Lupin: Part Two
Netflix has some “gaul” making us wait five months to see the resolution of Lupin’s mid-series cliffhanger, which saw Assane’s (Omar Sy) son Raoul (Etan Simon) go missing at a Lupin festival; a celebration of the French literary character who serves as inspiration for the protagonist’s life as a “gentleman thief”. The mystery continues right from where Part One left off with the search for the missing child, along with revenge on the corrupt businessman (Hervé Pierre) who framed the character’s father (Fargass Assandé).
Part Two pulls off the trick of feeling frothy and stimulating at the same time, similar to reading Sherlock Holmes in the bath or chasing champagne with a double espresso. It is more interesting when the loveable thief is on the back foot (as he begins this half of the series) than strutting around in control of the situation. This is when the programme begins to slip into generic heist clichés and plot twists almost as obvious as Assane’s conspicuous wigs and false moustaches. If the show didn’t keep assuring the audience that he’s a “master of disguise” it would probably be assumed he was constantly on his way to a fancy dress party.
These issues are easily forgivable, largely because Lupin is underpinned by real commentary on race and wealth that brings a pertinent political point to the caper. The other key to repairing the gaps in the story’s credibility is Sy’s charming performance as the heroic, flawed and highly sympathetic lead. As his younger iteration, Mamadou Haidara impressively captures the older actor’s charisma in illuminating flashbacks that inform the action without interrupting its heady pace. As soon as one plot thread is resolved viewers are thrown immediately into the next ruse, as though it was designed especially for Netflix’s autoplay function.
This fizzing cocktail of momentum, humour and performance makes Lupin Part Two a case of comfort viewing with purpose; you might not mind how Assane pulls it off, but you care that he does.
Lupin: Part Two is released on Netflix on 11th June 2021.
Watch the trailer for Lupin: Part Two here: