Dark Tourist premiere episode recap – Latin America

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Dark Tourist, Netflix

Episode 1 of Netflix series Dark Tourist has journalist David Farrier in Latin America, where he explores narco-tourism, Santa Muerte and mock border crossing.

Dark Tourist may be a hidden gem in your Netflix subscription. Or it may be something you won’t like, or find offensive. Either way, it is available for you to watch, which is similar to the tour events that David Farrier attends in the series.

To begin with, David goes to Colombia to meet druglord billionaire Pablo Escobar’s former hitman, named “Popeye.” On the way there, he encounters numerous characters involved in narco-tourism, down in Medellin.

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For example, he receives a cab ride tour with a Pablo Escobar lookalike. He sees the barrio Pablo Escobar shrine, which seems to honor the criminal at every turn. Farrier casually notes how, despite such apparent praise, Escobar had turned Colombia into the murder capital of the world.

Still, are these people all crazy or is there something to their respect for the man? In reality, it’s a bit more complex than him just being a villain. As one interviewee notes, Pablo Escobar built most of the houses they can see in town.

In other words, he is seen as a kind of Robin Hood figure.

When Farrier interviews an ex-cop, he confides that he only survived because he was corrupt. Quite simply, he notes that you either take bribes or you die. This same ex-cop, Carlos, gives Escobar tours as well.

Farrier discusses the history of Pablo Escobar, which is a twisted rags-to-riches story (though perhaps not as dramatic as that of Griselda Blanco, who isn’t mentioned in this episode, but who you should definitely look up).

Before he was a billionaire drug kingpin, Escobar began as a petty thief but rose to wealth through sheer brutality and an uncompromising edge.

Farrier meets a woman named Claudia, who was married to Escobar’s brother Roberto. Specifically, he’s there to see one of Pablo’s old apartments. As she’s showing him around, she points out where a rocket was fired into the place, in an assassination attempt on the legend (if you’re curious about buying, the apartment is being sold for about $750,000).

It’s also revealed that, when Escobar was successfully imprisoned, it was in La Catedral Prison — a sort of luxury jail built by Escobar himself. In effect, it was more of a party resort than a prison, as — according to Popeye — Escobar would have sex parties over there, as well as plenty of marijuana cigarettes.

Dark Tourist does not mention if the festivities were funded by tax dollars.