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 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.
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.
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.