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Jennet Humfrye, otherwise known as The Woman in Black, is the titular main antagonist of the 1987 stage play The Woman in Black and its loose 2012 film of the same name, as well as its 2014 sequel.

She was portrayed by Liz White in the 2012 film, and Leanne Best in the 2014 sequel.


The Woman in Black appears when children die. She manipulates the children into killing themselves, and it is stated that she has control over their souls after their deaths. It was revealed that in life, The Woman in Black was a woman named Jennet. She was found to be mentally troubled and wasn't considered suitable for taking care of her son Nathaniel. Alice, her sister, takes Nathaniel and treats him as though he were her own son. One day, Nathaniel drowned in the Marsh, and Jennet hung herself.

Play Ending

While the play's protagonist Arthur Kipps recounts in his own telling of the play's events he is doing research on Alice Drablow he finds that Drablow's son was actually Jennet's who became bitter over losing him to Alice and her husband. Upon hearing of her son's death after he, Drablow's husband and the carriage driver drowned in he marshes Jennet was overcome with grief and killed herself. She then continued to haunt Eel Marsh House ever since. Years later, however, Alice Drablow passed away with Jennet still haunting the building and killing any child who sets their eyes on her.

Arthur then experiences several terrifying encounters inside of the house before Samuel Daily's dog Spider runs away and gets caught in the marshes. Kipps eventually manages to pull Spider out of the marshes before Daily arrives.

Daily tells Arthur that he has to leave the town before it's too late for him and Kipps eventually reluctantly agrees. A few years later Arthur, his wife Stella and his son Joseph went to a carnival where Kipps once again saw Humfrye. A few moments later Joseph and Stella were both killed in an "accident" on one of the carnival attractions.

In an ending twist after Arthur's story is told the actress portraying the Woman in Black in the fictionalized play wasn't present for that evening revealing that the real Jennet Humfrye was the one truly performing.

Movie Ending

When Arthur Kipps, found out that his son Joseph was her next victim, he dove into the Marsh in order to retrieve Nathaniel's body in hopes that she will have closure. He does finally retrieve the body, and returns it to Jennet. However, she said that she would never forgive.

While waiting for the train, Joseph walks into the train tracks while the train was arriving. Arthur tried to get his son back. The result is both of them dying, and reuniting with his deceased wife. And The Woman in Black looks on in implied anger. It's possible that since Arthur tried his best to appease Jennet, she allowed him and his son to pass into heaven and reunite with Arthur's wife rather than take their souls.