Barbarians Netflix: Was Folkwin Wolfspeer a real person?

Barbarians Netflix: Was Folkwin Wolfspeer a real person?

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Netflix’s new historical series Barbarians reimagines the story of the Battle of Teutoburg Forest. One character who has captured the viewers’ imaginations is Folkwin Wolfspeer (David Schütter). But the nature of the historical show, fans are curious if he was based on a real person – here’s what you need to know.

Was Folkwin Wolfspear a real person?

Barbarians dropped in full on Netflix on October 23 for viewers to binge-watch the historical series.

The show retells the story of one of Germany’s most epic wins in military history back in nine AD.

One character who fans became invested in during the series was Folkwin Wolfspeer.

Across the show, the heroic warrior agitates the Romans and winds up as one of their key targets.

As well as this, he is also part of a romantic storyline with his lover Thusnelda (Jeanne Goursaud).

Given the show’s historical nature, many have been curious about if he was based on a real person.

Unfortunately, Folkwin is actually a fictional character who was created for the series.

Although, it is likely the series drew from historical records to make an authentic role to fit into this world.

Speaking to Variety earlier in October, executive producer Sabine de Mardt revealed how important authenticity was.

She said: “Only the feeling of an authentic world combined with emotional and truthful stories brings the magic that will draw in an international audience and make sure they follow us into this compelling world.

“This is universal. And this has very little to do with production budgets that are clearly higher for big international shows.

“Like David with Goliath, you just have to be a little clever about what you choose to show on screen and what you elegantly leave out.”


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What’s more, while Folkwin is not based on a real historical figure, there are plenty of other characters who are.

This includes his lover Thusnelda, who was a Cheruscan noblewoman who was part of a Germanic tribe.

However, her father was an ally of the Roman Empire, which left her in a sticky situation.

In historical records, Arminius (Laurence Rupp) was said to have kidnapped Thusnelda before marrying her.

Arminius is also depicted in the series and was based on an actual German hero.

He was the son of a noble house who studied in Rome, learning all he could about their military.

This is why he played such a key role in the battle as he had both the trust of the Roman Empire and the experience of their strategies.

Barbarians is available to stream on Netflix now.

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