Not all stories involving Those Wacky Nazis
are set in World War II. Sometimes they are set in the aftermath, or even the present. Some Nazis have escaped from defeat and/or trial, and are lurking in a hidden base laying plans to restore the Reich and Take Over the World
(as if a few guys in a hidden lab had better chances than a whole country). Or in more naturalistic stories, they're just trying to evade justice and fondly remembering what fun they had in the camps
. Perhaps the hero, or a Nazi Hunter
, is chasing such fugitives; perhaps they have treasures, a Lost Technology
or a MacGuffin
, or perhaps they are simply seen around. Many times, said Nazis are hidden in Argentina or elsewhere
in South America.
Having actual WWII fugitives hanging around in the present is becoming a Dead Horse Trope
for obvious reasons - any survivors nowadays are going to be pretty ancient without some Nazi Superscience
to spruce them up. However, they could still be used as Back Story
, to give a run-of-the-mill Evil Scheme
that unmistakeable Nazi flavour. Or their sons or grandsons raised in 'the faith.'
There is some Truth in Television
to this: yes, several Nazis escaped to Argentina and were allowed safe- passage by the government of Juan Domingo Perón, most notoriously Adolf Eichmann (who was captured by Mossad and put on trial in Israel) and Josef Mengele (who never did get caught). However, things were not so simple in real life. Several countries sought to receive the German scientists
that worked for Hitler and improve their national development, Argentina was one of those countries, but not the only one. The USA
, actually, got the most, including famous Werner von Braun. The Argentine neutrality in World War II was not caused by popular support to Nazism (though there certainly was a notorious pro-axis feel at the time, mainly among the armed forces), but by mere localism: most people considered it a distant war between foreign countries, with no Argentine business at stake
. Other countries in South America gave Nazis sanctuary thanks to what is now a rather uncomfortable relationship between the Catholic Church (which was big in both Central Europe and South America) and fascism (which was also big in both Central Europe and South America). One hypothesis is that it was individual clergymen helping national figures escape a Communist crackdown. Another is that Vatican was seeking Catholic bulwarks against the Communist threat.
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- In G.I. Joe: Special Missions #2, the Joes are sent to South America to extract an ageing Nazi, who is the only one who knows the details of a planeload of nerve gas frozen in a glacier, from a heavily fortified compound in the jungle.
- The map of the world in DC Comics' Flashpoint alternate timeline unusually used Brazil but the map appeared to indicate all of South America, more or less: "Brazil (Nazi-Occupied)"
- In the non-canon Hellboy/Batman/Starman crossover, the neo-Nazi Knights of October have an outpost in the Amazon jungle from which they attempt to summon an elder god.
- Retroactively used as Doctor Nemesis' "bus" in X-Men. After World War II he spent decades in South America fighting the efforts of Nazi mad scientists to found the Fourth Reich (and more recently, the Fifth Reich). However, after he became too widely known in the patently-insane-fascist-South-American-superhuman community, he decided to leave to help the X-Men. With science.
- When Captain America returned in The Avengers #4, they made the retroactive fashback of the plane, that Bucky was holding to while Captain America falled to the ocean and freezed. That plane was part of a plot of Baron Heinrich Zemo (retroactively pointed as the archnemesis of Captain America and Bucky in WWII). What did Zemo do after the war? He stayed hidden in an unexplored jungle in South America, and led the Masters of Evil against the Avengers until he died in a landslide while fighting Captain America
- In Hitman, when Tiegel's Nazi Grandpa dies, his old comrades come "from South America" for his funeral.
- In Catwoman #19, Catwoman heads to South America to retrieve a painting from an ex-Nazi who had later served with the KGB and had been allowed to retire with a handful of stolen artworks.
- In X-Men: First Class Magneto chases a Nazi to Villa Gesell, a city in Argentina. Even though what appears in the movie is an area of mountains and lakes - while the real Villa Gessel is a beach city, former hippie paradise.
- In OSS 117: Lost in Rio, 117 is sent to Brazil to obtain a list of French WWII collaborators from an old Nazi who's plotting to create a fifth Reich - because his fourth Reich attempt failed. His son disguises himself as a hippie.
- The Boys From Brazil (and the novel it was based on) are about a secret plot to raise clones of Hitler in, well, three guesses where. Though unlike the boys, Mengele is seen in Paraguay - his speculated location at the time of filming, and where he really went for some time. But in 1978 Mengele was really in Brazil, where he died an year later.
