Sweeney Todd
L-R: Drawing from The String of Pearls
Tod Slaughter from the 1936 film
Len Cariou from the 1979 musical;
Johnny Depp in the 2007 film adaptation of the musical
Characters Adapted from Other Works
First Appearance: The String of Pearls: A Domestic Romance (source novel);
Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (relevant stage adaptation)
Creator: James Malcolm Rymer and/or Thomas Peckett Prest (disputed) (novel);
Christopher Bond and Stephen Sondheim (play)
Nationality: United Kingdom
Date of Birth: 18th century (original work)
Early 19th century (musical)
Date of Death: 1785 (original work)
1846 (musical)
Cause of Death: Execution by hanging in the original story;
Throat slit in the musical
Spouse: Lucy Barker (play only)
Children: Johanna Barker (play only)
Occupation: Barber, criminal
Appearing in:
"The Great White Way"
by Laura Frankos

Set in OTL
Type of Appearance: Direct
Species: VR avatar
Cause of Death: Crushed to death

Sweeney Todd is a fictional character who first appeared as the villain of the British penny dreadful serial The String of Pearls (1846–1847), attributed to James Malcolm Rymer and Thomas Peckett Prest.

In the original version of the tale, set in 1785, Todd is a barber from London's Fleet Street neighborhood who dispatches his victims as they sit in his barber chair, by sending them down a revolving trap door into the basement "polishing them off" (slitting their throats with his straight razor). In some adaptations, the murdering process is reversed, with Todd slitting his customers' throats before dispatching them into the basement through the trap door. After Todd has robbed his dead victims of their goods, Mrs. Lovett, his partner in crime, assists him in disposing of the bodies by baking their flesh into meat pies and selling them to the unsuspecting customers of her pie shop.

Christopher Bond's 1973 stage adaptation reveals Todd to be Benjamin Barker, a man falsely convicted and deported by a corrupt judge, and whose primary motivation for murder is vigilantism. This element was carried over into Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, the 1979 Broadway musical adaptation by Stephen Sondheim and Hugh Wheeler, which is arguably the best known version of the tale.

Sweeney Todd in "The Great White Way"[]


Sweeney Todd was one of Trina Hutchinson's primary Sondhead warriors in her virtual reality battle against Brent Birley's Webberite army. He was designed in Kelsey Grammer's image.

Sweeney Todd in "Leg Irons, the Bitch and the Wardrobe"[]

Cammek once directed a brilliant play about a demon Berber and a mad cook. The general viewing public did not appreciate the greatness of this piece of art.

See also[]