The French suspense thriller series ‘Lupin’ is one of the best things on Netflix’s platter. George Kay and François Uzan do to Arsène Lupin what Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss do to Sherlock Holmes (or should we call him Herlock Sholmes) only in a more nuanced way. Driven by a commendable performance by Omar Sy and guided by an evocative score, the intricate story is woven delicately and with precision. Maurice Leblanc’s original characters permeate the story, but the creators give the stories a broad basis as Lupin here is up against not only class but also racial injustice perpetrated by the French white bourgeoisie.
In the second season, the modern-day Lupin — Assane Diop — continues his quest against Hubert Pellegrini, the evil white bourgeois who is responsible for the death of Assane’s father. Pellegrini’s connections are spread far and wide into the legal system, and Assane’s Lupin passes through the system like a needle through a sieve.
The second season sees Hubert revealing Assane’s identity to the police, and Assane becomes subjected to a nationwide hunt. After a series of near-impossible escapades, the finale plays out in taut tension as Assane confronts his arch-nemesis. As the season comes to an end, some strands are seemingly wrapped up, but some mysteries remain to be revealed. If pondering upon the finale has raised questions in your mind, let us try to make the picture clearer. SPOILERS AHEAD.
Lupin Season 2 Recap
Picking up from the first season, the story begins with Guedira meeting Lupin for the first time, albeit under troubling circumstances. In the middle of a cat and mouse chase between Hubert and Assane, Raoul is kidnapped by Hubert’s henchman Leonard. In the past timeline, Assane is summoned to the principal for stealing a violin for Claire, but he escapes severe punishment with fast thinking and some luck. Back to the present, Guedira and Assane rush to save Raoul, but Assane denies help from Guedira, as he doesn’t work with cops. After a tense episode with Leonard, Assane is captured by the police, while Raoul seemingly burns in the trunk of Leonard’s car.
Only, Raoul is still alive as Guedira appears in the nick of time to save him. Assane escapes by duping Belkacem, and with a flat tire, she cannot run after him. Dumont summons Guedira at the Hyatt Hotel and takes custody of Raoul. Dumont takes him to Hubert, who tries to convince Raoul that his father is a thief. After cloning Hubert’s voice and sending Dumont a message, Assane finally manages to save his son.
But Hubert has a backup plan since Claire has already visited Hubert in search of her son. Henchmen wait at Claire’s house for Assane’s return, and following Claire’s warning, Assane manages to escape yet again. Hubert has endangered Assane’s family, so Assane decides to take Hubert down from within the Pellegrini family. With the help of his lifelong friend Benjamin, Assane stages a meet with Hubert’s daughter Juliette.
On the other hand, with the help of a prodigious accountant, Hubert plans to move the fundraising money of his daughter’s charity event to a discreet overseas account. Juliette relives her past with Assane with a night’s shenanigan. However, it is not enough, and Assane steals the bracelet given to Claire by her boyfriend to earn Juliette’s trust.
In return, he convinces Juliette to confront her mother, who, in turn, goes to confess to Guedira about Hubert’s crimes. The police bring Hubert in for interrogation, but they apparently lack proof, and Hubert gets away. Although, he reveals Assane’s name to the police before leaving. Belkacem and Laugier interrogate Claire, while Assane consoles Juliette. Hubert devises an elaborate plan to frame Assane. Leonard becomes a martyr in Hubert’s plan, as the other henchman Pascal Oblet kills him.
Now blamed for the murder of Leonard, Assane becomes a nationwide fugitive. Guedira is shaken by disbelief as the gentleman burglar never kills. After getting a cryptic message from Assane, Guedira retrieves a drive from a candle that contains the confession of Dumont. In the tense finale, the police reach to the fundraising event of the Pellegrini Foundation, and while the famous French Symphony Orchestra plays on the stage, we get to see who plays the actual fiddle.
Lupin Season 2 Ending: Why is Assane on the Run?
In the befitting finale, Assane finally manages to extract a confession from Hubert. While Hubert thinks that he is winning, Assane is one step ahead of him. It is revealed that the smug accountant Courbet is actually an emo-punk Lupin fan whom Ben and Assane met at a library. So, while Hubert thinks the money is being transferred to his personal account, Assane makes sure that the fundraising money reaches the account of the Foundation.
Assane gets into the building in a trunk and catches Hubert by surprise, who confesses under the pressure of having framed Assane’s father, as well as his involvement in Raoul’s kidnapping and Leonard’s death. After revealing Hubert’s true face before the donors, Assane forwards the recording to Guedira. In the finality of events, the police have enough evidence to take Hubert and Dumont into custody. The master of deception and daring escapades succeeds on his quest to deliver justice to his deceased father, and his battle seemingly comes to an end.
But he is still a criminal in the eyes of the police. As the police chase Assane, he manages to meet Claire and Raoul one last time before disappearing. The ending is very much akin to ‘The Dark Knight,’ since Assane is ostensibly the hero France deserves, but not the one it needs right now. So, the police will hunt him, because he can take it. But we have faith in Lupin, and we know that Assane will come out of any adverse situation unscathed.
Is This the End For Hubert Pellegrini?
With the arrest of Hubert Pellegrini and his enabler Dumont, it seems that we are given a definitive closure to the saga. With the heinous crimes amassing, Hubert had to “atone” for it, to borrow one of the character’s own words. Earlier, Hubert is brought into custody following Anne’s disclosure of the crimes to Guedira. However, Hubert rubs his shoulder with the who’s who of the legal system, and the police have to let him go, apparently for the lack of enough evidence. This time, the cops have Hubert’s own confession on tape, and the case looks pretty solid.
But Hubert has seemingly deep-rooted ties with the government, and he may manage to get away this time as well. The elite people always have a way out, it seems. Assane has previously mimicked Hubert’s voice to send a message to Dumont, and Hubert may use this as his chip. In other words, he may argue that it is Assane who copied his voice to make the confession tape and blindside the police. To know the final fate of Hubert Pellegrini, we have to keep an eye out for the next season.
Where is the Necklace?
At the center of the story lies a necklace. It is the necklace of Marie Antoinette, the one Assane steals from the Louvre at the beginning of the series. This is the same necklace Hubert framed Babakar Diop for stealing. One may argue that the necklace is an artifact that represents the classism that was prevalent in France back in the days of the monarchy. The necklace that Assane steals is seemingly a duplicate, and following Assane’s suggestion, Hubert Pellegrini had a fake necklace in his possession.
We don’t know the whereabouts of the real one. However, in an episode in the second season, after Assane is declared a fugitive in the media, Benjamin flees from his shop following Assane’s tip. Before heading out, he retrieves a necklace from the locker, and the necklace looks identical to Marie Antoinette’s. However, in the world of ‘Lupin,’ things often turn out to be drastically different from what they seem. Therefore, we hope we’ll acquire more information on the necklace in the next season.
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