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Ripper Street: Policing the meanest streets imaginable (BBC TV Blog, 4 janvier 2013)
...The decision to discard any direct element of the manhunt in our series allowed me to pursue what I was really interested in: how did the men who were responsible for keeping the people of Whitechapel safe cope knowing that they’d failed so spectacularly?
How do you then go about bringing all the other murderers, thieves, rapists and poisoners to justice?
Would you be broken or galvanized?
The answer – in terms of our imagined drama – is both.
As soon as Matthew Macfadyen told us he was interested in taking on the part of Inspector Reid, I knew that this duality would be perfectly served.
As an actor, he has such an astonishing ability to describe both toughness and vulnerability, to entirely inhabit the role of a man who is haunted by terrible ghosts but who is still intent, every new day, on bringing the fight to the evil and corrupt.
There’s a particular moment toward the close of episode one when, the case solved, he tells his one-time boss and superior officer, (the more fictionally celebrated) Fred Abberline that no longer is he going to let Jack The Ripper dominate his every day and that from now on he’s going to look on and forward.
Reid comes out of the pub, puts on his bowler and – a private moment for the camera – he smiles.
It’s a smile of conviction and intent and, whilst it wasn’t scripted, it makes the whole character come alive.
It’s a purely instinctive moment from Matthew and one that went on to entirely inform the further development of the character.
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