'White Lines': With a host of two-faced characters, Nuno Lopes' Boxer easily emerges as the most lovable
Boxer’s character is definitely a trope. The good-hearted bad guy. But it’s a trope that isn’t often done well. One good example of this is unsurprisingly Bronn from ‘Game of Thrones’
Spoilers for ‘White Lines’
There is a lot to like about Alex Pina’s newest crime thriller on Netflix, ‘White Lines’. The show is set in Ibiza, Spain, so the views are spectacular. There’s plenty of debauchery going on in the show, what with all the sex, drugs, and parties. It is, after all, Europe’s party capital.
The show holds up its promise of tantalizing views with a good mystery. And most importantly, the characters are worth investing in. They are well-written and multi-dimensional. Be it Laura Haddocks’ self-doubt-filled Zoe, who is a woman on a mission; or Tom Rhys-Harries’ Axel, the handsome, talented and flawed DJ who was brutally murdered. There’s also Conchita (Belén López), the matriarch of the Calafat family, and her son Oriol (Juan Diego Botto), whose Oedipal complex is an uncomfortable watch.
But the best character on the show is Nuno Lopes’ Boxer. A bouncer, henchman, and a trusted bodyguard of the Calafat patriarch Andreu (Pedro Casablanc), Boxer is truly the only character worth loving in a series where everyone is two-faced.
Boxer’s character is definitely a trope. The good-hearted bad guy. But it’s a trope that isn’t often done well. One good example of this is unsurprisingly from ‘Game of Thrones’. Bronn the sellsword, played by Jerome Flynn, is in all sense of the word, a shady man. He’s selfish, doesn't play by the rules, and is not at all knight-like. But one would be lying if they said he wasn’t honorable.
Another good example of this is also Omar Little (Michael K. Williams) from ‘The Wire’. Omar is a criminal, but he’s essentially a Robin Hood-like character. He robs other drug dealers and helps those in need. He’s ruthless but has a strict code.
Boxer is not exactly like either character. He is ruthless. But he’s also kind-hearted. He’s dangerous. But he’s not evil. He’s blunt. But he’s not unkind. In fact, he proves to be the most lovable of all as the series progresses.
His relationship with Zoe sees his goodness right from the very beginning. He never begrudges her shooting him in the leg with a harpoon. In fact, he likes that she has guts, a fact that he keeps repeating. He helps her kill the Romanian drug lords who were after Marcus (Daniel Mays). He comforts her when she has a panic attack. And he does not hold it against her for choosing her husband over him, despite their brief-but-torrid relationship.
His loyalty towards the Calafat family, especially Andreu is visible throughout the show, as he selflessly does their bidding. But he is also not afraid to air his opinions, especially to Kika (Marta Milans), who he calls a coward for trying to escape.
The fact that he is a huge, hulking man, who has a dangerous profession, however, does not ever stop Boxer from being a vulnerable man. He is open about his feelings for Zoe, who panics when he expresses his desire to have a relationship with her. He loves his old french cinema. He loves his cooking. And he paints.
It’s hard to guess if there can be real-life versions of Boxer, but on screen, he is one of the best characters we have right now!
‘White Lines’ is available for viewing on Netflix.