- In Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, the golden ticket holder from Paraguay is revealed to be a fraud - a news photo shows him to be Martin Bormann.
- Referenced in Yellow Submarine. When the Chief Blue Meanie is defeated and asks where the Meanies should flee to, his flunky suggests, "Argentina?"
- That "flunky's" name is Max.
- The nazis in They Saved Hitlers Brain are hiding in the fictional South American country Mandoras.
- Notorious, in a variant on the trope, has the daughter of a Nazi spy recruited to infiltrate an order of Nazi fugitives in post-war Brazil.
- In The Money Pit, Tom Hanks' character is able to buy the house for a song from a lady whose husband turns out to have been Hitler's pool boy and had escaped to South America about three steps ahead of the Nazi hunters.
- In the final scene of Amen., the Doctor is preparing to catch a boat to Argentina.
- In Robert A. Heinlein's Rocket Ship Galileo the protagonists discover a hidden Nazi base on the Moon.
- Andrei Lazarchuk / Mikhail Uspensky's Look into the Monsters Eyes plays with the trope. In it there are two neighboring villages in Argentine, one Belorussian, and other Bavarian, with the catch that the first was created by the survivors of a partizan group hunted by the men of the second during the WWII. Both villages use this fact to bond over. And the real Nazi base is in the Antarctic, but by the time Adm. Baird's expedition finally gets there it was already destroyed by their experiments with the occult.
- Clive Cussler's 1999 novel Atlantis Found has Nazi villains living in Argentina.
- Incidentally, in Cussler's 2010 novel The Silent Sea, the totalitarian villains are actual Argentineans - the country has been taken over by fascists in-universe.
- Two Graves plays with this trope by putting Naziland in Brazil instead.
- The Night Gallery pilot had a segment about a hunted fugitive death-camp officer in an unnamed Latin American country seeking escape in a museum painting.
- A Get Smart episode centered around a quasi-Nazi KAOS prison camp in the wilds of New Jersey. Commandant Siegfried announces the imminent arrival of a noted officer "from our glorious fatherland...South America", known as "ze Beast of Buenos Aires!"
- Mission: Impossible: In "The Legend", Briggs and Cinammon impersonate a former Nazi and his daughter who are invited to attend a reunion of aged Nazi leaders at the South American home of Nazi fugitive Martin Bormann, who is planning the creation of the Fourth Reich.
- Invoked on Millennium during the second season's "Roosters," in which it is said that the SS secretly set up shell corporations in Argentina, Paraguay, and other "cooperating countries" as part of a secret project called "Odessa," with the express purpose of bringing down the Millennium Group.
- White Collar at one point had a U-boat filled to the brim with Nazi treasure with an intended destination of somewhere in Argentina, but it sank before it could arrive.
- On The Office, Dwight Schrute has referred several times to his Nazi maternal grandfather, who lives in Argentina and was 103 at the time of the interview.
Dwight: I wanted to visit him, but my travel visa was protested by the Shoah Foundation.
- Herederos De Una Venganza: the members of the lodge are the descendants of Nazi fugitives.
- Frasier discovers Niles' Hispanic maid speaks German.
Frasier: Apparently she worked for a German family that turned up in Guatemala... [darkly] just after the war.
- Doctor Who gave "DeFlores" (strongly implied to be Martin Bormann, especially in the deleted scenes) and his group of neo-Nazis a South American headquarters in "Silver Nemesis".
- Secret Army had a sequel, Kessler, featuring the titular Nazi from Secret Army as a Villain Protagonist trying to keep one step ahead of Nazi-hunters in the years after 1945. It included a period in South America.
- In a perhaps unintended lampshading of this trope, Seinfeld's Soup Nazi moves to Argentina after Elaine discovers his recipes.
- Soap: In a Season One scene set in Ecuador we see that Adolph Hitler is working as a waiter.
- Delta Green gives us the remnants of the Karotechia, Hitler's occult warfare division of the Ahnenerbe. They're staked out on a plantation in the depths of the Amazon, usually work through modern neo-Nazis, and most of them have one foot in the grave - though, in an aversion of the "fading threat" bit, one of them's stayed young and immortal due to cannibalistic practices, and may end up being the future of the group.
- In GURPS Technomancer, the Condor Group, comprising former SS magicians, essentially control Argentina behind the scenes after giving Eva Peron immortality.
- Almost a third part of Bloodrayne takes place in a hidden Nazi base in Argentina. Then again, another third takes place in Germany proper.
- In the I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream adventure game, Nimdok fled to Brazil to continue his experiments.