|Theme music composer||Rodrigo Amarante|
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of seasons||2|
|No. of episodes||20 (list of episodes)|
|Running time||43–57 minutes|
|Production company(s)||Gaumont International Television|
|Picture format||1080p, 2160p (16:9 HDTV)|
|Original release||August 28, 2015 – present|
Narcos is an American crime web television series created and produced by Chris Brancato, Carlo Bernard, and Doug Miro. Season 1, comprising 10 episodes, originally aired on August 28, 2015, as a Netflix exclusive.
Set and filmed in Colombia, season 1 tells the story of drug kingpin Pablo Escobar, who became a billionaire through the production and distribution of cocaine, while also focusing on Escobar's interactions with drug lords, DEA agents, and various opposition entities. The series was renewed for a second season, which premiered on September 2, 2016 with 10 episodes. On September 6, 2016, Netflix renewed the series for a third and fourth season.
|1||10||August 28, 2015|
|2||10||September 2, 2016|
Season 1 (2015)
Season 1 chronicles the life of Pablo Escobar from the late 1970s, when he first began manufacturing cocaine, to July 1992. The show chronicles the main events that happened in Colombia during this period and Escobar’s relationship to them. It is told through the perspective of Steve Murphy, an American DEA agent working in Colombia. The series show how Escobar first became involved in the cocaine trade in Colombia. He was an established black marketeer in Medellín, moving trucks worth of illegal goods (alcohol, cigarettes, and household appliances) into Colombia during a time when this was strictly forbidden, when introduced to Mateo "Cockroach" Moreno, a Chilean exile and underground chemist, who pitched the idea that they go into business together, with Moreno producing and Escobar distributing a new, profitable drug—cocaine. They expand beyond Moreno's small cocaine processing lab by building additional, larger labs in the rainforest and, using the expertise of Carlos Lehder, transport their product in bulk to Miami, where it gains notoriety amongst the rich and famous. Soon enough, Pablo develops larger labs and more extensive distribution routes into the US to supply growing demand. With cocaine's growth into a drug of importance in the American market, one that accounts for a large flow of US dollars to Colombia and escalating drug-related violence in the US, the Americans send a task force from the DEA to Colombia to address the issue. Murphy is partnered with Javier Peña. The role of Murphy's task force is to work with the Colombian authorities to put an end to the flow of cocaine into the United States. It ends when Escobar escaped La Catedral prison.
Season 2 (2016)
Season 2 is a continuation of where Season 1 ended. Some soldiers find Escobar and his entourage right outside the perimeter of La Catedral, but are too petrified by Escobar to make an arrest. At the embassy the US sends a new ambassador who brings the CIA into play. In the beginning, there is little change for Escobar, as he still has the loyalty of his cartel. However, this starts to slip as Escobar needs to use lot of time and resources to hide from the government. Among the tricks he uses to avoid being seen are hiring a cab driver, who in turn hires a young woman to sit in the backseat as a decoy, while Escobar is hiding in the trunk; and having young look-outs reporting about Search Bloc attempts to find him.
At the beginning Escobar easily adapts to his new life, giving money to the community while ruthlessly killing those who tried to grab his empire. The Colombian police and Escobar engage in massive battles, resulting in high tension and unrest in Colombia. Cali cartel forms an unlikely alliance with Judy Moncada and Don Berna, and decide to bring in the Castanos. Agent Peña starts working with Los Pepes, who kill Valeria and Fernando Duque. After La Quica and Blackie are caught, Escobar goes on the run with Limon. Pablo and Limon hide in a safehouse where he celebrates his 44th birthday. When Pablo tries to make contact with his family, the DEA and military track him down via radio triangulation and corner Pablo on the rooftops. Pablo is hit twice in the ensuing shootout, and though he might survive his injuries, Trujillo executes him with a shot to the head. Tata goes to the Cali Cartel for their help in leaving the country. Peña returns to the U.S. and is asked to provide intel against the Cali Cartel.
