All the characters are very well developed. The patriarch of the Stasi family (Uwe Kossich) is shrewd enough to survive in the Stasi, but does see that there are flaws in his government. His wife is a typical wife of a member of the Communist Party. She just wants to maintain the image of her family as being loyal, because she can only see the consequences of being otherwise as too dire to even fathom. His two sons, Falk and Martin, are very different. Martin is idealistic, but has a heart that leads him astray. He falls in love with the daughter of a suspect musician and that leads to all kinds of trouble for him and his family. Falk is almost "devilish". As an upstart in Stasi, his whole purpose in life is to use people, incriminate people, advance himself, and protect his self interest. In some ways as "good a communist" as Falk believes himself to be, if he lived in West Germany he could have been an equally good ruthless CEO. One of the most interesting characters is Falk's boss. Falk's boss is the head of Stasi, and was very evidently around during Stalin's time. As scary and ferocious as he is, he is much smarter than Falk. He knows that Falk is basically a "cowardly self serving man who probably would have been eliminated if he were in Stalin's time".