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Silver or lead?

Narcos is Netflix’s show which premiered last month on 28 of August. Two weeks ago on a weekend I watched the whole season one in two consecutive evenings. This series is badass, I am hooked.

Narcos Netflix

Narcos tells the rise and fall of the notorious Colombian drug lord, Pablo Escobar. This true story is told on-screen by the narrative of Steve Murphy, one of the USA’s DEA agents who chased and captured Escobar.

Who was Escobar?
Pablo Emilio Escobar Gaviria was born as a son of a farmer. He was a local smuggler before he extended his criminal career. In 1970es he started to build his own imperium as his ambition was to be a millionaire by the time he became 22. In the peak of his power Escobar was estimated by Forbes as the 7th rich man on earth. He was estimated to be worth of USD 50 billion. Escobar initiated the forming of Medellín Cartel with two other drug lords. Despite his criminal activities, Escobar helped the poor in his hometown. To them he was a saint. With this image he made it to the parliament of Colombia for about a year before he was recalled because of his criminal records.

From then on it became chaotic in Colombia. Terror dominated the daily life, murders of gangsters and even people in the politics were on the headlines with the bombing of a commercial flight which killed all 107 passengers as the prominent one.

Escobar blatantly bribed people everywhere even in the government. One of his famous quotes is “Plata o plomo’ it means silver (money) or lead (bullet). Enough about the story as you are able to easily find it online.

The series
More than 90% of the dialogues in this series is in Spanish. Parallel to Escobar’s story this series contains violence, sex and a lot of swearing. The storyline flows smoothly. The acting is very good. Brazilian actor Wagner Moura (Elysium) plays Pablo Escobar. Chilean Pedro Pascal (Oberyn Martell in Game of Thrones) as DEA agent Javier Peña and Boyd Holbrook  as DEA agent Steve Murphy were well casted. They and all other actors perform convincingly.

I recommend this amazing series to those interested in action and in possession of a strong stomach.

Footnote
I remember as a teen in early 1980es I read regularly about ruthless Pablo Escobar on papers and magazines. I could not imagine myself how a drug lord could dominate a country. Narcos provides the images I had in my head then about the chaos because of the real archive images shown in the series. However I heard from a Colombian friend of mine that Colombians are not amused of this series. They blame Netflix for exploiting the black pages in their history for commercial use. According to my friends Los Colombianos want to move on with their life, building their beloved country. Not that foreigners associate their land with drugs and Escobar. And I understand this fully. I admire Colombianos even more seeing how the country has become now after the almost civil war with the Narcos.

12 thoughts on “Silver or lead?

  1. Dan gara-gara zaman Escobar ini aku dan M dibilang “gila” pas mutusin utk tinggal dan kerja di Kolombia beberapa tahun lalu😉
    Whoaaa…pengen nonton..😱 Apalagi aku dan M pernah tersesat dan terpisah pas lagi jalan-jalan di Medellin.. Duh itu mah antara ngeri-ngeri sedap gimana gitu..😝 *heran deh diriku ini.., gak di Cianjur gak di Medellin ada aja momen tersesat..😄*
    Kesimpulannya, seri ini juga direkomendasikan utk siapapun yg pernah tinggal di Kolombia 😉

    • Gila ya itu negara kacau karena kartel narkoba. Kalian tinggal di situ tahun berapa Em? Memang setelah Escobar ditangkap kan banyak bawahannya yang pingin mempertahankan usaha mereka. Maksudku setelah Escobar ditangkap bukan berarti terrornya langsung berhenti.

      • Awal 2011 sampe awal 2012.. Bagi Kolombia penangkapan dan kematian Escobar adalah awal dan akhir dari sesuatu.., jadi yg namanya gema dari horor belasan tahun lalu ya masih ada sampe sekarang.. Beberapa bulan lalu suamiku nonton dokumenter Escobar di Discovery Channel.., salah satu segmen yg bikin takjub yaitu ditemukannya sebuah gudang besar banget milik Escobar yg isinya…duit US dollar dalam ratusan box/karung yg udah mulai rusak dimakan tikus saking banyaknya uang tunai yg dia miliki..Kayaknya Escobar tuh lupa pernah naroh duit di situ.. Trus belakangan ini di NatGeo Channel lagi diputer seri Airport Security: Colombia, isinya sebagian besar tentang drug trafficking via air travel.. Ampun deh itu ya ketangkep aja bisa 5 kasus/minggu.. Gimana yg gak ketangkep dan via jalur non bandara coba.. Hadeuuuhhh.. Tapi pemerintah Kolombia selama 15 tahun terakhir ini emang bebenah terus soal ini, gerah kali ye dibilangin “the drug capital of the world” melulu.. Ah maaf ini komentar koq jadi panjang ya..hehehe..

        • Iya Em, di serie ini juga ada adegan anak buahnya Escobar simpen uang dimana-mana. Dikubur didalam tanah di hutan, ibunya dia juga banyak simpen uang kontan dirumahnya. Aku baca anaknya dia pake nama belakang lain ya. Ngga mau dihantui sejarah bapaknya, aku ngerti ini.

        • Walahhh sampe segitunya.. Waktu kami jalan di Medellin itu, pemandu kami bilang bahwa kita bisa ikutan tur Escobar juga, maksudnya city tour menelusuri jejak sepak terjang Escobar di Medellin, ini termasuk menelusuri aksi plus minusnya dia, karena di kotanya ini dia bagaikan Robin Hood gitu, meski seisi Medellin tau kerjaan dia apa.. Tur ini didukung oleh keluarga Escobar juga.. Waktu itu kami gak sempat ikutan, cuma sempat melintasi daerah yg dulunya kumuh yg kemudian didanai keluarga Escobar supaya jadi gak kumuh lagi..

  2. Saya ingat baca tentang Pablo Escobar juga Mbak Yo jaman dulu di koran dan berita TVRI. Karena masih kecil gak tahu apa sih gembong narkoba cuman namanya bener bener melekat banget, Pablo Escobar. Jadi penasaran banget sama serial ini.

    • Iya, akhir 80an awal 90an sama waktu USA ke Panama menangkap Manuel Noriega. Masa-masa penuh terror dan perang juga Dan. Nonton ayuk. Ini si Escobar kaya banget waktu itu, uangnya kontan banyak. Konon dia habis USD 2500 per bulan untuk beli karet gelang buat ikat uang kontannya.

  3. Pingback: Pablo Escobar Halloween Costume - Halloween Outfits - Crazy Halloween Costumes |

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