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La casa de Papel's Anatomy

The inspirations behind new Netflix revelation series

La casa de Papel's Anatomy  The inspirations behind new Netflix revelation series

A brilliant and methodical Professor.

8 people with a rap sheet, nothing to lose and the code name of a city.

5 months to plan and prepare for the heist.

67 hostages.

A single objective: to enter the Madrid National Factory and Market, print and take home millions of unregistered euros.

These are just some of the numbers of La casa de papel, the revolutionary series on Netflix.

Originally produced by the Spanish Antena 3, the show created by Alex Pina obtains, thanks to word of mouth and the international distribution of the streaming service, an unexpected viral success. All thanks to a story built in an effective way that contains all the right narrative techniques: flashbacks, temporal ellipses, narrative analysts and cliffhanger positioned in the right places and, above all, at each episodes end. It is precisely these ingredients that push the viewer to an obsessive binge-watching.

And then there are the characters, the robbers with red jumpsuits and the masks of Salvador Dali: Moscow, Tokyo, Berlin, Nairobi, Rio, Helsinki, Denver and Oslo.

These are unlikely Robin Hoods, rebels attacking the capitalist system that print money from scratch, do not steal it from anyone and do not kill, guided away from the brilliant mind of the Professor, to catalyze attention with their characteristics, their actions, loves, disagreements, weaknesses, cumbersome pasts and dreams for the future.

Each of them opens a series of interactive windows on a series of themes that enrich the original plot, expanding the series beyond the usual boundaries of the classic heist movie.

A third season has now been confirmed, waiting for 2019, are you already shuddering?


Feel like: Salvador Dalì


Everyone knows it: the robbers of the Spanish series had masks with the iconic face of Salvador Dalí.

Many have wondered why the choice fell on the artist of Figueres and not on Picasso, Warhol or anyone else. Some theories emphasize the affinity between the creative irreverence of man and the daring of a shot in the bank, but the most accredited hypothesis seems another and must be sought in his political sympathies.

It seems that in his youth Dalí was close to the communist movement, then growing up he presented himself as a revolutionary and in the 1930s he began to show interest in the fascist regimes, an affront that was not forgiven amoung his surrealist friends. At the time of the outbreak of the civil war in Spain Dali escaped from his country to take refuge in the United States, but he returned to his Catalonia, was close to the fascist regime and often expressed words of admiration for Francisco Franco.

Masquerading with his face thus becomes a way to scoff and exorcise the dictatorship that has imprisoned Spain for more than 30 years.


Dress like: utilitarian fashion (Prada, Ellery, Vetements)


La casa de Papel is embodied in a single piece of clothing: the red coverall.

A simple, comfortable, worker's garment, dawned in the symbolic color that classically denotes the politics of the left, the resistance, the revolution.

The history of the suit begins in the early years of the last century, worn by skiers, aviators, paratroopers, but is introduced for everyday use by the Italian artist Thayat in 1919.

His is a vision of the leader as the signature of the proletariat, an anti-bourgeois declaration, but also a comfortable and easy-to-wear suit for working-class women in factories and fields. Then came Coco Chanel, Elsa Schiaparelli and all the other designers up to their contemporaries Vetements, Prada, Ellery or Calvin Klein, transforming the suit and workwear into the epitome of relaxed and casual glamour.

A curiosity about the style of Tokyo, one of the most loved protagonists of the Spanish series: the outfit of the character played by Ursula Corberó is inspired by Mathilda, the iconic girl from the movie Léon.


Think like: "The bank robbery. History. Theory. Practice "by Klaus Schönberger


La casa de Papel is the story of a fake robbery, but those enclosed in the book by Klaus Schönberger are true, made by professionals of burglary, hardened criminals, but also by old ladies who want to round up their pensions.

These are the memorable events of Dillinger and Bonnie & Clyde, Tupamaros, Patty Hearst, Horst Fantazzini, the Bonnot Band ... and many others.

The pages tell of cleaned safes, assaulted diligences, burglarized banks, destroyed security vans, security systems and alarms, escape routes and hiding places.

Reading it could make you find the answer to the famous question by Bertold Brecht "Is it more criminal to found a bank or to rob a bank?".


Sound like: "Bella Hello" Modena City Ramblers version 


"The life of the Professor revolved around a single idea: resistance. His grandfather, who joined the partisans to defeat fascism in Italy, had taught him this song. He taught it to us."

How to turn the Italian Resistance anthem to fascism in the soundtrack of the most talked-about TV series of the last few months and, therefore, into a viral phenomenon. If you have seen La casa di carta you know: if there is a song that embodies the spirit of the Spanish show, its Bella Ciao

"It is a song that has always been part of the soundtrack of my life" - explains Alex Pina, creator of the television project - "a song that reminds me of childhood and that the whole world knows, a hymn of resistance as the same series is, as long as there is resistance there is hope even if they do not have the faintest idea if they manage to get out of there". 

In the background of different scenes and sung as a battle song both by the Professor and Berlin and, in the end, by the whole group of robbers. The choice of the famous partisan song is a clear way to underline that the Spanish series is not the story of a a robbery, but of rebellion, revenge, resistance. It is a critique of the current economic system and choices that penalize people to favor banking institutions. If, however, you are wondering what the song thats introduces each episode of The house de Papel is, the answer is My life is going on by Cecilia Krull.


Taste like: Paella


Love like: the binge-watching attitude


A little Tarantino, a little Inside man by Spike Lee, a little Breaking Bad, La casa de Papel does not tell anything new, nor is it the coolest and best show ever made, but it remains a good product, able to catalyze the viewer's attention.

It is a necessary binge-watch, powered by shots of scenes to continuous consumption, the secret ingredient that makes this tv series a viral success.