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Fargo Crime Syndicate

    In General 
  • All There in the Manual: Their names are only revealed in the credits. Numbers' and Wrench's first names are revealed in the credits of the Season 2 finale.
  • Composite Character: Of their predecessors, the Gerhardt crime family and the Kansas City crime syndicate. They have the local, tight-knit quality of the Gerhardts and the methodical business savvy of Kansas City. This is fitting, because their leader was formerly an enforcer for the Gerhardts, and was responsible for the destruction of both organizations.
  • Early-Bird Cameo: Hanzee Dent, who has just become Moses Tripoli, helps his future enforcers, Numbers and Wrench, with some bullies on a baseball field in the Season 2 finale, planting the seed of the Fargo Syndicate.
  • End of an Era: The prophetic words Hanzee Dent ignored in 1979 finally ring true in 2006, when, like the Kansas City syndicate and the Gerhardts before them, the Fargo mob collapses and falls into the sea.
  • Kill 'Em All: The organization is destroyed and most of its members killed by Lorne Malvo.
  • Killed Offscreen: The fate of the majority of them.
  • Mister Strangenoun: Mr. Wrench, Mr. Numbers, and Mr. Tripoli. These turn out to be their real names.
  • Mugging the Monster: They have no idea how dangerous Lorne Malvo is.
  • Mythology Gag: Their building is named the Showalter Block.
  • Only Known by Their Nickname: Subverted. Mr. Tripoli, Mr. Wrench, and Mr. Numbers seem like aliases, but the Season 2 finale reveals that these are actually their names.
  • Revenge: They get involved with the plot because they want to avenge the murder of Sam Hess.
  • Trademark Favorite Food: They seem to frequent the Chinese restaurant next door.
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Leadership

    Moses Tripoli 

Moses Tripoli (Formerly Hanzee Dent)

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/tripoli_moses.jpg
"Dead. Not apprehend. Dead. Don't care extramarital. Don't care not related."
Played By: Mark Acheson

"Kill and be killed. Head in a bag. There's the message."

The head of the Fargo Crime Syndicate.


  • Always a Bigger Fish: He's gunned down by Malvo to signal the end of his reign in the criminal world and to establish how Malvo is truly Eviler Than Thou.
  • Ambiguously Brown: Likely the Intended Audience Reaction. His first name comes from the Hebrew, and his last name is the name of a city in North Africa (the Libyan capital, to be precise). He's portrayed by an actor of European descent and season two reveals he's a Native American man who has undergone extensive plastic surgery to conceal his original identity.
  • Character Death: Malvo sinks his entire empire, which includes gunning down Tripoli in his building.
  • The Don: Of the Fargo Crime Syndicate.
  • Fat Bastard: A crime lord who is as ruthless as he is overweight.
  • Formerly Fit: Back in The '70s, he was quite physically fit, and a perfect example of Lean and Mean when he still was Hanzee Dent.
  • From Nobody to Nightmare: After the fall of the Gerhardts he built his criminal empire practically from scratch, eventually becoming a dreaded criminal lord.
  • Karmic Death: Dies an ignoble death, helpless to change the outcome when he could have easily handled it in his youth... like Otto Gerhardt, the boss whose family Tripoli betrayed in the 70s. For extra Irony points, he also dies offscreen, same as Otto.
  • Killed Offscreen: His death is heard, but not seen, when Malvo breaks into the Fargo Headquarters and kills the entire syndicate.
  • Meaningful Name: In the words of the man who chose it: "And so... great empires fall and are forgotten ... Tripoli ... was founded in Libya in the Seventh Century by the Phoenicians, then was conquered by the Romans. And then by the Spanish, and then by the Turks. You see where I'm going."
  • Race Lift: In-universe. He was born a Native American member of the Sioux Tribe.
  • Two Aliases, One Character: The season 2 finale reveals that he is also Hanzee Dent, the ultimate Big Bad of Season 2.
  • Villainous Glutton: He barely pauses in eating his fancy dinner while ordering the deaths of his enemies.

    Mr. Carlyle 

Carlyle

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/mrcarlyle1.png
"Yield so far 9,000 unique credit card numbers with a credit limit of approximately 1.1 million minus real estate, minus labor, minus R&D."
Played By: James Binkley

"Assets deployed, Mr. Wrench and Mr. Numbers. Three days, plus lodging plus mileage."

A member of the Fargo Syndicate.


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Associates

    Mr. Jergen 

Jergen

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/mrjergen1_5.png
"Soy sauce and another mai tai. Mai tai? Mai tai!"
Played By: Andy King

"So he's got the stick in his mouth, right? Biting down. And I grab the arrow. Then Craig is in the car having a giggle. Thinks the whole thing's hi-larious. Which that's my cousin out there, right? So I slip the knife outta me boot and give him the old what-for. Held the knife to his bloody face."

A member of the Fargo Syndicate.


    Sam Hess 

    Max Gold 

Max Gold

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/gold_max_1.jpg
Played By: Brian Markinson

A lawyer working for the Hess family and Hess & Sons Trucking, and, by extension, the Fargo crime syndicate.


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Enforcers

    Mr. Wrench 

Wes Wrench

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/wrench.jpg
Played By: Russell Harvard

A deaf contract killer, employed by the Fargo Crime Syndicate, Mr. Wrench is sent in to find out who killed Sam Hess, a local trucking boss, and "dispose" of the problem. Working with his partner Mr. Numbers, Mr. Wrench will use whatever means necessary to track down his target, even if it means piling up a few more bodies along the way.


