Follow TV Tropes

Following

Series / La casa de papel
aka: Money Heist

Go To

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/188799.jpg
Hands up, this is a heist!
Advertisement:

La casa de papel (Literally "Paper House", marketed by Netflix in English as Money Heist) is a 2017 Spanish TV Series created by Álex Pina (also the creator of Locked Up) broadcast by Antena 3 (also known for Aquí no hay quien viva, Allí abajo or the aforementioned Locked Up). The full series is currently available on Netflix.

This show deals with a heist... but not just any heist: the takeover of Spain's Royal Mint by a diverse group of criminals, with the goal of forcing the workers to print 2.4 billion euros in untraceable banknotes over the course of 10 days.

In the planned robbery, the group is to follow three rules:

  • No Killing: as part of what they want is to appear to be Just Like Robin Hood, they intend not to hurt anyone, because, if they kill anyone, they will lose the battle of public opinion.
  • Advertisement:
  • No Names: Everyone (save for The Professor) is nicknamed after a city. This, supposedly, prevents attachments and avoids the potential problem of someone outing them.
  • No Personal Relationships: this, technically, is supposed to prevent attachments and allow the group to go on their way without a problem once the robbery is done.

The day of the heist coincides with the visit of a group of students, among whom stands out Allison Parker, the daughter of the British Ambassador to Spain, and who is to play an (unwittingly) important role in the Professor's plan. The first phase of the plan goes swimmingly, but soon it becomes obvious that no plan survives contact with the enemy, and even the most obsessive Crazy-Prepared plans can be screwed up by human nature.

After the international success of Seasons 1 and 2note , the decision was made to renew for a third season, with its premiere on July 19th 2019.

Advertisement:

The show is due to air Season 4 in April 2020.

A tie-in event in Rainbow Six Siege ran 21-25 November, 2019. The event features a special hostage mode and cosmetic items based on the iconic red outfit and Dali mask.


This series has examples of the following tropes:

