Spring Heel Jack: A Cryptid?

Posted by: Nick Redfern on May 7th, 2012

Can the legendary Spring Heel Jack be considered a cryptid? Well, in a new post over at the New Page Books blog – and specifically under their The Creature of the Month section – there’s a new article from Dr. Bob Curran (the author of such books as Werewolves and Man-Made Monsters) that addresses the debate surrounding the infamous phenomenon.

Curran notes: “The mid to late 19th century was a time when the working classes of England were finding their own identity and were beginning to look on the upper classes with suspicion. This emerging class struggle can be seen in some of the ‘monster figures’ of the time – Dracula, Jack the Ripper etc. Was Spring Heel Jack just another personification of this in the working mind – it is interesting that he’s always described in aristocratic terms and always preyed on the ‘lower classes’. Whatever he was the idea of the bounding, dark-caped figure, breathing fire, perhaps still lurks somewhere deep within the English mind.”

Caught your attention? If yes, then you’ll want to read Curran’s complete blog-post, which is only a click away.

Nick Redfern About Nick Redfern
Punk music fan, Tennents Super and Carlsberg Special Brew beer fan, horror film fan, chocolate fan, like to wear black clothes, like to stay up late. Work as a writer.

8 Responses to “Spring Heel Jack: A Cryptid?”

  1. DWA responds:

    Springheeled Jack is no cryptid. Have you ever read his posts? Sound real enough to m….oh…never mind…

  2. coelacanth1938 responds:

    I’ve always wondered if Spring-heeled Jack might’ve been an indirect inspiration for Batman.

  3. Loren Coleman responds:

    Spring-heeled Jack, a cryptid? Nay.

    Spring-heeled Jack, a Fortean manlike entity? Yay.

    Spring-heeled Jack was described as a large caped man with a glowing lantern and other humanlike attributes. It was very unlike, for example, “Mothman,” which was described first as a “big bird.”

  4. springheeledjack responds:

    I SUPPOSE if I comment on no other post this week, I’d better get in on this one…

    For my money, Spring Heel Jack was always human-ish in nature. As in I always took it to be either somebody that was way ahead of the curve either physically (with the whole jumping thing) putting him in the Fortean category, or something otherworldly–that could have either been Fortean or extra-terrestrial. I also always wondered if it couldn’t have been someone who was ahead of the curve technologically for that time.

    NOW all of that is ASSuming that tales just weren’t exaggerated or that one story didn’t balloon out of proportion.

    Either way, I guess I always considered Jack a Fortean entity instead of a cryptid. Unless maybe you want to consider an escaped caped kangaroo with a nasty streak toward the ladies…

  5. graybear responds:

    Everyone please note this one simple but telling fact: Dracula was a literary figure solely, Jack the Ripper was real.

  6. springheeledjack responds:

    As far as I know I’m real…I guess that depends on your perspective…once you get into the Fortean…

    Wouldn’t it be a trip if the real Spring Heeled Jack could not only jump large distances but time as well…say come into the present and get on weird Fortean and crypto sites… 🙂

  7. AreWeThereYeti responds:

    @ SHJ re:

    “Wouldn’t it be a trip if the real Spring Heeled Jack could not only jump large distances but time as well…say come into the present and get on weird Fortean and crypto sites…”

    Sure. But, apparently, his screen name’s already been taken… LOL 😉

  8. springheeledjack responds:

    AreWeThereYeti– Touché

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