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Saturday, May 16, 2015

The Returned, 10 Twisted Twin Stories

Twins. We’re fascinated by them, and for good reason. Imagine – someone who looks just like you, acts just like you, has your same DNA and, in some cases, like Lena and Camille in THE RETURNED, even has the same sensations when you decide to get your groove on. It’s eerie. It’s odd… and it’s true. The symbiotic relationships of people who share identical DNA with one other are captivating… even more so when the duo is diabolical.
1. The Jim Twins
Identical twins Jim Springer and Jim Lewis may have been adopted by different families and have spent their entire lives apart, but that didn’t keep them from living a weirdly similar existence. Aside from the fact that they were both named Jim by their adoptive parents, the twins had both married twice – the first time to women named Linda and the second to women named Betty. But it didn’t stop there – they both had dogs named Toy, liked math and carpentry in school but hated spelling, spent time as sheriff’s deputies, got headaches at the same time of day, drank the same beer, smoked the same cigarettes, and drove the same model of car – a Chevrolet. Creepy.
2. The Crazy Swedes
Swedish twins Ursula and Sabina Eriksson seemed normal… until the day in 2008 when Ursula traveled from the US to Ireland to visit her sister – and they both went a little bonkers. The two were caught on camera running into oncoming traffic on the M6 motorway in the UK, across six lanes of speeding traffic. After both were struck by vehicles, Sabina was also placed under arrest for assaulting the police officer that had attempted to restrain her and her sister. But that’s not all! Sabina ended the day by murdering a father of two. Apparently, Sabina suffered from a form of temporary insanity, and Ursula’s sanity was consumed by her twin’s mental state.
3. The Nazi and the Jew
Separated as infants in 1930s Europe, Oscar Stohr and Jack Yufe were twins without ever knowing it. Stohr was raised in Germany, joining the Hitler Youth. Yufe, on the other hand, was raised Jewish and moved to Israel. Years later, when the twins were in their fifties, they found each other and discovered that while they had been raised to be completely different people, they found little things in common, like their way of speaking, and taste in food. Both also wore rubber bands on their wrists and had the most peculiar habit of flushing the toilet before using it. Talk about a weird family reunion.
4. The Watsons
Like Lena and Camille from THE RETURNED, Andrew and Christopher Watson of Lutterworth, England, had a bond that transversed consciousness (or in Lena and Camille’s situation – death). When the brothers were in a horrific car accident together at age 16, Christopher lingered in a coma while Andrew went home. Days later, the family found that when Andrew visited his brother in the hospital, Christopher’s blood pressure went down and his heart rate settled, despite being diagnosed as medically brain dead. When at home, Andrew would be unable to sleep while Christopher had an epileptic fit, and he would wake up in bed in the same position as his comatose brother.
5. Telepathic Twins
Eight-year-old Richard and Damien Powell’s telepathic link was so strong that they could “tune in” to each other and were actually able to feel what the other was going through. If one was cold, the other would shiver. If one was scared, the other would start having palpitations. We’re assuming – when they grew older – the twins would make a courtesy call to each other to “tune out” before one got his sexy time on.
6. The Gibbons Girls
June and Jennifer Gibbons were so close that they created an exclusive language that was unintelligible to outsiders except for their little sister. Sadly, the bond went bad – when they grew older, they were committed to a mental health hospital after a series of petty crimes and arson, where they remained for 14 years. During their stay in the hospital, they became convinced one twin had to die so the other could live a normal life. Jennifer eventually agreed to be the sacrifice, admitting to biographer Margaret Wallace, “I’m going to die. We’ve decided.” Within hours of their release at the age of 30, Jennifer died of sudden inflammation of the heart. After losing her twin, June resumed a normal life.
7. Psychic Twins
Linda and Terry Jamison, twins from the United States, are famous for their psychic abilities. On November 2, 1999, they claimed that through an automatic writing process there would be a terrorist attack on the federal government and the World Trade Center in 2001. They also predicted that John F. Kennedy Jr. would die by plane crash. Mysterious stuff.
8. Murderous Twins
Duplicitous twins Robert and Stephen Spahalski shared similar dark sides. What started as petty crimes evolved into a thirst for blood. Stephen killed a store owner, which his brother Robert backed up with saying, “They must have deserved it”. Meanwhile Robert dove into an addiction to crack and became a serial killer – among his murders were a prostitute and his girlfriend. Talk about evil twins.
9. The Kray Twins
The ’50s and ’60s were a time when mafia-style operations were still thriving. And identical twin thugs Reggie and Ronnie Kray, known as the Kray twins, put their criminal stamp on London’s East End, starting off as amateur boxers, and descending into all kinds of illegal escapades including blackmail, armed robbery, arson, hijacking, assault, torture, and murder. Owning several nightclubs, their wealth and localized fame gave them license to schmooze with the likes of Judy Garland and Frank Sinatra. Eventually, though, fame caught up with them in 1968 when they were arrested and convicted for the murders of Jack “The Hat” McVitie (by Reggie) and George Cornell (by Ronnie).
10. The O Brothers
Ah, to be caught red-handed! So classic! Such a simple mistake! But what if your genetic information could not be sniffed due to it being the exact match of your twin? That’s the loophole that prevented Hassan and Abbas O. (due to German law their full names cannot be disclosed), 27-year-old twins, from being convicted of stealing $6.5 million worth of jewelry merch back in 2009. All thanks to the shared genetics on a forgotten sweaty rubber glove at the crime scene. Quick, criminals, go clone yourselves!

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