    Seasons 1 and 2 
  • Adorkable: The Professor is hilariously flustered when personally confronted with female sexuality.
  • Aesop Amnesia: Arturo is devastated from grief and guilt over Mónica's apparent death because she was only following his plan. When Mónica is revealed to be alive, however, he goes right back to making half-assed escape "plans" and either convinces or bullies the other hostages into helping him.
  • Affably Evil: Berlin. Episode 5 lampshades it, revealing his psychological issues rank from megalomania to an absurd need to please other people.
    • Averted with everyone else: they have kidnapped a lot of people, but they do not intend to injure any of them.
  • Age-Gap Romance: Tokyo was 14 when she met her 28-year-old boyfriend.
    • Also the case with Tokio and Rio, there are plenty of comments on the 10+ year age gap between them.
    • Also between Denver and Mónica.
  • All There in the Manual: Oslo and Helsinki are the only two members of the Professor's band whose real names are never revealed in the series. An article in Antena 3's website identified them, respectively, as Dimitri Mostovoi and Yashin Dasayev. The actual canonicity of these names is dubious, however, as they generate an inconsistency: Oslo's coffin appears on screen giving his name as Radko Dragic, which is a better match for a Serb than the above, more Russian-sounding name.
  • And Starring: "...y Kiti Mánver"
  • Awful Truth: Moscú told Denver that his (Denver's) mother abandoned them both when he was a kid. During the heist, he reveals the actual truth: she was hooked on heroin, and Moscú's attempts to get her to detox, in which he blew all of his savings four times, never worked because she would soon go back for drugs, so he took her close to a place where he knew drugs were sold and left her there.
  • The Bad Guy Wins: In the end of the second season, the bad guys have sucessfully printed millions of money and got away with them, evading capture.
    • With the exception of Oslo, Moscú and Berlin, who die over the course of the heist.
  • Bait-and-Switch: When the Professor is at the bar with Raquel as she receives a message with a photograph from one of the robbers, she tries to arrest him... because she believes he is a journalist trying to get information about the robbery.
    • Double Subverted: when Mónica grabs Arturo's phone, and Denver sees her, he takes her outside - but he just wants to give her the abortive pill she requested and convinces her not to abort the child. Berlin comes up, Denver tells him about the pill, and Mónica leaves... and the mobile chooses that moment to blip.
    • After Tokio's failed attempt to force Berlin to reveal what's Plan Chernobyl, Berlin has Helsinki grab her. The narration appears to indicate she is going to get killed. She is taped to a table with wheels and thrown out of the Mint by the main gates, leading to her arrest.
  • Batman Gambit: The Professor's plan runs on this. Several of these, in fact.
  • The Bear: Helsinki.
  • Bittersweet Ending: The heist team manages to get away with almost a thousand million Euros while keeping public opinion on their side, but they lose Oslo, Moscú and Berlín on the way. Raquel leaves her job, but she meets the Professor and possibly reignites their past relationship.
  • Book-Ends/Call-Back: In the finale, the meeting between Sergio/the Professor and Raquel happens pretty much the same way they first met.
  • Bottomless Magazines: So, so much with the thieves in s2ep9, once the police breach the bank. Every single thief fires dozens if not hundreds of rounds, and only Berlin at the very end is actually seen to reload.
  • Brainy Brunette: Allison Parker.
  • Bullets Do Not Work That Way: Several times in the series important characters are shot, and a big deal is made of having to extract the bullets from their bodies before stiching them back up. While this might be marginally believable in the case of a handgun bullet shot into a leg - though if it were the type to stay in it would cause a lot more damage than pictured - it's just not reasonable that a high-power sniper round fired from a relatively close distance would stay lodged into someone's shoulder, to say nothing of the relatively small amount of damage inflicted - the victim survives with minor surgery to remove the bullet and a couple days of rest.
  • Caper Rationalization: The protagonists justify the heist with the fact that they aren't actually stealing from anyone, they're just printing new money, which the central bank does all the time anyway. This applies in universe as well, as a key part of the plan is to win over the sympathy of the public.
  • Chekhov's Boomerang: The Browning machine gun the team brought along gets used several times to fend off the cops, first to scare them off doing a full frontal assault, then when the escaping hostages leave a hole on a wall and the cops try to exploit it to charge in, and later by Berlin to pull off his final You Shall Not Pass! action as the team gets away with the money.
  • Concealment Equals Cover: While some shootouts feature realistic bullet-blocking items - large cement pillars, sandbags - a good few scenes feature the characters surviving rather extreme rains of lead by shielding themselves behind wooden crates and cardboard boxes on sheetmetal shelves.
    • The ballistic shields used by the police are an example as well. While such shields will reliably stop light gunfire such as from pistols or most shotguns, assault rifle rounds - such as those used by the attackers in the show - typically go straight through. In the series, though, the bullets harmlessly bounce off - replete with "ping" sounds - and leave the cops (and the shields) completely unharmed.
  • Contrived Coincidence: Subverted. The police believes that the robbery happening on the same day the students visit the Mint is a coincidence, but actually the Professor's plan relies on Allison's presence.
