Criminal Code Review 2023 Tv Show Series Cast Crew Online
In voice over, Benício (Rômulo Braga), a detective with the Brazilian Federal Police, talks about borders bringing criminals and cops together “in a fucked up, deadly war that wreaks havoc on both sides.” As we see a “superteam” of criminals cross over into Ciudad del Este to break into a vault carrying tons of foreign cash, Benício laments that these gangs killed his partner.
It’s the night of that robbery. As the federal police investigate a body washed ashore on the border, Benício is questioning someone who may know about The Organization, the gang that killed his partner in Foz three months earlier. His boss, Rossi (Pedro Caetano) wonders where he is and tells him it’s time to find a new partner.
Suellen (Maeve Jinkings), a detective who has been on desk duty since coming back from parental leave, takes the opportunity to drive one of the other big bosses to the airport; she says that she should be paired up with Benício, despite the reputation that precedes him in the department.
The robbery in Ciudad del Este is an elaborate one, starting with a warning shot to keep the local police at bay. The first vault the robbers enter is empty, and the lead is so incensed by the mistake that he ruthlessly puts a bullet in the head of the guard who got them into the vault. But they have plenty of time to go to the other vault and get what they were looking for.
Early the next morning, Suellen picks up her new partner, Benício, and he directs her out towards a soft border crossing. He suspects that the prison break in Foz that killed his partner has something to do with the bank robbery that just happened in Paraguay. His suspicion is confirmed when they go to the border crossing and see the large group of criminals coming ashore.
They try to back off and call for backup, but the criminal gang’s caravan runs into them on the highway, and the caravan scatters. Some are captured, and others are shot. Some take over a van full of people coming back from the supermarket and go to a local bus station. Benício and Suellen find one of the thugs on a bus with a bag full of money. Another, named Sem Alma (Tomas Aquino) is brought in. He’s at the bus station without anything in his hands except a bible. The one person Benício wanted to get is the ringleader, a man called Soulless. But there is no word that he’s been rounded up. Sem Alma doesn’t bend during questioning, and Rossi tells his detectives to let him go.
In the meantime, Rossi, with the help of DNA evidence collected by Yuri (Giovanni de Lorenzi), a criminal forensics analyst, tries to grab jurisdiction over the robbery, arguing that this group committed the jailbreak in Foz first.
Most of the first episode of Criminal Code (Original title: DNA do Crime) is taken right out of the American procedural handbook. A brooding detective looking at a bulletin board full of notes, clippings and pictures. Another detective looking to get back in the game and willing to put up with a brooding partner. Forensics nerds that are as tough as the cops they assist. Criminals who are cunning under pressure. And a boss trying to keep it all together. There’s even a rookie officer who’s a senator’s son who thinks it’s below him to assist Yuri in collecting forensic evidence.
So that’s all well and good, but what struck us as we watched the first episode was that the story itself was tough to get into. It might be that we just don’t know enough about the dynamics of the Brazil-Paraguay border to get a feel for just what criminal activity goes on there. There seems to be more discussion of jurisdiction than anything, and it’s hard to keep track of just what crimes are going on in Brazil and what is going on in Paraguay.
Because of some of the confusion, and the fact that we don’t really have a good idea who the characters are from the first episode, it was extremely difficult to stay engaged. Perhaps now that the situation is laid out, including just who Soulless is, it’ll be easier to follow along during the rest of the first season.