I was fortunate to pick up this program on my "free on-demand" cable program. I found it gritty and so different from the usual police drama with a cookie cutter plot.
Beginning with a Jack the Ripper copycat was a stroke of genius. The twists and turns kept me interested and involved in the drama. Two issues were going on: The new, obsessive-compulsive boss takes over and the detectives don't like it one bit. Plus the killings keep them on their feet and the focus is on thinking their way through the crime book of Jack the Ripper. Wonderful drama! I also like the character of the "ripperologist" who helps them out. I love the quirky personalities of the people involved and how they have to work together to find the real killer. Also a big surprise.
The second part about the Krays was a bit less interesting. I mean, how can you follow up after Jack the Ripper? But the drama was still there. I see that there will be another season in 2012. I sincerely hope they keep up the good work of tying in the historical element.
They could even have a copycat Henry the VIII! That would be very cool indeed.
Grisly murders, weird and wonderful characters, more than a hint of an underlying, occult evil and the top notch acting you expect from a British TV drama. How could it possibly fail to be enjoyable?
Rupert Penryth-Jones and Phil Davis are both excellent, as is always the case, and the supporting cast isn't far behind. The cases they encounter are delightfully convoluted and the dark and spooky atmosphere is created very effectively on a budget which might suffice to pay for 60 seconds of special effects animation in Hollywood.
If I have one negative criticism it is that DI Chandler's affliction is somewhat exaggerated, in the sense that it seems so severe it would be a drawback, not an advantage, in his work. Still, that's just a niggle.
We accidentally stumbled across this program a couple years ago and have been really enjoying it! Stories have improved and the characters have developed over time, but I hope they keep the British low-budgetness about it and don't try to overdo effects. It's got something for everybody; it's a sci-fi drama detective show stuffed inside a mystery series. It's quirky and fun - you can't take it seriously. Relax and enjoy it for what it is - great British entertainment!
My wife, a nurse and I, a teacher and family counselor, have immensely enjoyed the content of Whitechapel. We have appreciated the various personality types and how they clash and yet, often times bond with each other. However, the one negative that we found in the program was the inappropriate use of Jesus Christ on several different occasions. As Christians we would appreciate it if the writers would have respect for His name in future Whitechapel programs. Hopefully, this matter will be corrected so that we can highly recommend this series to others.
While the premise might not be the most original one ever (a Jack the Ripper copycat - not exactly the most ground-breaking of story lines), its the execution that made "Whitechapel" one of the most fascinating British crime dramas of the past few years: a fast-paced, strongly atmospheric thriller with an intriguing set of characters, well-acted and succeeding to keep the suspense at a nail-biting level. It's the kind of show where I wish we'd get more than just a three-part mini-series. Forget the Jack-the-Ripper thing; a full TV series with this team solving regular cases would be rewarding on its own. Instead, "Law & Order: UK" takes its spot with what, judging by episode one, promises to be a less than exciting series.
Whitechapel – well seems like a rehash of an old idea but put together very well but the conflict between upper and lower ranks was seen-it-all-before boring. Do the police really argue as much as they are shown to do in cop shows? If this is the case the crime clear-up rate would be zero in this
country. On this occasion the policemen did seem to be even more stupid than usual. You have a serial killer murdering victims in the precise way
and in the same places as Jack the Ripper. The officer-in-charge is given a book by a Ripperologist (?!) laying out the hows, whys and wherefores of
each murder. The officer-in-charge reads the book, seems to be convinced by what he learns, but still doesn't manage to get to the scene of the second
murder in time to save the victim. Like most of today's "remakes" and old plotlines are being for what it is their pulp horror value only and not much else – one would have hoped that it would be a little more "gothic" but with the police eating Dona Kebabs and take away Chinese in the street and drinking beer at the same time it all
seems very odd.
The atmosphere of the episode was good, but I found it very disappointing.
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