  • Conversational Troping: In the first episode, the gang talk about how Malevolent Masked Men work and how much of an apparent bad choice was to pick Salvador Dalí masks for the heist (Berlin points out that he doesn't care because a gun will always be scarier and Rio and Moscow think that using cartoon characters like Mickey Mouse is actually scarier because of the feeling of violated innocence it brings in people).
  • Crazy-Prepared: The Professor. The entire heist is built on the premise that things will go badly and parts of the plan will fail, and The Professor accounted for these failures and turns them into distractions for the cops. To give some examples:
    • To prevent the Madrid police from just going for a full-out frontal assault, the team brings enough fake guns (alongside overalls and Dali masks) that a camera probe makes it look like there's an army standing on the main room of the House (and obviously they can't risk going in and shooting a hostage)... as well as a Browning heavy machine gun.
    • When Ángel suspects there's something weird going on, he follows him - and the Professor has prepared part of his warehouse for a cider cellar.
    • When Raquel begins to suspect the same and forces him at gunpoint to take her there, he takes her to a different warehouse where he also prepares cider and has a substantially cosier living space.
    • The country home where the team trained for the heist was almost completely wiped clean, but littered with a (false) Orgy of Evidence that would lead the cops askew if they managed to find it.
    • Although certain kinds of injuries are understandably beyond them (because of lack of equipment or them being just too severe), the Professor trained the whole team in how to handle medical emergencies like being shot.
    • When the police tries to sneak in a couple of SWAT Team troopers wearing the same outfit (red coveralls, Dali mask) as what the gang and the hostages are wearing in the hope they will go unnoticed, the Professor orders the team to have everybody switch to different masks, forcing the infiltrators to abort.
    • The Professor gave everybody an exact breakdown of every single law that they would be breaking during the heist and how many years each (individual) offense would give to their prison time (the complete total being a Longer-Than-Life Sentence no matter what happens), knowing perfectly well that one of the things the police will do is to try to Divide and Conquer by saying that the first thief to help arrest the others would be given leniency (and then exploit Loophole Abuse to take them in — a list this severe would only be pardoned by the Prime Minister, anyway). Rio calls the cops after he sees the footage with his parents, lists off every crime that the pardon would have to remove, and asks if they are truly capable of making the Prime Minister do that. They unconvincingly lie to him, and Rio tells them to kiss his ass before hanging up.
    • One of the gang's first steps while taking over the Mint is to install a dedicated physical phone line that they had dragged in through the sewage pipes, providing them a virtually untraceable method of communicating with the Professor. It is not until several twists occur in the final hours of the heist (after almost a week of being sieged) that the cops are able to pick up a cell phone signal to trace to the Professor's hide-out.
    • Because the possibility of burning out of exhaustion was very high, the Professor had set daily mandatory R&R time-outs for the team. Only Berlin follows this order to the letter.
  • Cut Lex Luthor a Check: Moscow used the knowledge he had gained from a legitimate job to turn to crime, because it paid better - even if it led to him going to prison. Same with Rio, who just worked as a programmer when he was asked to hack a system - which belonged to a mansion in Geneva.
  • Dating Catwoman: Raquel expresses interest in having at least a fling with the Professor - or, rather, the nice man that lent her his phone. They actually do the deed later.
  • Defecting for Love: Mónica switches allegiance to the robbers because she loves Denver.
  • "Die Hard" on an X: "Die Hard" at the Royal Mint House of Spain. With the heist team as the Villain Protagonist collective.
  • Dirty Coward: Arturo, the Mint's director. Unfortunately, the one time he overcomes this is ten seconds before the police shoot him after mistaking him for one of the robbers. At one point, to avoid Denver beating the crap out of him, he reveals that a group of hostages are trying to run away - because of a plan he himself put together.
  • The Dog Bites Back: After being almost constantly belittled by most of her partners and superiors, blamed for things that are the fault of others (such as the failed attempt to get several hostages out, with Prieto ordering her to pick Allison Parker instead of the eight she would have picked), accused of being The Mole and threatened with the loss of her child if she does not cooperate, Raquel delays revealing what she has found long enough to allow the heist team to escape, and when she leaves the police corps she heavily criticizes the National Intelligence Center for the way they interfered in her work.
  • Double Standard: Rape, Female on Female: Averted. Moscow reproaches Tokyo after she kisses Alison, an underage hostage.
  • Domestic Abuse: Raquel suffered this at the hands of her now ex-husband. Unfortunately, few people believed her.
  • Enhance Button: The national police are able to "improve" a blurred image with maybe 60p of effective resolution to clearly show one of the perpetrators' faces. The literal translation of the original Spanish was "double the pixels", but the English dub avoided using the word "enhance".
  • Even Bad Men Love Their Mamas: Several of the robbers have issues related to their families. Moscow brought his son in on the plan, Tokyo loves her mother who died while they were in the planning, Rio feels particularly crushed when his parents appear on television, Nairobi wants to get her son back, Helsinki sends a bunch of money to his family even though he puts the operation in danger...
  • Even Evil Has Standards: The heist team has this, some of them at different levels, but all of them to.
