Blurring the Lines
Netflix’s new series, Inventing Anna, is introduced at the precipice of our narcissist society. America dangles at the glamorized world of a twenty-something con-artist. We ‘ooh’ and ‘aww’ at today’s modern-day Robin Hood, as Anna Delvey takes from New York’s wealthy. Available now to stream, Inventing Anna is based on the true story about Anna (Sorokin) Delvey, a Russian born, German citizen con-artist. Delvey landed in America in 2013 under the alias name Delvey; she led many wealthy people to believe that she was a German heiress, waiting to inherit 60 million dollars. She lied about her background and scammed several people into paying for her luxurious lifestyle.
The Netflix series starts with New York reporter Vivian Kent, who took interest in Anna’s story. Kent fights to convince her boss to let her research Delvey’s case. I loved that this series starts with the perspective of the reporter; the story unravels for the viewer as it did for Kent. But it also shows the perspective of Delvey and the people involved with her con life-style. If you are someone who enjoys the average Netflix series, you won’t be disappointed. This one was well written and full of great acting. This is a great series if you are interested in con-artist, true-crimes, and investigative type series.
At first, the audience roots for Delvey as the show introduced the people she scammed; they were wealthy and seemed very arrogant. But mid-way through the audience anxiously sat through the episode where Delvey scammed one of her middle-class friends, Rachel, who is Rachel Williams in real life. Delvey takes Rachel on a first-class get-a-way but eventually leaves Williams to pay for it, which ends up costing over $60,000 . You see the side of Delvey that seemed to hide at the start of the series. Through the series, the wealthier victims of Delvey get their money back without a sweat, but you witness Delvey’s conniving deception turn into greed and selfishness with the Rachel incident. Delvey’s heiress persona starts to unravel at the seams as her money runs out and her truth blurred, she does all she could to make a $40 million deal with investors.
The $40 million dream deal creates an exclusive club where billionaires can have some leisure time. Because some of the people Delvey conned were wealthy, high-level, business people, they were too embarrassed to come forward and admit what she had done. Though some victims did not come forward, Delvey was charged with eight counts of fraud, two she was acquitted. She served time for charges of grand larceny and theft of service. She swindled dozens of people out of money and didn’t pay her hotel bills.
An interesting fact about this story happened in 2018, with Delvey’s prison release in February of 2021. On the series and in real life, Delvey was convicted and sentenced to 4-12 years in prison. Delvey was released after four years for good behavior ironically. Shortly after her prison release, Delvey was arrested by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) for overstaying her visa and is currently being held in custody.
The Anna Delvey story made headlines and now with the Netflix release, Delvey has reached Hollywood fame status. A Time article recently written by Rachel Williams, claims that Delvey is getting rewarded for her crimes. Williams, as mentioned before in this article, is a victim of Delvey. Delvey was not found guilty for the $62,000 she swindled out of Williams. This shows that people cannot keep their eyes off Delvey, glorifying her and making her into a hero. But what does that say about society, where we celebrate crime and lack of moral discernment? Though the victims of Delvey got their justice, fame, and money, they are still victims of a con-artist. They are victims of one’s greedy, desperate attempts for wealth. The popularity of Inventing Anna is a perfect display of America’s obsession with the criminal mind.