In Blood by The Professor
THE PROFESSOR RETURNS!
London - December, 1888
The great classical actor Henry Irving opens a new production of ‘Macbeth’ to great acclaim. Audiences shaken by shocking accounts of the savage murders committed by Jack the Ripper are now mesmerized by the figure Irving presents on stage, a man obsessed by murder and blood. He becomes the embodiment of their terrors.
In a letter to his great friend, collaborator, and personal manager Bram Stoker, Irving makes a stunning revelation about the part he has played in the Ripper’s most recent and most horrific murder...
With IN BLOOD The Professor boldly reimagines the murder of Mary Kelly, taking the horror of it to a new level and possibly shedding new light not only on the crime itself but on the crucial part it might have played in the genesis of one of the most influential horror novels of all time.
Bloody and brilliant
I loved every second of this short. I was really swept up in the gruesome, gripping narrative. Every drop of gore and brilliance was wrung out on the page for this reimagining of history. Highly recommend!
Drac the Ripper
A few years ago I wrote a satirical monograph elaborating a theory that Bram Stoker was the Whitechapel serial killer, so of course when I saw this I snapped it up... and is it a bit ironic, perhaps, that the identity of "The Professor" is in indie horror circles every bit as debated as the possible suspects in the Ripper case?
My first read by the mysterious Professor. Written with great style and finesse. A wonderful short story. The other reviews go into more detail then I, just know that this is a must read!
Dare look on that which might appall the devil
People who know me can tell you I am obsessed with three very party-killing things: Richard Wagner, Sergio Leone, and Shakespeare's Macbeth. I have read it many times and seen it live many more (5 times in 2019, can only assume I brought on the pandemic by doing this), and I have the dagger speech so well memorized that the decision to cut Tarquin's ravishing stride in that particular production continues to enrage and baffle me now two years later. I live in massive regret that I missed my chance to see the former artistic director's experimental "Macbeth/Medea/Cinderella," a theatrical collage exploring the rhythms of the three plays. Well, now I have read something better. "Macbeth/Dracula/Ripper" is an alternative title I'd pick for In Blood, which is an absolutely gorgeous demonstration of the fine rhythms between fiction, theatre, and history--especially history's murky alleyways. As glad as I am that Godless exists, it is punk rock. The Professor is writing opera. Hope his audience will continue to grow and widen enough for him to give us a novel sometime. Can't say enough about him or this piece. Read it.
The Blood Is the Life!
In Blood immerses us within an epistolary horror penned by Sir Henry Irving, the owner of the Lyceum Theatre, to his friend and assistant, Bram Stoker. It is a tale of murder, insidious plots, and the evolution of what would become Dracula. It all revolves around a Masonic conspiracy surrounding the Duke of Clarence and Avondale, his part in the pregnancy of a Catholic girl of low birth, and the prostitutes murdered by Jack the Ripper. As our narrator describes it, his authentically terrified performances in Macbeth are informed and influenced by an all-too-real haunting wherein he sees the deceased ladies of the night in place of the three witches on stage with him. From there, he finds himself driven by strange and monstrous compulsions and a need to witness unspeakable things in an appalling attempt at method acting. As his missive to Stoker continues, it becomes clear that something awful has awakened within him, leading inexorably down the path toward damnation and inhuman brutality. The Professor's narration of this sordid tale makes the story all the more compelling, its deranged and lunatic protagonist leaping from the page in such a way that the listener feels his frantic, unhinged need propelling the narrative forward. The strangely beautiful prose comes to life in cruel, vivid detail as the exquisitely described savagery spirals out of control.