    • Most work so they won't have to physically harm any of the hostages, even treating some of them very well.
    • Berlín may be a sociopath and a thief and pretty much raping one of the hostages, but he won't stand for being accused of white slavery and pimping.
  • Faking the Dead: Denver fakes Mónica's death after she gets caught with a mobile phone and Berlin orders him to kill her.
  • Fair Cop: Inspector Raquel Murillo, the lead negotiator.
  • Fan Disservice: Tokyo giving Allison a Forced Kiss.
  • Flirting Under Fire: Tokyo and Rio in the final shoot out. They declare their love and have a Now or Never Kiss all whilst being shot at by the police.
  • Frame-Up:
    • The police, when they publish Berlin's identity, state he has been involved in white slavery and child abuse. Bites the police in the ass when Berlín uses the interview with the journalists to mention the frame up live and the journalists dig up the truth.
    • The Professor makes it look like Ángel has been passing information to the robbers, when it was all because of the microphone the group sneaked in his glasses.
  • Genre Savvy: Berlin points out to Arturo how blatantly he's wearing the "Hate Sink" sign around his neck (and what usually happens to those guys) by giving him the following "The Reason You Suck" Speech:
    Berlin: You ever seen horror films? (Arturo says he does) Well, you've always seen that one guy that appears, that you can tell right away that he smells like a dead man walking? It always happens, it never fails. Arturito... you smell like a dead man walking.
  • Gentleman Thief: The image Berlin tries to portray.
  • The Ghost: The Professor. Ever since he was eighteen, he has erased every trace of his existence.
  • Given Name Reveal: The real names of most of the group are revealed over the course of the series. A particularly dramatic instance is when a dying Moscow asks to say his name as his last will.
    Moscow: Agustín Ramos, it has been a pleasure.
  • Give the Baby a Father: The ending of the series has Denver doing this with Mónica's baby.
  • Godzilla Threshold: The Professor knocks Raquel's former husband (who is helping in the investigation) out to eliminate proof that could lead the cops to his true identity, getting himself arrested just when the robbers are starting to fight against each other when he doesn't answer to their control calls.
    • Plan Chernobyl. Tie the cash they have spent days printing to balloons and launch them into the sky to then blow them up, thus causing enough of a disturbance that the team can escape.
  • Good Girls Avoid Abortion: When Arturo tells Mónica he does not plan to divorce his wife, she requests an abortive pill. Denver convinces her not to take it, at least for a while.
  • Green-Eyed Monster: Tokyo gets rather angry when she notices Rio is getting closer to Allison Parker.
  • Groin Attack: Nairobi does this to Pablo when he and his friends start to bully Allison after they find out the cops decided against getting eight of them free in favor of just her.
  • Harsher in Hindsight: After Moscú tells Denver the Awful Truth about his mother, Denver tells him that, after the heist, he does not want to have anything to do with him. A few hours later, as they cover Tokio's return to the bank, Moscú suffers a lethal shot that ends up killing him.
  • Hate Sink: Arturo. Ay, Arturito... Smug Snake Dirty Coward that was two-timing his wife with his secretary, got angry that said secretary got pregnant with what might be his child, and tries repeatedly to be a Defiant Captive with brain-dead plans that he bullies other hostages into assisting with, which is one of the things that lead to Oslo's death and creates a Mexican Standoff in a very delicate moment. He also gets pissed at finding out the aforementioned pregnant secretary lover (Mónica) is falling in love with Denver and pretty much tells her to drop dead. It ends up feeling really good whenever he's put in his place, culminating with Berlin wiring him up with a (faked) suicide vest and forcing him to sit down and keep quiet in the House's main room or else they will blow him up.
  • The Heist: The series revolves around a heist on the Spanish Royal Mint.
  • He Is Not My Boyfriend: Tokyo denies she is in a relationship with Rio, saying he is a kid - even though they have been having sex for several months already. This leads Rio to tell Tokyo that he should be with a girl of his own age, instead of her. However, they later make up and confirm their love for each other.
  • Heroic BSoD: Raquel suffers one when she realizes that the man heavily injured on her orders was one of the hostages.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Berlin ultimately stays behind to stall the SWAT team by several minutes, allowing everyone to escape with the cash and the evidence that would allow it to be traced. Subverted in that he does it to spite a hostage he had been raping and manipulating the entire time.
  • Hypocrite: Berlin looks down on everyone else, but even he is not above having defects, such as having sex with one of the hostages.
  • I Have No Son!: Rio's father states in television (just when the robbers have managed to hook up a TV signal to watch the news) that his son is dead to him. Subverted: Raquel later sneaks in an SD card with a video where Rio's parents plead him to leave, promising that they are going to get him a good defense attorney and a deal.
  • Immediate Self-Contradiction: After Río reveals the whole plan to the hostagesbecause Berlín threw Tokio out of the door to be arrested, Berlín brings Río down and gets a gun.
    Berlín (paraphrasing): My hand will not shake when I pull the trigger!
    Berlín points his gun, which is shaking quite a lot because of Berlín's illness.
    Berlín: Okay, maybe it will shake a bit.
  • Irony: Moscow tells his son that the reason he got out of the mine was because he had claustrophobia... and that led to him making holes to rob and being sent to jail.
  • Jerk Jock: Pablo, one of the students. Captain of the athletics team. He fakes interest in Allison so he can take a half-naked photo of her and publish it on the Internet.
