The Serpent returns to BBC One tonight for episode two, but if you can’t wait to find out what happened to the real Monique – aka Marie-Andrée – read on!
Jenna Coleman plays the girlfriend of serial killer Charles Sobhraj, who was accompanied by Marie-Andrée Leclerc before her lover renamed her.
So far on the series, it’s hard to see how complicit Monique was in the horrific murders of Western backpackers in and around Thailand.
Is she a victim of coercive control herself?
Who was Marie-Andrée Leclerc?
She was a legal secretary born in 1945 in French-speaking Quebec, Canada.
Marie-Andrée apparently met Sobhraj on vacation in India in the spring of 1975 and came to live with him in Thailand that summer as his girlfriend.
In the television series, she helps drug victims and uses the stolen passports of Sobhraj’s female victims as soon as he kills them to steal their money.
Marie-Andrée was accused in real life despite protesting her innocence.
Was ‘Monique’ brainwashed by Sobhraj?
Jenna Coleman enjoyed that, is she / isn’t she? Element of her character that reveals before the start of the season: “I think that [question of] “Is she a victim or is she not”, how much of her was brainwashed, how much of it was a choice to be there and a choice to live in delusion.
“I think that’s really interesting, about making the choices she made to keep this reality so that it can exist and be with Charles.
“I think what’s really interesting is almost like she created her own narrative and she really lives in her delusion.
Read More: Five Burning Questions Before The Serpent’s Second Episode
“So I think for me it was more about crushing the truth, it was like not accepting the reality of what was actually going on, and now it’s almost like she was her own movie star life running in her head what made it really complicated in a great way, in a really great way.
“It felt like between the lines Richard had [Warlow, The Serpent writer] wrote that there were a thousand ways that you always attract. “
Perhaps Marie-Andrée herself never understood the truth …
Did Marie-Andrée go to prison?
Yes, in June 1976 Sobhraj and Monique were arrested in New Delhi after they got a group of French students to recruit them as tour guides.
An attempt to drug the students failed and one of them alerted the police.
Read more: Where is Charles Sobhraj now?
The couple were sentenced to 12 years in prison despite denying participation in one of his crimes and insisting that she was under his control.
In 1980 they were convicted of murder, but Marie-Andrée appealed and was released on the condition that she remain in India.
In 1983 she was diagnosed with ovarian cancer and was given permission to return to Canada.
She died a year later at the age of 38.
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