- Wagner Moura as Pablo Escobar – a Colombian drug lord and the leader of the Medellín Cartel (Season 1–2)
- Boyd Holbrook as Steve Murphy – a DEA agent tasked with bringing down Escobar (Season 1–2)
- Pedro Pascal as Javier Peña – a DEA agent agent tasked with bringing down Escobar (Season 1–2)
- Joanna Christie as Connie Murphy – Steve's wife, a nurse who works in the local hospital
- Juan Pablo Raba as Gustavo Gaviria – Escobar's cousin and one of the founding members of the Medellín Cartel (main Season 1; guest Season 2)
- Maurice Compte as Horacio Carrillo – a Colombian police chief, based on Colonel Hugo Martinez (main Season 1, recurring Season 2)
- Diego Cataño as Juan Diego "La Quica" Diaz – an assassin routinely hired by the Medellín, based on Dandeny Muñoz Mosquera
- Jorge A. Jimenez as Roberto "Poison" Ramos – a hitman hired by the Medellín Cartel, who often argues with Quica about personal death counts (Season 1)
- Paulina Gaitán as Tata Escobar – Escobar's wife, based on Maria Henao
- Paulina García as Hermilda Gaviria – Escobar's mother, a former Colombian schoolteacher
- Stephanie Sigman as Valeria Vélez – a Colombian journalist who also serves as Pablo Escobar's mistress, based on Virginia Vallejo (main Season 1, recurring Season 2)
- Bruno Bichir as Fernando Duque – a Colombian lawyer who represents Pablo Escobar, acting as his liaison with the Colombian government
- Raúl Méndez as César Gaviria – a Colombian economist and politician and the 28th President of Colombia
- Manolo Cardona as Eduardo Sandoval – the Vice Minister of Justice in President Gaviria's administration
- Cristina Umana as Judy Moncada – a former leader in the Medellín Cartel who, after Escobar murdered her husband Kiko, led a breakaway cartel and allied with the Cali Cartel and Los Pepes; she is based on the real-life Dolly Moncada (main Season 2, recurring Season 1)
- Alberto Ammann as Helmer "Pacho" Herrera – a Colombian drug lord and high-ranking member of the Cali Cartel (main Season 2, recurring Season 1)
- Damian Alcazar as Gilberto Rodríguez Orejuela – the Leader of the Cali Cartel and one of Pablo Escobar's primary rivals (Season 2)
- Eric Lange as Bill Stechner – the CIA Station Chief in Colombia (Season 2)
- Julián Díaz as El Negro or "Blackie" (né Nelson Hernández) – a member of the Medellín Cartel, who is frequently seen by Escobar's side (in real life, Escobar had a close friend named Jorge "El Negro" Pabon)
- Jon-Michael Ecker as El Lion or "The Lion" – a childhood friend of Escobar's who becomes his first drug smuggler into Miami and subsequently runs Escobar's Miami operations
- Richard T. Jones as CIA Officer – a CIA officer, also on Murphy's task force (recurring Season 1, guest Season 2)
- Patrick St. Esprit as Colonel Lou Wysession – a Marine officer fighting against communism (recurring Season 1, guest Season 2)
- Luis Guzmán as Gonzalo Rodríguez Gacha – founding member and former leader of the Medellín Cartel (Season 1)
- Juan Riedinger as Carlos Lehder – Lion's contact in the United States, tasked with distributing the cocaine (Season 1)
- André Mattos as Jorge Ochoa – founding member and former leader of the Medellín Cartel (Season 1)
- Roberto Urbina as Fabio Ochoa – a high-ranking member of the Medellín Cartel (Season 1)
- Ana de la Reguera as Elisa Alvarez – the co-leader of guerrilla faction 19th of April Movement (M-19) (Season 1)
- Danielle Kennedy as Ambassador Noonan – a United States Ambassador deployed to Colombia under Ronald Reagan (Season 1)
- Thaddeus Phillips as Agent Owen – a CIA agent on the Colombia task force (Season 1)
- Ariel Sierra as Sureshot – one of Escobar's sicarios (Season 1)
- Carolina Gaitán as Marta Ochoa – the Ochoas' sister, who is kidnapped by M-19 (Season 1)
- Laura Perico as Marina Ochoa – the Ochoas' sister, who has an affair with Escobar's cousin Gustavo (Season 1)
- Vera Mercado as Ana Gaviria – the wife of César Gaviria and the First Lady of Colombia (Season 1)
- Leynar Gomez as Limón – a pimp and taxi driver from Medellín who becomes one of Escobar's sicarios, based on Alvaro de Jesús Agudelo (a.k.a. "El Limón") (Season 2)
- Martina García as Maritza – an old friend of Limon's roped into unwittingly helping Escobar (Season 2)
- Brett Cullen as Ambassador Arthur Crosby – A former Navy officer sent as US Ambassador to Colombia by George H.W. Bush in 1992, replacing Noonan (Season 2)
Special guest appearances
- Luis Gnecco as Mateo Moreno or "Cockroach" – the Chilean chemist who first introduced Escobar to cocaine trafficking
- A.J. Buckley as Kevin Brady
- Adria Arjona as Helena
- Rafael Cebrián as Alejandro Ayala
- Dylan Bruno as Barry Seal – an American drug smuggler working for the Medellín Cartel who uses the alias "McPickle"
