with no punches pulled and if you like a good mystery and the absolute feeling of been in that time period, this ones for you.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on March 26, 2014
So often a quality production like this gets cancelled in favor of the banality and sheer stupidity of "reality TV" that it makes me question even owning a TV, particularly here in the US. Thankfully, companies like Amazon are stepping up and helping to save shows like this, and producing their own original shows, so those of us not devoted to short-attention-span pseudo-drama can actually enjoy an evening of thoughtful, creative, and even action-filled entertainment.

Ripper Street, a BBC production, was apparently cancelled after 2 seasons and Amazon has been instrumental in its revival for a third season - and hopefully more. If you haven't seen it yet, watch from the beginning. Try a few episodes. You won't be disappointed.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on March 28, 2014
Ripper Street is first class TV. Improves w/each episode of each season. So happy Amazon came in to save the day and guarantee a Season 3 and more.
Thanks, Amazon!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on April 8, 2014
I love this series. The characters are phenomenal. This could have fallen flat with poor delivery of a very specified dialogue alone, but the cast is awesome, and they more than pull off the script. The human tensions are very real and convey restraints of the time period with what feels like painful accuracy.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on January 3, 2014
In case anyone has not seen this article. There are negotiations in progress with Ripper Street producers and Amazon. I believe this could be a win win for the show, amazon and Ripper Street fans. Url of the complete article is listed below: Fingers crossed!!!

[...]
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