  • Jizzed in My Pants: Arturo gets a little... overexcited while groping Mónica after her apparent return from the dead.
  • Just a Flesh Wound: Averted with Mónica's and Arturo's gunshots. Both require surgery to fix, must remain lying for a long time, and Mónica's injury is in risk of getting an infection when she chooses not to get the bullet out on time.
  • Just Like Robin Hood: Explicitly stated to be one of the aims of the robbery. As long as no one gets hurt, the people will be likelier to support them.
    The Professor: Be very careful, because the moment there is a single drop of blood, this is very important, we will stop being Robin Hoods to become just sons of bitches.
  • Kansas City Shuffle: The entire heist is a series of these. The Professor knows that the cops are not all incompetent so he feeds them information in drips and directs their investigation towards dead ends and red herrings. He starts out by making the cops think that the hostage taking was incidental because it forces them into a certain protocol and makes them waste a day. He specifically designed parts of his plan to fail because it makes the cops think that they can win without having to storm the building. This all culminates in the final escape plan. They force some of the hostages to dig a hole to a nearby tunnel they know will be detected by the police, while Moscow secretly digs a different hole in one of the vaults that leads to another tunnel the police does not know about.
  • Karma Houdini: The heist team (save for Oslo, Moscú and Berlín) gets away unscathed. Denver even finds himself a girlfriend in the form of Mónica, one of the hostages.
  • The Lancer: Berlin for the Professor, Ángel for Raquel.
  • The Last Dance: Berlin is dying and sees the heist as a way to be remembered by the public.
  • Love Makes You Dumb: Several characters make stupid decisions because the people they love are in danger.
  • Magnificent Bastard: The Professor. Not only does he makes plans within plans, he is also quite capable of making things on the fly.
    • When the cops find the heist team's refuge and one of the agents (Inspector Murillo's former husband) takes an important piece of proof back to Madrid, he manages to get himself in the car and, after driving said agent mad, he effortlessly knocks him out and changes the proof with something else that is meaningless.
    • When he naturally gets arrested, he calls Raquel and then goes to the bathroom to beat himself up, so he can play a Wounded Gazelle Gambit and make it look like he just defended himself.
    • When it is revealed that Ángel is about to return from his coma, the Professor knows it's a trap, but cannot be sure of that - so he gets dressed as a clown and publishes a fake advert to flood the hospital with clowns while he sneaks around and gives a toy with a camera to one of the children in the hospital, sending him to scout.
    • His plan for when things start to go down the drain is to free some hostages and invite a journalist and camera in - so the heist team can use it to turn public opinion in their favor, invoking Underdogs Never Lose.
  • Making Love in All the Wrong Places: Rio and Tokyo had sex in the Mint's toilet while they were checking the place. Later Arturo and Helsinki walk in on Denver having sex with Mónica on the House's vault.
  • Master Actor: Berlín. When the journalist comes in, he manages to play his role as someone who has been driven to do something desperate and angry for being framed of actions that sicken him so well that it turns public opinion in the heist team's favor.
  • A Match Made in Stockholm: Denver and Mónica. More on how it ended on Defecting for Love and Give the Baby a Father.
  • Mercy Kill: Given to Oslo once it's made clear that the pipe blow to the head he got during the getaway of some of the hostages has given him permanent brain damage and catatonia. Helsinki does the deed, and later says that he knows Oslo would have preferred it that way.
  • The Mole: Averted. The reason the Professor found out about the police discovering the car was because of the microphone the others sneaked in with Ángel's glasses.
  • Morality Pet: Most of the heisters develop bonds with one particular hostage.
    • Berlin: Ariadna. (Though in this case it's not mutual.)
    • Denver: Mónica.
    • Helsinki: Arturo. (Though in this case it's not mutual.)
    • Nairobi: Torres.
    • Rio: Allison.
    • If you include the Professor then Inspector Raquel Murillo.
  • Moment Killer: Moscow breaks a moment between Tokyo and Denver.
  • Never Going Back to Prison: Moscow was in prison and would rather die than go back.
  • Nice Guy: Rio is probably the nicest out of the robbers. Deconstructed when this leads to him making a mistake that allows the police to identify him and Tokyo as two of the robbers.
    • The Professor. He might be planning a great robbery, but he insists on making sure no one gets injured, and when he personally meets Raquel, he's sincere in their interactions.
  • No Name Given: One of the rules established at the beginning. The Professor is the only one that knows everyone else's identity. Moscow and Denver are father and son, and Helsinki and Oslo are old friends. The only one that knows the Professor's true name is Berlin.
  • Not What It Looks Like: In the last few episodes, after the Professor is identified, everybody thinks that Raquel was working with the heist team because she was dating him.
  • Odd Name Out: Downplayed. While most of the gang's nicknames are capitals (Tokyo, Berlin, Moscow, Helsinki, Oslo, Nairobi) or at least one of the most populated and renowned cities of their country (Rio), Denver isn't a particularly outstanding city in the United States.
  • Oh, Crap!: Denver when he realizes that the gun in Arturo's hand is the real deal - and that his is fake.
  • Orgy of Evidence: The Professor allows the police to discover the gangs staging area because he filled it with irrelevant information and false leads. The police would spend days trying to chase down every lead only to discover that they had nothing of value. It is then subverted when the police forensic expert concludes that the evidence is useless and correctly identifies the one place in the house where real evidence might be found.
