Thursday, September 11, 2014

Jack the Ripper identified

You may have read the headlines of late.  A DNA test on a blood and semen stained scarf found with one of the White Chapel victims has been linked to a Polish barber Aaron Kosminski.  The young Kosminski was in and out of lunatic asylums for much of his life and died in one.

My first introduction to the "Jack the Ripper" mystery was in the form of pure 80's television.

"Fantasy Island" season 4, episode 6, original air date of November 29, 1980.  The episode title was "With affection Jack the Ripper/Gigolo".  It was a strange pairing of a authoress that wanted to go back to 1889 White Chapel to unmask Jack the Ripper and some meek little guy who wanted to be a gigolo to get some confidence with women.  Really? confidence with women, obviously written by a man.

I'm sure I had no idea what a gigolo was and the questions probably prompted answers that as a 8 year old I wasn't at all interested in.  I don't remember that part of the episode.

But I do remember a immediate fascination with the idea that someone so long ago, in the "Laura Ingalls" of my brains history could also be a killer.  I grew up with stories of "the green river" killer.  A monster serial killer that was yet to be caught.

And all this interest was started from a evening soap opera where Charlene Tilton could be a figure skater, they had little cars for Tattoo, and you could time travel.  Who said 80's television wasn't educational.

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