Fantastic Friday is a new feature here on Ramblings of a Daydreamer. Each Friday I'll showcase fantastic things from the past week - could be things I've done, places I've gone, a new song I like, a movie I've seen, books I've read, blog posts from around the blogosphere - anything at all!
What I'm finding fantastic lately: Ripper Street.
I am so obsessed with this show. I was browsing the DVDs at my library weekend before last and these caught my attention. Like many other people, I have a bizarre fascination with Jack the Ripper, so the title piqued my interest and I grabbed both seasons.
While the show doesn't actually have to do with Jack the Ripper, the first season is set shortly after the Ripper's reign of terror in Whitechapel, and features the police force (division H) who tried to hunt him down. The main characters are Inspector Edmund Reid (Matthew MacFadyen), Sargeant Bennet Drake (Jerome Flynn), and American doctor/ex-Pinkerton Captain Homer Jackson (Adam Rothenberg). These three make a dynamic trio and have such great chemistry on screen. The characters are very different, but they have several core values in common: they're passionate about their jobs, want to help people, and are protective of those they love. Plus they're easy on the eyes, especially Mr. MacFadyen. ;-)
I love historic fiction, and Ripper Street is fascinating to me because it shows the seedier side of London in the late 1800s - dirty streets, poor people, prostitutes, mob mentality regarding several issues. While I've seen plenty of movies and TV shows set during the late Victorian era, part of what's so interesting to me is how this show doesn't hold back. A good portion of the show deals with prostitution - Captain Jackson lives in a brothel, and there are a few regular characters who are prostitutes - and they deal with issues surrounding religion, politics, homosexuality, and infidelity. Another fascinating aspect to me is that they don't just focus on the police work; we see a lot of Captain Jackson at work, examining dead bodies, performing autopsies, and doing a fair bit of scientific work. He's basically a one-man CSI unit using 19th century methods, and the work he does is really interesting.
There's a lot of violence and quite a bit of gore in Ripper Street, but there's also a mixture of everything else you can imagine - romance, intrigue, drama, humour, heartache. I've been recommending the show to all my friends over the last couple of weeks. I'm almost done the second season and I'll be sad because I know it'll be awhile before I'm able to get my hands on season 3!
Do you watch Ripper Street? What shows are you currently obsessed with? Tell me in the comments below or chat with me on Twitter. Also, feel free to link me to blog posts, articles, pictures, songs, videos, or whatever you thought was fantastic this week that you want to share!