‘Narcos’ || Netflix Original Series on Pablo Escobar
After a typical two day binge watching episode, I’ve completed ‘Narcos’ on Netflix.
Now, I do understand that there’s probably a menagerie of reviews and plot summarizations by other people on the internet, however I found a few things interesting with the series, at least the first season that’s been released. There’s a few high points as well as quite a few low points, both and plot in production value.
Production wise, Netflix hasn’t failed with any series really from this standpoint. The casting of the show was also well done. The factor that effected ‘ Narcos ‘ the most is the writing. Action transitions with no lead up to sex scenes only to dribble off into drab dialogue sessions. The campy approach to Escobar’s endeavors reduces the enjoyment of what could have been a lot better series. Still worth a watch overall but lacking in the “wow” aspect any crime/ drama watcher wishes for.
To be real honest, I was constantly reminded but Adrian Grenier’s portrayal in ‘Entourage’ of the Medellin Drug Cartel’s infamous leader, Pablo Escobar. What I mean by this is relevant to the faux Medellin, the fake film in the HBO series ‘Entourage’, had massive appeal in its initial discussion and production, but fell short of expectations shortly after launch, crashing Vincent Chase’s (Adrian Grenier) career in burning hell fire. Don’t get me wrong, ‘Narcos’ still had a few points of grabbing the audience’s attention, including my own, however it was probably put best by another reviewer on IGN, “It is like watching a narrated version of Pablo Escobar’s Wikipedia page with a little more action.” Now this synopsis of what the show is does not give complete credit to what this series has to offer in an overall capacity.
The lead role, portrayed by Brazilian actor Wagner Moura, is done very well, along with supporting roles and co leads like, Maurice Compte and Boyd Holbrook. The lackluster appeal offered by the show ‘Narcos’ really stems from its production value and more so in the story line approach. It seems as though the creators and writers of the show dare not to step away from what’s publicly accepted about Escobar and the Medellin Drug Cartel. Understandable in a sense, so it’s so much information and lower surrounding the infamous, and still in some people’s eyes famous drug cartel leaders life, there was many more avenues the series could have traveled down during season 1. Some of the things found in the plot let the romantic relation with a news reporter as well as Pablo Escobar’s brother and his major role in the cartels movement was rather poorly highlighted or seemingly used as sexual fluff moments in the series.
Speaking of sexual fluff, along with straying from actual fact about Escobar’s life, the writers seemed to truly need to fill this show with meaningless sex moments to make up a 44 minute episode. A couple of these moments are quite alright in any show, but having five to six sexual scenes in an episode dilutes the audience’s ability to connect with what’s happening in an episode to episode basis and draws away from many aspects that could have made the show more viable.
‘Narcos’ is still an action filled, gory and seemingly fun show to watch, despite the lagging dialogue and transitions. Nevertheless, with the quality of actors involved and the streamlined approach to portraying Pablo Escobar’s life, the first season of ‘Narcos’ is worth a watch for anyone with interest in drama and crime genres. The second season of the series is said to release mid 2016 and should offer the continuance of the rise and fall of Pablo Escobar, infamous leader of the Medellin Drug Cartel.
Contributed by KM Franck