Univision takes Netflix’s “Narcos” to air

The deal will see the series air for the first time on U.S. broadcast television beginning Aug. 22. A fresh season drops on the global SVOD Sept. 2.
August 15, 2016

The first season of the Netflix original series’ Narcos is headed to linear following a distribution deal inked with Univision Network.

The deal will see the Golden-Globe nominated series air for the first time on broadcast television in the U.S. beginning Aug. 22. The second season of the series drops globally on Netflix starting Sept. 2.

The series chronicles the real-life stories of the growth of cocaine drug cartels of the late 1980s and the efforts of law enforcement to curb the growing illegal trade. The first season of the series comprises 10 episodes and features Brazilian actor Wagner Moura as Pablo Escobar, the mastermind behind the cocaine mass trade business. Moura also received a 2016 Golden Globe nod for his portrayal of the drug kingpin.

The story is told through the eyes of Steve Murphy (Boyd Holbrook), an American DEA agent working in Colombia. Narcos was filmed in Colombia and produced by Gaumont Television for Netflix.

The deal with Univision continues an existing relationship between the Hispanic-focused media co and Netflix. In May, the two companies announced they will co-produce the dramatic series El Chapo, based on the life story of one of the world’s most notorious criminals.

El Chapo will be available to Netflix members in the U.S. following its television airing on UniMás in 2017. Globally, episodes of El Chapo will premiere exclusively on Netflix.

Meanwhile, Netflix earlier listed Narcos among its most-savored historical dramas, along with the likes of Mad Men, Peaky Blinders and The Americans. The designation comes following the release of the SVOD’s so-called Binge Scale, which examines viewing patterns of more than 100 TV series across more than 190 countries, and measures members’ intent to either “devour” or “savor” a show.

Netflix, of course, popularized the concept of binge-watching to audiences through its strategy of dropping all episodes of a series at once. Shows deemed most binge-worthy include sci-fi thrillers such as Sense8, Orphan Black and The 100, dramas such as the The Walking Dead and the award-winning comedy/drama Orange is the New Black. 

More complex narratives, like those driving Narcos and House of Cards, are more often watched at a slower pace by audiences (deemed the “savor” side of the scale).

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