Máiquel was played there by Murilo Benício as a careless ingenu who never quite squanders our sympathy as he makes his way along a Tony Montana-like career path.
That all his misfortune and that of his victims can be traced back to an unfortunate wager which prompted this ineffectual gamma-male to change his hair-colour and with it to transform himself into a dark angel of social sanitisation is an ever-present visual joke in the film.
The gags are generally thinner on the ground in O Matador. ("I stood on my head for fifteen minutes. The coke still wasn't working.") and the outrageous social implications of this story are given the full overtone treatment.
Melo's Máiquel is a more transparently psychotic individual, whose compassionate asides are swept away by sudden tsunamis of incontinent savagery.
The key female character — Érica — is also handled considerably more perceptively than by screenwriter Fonesca.
It's still a fun, ironic and stylish experience, but falls short of being a significant piece of Latin American literature; a failure I've put down to the intermittent hokeyness of Melo's stream of consciousness format.