The first three seasons of Netflix's 'Narcos' chronicled the rampant cocaine-trafficking trade in Columbia in the 1980s and 90s through the stories of Pablo Escobar's Medellín Cartel and the Rodriguez Brothers' Cali Cartel. For season 4, it was previously confirmed that the series would move production to Mexico and focus on the country's notoriously violent Guadalajara Cartel, and the first few images of the latest season indicate how the show will shape up.
Pedro Pascal's Javier Peña was phased out of the show during the end of season 3, with Michael Peña and Diego Luna taking up the mantle of the leading stars in a new-look series that has been rebranded by the streaming service as 'Narcos: Mexico.'
Netflix will be releasing it as a new original series later this year, with an official description stating that the new season will "explore the origins of the modern drug war by going back to its roots, beginning at a time when the Mexican trafficking world was a loose and disorganized confederation of independent growers and dealers."
While each of the previous three seasons were bloody in their own right, it looks likely that the upcoming season will blow them out of the water. Production was already confronted with a major setback when a location scout was gunned down while in search of shoot locations, giving a brief glimpse of the violent nature of the cartels that now prowl Mexico's far reaches. Season 4's antagonist, Guadalajara Cartel supremo Felix Gallardo (Diego Luna), all but confirms that notion.
'Narcos: Mexico' will chart the rise of Gallardo and his cartel as he takes advantage of the chaos in Columbia to unify traffickers in the country to build his empire. Tracking Gallardo and attempting to bring him down is DEA agent Kiki Camarena (Peña), who moves his wife and young son down from California to take on his new assignment.
Character descriptions for Camarena and Gallardo detail what audiences can expect from the pair in the rebooted series.
The former has been described as a family man who garnered valuable intel through a series of informants around Gallardo, but who "quickly realizes that he has underestimated the sophistication of Gallardo's system."
The latter is one of the biggest narcos in the history of Mexico and the founder of the modern Mexican drug trade and has been described as "quiet but bold, inscrutable but sharp-minded, and a benevolent leader who is loyal to his friends, associates, and employees — but whose ambition comes before all else."
Besides Gallardo, 'Narcos: Mexico' will also see the introduction of arguably the only other narco who can match Escobar in terms of ruthlessness and viciousness — Joaquin 'El Chapo' Guzman. Portrayed by Alejandro Edda (Fear the Walking Dead), showrunner Eric Newman confirmed to the Hollywood Reporter that his insertion into the show has been in the works since as early as season 2.
"Chapo was there at the beginning, in a way. He was one of the younger guys in the Guadalajara cartel before it splintered and he and another guy were given Sinaloa as territory," he said.
While a premiere date has not been announced yet, 'Narcos: Mexico' is expected to premiere globally on Netflix in the later half of 2018.