In the new Netflix series Lupin, Omar Sy plays Assane Diop, a Senegalese immigrant whose father died as a result of a false accusation. While working as a chauffeur for a wealthy Parisian family, Asssane’s father was accused of stealing a necklace in their care, that once belonged to Marie Antoinette. Assane was given an Arsène Lupin book by his father as a young man. He sets out to use the character’s exploits to mold himself into a mysterious figure whose entire existence is dedicated to claiming the necklace and bring down the family that ruined his life.
More than just a heist series
While Lupin has all the makings of a typical heist story such as Ocean’s 11 or Money Heist, we appreciate that the show is not just about a thief looking for a big score before retiring to the Bahamas. Stealing the Marie Antoinette necklace is more than just a heist to Assane, it’s personal.
Social commentary that isn’t thrown in your face
One of the more impressive elements of the show is the way it depicts racism in a subtle manner. Assane, a black man, puts a 60 million euro bid on a necklace worth millions and the auctioneers awkwardly pause to confirm his (fabricated) identity and net worth. The white men in attendance are not vetted upon placing their bids.
Omar Sy’s charisma keeps you hooked.
The ‘gentleman thief’ is an old literary archetype with modern examples like Danny Ocean from Ocean’s 11. In Omar Sy’s Assane, we get a character that’s both inscrutable and playful. He’s always a few steps ahead, but when confronted, Assane pauses with an unreadable expression before reacting with a quip. His delivery is unpredictable and incredibly smooth.