- Adan Canto as Minister Rodrigo Lara Bonilla – a Colombian lawyer and politician
- Gabriela de la Garza as Diana Turbay – a Colombian journalist who was kidnapped by the Medellín Cartel
- Adrián Jiménez as Colonel Herrera – a DAS agent
- Aldemar Correa as Iván Torres – a Colombian guerrilla fighter and communist, based on Iván Ospina
- Julián Beltrán as Alberto Suarez
- Juan Pablo Espinosa as Luis Galán – a Colombian journalist and politician
The series was announced in April 2014, through a partnership deal struck between Netflix and Spanish language network Telemundo. The series is primarily written by Chris Brancato and directed by Brazilian filmmaker José Padilha, who directed the critically and commercially successful Elite Squad (2007), before directing its sequel in 2010, which became the highest-grossing film ever in Brazil.
Opening theme and title sequence
- Title card
Narcos opens with a title card, from which the narrator reads: "Magical realism is defined as what happens when a highly detailed, realistic setting is invaded by something too strange to believe. There is a reason magical realism was born in Colombia".
- Opening theme
- Visual montage
The theme scores the visual montage comprising the title sequence, created by DK Studios under artistic director Tom O’Neill. The 1980s-themed images address Colombian drug trafficking in general, the United States’ attempt to control it, the era’s glamour, footage from the mountainous regions of Bogota and surrounding underprivileged neighbourhoods, shots of local residents, archival news coverage, and violence. The montage excludes some people who were unwilling to appear in the credits, but it does include some news clips and images "of Pablo Escobar and his entourage, like those at the zoo, [which] came directly from the drug baron’s personal photographer, who goes by the name El Chino." According to O'Neill, "the production team took inspiration from James Mollison’s photo book 'The Memory of Pablo Escobar'."
In Spanish, the term "narco" is an abbreviation of the word "narcotraficante" (drug trafficker). Before this usage, in the United States, the epithet "narc" (or "narco") referred to a specialist officer of a narcotics police force, such as a DEA agent.
|1||78% (45 reviews)||77 (19 reviews)|
|2||90% (20 reviews)||76 (13 reviews)|
First season received generally favorable reviews from critics. Rotten Tomatoes a review aggregator surveyed 45 reviews and judged 78% to be positive. The site reads, "Narcos lacks sympathetic characters, but pulls in the viewer with solid acting and a story that's fast-paced enough to distract from its familiar outline." On Metacritic, Season 1 holds a score of 77 out of 100, based on 19 critics, indicating "Generally favorable reviews". IGN gave the first season a 7.8 out of 10 score saying it "Good" and reads "It's a true-to-life account, sometimes to a fault, of the rise of Pablo Escobar and the hunt that brought him down laced with stellar performances and tension-filled stand-offs. Its blend of archival footage reminds us that the horrors depicted really happened, but also manage to present an Escobar that is indefensible but frighteningly sympathetic."
Writing for Philadelphia Inquirer, Tirdad Derakhshani reviewed the season positively calling it, "Intense, enlightening, brilliant, unnerving, and addictive, Narcos is high-concept drama at its finest." Television critic, Tim Goodman of The Hollywood Reporter also reviewed the series positively saying, "The series begins to find its pacing not long after, and we see the strength of Moura’s acting, which to his credit never races, in the early going, toward over-the-top menace or the drug-lord cliches we're all used to at this point. Credit also the fact that Padilha brings a documentary feel to Narcos." Nancy deWolf Smith of Wall Street Journal wrote, "The omniscient-narrator device works very well for a complex story spanning many years and varied sets of players." Critic Neil Genzlinger of New York Times said, "It’s built on sharp writing and equally sharp acting, as any good series needs to be." However, chief television critic Mary McNamara of Los Angeles Times wrote, "It's a grand if inconsistent experiment that, from the moment it opens with a definition of magic realism, wears its considerable ambitions on its sleeve." Writing for IndieWire, Liz Shannon Miller said, "An unlikeable character, no matter the circumstances, remains unlikeable, but an unlikeable character trumps a bland blonde man whose position of authority appears to be his only really interesting character trait, no matter how much voice-over he utters."