  • Papa Wolf: Moscow's weakness is stated to be Denver. He brought him into the plan because he screwed up with some drug-dealers, and has an anxiety attack when Denver kills a hostage (or so he thinks).
  • The Plan: Of course, the heist is a complex plan where pretty much every eventuality is considered and planned for. The robbers also have a number of smaller plans to activate at certain points, many of which have a Meaningful Name:
    • Plan Valencia: make a lot of noise by shooting at paper rolls while the hostages are encouraged to scream. This is used so the police will demand proof of life of all the hostages, and when they notice some of the images may have been faked force them to send someone to personally check on everyone, which allows the heist team to print even more money.
    • Plan Chernobyl: the go-to plan if they pass the Godzilla Threshold. Tie all the money they have printed to balloons, throw them out and then blow the balloons, using the confusion as people attempt to take the money to escape.
    • Plan Cameroon: named after a conversation on how people will (nearly) always support the underdog (comparing their situation with a Brazil-Cameroon football game), they invite a journalist for an interview where they make things look like they are a lot worse than they are and free a group of hostages, gaining a lot of sympathy - particularly after the press finds out that the police framed Berlín for a lot of crimes he did not commit.
  • Police are Useless: Averted. The police are quite competent at their job, and more than capable of realizing what the robbers are doing - the only problem being that the Professor is always a step or two ahead of them.
  • Poor Communication Kills: When the Professor charged Helsinki with destroying the car they used for their stakeouts, Helsinki did not realize that there was a good reason behind it. This nearly causes a problem when the police find about the car, forcing the Professor to risk being identified to erase the fingerprints.
  • Pragmatic Villainy: Berlin is obviously this. He tells the hostages that they will not be harmed, and that the robbers will take care of them, as the hostages are (a) the only reason the police aren't assaulting the place and (b) the only means to ensure they can later escape. It does not mean he is not willing to hurt or kill (or, rather, force others to do it) so as to make his point through.
  • The Quiet Ones: Oslo rarely, if ever, says a word. Helsinki is a bit more talkative, but still likes to remain silent unless needed.
  • Reality Ensues:
    • Plans will fail when clashing with reality. For example, knowing bullets will fly and not planning for what to do if one of them gets hit is an issue. As Tokyo narrates (paraphrasing) "We had been prepared for when we had to shoot - but we forgot that the other guys would be shooting back".
      • Also, getting shot is not something you can easily walk off. Mónica nearly dies because her injury becomes infected, and Arturo has to undergo surgery to get healed from the sniper shot.
    • Putting seven men and two women in an isolated house and not expecting any sexual or romantic relationships to develop is a tad optimistic.
    • The robbers have different, often conflicting personalities. Once they are locked in the Mint with the hostages, tensions start rising and only the Professor is able to keep them working together. When it looks like the Professor might have been arrested things quickly spin out of control and the robbers turn on each other. The Professor salvages the situation but Moscow is killed in the process.
      • One of the reasons for tensions getting so bad is that none of them (save for Berlin) take proper R&R time.
    • After attacking Raquel's former husband (who is also a cop), the Professor gets arrested.
    • After the Professor is finally identified, Raquel falls under suspicion because she has been dating him - even though she hadn't even met him until after the beginning of the heist.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Moscow lays one on Tokyo for her behavior, particularly after she kisses Allison.
  • Refuge in Audacity: The Professor, when speaking with Inspector Murillo, asks several uncomfortable personal questions of her, such as what she is wearing and whether she has ever faked an orgasm. And he also takes the time to personally speak with her by going to the same bar as she does.
    • The Professor has to clean up the car that was left in a scrapyard before the cops find it, which he does, but cannot get away from there before the cops arrive. What does he do? Disguise himself as a hobo and dirty himself so much the only cop that talks with him lets him go without issue.
    • But the Russian scrapyard worker saw him before, and the cops get him to help build a portrait. So the Professor distracts a couple of cops to get in their car and uses the radio to call to the police tent (knowing the radio channel they are using) to threaten the scrapyard worker's family so he won't collaborate.
    • The Professor plays The Entertainer on the electronic piano for Raquel. Subtle.
    • When he suspects the reveal that Ángel is going to wake up is a trap, he tricks a large number of clowns into flooding the hospital while he sneaks in and gives one child a toy with a camera, to then send him to spring the trap.
    • To get back into the Mint, Tokio takes advantage of her cop disguise to get close, and then calls Río so he will open the gate for her, allowing her to get inside the building while gunning her bike.
  • Rooting for the Empire: Exploited in-universe. The no-kill policy was meant to get the support of the population, as if the heist was some kind of contra-cultural protest, and thus force the police to negotiate (and waste time, for them to print more money). And it worked.
  • The Scapegoat: Berlin blames Denver for his identity being discovered, but it was actually the Professor.
