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Early in episode 4 of season 1 of the TV series Fargo we see a flashback scene explaining some of a character's history. The car of character Stavros Milos breaks down in a snow swept remote road. He prays that his family will survive and not freeze to death and then discovers a briefcase stuffed with money. The implication is that this is how his penniless, debt-ridden character ends up later as the owner of a major supermarket chain.

But the big question for me was: is this supposed to link the TV series to the Movie? After all a character who is later killed hides a large sum of money in a remote snowy road just like the one seen in the TV series. Does that make the TV series a sequel and not just a homage?

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Officially the show is 'heavily inspired by' the film. But there are many connections between the two story lines, the briefcase included. Here's a more exhaustive list of connections (spoilers): http://www.ew.com/article/2014/06/17/fargo-film-series-references-season-finale

Regarding the briefcase of money, specifically, from the above link:

The briefcase: Having killed Jean’s father and taken the briefcase full of $1 million in ransom money, Carl pulls out the agreed-upon $80k that he will share with Gaear. He buries the rest in the snow on the side of a desolate road along a fence, using his red ice scraper as a marker so he remembers where the money is located. Broke and desperate, Milos flees to Minnesota with his family in 1987 – except along the way, he runs out of gas. His car just happens to stall out at the exact spot where Carl buried his briefcase full of money. Milos spies the ice scraper, digs, and finds the treasure. The scene firmly plants the series within the same universe as the film.

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