Second Season generates greater reviews as compared to previous season. Rotten Tomatoes a review aggregator surveyed 20 reviews and judged 90% to be positive. The site reads, "Narcos' sophomore season manages to elevate the stakes to a gut-wrenching degree in what continues to be a magnificent account of Pablo Escobar's life." On Metacritic, Season 2 holds a score of 76 out of 100, based on 13 critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews". IGN gave the second season a score of 7.4 out of 10 saying it "Good" and reads "It may go overboard with its love of Pablo Escobar, but I can't truly fault the show for taking advantage of its best performer and character – or for scrambling to find an emotional core on a show that can feel rather clinical."
Season received generally positive reviews from many media outlets. Joshua Alston of The A.V. Club lauded the performance of Moura's and said, "While the show never soft-pedals the havoc Escobar created, it makes him surprisingly sympathetic, thanks in part to Moura’s shrewd, affecting performance." Critic Neil Genzlinger of New York Times said, "Mr. Moura is inscrutably brilliant at the center of it all." Entertainment Weekly's Jeff Jensen also reviewed the series positively saying, "Where season 1 spanned 10 years, season 2 captures Escobar's last days on the loose. Each tightly packed episode moves quickly without sacrificing richness, chronicling the uneasy alliances and gross tactics employed to Snare Escobar." Television critic, Tim Goodman of The Hollywood Reporter said, "What works in the early going of season two is that the fall is almost always more thrilling, if not engaging, than the buildup. Escobar senses the loss of power and Moura does some of his best work as viewers read the worry and interior thinking on his face."
Awards and nominations
|2016||Writers Guild of America Awards||Episodic Drama||"Explosivos"||Nominated|
|Golden Globe Awards||Best Actor – Television Series Drama||Wagner Moura||Nominated|
|Best Television Series – Drama||Narcos||Nominated|
|BAFTA TV Awards||Best International Programme||Nominated|
|Satellite Awards||Best Television Series – Drama||Nominated|
|Primetime Creative Arts Emmy Awards||Outstanding Main Title Design||Nominated|
|Outstanding Main Title Theme Music||Rodrigo Amarante||Nominated|
|Outstanding Single-Camera Picture Editing for a Drama Series||"Descenso"||Nominated|
- "Netflix Orders 10 Episodes of Pablo Escobar Drama 'Narcos'". The Hollywood Reporter. April 1, 2014.
- "Netflix Plans To Create Original Series About Colombian Drug Lord Pablo Escobar". Fox News Channel. April 2, 2014.
- "Netflix's 'Narcos' Series On Pablo Escobar 'Will Be Like Nothing Ever Seen Before'". The Huffington Post. May 3, 2014.
- "'Narcos' Sets Season 2 Premiere Date". Deadline. June 13, 2016.
- Hibberd, James (September 6, 2016). "Narcos Renewed for Two More Seasons". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved September 7, 2016.
- Ge, Linda. "Netflix's 'Narcos' Casts Joanna Christie — Star of Tony-Winning 'Once' (Exclusive)". The Wrap. Retrieved May 19, 2015.
- Harvey, Chris (August 1, 2015). "The terrible reign of cocaine king Pablo Escobar". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved November 19, 2015.
- "Maurice Compte boards the Netflix series Narcos". Digital Spy. October 10, 2014.
- "Entrevista exclusiva con la nueva chica Bond mexicana". Publimetro (in Spanish). Metro International. March 12, 2015. Retrieved March 12, 2015.
Hago a Valeria Velez, un personaje distinto basado en la amante de Pablo Escobar, Virginia Vallejo, un personaje importante en Colombia
- "Stephanie Sigman Joins Netflix Series 'Narcos'". Variety. July 20, 2014.
- "'Narcos' Netflix Casting: Ana De La Reguera, 'The Book Of Life' Actress, Joins Cast". Latin Times. October 9, 2014.
- Bowden, Mark (November 26, 2000). "A Former Ally Offers A Profile Of Escobar". Philadelphia Inquirer.