  • Badass Bookworm: He's a Professional Killer who firmly believes that every town should have a library.
  • Best Served Cold: He waits five years before executing Emmit Stussy to avenge Nikki's death.
  • The Bus Came Back: After fleeing at the end of season one, he shows up almost two seasons and four in-universe years later, on the bus carrying Nikki to prison.
  • Cartwright Curse: A platonic example, but so far, every person he's teamed up with has died. His first partner, Mr. Numbers, has his throat cut by Lorne Malvo during an assassination attempt. His next partner, Nikki Swango, dies in a shoot-out with a state trooper while she tries to murder Emmit.
  • Fire-Forged Friends: With Nikki Swango, after their ordeal in the forest being pursued by Varga's henchmen.
  • Handicapped Badass: Wrench is deaf, only communicating through sign language. He also happens to be a Professional Killer and one of Fargo's best hitmen. Shown even more with his return in Season 3, where he ably helps Nikki escape Varga's men as they're hunted through the woods, ultimately killing one and cutting off Yuri's ear by throwing an ax, then ripping apart the weakened chain that had been holding them together with his bare hands.
  • Heartbroken Badass: He's devastated after the death of Mr. Numbers.
  • Iconic Outfit: His tasseled cowboy jacket that doubles as a Shout-Out to Midnight Cowboy. It's a lot more conspicuous than Mr. Numbers's outfit. The creators note that the tassels draw attention to his constant signing.
  • It's Personal:
    • Wrench's pursuit of Malvo takes a more personal turn when he kills Numbers, but also because Malvo killed his bosses at Fargo, so the job is no longer a factor.
    • Same motive when he kills Emmit Stussy after 5 years because of his indirect involvement with Nikki's death.
  • Leitmotif: His and Numbers's appearance is frequently accompanied by a jazz drumbeat.
  • Like an Old Married Couple: The actors were told to interact with each other like one, and their argument in the diner certainly comes off this way.
  • Not So Stoic: Played with. Upon learning that Numbers perished, Wench maintains a stoic expression, but his eyes are red and watery.
  • Odd Couple: A non-romantic varient with Nikki in Season 3.
  • One-Man Army: Able to take down Meemo and four more of Varga's heavily armed goons in an ambush.
  • Professional Killer: He is a ruthless killer employed by the Fargo syndicate.
  • Recurring Element: So far, he's the only character to appear in every season.
  • The Quiet One: Due to being deaf.
  • Shout-Out: He dresses like Joe Buck from Midnight Cowboy.
  • Silent Snarker: Wrench lets his expression do his snarking for him.
  • Single Tear: Wrench has one when he finds out Malvo killed Numbers.
  • Those Two Bad Guys: He and Numbers stick together pretty much exclusively. It comes to a tragic end when Numbers is killed.
  • Took a Level in Kindness: By 2010, he is a much better person, to the point that Paul Marane seems convinced that he is "on a better path" and allows him to return with Nikki to help her in her mission.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: He and Numbers are constantly bickering and annoying each other, but are stalwart partners and have been friends since they were kids.
  • Worthy Opponent: Malvo tells a hospitalized Wrench that he and Numbers came closer to taking him down than anyone else ever has.
  • Unexpected Character: Given the limited connection between seasons, his reappearance near the end of season three was quite surprising.
  • Unknown Rival: He turns out to be key to stopping Varga, as the practically omniscient villain has no idea he even exists. This gives Nikki an advantage she otherwise would not have had.

    Mr. Numbers 

Grady Numbers

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/numbers.jpg
Played By: Adam Goldberg

Mr. Numbers is the partner of and sign language translator for Mr. Wrench. When an associate in Minnesota is murdered, Wrench and Numbers are sent to Bemidji, MN to track down the killer and dispose of him as quickly as possible.


  • Badass Beard: He wears a very thick beard and comes close to killing Malvo.
  • Character Death: Malvo brutally cuts his throat during a show-off in a blizzard.
  • Dropped a Bridge on Him: Numbers is stabbed by Malvo with limited buildup. Somewhat subverted given the brutal, harsh nature of the episode.
  • Leitmotif: His and Wrench's appearance is frequently accompanied by a jazz drumbeat.
  • Like an Old Married Couple: The actors were told to interact with each other like one, and their argument in the diner certainly comes off this way.
  • Professional Killer: He is a ruthless killer employed by the Fargo syndicate.
  • Shout-Out: He dresses like Enrico "Ratso" Rizzo from Midnight Cowboy.
  • Slashed Throat: How Malvo finishes off Numbers.
  • The Snack Is More Interesting: In a deleted scene, he and Wrench stop at a gas station and Numbers heads to the convenience store to eat a bag of Scrunyons, in spite of Wrench's insistence that they're pressed for time. When the convenience store is being robbed, Numbers is just hanging around, eating his chips, while the robber is making his demands. Though when the robber's back is turned, Wrench puts his gun into the bag, and offers the guy a chip, before shooting him in the head through it. After killing all the witnesses, he makes sure to rob the place... and take another Scrunyon bag for the road.
  • Those Two Bad Guys: He and Wrench stick together pretty much exclusively until he is killed.
  • Trolling Translator: He frequently mistranslates Wrench either for a laugh or so the two of them can have private conversations, like when they were mocking Hess's lawyer right in front of his face.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: He and Wrench are constantly bickering and annoying each other but are stalwart partners and have been friends since they were kids.
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