From he­roes to out­laws

tv times joins Rip­per Street as a sup­port­ing artiste and talks to the stars about their fi­nal ex­plo­sive chap­ter…

TV Times - - Set Visit - Emma Bul­limore

It’s been lovely to tell the whole story, es­pe­cially as Rip­per Street has had quite a rocky ride

NEW Drama Rip­per Street mon­day / bbc2 / 9.00pm

There was a blood­cur­dling cli­max to the last sea­son of Rip­per Street, as Ben­net Drake fell vic­tim to can­ni­bal­is­tic se­rial killer Natha­nial Dove, and a hor­ri­fied Ed­mund Reid could do noth­ing to save him.

The fifth and fi­nal sea­son of the un­flinch­ing drama, which has al­ready aired on Amazon Prime and starts this week on BBC2, picks up the ac­tion just a few days af­ter Drake’s death.

DI Reid, Cap­tain Homer Jack­son and Long Su­san are out for jus­tice, while also dodg­ing a cor­rupt po­lice force hunt­ing them down over the death of Su­san’s father, Theodore Swift.

TV Times vis­ited the cast on set in Dublin, which stands in for Vic­to­rian Lon­don. To get us into the mood we were whisked into

make-up and cos­tume, cov­ered in ‘grime spray’ and kit­ted out in torn threads to give us the look of a lo­cal. It was not glam­orous!

We soon bumped into Myanna Bur­ing, 37, who plays savvy Long Su­san. ‘We pick up pretty much from where we left them,’ she says. ‘They’ve been in the tun­nels for a few days, and Jack­son has a plan for where they may be able to hide out.

‘They go to an old the­atre, which is be­ing re­fur­bished by miss mimi morton, Jack­son’s ex-girl­friend. She’s con­fronted with three fugi­tives, one of whom she was madly in love with. Ob­vi­ously that cre­ates a lot of ten­sion!’

‘They’re all pretty shell-shocked,’ says Matthew Mac­fadyen, 42, who plays Reid. ‘They’re on the run and Reid feels guilty about Drake and the way he be­haved to­wards him.

‘He was quite thought­less in his treat­ment of him be­fore he died. Reid’s a stub­born man, which is ad­mirable but also in­fu­ri­at­ing – it’s at the ex­pense of other peo­ple’s feel­ings. Life feels bleak to him now and it’s dif­fi­cult to see how he might pros­e­cute Dove, who is be­ing pro­tected by his high­rank­ing po­lice­man brother.’

In this se­ries, Rip­per Street’s world is flipped on its head as our he­roes be­come out­laws. ‘It’s a rich set-up, this idea that Reid is a pil­lar of the law and now he’s out­side it, es­pe­cially with a woman he re­gards as a crim­i­nal. It’s very com­pli­cated and nu­anced,’ re­flects Matthew.

‘At times he feels frus­trated, as he’s un­able to see his daugh­ter, Mathilda, but there’s also a free­dom in hav­ing gone rogue – part of him thinks there’s noth­ing left to lose.’

mean­while, Long Su­san and Jack­son (adam Rothen­berg) are de­ter­mined to be re­united with their son, Con­nor, be­fore they leave Whitechapel. ‘All Su­san wants is the free­dom to cre­ate the fam­ily she longs for,’ ex­plains Myanna. ‘How­ever, mem­o­ries are catch­ing up with her – 55 peo­ple died [in a train crash] at her hands, and the guilt is in­cred­i­bly hard to live with. There’s a dark tus­sle go­ing on inside her.’

Al­though the show was can­celled af­ter se­ries two, then res­cued by a fan cam­paign and an Amazon deal, the writ­ers al­ways planned a five-sea­son arc. Matthew is grate­ful to have de­liv­ered the en­tire saga. ‘It’s been lovely to tell the whole story, es­pe­cially as Rip­per Street has had quite a rocky ride. This is the long­est I’ve played one char­ac­ter, but it’s been spe­cial. I’ll miss it.’

DI Reid, Long Su­san and Jack­son re­turn for the fi­nal sea­son of

Rip­per Street

Our girl Emma in cos­tume, and the in­fa­mous ‘grime spray’

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