- Guryney, Kyra (December 5, 2014). "Top 10 Tales from Pablo Escobar's Son's Book". InsightCrime.
- "NARCOS REVIEW (NETFLIX)". IGN.
- Almario, Alex (September 24, 2016). "REVIEW: 'Narcos' state of mind, ALWAYS RIGHT NOW". The Philippine Star.
- Sepinwall, Alan (August 27, 2016). "Review: Netflix's 'Narcos' takes on the legend of Pablo Escobar". What's Alan Watching?.
- Romero, Angie (September 11, 2015). "Meet the Musical Minds Behind 'Narcos,' Netflix's New Pablo Escobar Series". Billboard. Retrieved September 5, 2016.
- Olité, Marion. "The Story Behind The Opening Credits #1: 'Narcos'". Konbini.
- "'Narcos': A discussion with Creative Director TOM O'NEILL at Digital Kitchen". Art of the Title. September 22, 2015.
- "Review: The Memory of Pablo Escobar by James Mollison". Photo-Eye Bookstore.
- Mollison, James (2007). The Memory of Pablo Escobar. London: Chris Boot.
- "'El Narco': The Trade Driving Mexico's Drug War". NPR. October 25, 2011.
- Ramos, R. (1990). Chicano intravenous drug users: The collection and interpretation of data from hidden from Hidden Populations.
- "EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT 'NARCOS' HYPNOTIC THEME SONG". Decider. August 31, 2015.
- "Narcos: Season 1 (2015)". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved March 13, 2016.
- "Narcos". Metacritic. Retrieved September 10, 2016.
- Wheatley, Chris (August 27, 2015). "Narcos: Season 1 Review". IGN. Retrieved September 18, 2015.
- Derakhshani, Tirdad (August 27, 2015). "Narcos: Season 1 Review". Philadelphia Inquirer. Retrieved September 18, 2015.
- Goodman, Tim (August 19, 2015). "'Narcos': TV Review". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved October 9, 2015.
- deWolf Smith, Nancy (August 28, 2015). "Easy to get hooked on Netflix's drug drama 'Narcos'". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved October 11, 2015.
- Genzlinger, Neil (August 28, 2015). "Review: 'Narcos' Follows the Rise and Reign of Pablo Escobar". The New York Times. Retrieved October 5, 2015.
- McNamara, Mary (August 26, 2015). "Netflix's 'Narcos' plays up Pablo Escobar's menace and magnetism". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved October 12, 2015.
- Bell, Josh (August 26, 2015). "The Grug War gets a superficial dramatization in Narcos". IndieWire. Retrieved October 12, 2015.
- "Narcos: Season 2 (2016)". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved September 10, 2016.
- "Narcos Season 2". Metacritic. Retrieved September 10, 2016.
- Fowler, Matt (August 31, 2016). "Narcos: Season 2 Review". IGN. Retrieved September 10, 2016.
- Alston, Joshua (September 1, 2016). "Netflix's Narcos becomes a full-blown addiction in its potent second season". The A.V. Club. Retrieved September 18, 2016.
- Genzlinger, Neil (September 1, 2016). "Review: In 'Narcos' Season 2, Pablo Escobar's Time Is Running Out". The New York Times. Retrieved October 12, 2016.
- Jensen, Jeff (August 26, 2016). "Narcos season 2: EW review". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved October 11, 2016.
- Goodman, Tim (September 2, 2016). "'Narcos' Season 2: TV Review". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved October 9, 2016.
- "2016 Writers Guild Awards Winners & Nominees". Writers Guild of America. Archived from the original on April 24, 2016. Retrieved July 31, 2016.
- Moraski, Lauren (December 10, 2015). "Golden Globe Awards 2016 nominees list". CBS News. Retrieved July 31, 2016.
- Lazarus, Susanna (May 8, 2016). "BAFTA Television Awards 2016 – winners in full". Radio Times. Retrieved July 31, 2016.
- "Narcos – Awards – IMDb". Internet Movie Database. Retrieved July 31, 2016.
- Prudom, Laura (July 14, 2016). "Creative Arts Emmy Awards Winners: 'Game Of Thrones' Leads Way On Night 1". Deadline.com. Archived from the original on September 11, 2016. Retrieved September 11, 2016.
|Wikiquote has quotations related to: Narcos|