Individualism versus Groups

I think one of the main themes of this show is the difficulty of overcoming one's sense of individuality to form a group. Libano is visionary in his understanding that the union of the two gangs will yield greater results for them all in the long term. But the group's cohesion is constantly under peril from each member who has his own schemes to make money or their own ways of doing things. I think they all understand the benefits of being in the group, but at the same time they can't give up their individuality for its sake, and that's why their entreprise is doomed to failure. This becomes more and more obvious in season 2: without Libano's domineering personality, the members start running parallel schemes, stealing from the group and making secret deals with other groups. In season 2, the only one who still seems to care about the group if Freddo, but he lacks Libano's strength; all the others are just interested in their own lives, especially Dandi, who manages to rise above the group and become a powerful businessman in his own right.

Ironically, in spite of Libano's stress on partnership, it was his strong personality that kept the group together. But it was also his stubborn way of doing things his own way that caused the first attrition between the members.

This world is a comedy to those that think, a tragedy to those that feel.


Very good post and you're right. It also depict the romans a bit ;-)


Very accurate post, I saw the same thing. As they said, when Libano died the gang did too - he understood the a need for a natural respected leader to emerge - and everybody made money at that time. Once his personal demons started the secret service saw the gang fragmenting - and they made a call.

I personally though the whole Bufalo story was one of the best - an uncontrollable beast whole was totally loyal to Libano from the day they met until the day he died.


There's an irony in the way Libano ran things, too. He was always claiming that all members are equal, but almost never followed his own rule. Regardless of the others' feelings, he would force his own will on them all and made the group his own. He becomes "King of Rome", but the group aren't kings with him.

Once Libano's out of the picture, Dandi and Freddo are even more exaggerated: controlling the group while claiming to be for the group - to the detriment of all. The only one who eventually pulls ahead (fiscally) is Dandi, who stops pretending at some point and just takes as much power as he can get for himself.

Could there be some sort of Communist/ Fascist commentary here? The series has the communist political backdrop. Maybe it's making a dark, satirical point about any leader telling you he'll lead you to equality (a paradox at best). Maybe Libano and Freddo are Communists, claiming to be for the people and really just making life good for themselves and their ideals. Maybe Dandi is the Fascist who dominates and doesn't care for anybody but himself.