    • Raquel is scapegoated by her superiors over several of the bad decisions they made.
  • Scatter Brained Senior: Raquel's mother suffers from memory problems, and has multiple post-its emplaced all around the house to remind herself of the changes, which becomes relevant when Ángel leaves a message in Raquel's home answering machine and she listens to it. When the Professor finds out about the message, he considers overdosing her with her medicine, but finding about her memory problems means he can just erase any trace of the message to get out of trouble.
  • Secretly Dying: Berlin has a terminal illness that he keeps secret.
  • Sexy Secretary: Mónica Gaztambide, who has been in a relationship with Arturo for several years now.
  • Shout-Out:
    • The Professor's fake name is Salvador Martí, just like the man in charge of The Ministry of Time (another Netflix-broadcast Spanish TV show).
    • Part of the plan involves forcing all the hostages to dress the same way as the robbers so the police cannot distinguish between them, just like in Inside Man.
    • In a flashback to when the Professor and Rio are looking through the Darknet for weapons to purchase for the heist, Rio points out an APC for sale and makes a joke about buying it and using it to ram through the front door of the House like The A-Team.
    • The Professor plays The Entertainer for Raquel.
  • The Sociopath: Berlin; he's even referred as such in his psych evaluation.
  • Spanner in the Works: The scissors. When the teacher takes the scissors, Arturo comes up with a plan to spark a escape plan by the hostage cops - which is the point where things start to go pear-shaped.
    • Raquel. Because she meets with the Professor, he is not there to warn the team that the hostage cops are trying to escape - which they do, opening a way into the mint and screwing up all the plan.
      • In fact, during the finale, the Professor explicitly mentions that his plan had gone on perfectly, and would have worked perfectly, if it were not for the fact that he has fallen in love with her.
  • Stockholm Syndrome: Allison apologizes to Rio after she accidentally gets him captured on her mobile phone's camera.
    • Mónica has sex with Denver. Their relationship causes an in-universe discussion of the trope, and it's suggested that her city nickname could be Stockholm.
    • Torres, the chief mint engineer. In fact, he tells Nairobi that - apart from the guns and being a hostage - she's the best boss he's ever had.
  • Tap on the Head:
    • Averted with Oslo, who's hit on the head with a pipe and doesn't recover from it.
    • Played more straight with Berlín, who gets hit in the back of the head by Nairobi. He bleeds and gets a bandage, but is up on his feet soon after.
  • Tempting Fate: When Berlin tells the Professor he had Denver kill Mónica (it did not happen, but he doesn't know that), he dares the Professor to punish him, or else he won't think he's worthy of being a leader. The Professor plants one of Berlin's buttons, with his fingerprints on it, in the car used to watch the bank.
  • Theme Naming: Obvious. All of the robbers (save for the Professor) are called after a city. Mónica gains the nickname Stockholm after stating her intention to join the robbers, and she earns this name in the Part 2 finale.
  • Too Dumb to Live: The Professor gave Helsinki 1000 euros to get a scrapyard's worker to destroy a car that had some of the team's fingerprints on it, no questions asked. Not only did Helsinki not get the car destroyed - he sent the cash to his family - he did not even think of cleaning the fingerprints. The Professor has to risk being identified and his life to find the car and clean it himself before the cops find it.
  • Trojan Horse: After Arturo gets injured, the police try to sneak Ángel (Raquel's Number Two) as part of the medical team while two special forces agents get in through a tunnel disguised as hostages, but the Professor knew they would try that tactic and recognizes said Number Two, so they sneak a microphone on his glasses, allowing him to catch the police plans, and has everyone change their masks to make the agents stand out.
  • Unintentionally Notorious Crime: Subverted — one of the hostages is Allison Parker, daughter of the British ambassador and close friend of the Queen of England. She is so integral to the plan that she was nicknamed "the lamb" by the robbers, which is one of many clues to the Crazy-Prepared nature of the robbers.
  • Unspoken Plan Guarantee: The plan is revealed to the audience little by little, exactly as the corresponding part of the plan takes place in the present.
  • Villain Protagonist: The series is starred by the criminals, not the cops.
  • Violently Protective Girlfriend: Tokyo goes berserk after Helsinki beats the crap out of Rio, telling the Professor that, if it happens again, she will kill him (or Berlin, or Helsinki).
  • Was It All a Lie?: Played for Drama when Raquel realizes that her boyfriend Salva is actually the Professor and takes him to the farm to interrogate him, broken down because she thinks he only got close to her to use her. The Professor reveals that he did initially, but as he got to know her he actually fell in love with her.
  • Wilhelm Scream: In the dub, the Wilhelm Scream is played during the shootout in P2 E6 when Tokyo reenters the mint. It's used when a SWAT officer ducks under some sandbags.
  • Wounded Gazelle Gambit: Denver has a group of hostages move to the roof so his father can breathe open air. While there, Denver's conversation with Moscú makes Arturo think that Denver has killed Mónica and threatens them with his false gun. Moscú and Denver kneel, and the police, thinking Arturo is one of the robbers, shoot him.
  • You Are Too Late: The police arrive precisely 1 minute too late to stop the freshly printed Euro from being taken from the hideout. Also 2-7 minutes too late to capture any of the perpetrators.
  • Your Cheating Heart: Arturo is cheating on his wife with Mónica, but in spite of his promises never considers leaving her.
  • Your Days Are Numbered: Berlin suffers from a degenerative disease that will kill him within two years.
