When Ripper Street “A White World Made Red” begins, we see Mathilda Reid (Anna Burnett) reading Dracula late at night. While the girl gets intensely into the book, we see a woman being led through the streets by a young girl. Once the woman arrives at her destination, a door is open and the woman lets out a blood curdling scream. A dead man is found hanging upside down. In the morning, Edmund Reid (Matthew Macfadyen) finds his daughter still reading her book in the kitchen. He is forced to prompt her to get ready, so they can leave. Then, we jump to the Drake household, where Connor is having a fit. Bennet (Jerome Flynn) encourages Rose (Charlene McKenna) to sing to the boy. She sings Jackson’s song to the boy and manages to calm him.
Next, Jackson (Adam Rothenberg) heads to the docks and takes some cigarettes with Nathaniel’s (Jonas Armstrong) blessing. He is distraught upon discovering Susan has disappeared from her room. With Abel Croker’s (David Threlfall) advice, Jackson manages to track her down quickly. She admits she awoke and attempted to grab her son, before going for a stroll. Abel arrives moments later and encourages Susan to go back into hiding, where he will be able to keep her safe. Next, Drake, Reid and Thatcher (Benjamin O’Mahony) head to the butcher’s cold storage room, where they discover the man’s body hanging upside down. The investigation begins. A blood filled bucket is discovered underneath the man, before Drake order Jacksons to enter and learn whatever he can. Reid discovers the man’s hands are bound and someone else appears to have been strapped to a nearby chair.
Thatcher is sent to scour the local market for another body, while the investigation continues. Jackson concludes that the man has died, due to blood loss. Thatcher manages to find another victim nearby. The woman’s neck shares a wound similar to that of the unknown hanging man. Reid concludes that she was alive when they attempted to syphon blood from her neck and likely ran away, while trying to stop the bleeding. Meanwhile, Jackson finds no defensive wounds on the man and discovers he has a broken neck. He concluded that man was most likely executed at the nearby prison. With that, he heads to the Prison of London and consults with Dr. Carlyle Probyn (Ed Hughes). During the encounter, the doctor attempts to exploit his knowledge of Susan’s escape, Jackson leaves behind a cigarette butt and threatens the man once more.
Jackson demands to know who the man is and where he was sent. Moments later, he returns to the police station with a name, Percival Monks. He also reveals that the man was sent from the prison to London Hospital, after his death. When Drake inquires about Jackson’s knowledge, he receives a short, unenlightening answers. Next, Jackson inspects the woman’s teeth and confirms her as a migrant. Reid scours through her belongings and discovers a Polish prayer card. Jackson examines the woman’s fingertips and discovers indigo staining and needle scarring. This leads him to believe she was a seamstress. Upon further examination, Jackson reveals that the woman hadn’t bled at all and the cause of her death remains unknown. With that, Thatcher and Drake head to the local sweatshop.
A quick search of the women pinpoints one, who seems to be hiding something. Magdalena Dobrowski (Julia Rosnowska) is ushered back to the station for further questioning. She quickly identifies the deceased woman as Agniezka. Magdalena admits she helped the woman find work. An infected wound on Magdalena’s arm is treated, while the woman continues to insist Agniezka vanished. Upon further questioning, Magdalena reveals that he colleague had agreed to meet a man, who agreed to pay her handsomely for her troubles. She insists the woman wasn’t a prostitute and might’ve been robbed. Drake is adamant that robbery wasn’t a motive, before allowing Thatcher to take the woman back to work. Once they arrive, Thatcher threatens the woman’s boss and encourages him to avoid any repercussions for Magdalena’s absence.
Back at the station, Jackson acquire blood samples from many of the officers, including Sgt. Drum (Matthew Lewis). He tells Drum about his friend, who was killed by Indians in American and how his eyes turned from white to red. Mathilda pays a visit to Rachel Castello (Anna Koval) and asks her about Drummond. Rachel tells the girl to show him something she is passionate about and see if he shares that passion. Their conversation turns to Bloom. Castello admits she is headed to Paris to investigate the rabbi. When asked how she knows so much about the case, Mathilda confesses she often looks through her father’s documents. Castello instills in Mathilda that disobedience is one of the best characteristics women can have.
Next, Reid pays a visit to the local hospital and discovers Frederick Treves (Paul Ready) giving a speech about the Elephant Man. During their conversation, Reid crosses a French doctor. Treves shows Reid the documents, which prove Monks never arrived at the hospital after his death. Treves also admits the purpose of the blood was most certainly knowledge and experimentation. Back at the station, Thatcher’s blood is taken. He becomes woozy and doesn’t seem to like the sight of blood. Jackson walks them through his new discovery, which relates to blood transfusions. He shows the men how some bloods match, while others do not. With that, he confirms the woman was likely killed by a mismatched transfusion.
