After being saved at one time by Netflix which then made it one of its greatest hits, La Casa de Papel (finally) is bowing out. A long and painful road to a successful end?
Four years. It has been four years now that La Casa de Papel, a small Spanish series then broadcast on Antena 3 in its country, landed on Netflix which has made it a global phenomenon. The streaming platform (SVoD) has just got its hands on a vein that it does not intend to let go so quickly. She redeems the rights and this story looped in two parts quickly returns for a new robbery of three additional seasons. Since there are no small profits, the last season will even be split in half. A well-oiled plan that would make The Professor jealous.
And that’s where we are. After years of seeing Dali’s mask everywhere and hearing Bella Ciao as soon as you take the subway, the show has bowed out. Five episodes to complete the whole plot. Five episodes for a successful release. Five episodes to make us forget everything else.
So we pick up where we left off; our amateur robbers must overcome the tragedy, finish stealing the gold and make it out alive while in front, the police are determined to arrest them, whatever the cost.
Is everything forgiven?
After a first part that allowed itself a breath by abandoning its plans for grenade explosions, the real Casa de Papel, the one that foresees the unforeseeable four centuries in advance, is back. We do not change a winning team and the absurdity of the scriptwriting strings continues to shine because it has long been accepted that our credulity is acquired.
But perhaps because we know that each incongruous turnaround will be the last, we end up accepting events with a certain sympathy. To use the metaphor, it’s like a kid trying to impress us with his tenth necklace of noodles just before he starts college; we are fed up, but we show him that we still love him a little.
An effect which is also felt on our “professionals” of the robbery who are always quicker to talk about their love stories than to think about it. Everyone refocuses on their primary objective, reducing our desire to slap them. Even Denver, the last survivor of the Hartley team, heartbroken, becomes almost touching on his final bursts of maturity.
Without being sad to see it end (let’s not exaggerate anything), we would have almost reconciled with La Casa de Papel as it puts the human at the center of these five concluding episodes. Fallible humans, but this time for better reasons. And far from the bank, it offers us above all a much more pleasant plot to follow between The Professor and Alicia Sierra whose alchemy seems more natural than with its historical comrades. More generally, the actress Najwa Nimri comes out of the molasses that were these three additional seasons by bringing an undeniable freshness and energy. We love to hate her, we hate to love her. We would almost be ready to follow a dedicated spin-off. Almost.
Berlin, straight into the wall
Speaking of spin-offs, Netflix does not intend to completely let go of its goose that lays the golden eggs and has already signed the return of this dear Berlin (Pedro Alonso) in a series devoted in 2023. Favorite character fans, yet the latter has nothing more to say and as we feared in the first part of the season, the sequences devoted to him are mainly there to slow the pace of the main plot.
The writers may have us believe in the importance of the latter by connecting the threads of the past and the present, the story could have come to the same point without its ghostly presence. Even the 36,599th twist on characters linked to Berlin will have absolutely no major impact on the initial plan, other than lengthening the series before it goes to bed.
Admission of weakness of a series that will have killed the character who will become the darling of fans far too soon and who does everything to keep him alive, even artificially, even with a spin-off. After all, it’s not as if La Casa de Papel had never pulled the rope …