Series / Prisoners of War
Israeli drama series (originally titled Hatufim
, literally "Abductees") dealing with the return and slow rehabilitation of three IDF
soldiers who have spent 17 years as prisoners of Arab insurgents
following their capture in Lebanon.
More-or-less served as the basis for the acclaimed Showtime series Homeland
, which was actually developed with the creator of Hatufim
. In contrast to its American successor, the series involves far fewer thriller elements and primarily focuses on the long recovery and readjustment of the soldiers after their prolonged trauma, and the effects their absence and sudden return has on their loved ones.
This series provides examples of:
- Absence Makes the Heart Go Yonder: During his captivity, Uri's girlfriend Nurit became convinced that he had died and married his brother Yaakov.
- The Ace: Ynon.
- Being Tortured Makes You Evil: Amiel.
- Break the Cutie: Yael does not take her brother's death well.
- Chekhov's Gun: Ismail's math workbooks and Jamal's Beach Picture
- Cold-Blooded Torture: Nimrode, Uri and Amiel endured years of beatings, burns, mock hangings, electrocution of genitals . . . . and as the series progresses, fewer Gory Discretion Shots are employed.
- Dead All Along: The third soldier who was taken captive, Amiel, returns home in a coffin.
- Dead Person Conversation: Grieving and in denial, Yael imagines that her brother really came home, and carries on talking to him and interacting with him.
- Faking the Dead: As we find out at the end of series 1, Amiel.
- Fish Out of Temporal Water: Non-supernatural version. Uri and Nimrode have missed 17 years of political and technological developments, such as the invention of DVDs (which Nimrode repeatedly mistakes for CDs) and the world wide web.
- Honey Trap: Iris is sent by a suspicious Haim to spy on Uri. He doesn't take it well.
- Interrupted Suicide: Yael interrupts her own - she swallows a bottle of pills, but changes her mind and calls an ambulance before any serious harm is done
- I Will Wait for You: Talya. Though her reunion with her husband is far from simple.
- Jerkass: Abdullah.
- The Lad-ette: Dana. Rather aggressive sexually, very tomboyish.
- Madonna–Whore Complex: The way the Israeli public treats Nurit, who remarried after Uri's kidnapping, in comparison to Talya, the "faithful wife", reeks of this trope. Good thing Nurit makes up her mind not to take it lying down.
- Morality Pet: Ismail, Jamal's son, is one for Amiel.
- Nervous Wreck: Uri, Uri, Uri. He barely speaks, jumps at sudden movements and noises, and has a tendency to huddle in corners.
- Never Got to Say Goodbye: Uri's mother.
- President Minority: An unnamed female Prime Minister greets Uri and Nimrode on their return. Though, of course, Israel's already had one of these.
- Prisoner Exchange: How Uri and Nimrode are returned to Israel, and not everyone in the country is happy about the trade
- Protectorate: Uri is one for Nimrode. He kills Amiel (mostly) because the insurgents threatened Uri.
- Sadistic Choice: The insurgents threatened to kill Uri unless Nimrode continued beating a weak, bleeding, and bound Amiel, until finally the latter died. Apparently.
- Shell-Shocked Veteran
- Smug Snake: Abdullah.
- Stepford Smiler: Talia.
- Survivor Guilt: Nimrode suffers this in particular, as he is plagued by memories of his captors forcing him to kill Amiel with his bare hands.
- These Hands Have Killed: Amiel does not take it well when Abdullah goads him into killing a "collaborator", who turns out to have been a child.
- Tomboyish Ponytail: Dana's hairstyle of choice. Iris also usually wears a ponytail when working in her capacity as an IDF operative, in contrast to her hairstyle when she acts as a Honey Trap for Uri.
- Troubled Fetal Position: Both of the returnees on occasion, but Uri does this far more frequently.
- Wham Episode: The Tape. Amiel is alive.
- Wham Line: "Help...Me". Said by a thought to be dead Amiel after Nimrod beats him into unconsciousness.