Netflix’s first Benelux original ‘Undercover’ is a crime drama web series following a pair of cops going undercover to bust a drug ring manufacturing ecstasy. Inspired by true events, the show moves from focusing on the illicit drugs trade to the illegal arms business throughout the two-season run. The non-English-language drama has managed to garner a positive response from the critiques and global audience it amassed on the streaming platform, making it shoot atop the most popular series in that category.
If you’ve binge-watched the show and want more, fret not. We have curated this list based on the elements that glued together ‘Undercover’ – kingpins-detective chase, illegitimate drug trading, sprawled with enough twists and suspense to keep you zipping through season after season. You can watch most of these shows on Netflix, Hulu, or Amazon Prime.
6. The Sopranos (1999-2007)
Although this cult-classic might seem like an obvious choice for this list, we’d be remiss if we didn’t mention this iconic show. ‘The Sopranos’ is renowned by many for its nuanced writing, production value, and emotionally gripping plots to this day – traits which ‘Undercover’ fans will no doubt appreciate. We follow mobster Tony Soprano as he struggles to balance his criminal and personal life. While some might argue that the six-season long journey feels a bit abrupt with its ending, it still delivers on every other expectation.
5. Drug Lord (2018- )
From Pablo Escobar to the undisputed crack queen of LA, Jemeker Thompson, this Netflix docuseries delves deep into some of the most notorious crime lords of all time. Giving us detailed insight into the lives of law enforcement officials who pledge to bring them down in equal part alongside the kingpins’. The series focuses on taking the viewer back to the time when those incidents were taking place via in-depth interviews, dramatic re-enactments of crucial events, and backing them up with authentic testimonials. What makes it stand out is the finesse with which they deal drug lords of lower profile, giving attention to details just as much as they would for widely noted criminals.
4. The Wire (2002-2008)
‘The Wires’ tackles the root of the cause why, more often than not, criminals are being able to get away with heinous crimes they pull – by implanting people in the system who wouldn’t mind selling their ethics in exchange for money. Detective James McNulty (played by Dominic West) and his team try to the best of their abilities to burn these bridges that exist between the drug kingpins and the law enforcement agencies. Writer and creator David Simon’s ‘anti-cop show’ experienced a slow success over the course of its run. Let’s not forget the fact that the show made stars of Idris Elba, Michael B Jordan, and others.
3. Narcos (2015-2017)
Netflix’s original Spanish crime drama, ‘Narcos‘, chronicles the real-life stories of the rise of notorious and wealthy drug kingpin Pablo Escobar (played by Wagner Moura). Following the cocaine trafficker’s life from 1970 to 1992, the show is packed with plenty of true-to-life action, made all the more frightening with the inclusion of real archival footage of the era. Meanwhile, Boyd Holbrook and Pedro Pascal portraying the DEA agents give a profound performance trying to meet Escobar head-on in their attempts to put him behind the bars for good.
2. How To Sell Drugs Online (Fast) (2019- )
With this entry, we’re trying to cover those of you who like a little light-handed approach to the otherwise calamitous and somber world of drug dealing. Netflix’s German lingual ‘How To Sell Drugs Online (Fast)’ – as suggested by the name itself – is a sharp and very cleverly constructed show based on true events.
The series follows a nerdy teenager Moritz (played by Maximilian Mundt) who starts dealing drugs out of his incessant need to impress his ex-girlfriend Lisa (played by Anna Lena Klenke). The protagonist makes his life story a guiding tale for its audience in the dos and don’ts of online drug dealing, giving comedic relief now and then whenever things start getting gloomy. A must watch if you don’t mind laughing at otherwise gravely dangerous circumstances.
1. Breaking Bad (2008-2013)
You knew before clicking on the link that this will make the list. ‘Breaking Bad’ is not only one of the best TV shows to tackle the drug theme, but it is one of the best shows to ever hit the small-screen, period. It is the story of a struggling high school Chemistry teacher, Walter White (played by Bryan Cranston) who along with his former student Jesse Pinkman (played by Aaron Paul) turns to a life of crime. The riveting storytelling and astounding performance by every cast member earner a slew of awards, including 16 Emmy Awards and two Golden Globes.
Read More: Where is Undercover Filmed?