Over the past five seasons, Money Heist has delivered some of the best and worst characters in television/streaming history as part of its magnificent run. As the show draws to a close with its final chapter, we take a look back at the show’s best/and worst characters. See if you agree.
Best: Marseilles and Benjamin
While this duo was only introduced in the Bank of Spain heist, they did more than their fair share in ensuring the success of the heist from the outside. Since his first breakdown after Lisbon’s capture, Marseilles has been saving the Professor’s butt, bringing him back to the present every time he falters. He cleans up messes efficiently, goes shopping for baby stuff in the middle of a heist and is generally an all around reliable guy. It’s always fun to watch him complete a mission. Benjamin and his band of Serbians, on the other hand, has always delivered on many of the Professor’s complex rescue and escape missions. Their absolute loyalty to the Professor had them armed to back up Alicia Sierra in seconds without batting an eye. And, who can’t love Benjamin who accepted his son’s gender transition and openly professes his love and pride at his offspring just the same?
Arturo Roman is one of the worst characters in the history of television and he managed to raise Money Heist fans’ blood pressure to dangerous levels for the better part of four seasons. He’s a coward with a false sense of bravado. He manipulates other people into dangerous situations. He assaults defenseless women. He wants to take on the role of a hero without any of the risk. He has a big ego and he earns a living by lying. Don’t get me started on him goading Denver. This guy. There is just no redeeming quality to this guy at all.
Throughout the series, I harbored a love and hate relationship with Tokyo. She was independent minded to such a degree that it sometimes got in the way of the plan. She guilted the entire team into arming up so that she can save Rio and relieve her own guilt. However, when she signs up for something, she sees it through to the end. Tokyo is reliable. She is ready to do the dirty work. She thinks on her feet and she cares deeply about her people. Need a person to launch a grenade launcher at the entrance? She’s your girl. Need someone to go up against an ex military dude (and win) with her hands tied behind her back? You’ve got it. Need someone to ignite a come from behind victory? She’s it. Tokyo has placed herself in the line of fire time and again because she’s an amazing team player. She understood the assignment, even when no one told her what it actually entailed.
The last think you need is a mission leader who wields a lot of power but cares about his ego more than the mission. Colonel Tamayo led the mission with an eye to win not because he wanted the standoff to be resolved but because he did not want to lose face. He made decisions unilaterally and refused to take sensible advice from men on the ground. He was not above throwing people under the bus as part of crisis management. He blackmailed people and made brash decisions driven by public relations and it backfired on him 100 percent of the time. Served him right.
Best: The Professor
Its true that the Professor cracked easily, once his bond with the gang was established. He took things personally and fell apart each time things did not go according to plan. But you’ve got to hand it to him. When he stops panicking, he puts his big brain to work and comes up with a solution every single time. Even when he’s bluffing, you’ve got to give the guy props for the sheer amount of faith he has on his plan.
The plan started going south when Lisbon failed to execute her part of the plan as she should have. She got caught, and waited to be saved by the Professor. Once inside the Bank of Spain, she strode in and tried to assert herself as the leader because she knew more about the plan than anyone else. Her training as a police officer was not very helpful because most of the dirty work was done by other members of the gang. She wanted to be portrayed as a tough heroine, but I just don’t buy it.
From start to finish, Nairobi was efficient, commanded the respect of every person who worked under her because of her work ethic, and she was just a person that you would root for. As a mother who wanted the best for her son, as a friend who would sacrifice her life for another, and just someone who is realistic but optimistic at the same time.
Sure, Gandia was just doing his job to protect the governor and save the hostages but he took great joy in inflicting pain and torture when he could. Grandia may have been an excellent soldier but he was a pretty sh*tty human being. He was arrogant and sadistic and I, for one, was glad he went out the way he did.
Best: Alicia Sierra
Now, this is one one character evolution that we never knew we needed. At the beginning, Sierra was introduced as the heartless pregnant b*tch who mercilessly tortured Rio and dangled Nairobi’s son in front of her to make her vulnerable. It worked. She shot (and almost killed) Nairobi, and proceeded to play a cat and mouse game with the Professor after she was thrown under the bus by Tamayo. She finds the Professor’s hideout, captures him to use him as a bargaining chip and when she finally realizes what side she should be on, she uses all her skills and intelligence to find the treasure and save the day. This woman did all this while nine months pregnant or after delivering her baby in the middle of the heist. (She got right back on the horse as soon as she could stand). Alicia is the only character in the series that was a match for the Professor and the series was all the more richer for having her in it.
Also Best: Berlin
He was eccentric, toxic and more often than not, you wouldn’t know what went on in that head of his. But like his brother, he was brilliant. He lived life according to his rules even though he did have a convoluted way of inducting his son into the family business. He embraced his flaws. And he enjoyed wielding his power. He made no apologies for being himself. For a guy who’s been dead for the better part of three seasons, he’s the one getting a spinoff, and its because he is so well loved.