In the latest episode of Ripper Street, we’re introduced to an antique dealer, Horace Buckley (Charlie Creed-Miles), who has fallen behind on his rent payments. Therefore, Ronald Capshaw (John Heffernan) and his accomplice, Clyde Kendrick (Phil McKee), pay the man a visit, at his shop. While there a struggle ensues, since Horace has no money and won’t let them into a locked room. During the fight, Horace’s wife, Clara (Marie Critchley) is slapped around, knocked to the ground and killed by Capshaw.
After Horace is chased out of the store, by Clyde, a man on the streets notices the commotion and takes note. Meanwhile, back at the store, Capshaw discover a hidden cellar, within the hidden room. When he ventures beneath, he finds a young girl, Alice (Anna Burnett), who has been held captive there for years.
With the news of the murder, Bennet Drake (Jerome Flynn) and Edmund Reid (Matthew Macfadyen) set out to investigate. While they’re able to piece together some of the details of the murder, they’re forced to attempt to recruit their old comrade, Captain Jackson (Adam Rothenberg). Of course, Jackson wants nothing to do with Reid, after they discover him at the theater, with Mimi (Lydia Wilson). Rose Erskine (Charlene McKenna) and her soon to be husband is also there. Jackson forces Reid to apologize, before agreeing to help, which he does.
In the meantime, Reid and Drake pay a visit to Clyde, who denies everything. Reid inspects Clyde’s filing cabinet and discovers paperwork for the Obsidian Estates, which is signing by Capshaw. This forces Reid to pay Susan (MyAnna Buring) and Capshaw a visit, but he learns nothing of importance. Meanwhile, Susan and Dr. Amelia Frayn (Louise Brealey) try to figure out what to do with Alice, who continues to insist they return her to Horace’s place. The doctor puts the girl under hypnosis.
Meanwhile, Fred Best (David Dawson) pays Reid a visit and tells him about the bonds, which were discovered. Next, Reid begins to get desperate and commands the police force to interrogate shop owners, in order to find Horace, Clyde and discover new information. Later that night, Drake visits Reid and questions his actions.
Afterwards, Alice begins to speak, while under hypnosis. She speaks about boarding a boat, with an evil king. Alice explains that the boat went up in flames and she was rescues by Horace. When Susan shows Alice a picture of Reid, she confirms he is the evil king. During this time, Reid goes through Alice’s old belongings, looks at pictures and sobs.
Captain Jackson is at his best, as he continues to investigate the evidence from the crime scene and discovers Horace’s treasure digging location. With this information, Reid, Drake and PC Bobby Grace (Josh O’Connor) head down to the shore line and look for Horace. After they discover him and take him down, they return him to the police station, where he is interrogated. Horace confirms it was Clyde and Capshaw that killed his wife.
Next, Jackson, Reid and Drake head to Susan’s to arrest Capshaw. As they lead Capshaw from the room, Susan and Dr. Amelia intervene. Susan tells Reid that the girl died, due to her injuries, with backing from the doctor. Susan also mentions the girl could’ve been Reid’s daughter. Reid returns to the prison and transports Horace to the cellar beneath his store. He locks Jackson and Drake out of the cellar, while he interrogates Horace, who eventually admits that the girl’s real name was Matilda Reid. Without hesitation, Edmund Reid smashes Horace’s head against a wooden column several times, before he dies. Without interference from Jackson or Drake, Reid is allowed to escape down an abandoned alleyway.
The third season of Ripper Street continues to impress with The Beating of Her Wings. The White Chapel area, which is full of poverty, crime and sorrow, is perfect for the bleak mood of the show. So far, this has definitely been the most emotional season yet. Matthew Macfadyen showed his expert action skills this episode, as he went from sobbing to angered killer.
Meanwhile, MyAnna Buring and John Heffernan make a pretty good pair of villains. Hopefully Adam Rothenberg won’t let his drinking and silliness get in the way of bringing down his former lover. It was also depressing to witness Jerome Flynn’s Drake interact with the woman he once loved and her new partner. All in all, the episode brought some real surprises and continues to build upon a shocking start to season three. The episode deserves a 9 out of 10.