Narcos is a popular Netflix TV series that originally premiered in 2015. It is a crime drama series that chronicles the rise and fall of various drug kingpins and cartels, primarily focusing on the infamous Colombian drug lord Pablo Escobar.
Created by Chris Brancato, Carlo Bernard, and Doug Miro, the show blends fictionalised storytelling with real-life events to provide a gripping and intense narrative.
It was one of the biggest hits for Netflix and ran for three seasons earning a large global fan base. With its compelling storytelling, intense performances, and exploration of the world of drug trafficking, it remains one of the streaming platforms best shows.
But if you've never seen Narcos, then you'll want to know what it is all about and if it is worth watching. So here goes…
What Is Narcos About?
The first two seasons of Narcos revolve around the rise and reign of Pablo Escobar (Wagner Moura). He became one of the world's most powerful drug traffickers during the late 1970s and 1980s.
The story follows Escobar's early days in the drug trade, his establishment of the Medellín Cartel, and his subsequent expansion of the cocaine empire.
Narcos also delves into the efforts of the DEA (Drug Enforcement Administration) agents Steve Murphy (Boyd Holbrook) and Javier Peña (Pedro Pascal), who were sent to Colombia to bring down Escobar and dismantle his drug empire.
The agents faced numerous challenges and dangers as they navigated the complex and violent world of the drug trade.
In later seasons, Narcos explores the aftermath of Escobar's demise and shifts its focus to other drug cartels and kingpins operating in Colombia and other regions.
The series continues to portray the ongoing battle between law enforcement agencies and drug traffickers, highlighting the intricate web of corruption, violence, and power struggles in the criminal underworld.
Narcos Official Trailer
Is Narcos Worth Watching?
Yes, Narcos is definitely worth watching if you're a fan of crime dramas and compelling storytelling.
The series offers a gripping narrative that explores the world of drug trafficking, providing a blend of drama and real historical events.
The performances, particularly by actors such as Wagner Moura as Pablo Escobar and Pedro Pascal as Javier Peña, have been widely acclaimed. The show effectively balances action, suspense, and character-driven drama, creating a captivating viewing experience.
Furthermore, Narcos provides insights into the political and societal impact of the drug trade, shedding light on the corruption, power struggles, and moral dilemmas involved. It offers a clever and nuanced portrayal of both the criminals and law enforcement agents, presenting a multifaceted perspective on the drug war.
With three seasons available to watch and ten episodes in each season, this is a great choice if you are looking for something to binge that has some real substance.
It is a real roller coaster of an experience that not only follows Escobar's story as head of the Medellin Cartel but follows the transition of power across to the Cali Cartel and what seems to be an evolved and more advanced approach to trafficking, but every bit as brutal.
And when you're through with this show, switch over to Narcos: Mexico which is just as good.
How Many Seasons Of Narcos?
In total there are five seasons of Narcos. The first three are based on Pablo Escobar with the fourth and fifth switching to Narcos: Mexico.
Narcos Season 1 (2015): This season introduces the rise of Pablo Escobar and his Medellín Cartel. It explores his initial involvement in the cocaine trade, the formation of his empire, and the subsequent pursuit by the DEA. The season spans from the late 1970s to the early 1990s.
Narcos Season 2 (2016): The second season focuses on the intensifying hunt for Pablo Escobar as his empire crumbles and he becomes increasingly desperate to evade capture. The season depicts the final months of Escobar's life, leading up to his eventual demise in 1993.
Narcos Season 3 (2017): With Escobar's reign over, this season shifts its focus to the rise of the Cali Cartel. They were a powerful drug organisation that took advantage of the power vacuum left by Escobar.
Narcos: Mexico Season 1 (2018): A spin-off of the original series and serves as the fourth season. It takes place in the 1980s and delves into the origins of the Mexican drug trade. The season primarily follows the story of Miguel Ángel Félix Gallardo, the founder of the Guadalajara Cartel.
Narcos: Mexico Season 2 (2020): Continues to follow the Guadalajara Cartel and its expansion into the 1990s. It explores the increasing tensions within the cartel, as well as the efforts of the DEA to dismantle it.
How Accurate Is Narcos?
Narcos is a fictionalised but based on real events and characters from the world of drug trafficking. While it draws inspiration from historical events and individuals, it should be noted that the show takes creative liberties for dramatic purposes. So, it is not entirely accurate in its portrayal of the events and characters it depicts.
The series does strive to capture the essence of the time period and the broader narrative of the drug trade.
It provides a general understanding of the rise and fall of drug kingpins like Pablo Escobar and the operations of various cartels. However, specific details, conversations, and certain plot elements are dramatised for entertainment purposes.
Nonetheless, Narcos does draw extensively from historical research and firsthand accounts to maintain a sense of authenticity.
The series incorporates news footage, interviews, and archival materials, providing a backdrop of real-world context. Additionally, the show occasionally features real-life individuals and incorporates actual events, further grounding it in historical reality.
Where Was Narcos Filmed?
Narcos was primarily filmed in Colombia, the home country of the series' main subject, Pablo Escobar. The production team made extensive use of various locations throughout Colombia to authentically recreate the settings and capture the atmosphere of the story.
Some of the notable filming locations in Colombia include:
Bogotá: The capital city of Colombia, Bogotá. This served as a prominent filming location for urban scenes and government institutions depicted in the series.
Medellín: The birthplace of the Medellín Cartel and Pablo Escobar's base of operations. Medellín played a crucial role in the series. Many iconic locations in the city were utilised for filming, including Escobar's former residence, La Catedral.
Cartagena: This coastal city, known for its historic charm and beautiful beaches, was also featured in the series. It provided a backdrop for various scenes involving drug trafficking operations and the lifestyle of the cartels.
Cali: When the focus shifted to the Cali Cartel in the later seasons, the city became a significant filming location.
In addition to Colombia, some scenes were also filmed in other countries including the US for certain scenes involving the DEA operations.
Who Plays Pablo Escobar In Narcos?
Wagner Moura as Pablo Escobar, a Colombian drug lord and the leader of the Medellín Cartel
Boyd Holbrook as Steve Murphy, a DEA agent tasked with bringing down Escobar
Pedro Pascal as Javier Peña, a DEA agent given the task of bringing down Escobar and, in season 3, the Cali Cartel
Joanna Christie as Connie Murphy, Steve's wife, a nurse who works in the local hospital
Maurice Compte as Colonel Horacio Carrillo, a Colombian police chief and commander of Search Bloc
André Mattos as Jorge Ochoa, a founding member and former leader of the Medellín cartel
Roberto Urbina as Fabio Ochoa, a high-ranking member of the Medellín cartel
Diego Cataño as Juan Diego “La Quica” Díaz, an assassin routinely hired by the Medellín
Jorge A. Jimenez as Roberto “Poison” Ramos, a hitman hired by the Medellín cartel
Paulina Gaitán as Tata Escobar, as Escobar's wife
Paulina García as Hermilda Gaviria, Escobar's mother
These are just a few of the prominent characters in the series. There are many more supporting characters and cast members throughout the seasons.
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