Jackson also confirms that Thatcher’s blood matches the prisoner’s. They inspect the deceased’s arms and find a wound on the man that matches that of Magdalena. The woman’s arms are clean of wounds. This leads Drake to believe that the deceased woman might’ve visited the man in Magdalena’s place. Reid utilizes the phone to gain intel about Magdalena from Drum. Jackson is confronted about the prison doctor’s lie. Drum confirms that Magdalena was locked in the prison for four months, due to bread theft. Drake, Jackson and Reid head to the prison, while Thatcher attempts to track down Magdalena. At the prison, the doctor is questioned about his needles, which happen to be blunt. He attempts to play it off, by insisting he is only helping to protect the patients from disease.
Drake inspects a nearby shelf and finds a vial of blood. Meanwhile, Thatcher searches the workhouse, but is unable to find the girl. Thatcher returns to the station and asks Drum for Probyn’s location. With the information, he pays a visit to Probyn and gives him a beating. We also see Magdalena encounter a young girl, who leads her inside a building. Drake and Reid put a stop to the beating and question the doctor further. This time, he admits he took the inmate’s blood, as Reid accuses him of being an accessory to murder. Jackson arrives to care for the doctor’s wounds, as they admit they have no choice, but to release the man. When Jackson gets the doctor alone, he turns up the heat. After a little convincing, the doctor confirms he matched Magdalena and Monks’ blood and setup an encounter with Magdalena and a French doctor.
Afterwards, Susan speaks with Abel. She asks the man, if her crimes worry him. He admits they do not and that many men have died at his hands. Back at the station, Reid, Jackson and Drum share a drink. Reid checks out Drum’s Dracula book. When he opens it, he discovers it belongs to his daughter. Reid agrees to see that it is returned to her. A message comes in and provides the men with information regarding their suspect. The suspect is identified as Tristram Blanchard (Dylan Smith). They also learn that the man’s wife also died in a similar manner. Jackson mentions the disease, Porphyria. They conclude that the man’s child likely has the disease and he is using the blood to try and keep her alive. Thatcher is ordered to go to the French Embassy and stay there, until they provide him with information about Blanchard.
Afterwards, we see Magdalena meet with Blanchard. He provides her with a large sum of money and begins preparing for the blood transfusion. Blanchard’s daughter, Camille, enters and it is visibly clear she is ill. Back at the station, Reid acquires a picture of Blanchard and confirms he has met him before. We see that Camille and Magdalena was prepared and ready to go. Reid and crew arrive. Outside, Jackson convinces the others to stay outside, so he can speak to Blanchard surgeon to surgeon. He heads inside and attempts to convince the doctor that the transfusion will result in Magdalena’s death. Jackson attempts to convince the man that his daughter’s case isn’t likely going to change no matter what he does. Blanchard seems to be coming to his sense. However, he yanks the cord from Magdalena’s neck and runs off with his daughter.
Reid and Drake rush after the doctor, while Thatcher stays behind to help Jackson save Magdalena. Drake and Reid manage to convince Blanchard to give himself up, while Thatcher saves Magdalena, by giving his own blood. Once the fun is over, Jackson begins singing Connor’s song. Drake take notices and confronts Rose when he returns home. Rose admits Jackson has been visiting his son once a week, but insists Connor only knows Bennet as his father. Reid confronts his daughter regarding Drum and Dracula. He tells her to test him out, before jumping in and she confirms that was the entire purpose of the book. Reid agrees he is fine with the agreement, but demands Mathilda tell him the outcome of the test first.
At the prison, Doctor Probyn reads a letter, which focuses him out of his position. He inspects the cigarette butt that Jackson left behind and heads to the docks. There, he speaks with Abel. Susan enters and the doctor accuses her friends of reporting him and getting him fired. Susan stabs the man, before Abel and Nathaniel clean up the mess. Abel seems thrilled by Susan’s actions. He comforts her and insists she shouldn’t cry for the doctor. She admits she isn’t and only grieves for her father. She admits she killed her father, as the episode comes to an end.
Ripper Street Review
The new casting choices for Ripper Street really paid off in this episode. Drum, Thatcher and Abel finally proved their worth. Each has their place and purpose. The series also continued with the trend of children and did an excellent job bringing the emotions. Ripper Street has always managed to build villains, who are despicable, yet easy to sympathize with. This episode was no different. A White World Made Red was yet another brilliant episode and another solid reason that Ripper Street is without a doubt Amazon’s best original series.
A 9 out of 10 is deserves. Be sure to catch up with our previous Ripper Street recaps right now!