‘A Stronger Loving World’
This week we had the announcement from the BBC that they’re cancelling Ripper Street and although it’s a series of definite highs and lows, it’s also a series that has proven to be a great historical drama with some brilliant characters, the likes of which have never been seen in a BBC drama. So appreciate the next couple of weeks because it’s the last we’ll see of this series, although personally I secretly hope HBO will pick it up and, using the same cast, iron out the slight problems within the series to make it the amazing show it has the potential to be.
This episode focused on religious cults and Bennett Drake (Jerome Flynn) is put centre stage. With the love triangle between Drake, Rose and his wife Bella
bubbling to the surface, his affection for Rose, although forbidden now he’s married, is still evident. In this episode Rose’s ‘uncle’ Gabriel Cain is introduced, played by Paul Kaye who proves his great skill for character acting. It turns out that Gabriel is in fact her former lover and leader of the Golden Dawn cult.
The Susan storyline is put on the backburner and there’s another narrative running parallel to the cult story. With Reid and Jackson investigating a murder, the chemistry between the three main leads is becoming more and more intense, each of them with different personalities but all with an inner turmoil that dictates their instincts. It’s not a great episode for Rose who, after being the one to tell Drake that Gabriel doesn’t seem like any sort of uncle she’s seen, gets greeted with a slap and ends up hiding in a hideous Victorian toilet. The ever increasingly withdrawn Drake also rejects her repeatedly.
By the end of the episode Reid and Jackson manage to save Drake and Rose in the nick of time, but Bella is not so fortunate and takes her own life in front of them in what is an intense last few moments. “I am made of nought but death,” says Drake and these last words are heartbreaking, exposing how intense his state of mind has become.
The problem with this series is still all the threads it leaves un-tied, the themes of previous weeks are disposed of as soon as the episode ends and this is confusing as it’s supposed to be an on-going series. That said though, I’ll miss Ripper Street and I feel it’s being cancelled just at the turning point.