Yes, it’s getting a little on the horrific side. This is a flashback page from chapter 19, depicting the horrific event from Whitechapel murder cases, the murder of Martha Tabram. Historically Tabram is actually greatly debated as to whether or not she really was the first victim of Jack the Ripper given that her muder was much less severe than the that of the other murder victims. It is however generally accepted on a great degree that was the first despite not being considered one of the canonical five victims. When writing the Whitechapel arch, the biggest challenge was working with historical facts and getting them to work around the story I wanted to tell.
In the case of Tabram, the idea of her horrific slaughter was quite difficult as it seemed no “regular” criminal would commit such an act, just some lunatic. As I did not want to make Victor, the arch’s main villain, a very simplistic type of villain, I decided to add a method to his madness. As Victor was essentially a young artist looking for attention, the idea of him committing a crazed murdering frenzy essentially wrote itself out, with him purposely making mess so as draw a crowd. It’s essentially in the end what every artist would want.
Designing Tabram herself wasn’t too hard and was mostly taken from illustrations. There aren’t too many pictures of Tabram, but she appears to be depicted as a somewhat bloated individual with a thick neck. One such illustration shows an image of man discovering her bloody body, eyes open and laying on her back. That was essentially the influence for the middle panel on the page below.
To read more of the chapter, click the page below to link to the actual chapter 19.