Narcos Mexico – Episode 5 Review

Narcos mexico
© Netflix

Things aren’t getting any easier for Kiki in this episode. Not only are the DEA repeatedly coming up against obstacles in their attempt to take down Gallardo’s cartel, but the DFS are now getting personal. They decide to remind Kiki who is in charge by pulling his wife over and dragging her out of her car, leaving the children alone and vulnerable in the car without her. Kiki and the other DEA agents are understandably outraged, and they come up with a new way to get at Gallardo.

Turning to Kiki’s bookish neighbour who works at the phone company again, they start listening in to all the phone calls to and from Gallardo’s hotel, which means they start to really understand his organisation. They know which rooms are used for what purpose, they know the names of his associates, and they know that Gallardo is about to take a trip away from Guadalajara.

And where is Gallardo going? Back to season one of Narcos, that’s where. Since Gallardo saw the huge amount of cocaine that is no longer being shipped through the Caribbean, he has been plotting to get into bed with the Colombian cartels in order to help them move their product over the Mexican border and into the USA. Warned against dealing with the explosive and temperamental Escobar, he opts instead to meet with the Cali cartel, reuniting us with some familiar faces from series three. They’re reluctant at first, but Gallardo and Isabella manage to persuade them to go into business with them. 

narcos mexico
Gallardo has big plans for his cartel’s move into shipping cocaine © Netflix

Quick sidebar here – Isabella is rapidly becoming my second favourite character after my one true love, Don Neto. She’s wiley and persuasive, and I feel like she’s got the potential to end up as the thorn in Gallardo’s side if he doesn’t keep her happy. That there is a badass lady, and you need to keep her on side, Félix.

With the Cali cartel eventually on board, Gallardo sets off for home, only to be rudely kidnapped and shipped off to everyone’s favourite Colombian location, Hacienda Nápoles, where Wagner Moura is waiting to reprise his role as Pablo Escobar. It’s an ingenious way of letting Narcos fans get another glimpse of the most memorable character from the series so far. In true Escobar style, he whispers menacingly about feeding Gallardo to his pet hippos and then forces him to agree to his terms – if he ships Cali cocaine through Mexico, he has to ship an equal amount of Medellin cocaine as well. It seems like a win-win for Gallardo, he gets to ship more cocaine and make more money, while not getting himself on the hit list of one of the world’s most dangerous criminal organisations. 

narcos mexico
Escobar returns to Narcos © Netflix

But not everything is going smoothly for Gallardo, because his foray into cocaine has ruffled the incredible hair of Tijuana drug lord Falcón, who boogies into the warehouse in his excellent brown loungewear and steals a whole truckload of weed.

While Gallardo is trying not to end up as a hippo’s breakfast, Kiki is doing some world-class sneaking around Gallardo’s hotel, getting into his office and managing to copy down some key financial information. But nothing is a secret for long in Guadalajara, and the DFS try some more intimidation by shooting into one of the DEA agents’ houses, and also killing Kiki’s neighbour. Kiki is devastated, and he realises that if they’re going to beat Gallardo, they can’t do it in Guadalajara. Instead, he hatches a plan to try to lure Gallardo into the USA and pinch him for financial crimes instead. If it’s good enough for Al Capone, it’s good enough for Félix Gallardo, right?

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