Arsène Lupine , the famously elegant white-collar thief created by French writer Maurice Leblanc , has come back into fashion . Or perhaps he always has been, especially in France, where he is one of his most recognizable literary characters. It was thanks to Lupine , in the shadow of Arsène , that he prays as a subtitle in the recently released successful television series . Starring the popular French actor Omar Sy , and with his figure and his books in the background, it is an excuse to review it .

Maurice Leblanc

Leblanc was born in Rouen in 1864 and began his literary career in Paris. In 1905 he created Arsène Lupin , a character who became one of the most famous in crime literature.

Lupine is a cultured, elegant and seductive white-collar thief who robs people much worse than himself. He stars in about twenty novels and stories . Many consider Lupine and his stories to be the French version of Sherlock Holmes. In fact, just a year after the creation of Lupin, Leblanc wrote a series of stories in which he brought the two characters together, even though Holmes was Herlock Sholmes. 

Arsène Lupin, knight and thief

The first Lupine story is considered a legendary piece of pulp literature. His precedent was a series of stories published in the magazine Je Sais Tout, which would later be edited together under this title. It is the first book that his father gives to the protagonist of the television series. It also contains the story The Queen’s Necklace , which is part of the plot of the first chapter of the series.

The Countess of Cagliostro and The Hollow Needle

These titles are also mentioned in the series. The former contains the fantastical and supernatural element that Leblanc brought into the Lupin stories. Here, for example, the thief faces the heiress of the Duke of Cagliostro, an evil immortal and a copy of the Holmesian Professor Moriarty.

Lupin— To the series

In the series produced by Netflix , the figure of Lupine and those books are in the background and are the inspiration for the protagonist, Assane Diop ( Omar Sy ). Diop is a man willing to clear his father’s name from him, who committed suicide in prison, accused of a robbery that he did not commit by the tycoon for whom he worked as a driver.

Diop’s difficult life has turned him into a very cunning thief, who, supported by 21st century technology , exudes ingenuity in his disguises and modus operandi to carry out his revenge against the man who brought his father down. This gave him in his childhood the first Lupine novel and the young Diop took it as a reference.

Very entertaining, it consists of only 5 chapters that are seen right away. And both the charisma of Omar Sy and the staging in today’s Paris and settings of Lupin’s novels are essential to consider it a good tribute to the literary character.

Other titles featuring Lupin

Lupin III

The alleged grandson of Lupin and his band of thieves are the protagonists of the manga that Monkey Punch , the artistic name of Kazuhiko Katō , created in 1967 and that is already an icon in Japanese culture due to the great fondness for the character in Japan . There he has been adapted into various series, video games and anime films .

Precisely today Lupine III: The First, a new 3D animated adventure on TV,  directed by Takashi Yamazaki , opens on the big screen .

French Crimes: An Anthology

This collection of short stories , by authors from the 19th century to the end of the 20th, also includes Leblanc along with Mérimée, Balzac , Dumas, Maupassant, Apollinaire and Gaston Leroux , creator of the Phantom of the Opera.

Sherlock, Lupine and I: The Black Lady Trio

Lupine also appears in this collection of juvenile novels , by Pierdomenico Baccalario and Alessandro Gatti, supposedly written by Irene Adler . In this one, the author remembers the adventures of her youth that she lived with the detective and also with a French boy fond of appropriating what belongs to others.