  • You Are Not My Father: Denver to Moscú when the latter reveals the Awful Truth of why the former's mother (seemingly) abandoned them both.
  • You Shall Not Pass!: Berlin stays behind during the getaway and blasts away at the oncoming police with the Browning machine gun the team brought into the House, buying time for the other robbers to leave and blow up the escape tunnel behind them. Also a variant of Suicide by Cop.
    Season 3 
  • Back from the Dead: Berlín is seen at the end of the first trailer.
    • Subverted. He only appears in flashbacks to show how the heist was planned years before.
  • Batman Gambit: The plan to steal the Spanish National Bank involves using their security against them.
  • Blackmail: The heist team uses top-secret documents hidden in the bank to prevent the cops from assaulting the bank.
  • Blatant Lies: Arturo has made his post-heist life talking about his "heroics" during the bank heist.
  • Call-Back: As they get ready for their part in the operations, the Professor asks Raquel what she is wearing.
  • Darkest Hour: Episode 8's Cliffhanger. Nairobi gets shot by a sniper and is close to death, Raquel/Lisboa has been arrested and her execution faked and the heist team crosses the Godzilla Threshold to prevent the police from bringing down the Bank's doors by blowing the tankette with two RPGs, killing several cops and pretty much sending Rule #1 down the drain.
  • Death Trap: The Bank's vault wasn't designed specifically to kill intruders but once the security system is tripped, the vault will fill with water within minutes and anyone still in it will drown.
  • Expy: The Dali masks become an In-Universe equivalent to the Guy Fawkes masks.
  • Eye Scream: During the shoot out against the Governor's bodyguards, one bullet hits a cabinet, breaking the crystals, which hit Palermo in the eyes. This leaves him blinded for the rest of the heist.
  • For Want of a Nail: In Chapter 1, Tokio decides she needs to get out of their island for a while - which leads to the capture of Río when their phones get tracked.
  • Godzilla Threshold: The government has declared the robbers to be dangerous terrorists and subversives and is determined to stop them at any cost. The Bank of Spain heist is treated as a national security rather than police matter and the authorities are more concerned with stopping or killing the robbers rather than saving the hostages. A dangerous knockout gas is used that could kill hostages and one official suggests that they should just blow up the building and kill everyone inside.
  • Happy Ending Override: Río and Tokio's happy ending becomes overriden when the police finds out where Río is, capturing him and forcing Tokio on the run.
  • Heel–Face Turn: Mónica and Raquel join the team as Estocolmo and Lisboa.
  • Hollywood Density: Nairobi is seen holding up a bar of gold in each hand and playing with them. If they're Good Delivery standard bars (and they look bigger than that), it means she's effortlessly carrying around about 25 kg of gold - more than a third of the weight of her own body.
  • Ironic Echo: Season 1 began with Tokio being recruited by the Professor and being very wary of him. Season 3 has her going to meet the Professor and hugging him.
  • Lampshade Hanging: Mónica, formerly a hostage who fell in love with her kidnapper, adopts the alias of Estocolmo.
  • Meaningful Name: Denver and Monica's son is named Cincinnati, named after a city like the rest of the gang (except for the fact that it is his actual name, and not just a nickname).
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!: Río chooses the worst possible moment to tell Tokio that he wants to break up with her - right after he arrives to the bank in the middle of the heist that got started because Tokio begged the others to help her free him.
  • Putting the Band Back Together: The heist team, with the inclusion of Mónica, Raquel and three new people, reunites in order to save Río.
  • Reality Ensues: Robbing 2.4+ billion Euros makes the heist team an objective of Europol and puts them in international search and capture. It also provides the robbers with much improved resources compared with what they had before, like having a team of 65 Pakistanis remotely doing what Rio did by himself in the Mint heist.
  • Refuge in Audacity: The plan begins by dropping 140 million Euros from a dirigible marked with the Dali mask. Then, the Professor sends a message where he shows his face - and calls the people of Madrid to demonstrate, while they sneak into the Spanish National Bank disguised as the Army, tricking the police and the bank's security into helping to do the initial heavy work for them.
  • Rock Beats Laser: How the heist team gets around the communication problems. They use a 1940s short wave radio to talk between the Professor and the team, and 2nd generation mobile phones so the police won't be able to track them.
  • Survivor's Guilt:
    • The Professor feels quite guilty over the fact that three of the team members died during the first heist.
    • Palermo masterminded both the Mint and Bank of Spain heists with Berlin and later the Professor, but he did not participate in the first heist. He feels that if he did then Berlin would be still alive. He joins the second heist as a form of atonement/revenge.
  • Up to Eleven: The characters acknowledge that, whatever they do, it is going to be bigger than what they did at the Mint.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Denver has some choice words for Río after he breaks up with Tokio in the middle of the heist.
    Season 4 
  • Battlecry: For Nairobi!
  • Plot Armor: Gandía. No matter how many people are firing at him, not a single bullet ever hits. Even when he is flanked, lying on the ground and shot at from both sides.
  • Rape Discretion Shot: Arturo drugs and molests one of the hostages. The camera cuts as he begins to undress her.
  • The Infiltration: Manila was posing as one of the hostages all along.

Alternative Title(s): Money Heist

Top

How well does it match the trope?

Example of:

/

Media sources:

/

Report