Netflix and Crime: Identification with the Characters of ‘La Casa de Papel’ Spanish Series

10.22492.ijah.8.1.01

Authors:
Afnan Qutub, King Abdulaziz University, Saudi Arabia
Dina Marie, King Abdulaziz University, Saudi Arabia
Samar Meer, King Abdulaziz University, Saudi Arabia
Amira Alkurdi, King Abdulaziz University, Saudi Arabia
Email: [email protected]
Published: August 25, 2021
https://doi.org/10.22492/ijah.8.1.01

Citation: Qutub, A., Marie, D., Meer, S., & Alkurdi, A. (2021). Netflix and Crime: Identification with the Characters of La Casa de Papel Spanish Series. IAFOR Journal of Arts & Humanities, 8(1). https://doi.org/10.22492/ijah.8.1.01


Abstract

This study examines the Netflix Spanish series La Casa de Papel as a pragmatic example of a series that addresses questions of criminal justification. In this qualitative study, in-depth interviews were conducted with 17 Saudi participants. The findings suggest that the Saudi viewers justified the characters’ crimes influenced by fundamental attribution error. Viewers’ identification with the characters could be seen in their empathy with the robbery team and their desire for threatening characters to die. Viewers also stated that they did not want the criminals to be caught. In fact, viewers felt sad and emotional when the characters were shot or caught. Participants ranked the Professor, Tokyo, Berlin, and Nairobi as the most liked characters. Conversely, the least liked characters were Arturo Román and Sierra because they threatened the success of the robbery. Finally, participants accepted the banker joining the team, while they opposed detective Lisbon joining it.

Keywords: La Casa de Papel, money heist, Netflix, Saudi Arabia, Spanish series