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A group of students sits outside a building in this image from Zeta Producciones.
“Elite,” with its murder mystery, hookups, and betrayals, is a must-watch Spanish-language series on Netflix. (Image: Zeta Producciones)

The best shows on Netflix right now may be “Stranger Things” and “Sex Education,” but the streaming platform also possesses a treasure trove of series and films in Spanish that you shouldn’t skip. Whether you’re a fluent Spanish speaker or you’re just picking up the language, I can attest to these series, which are some of the best on the platform. Check them out below.

Spanish-Language TV Series on Netflix

‘Nothing to See Here’ / ‘Ojitos de Huevo’ (2023 to Present)

A boy performs on a stage in this image from Perro Azul.
Alexis (Alexis Arroyo) takes the insult “ojitos de huevo” (egg eyes) and adds it to his stage name to become Alexis Ojitos de Huevo. (Image: Perro Azul)

With dreams of becoming comedians, Alexis (Alexis Arroyo) and his friend Charly (Kike Vázquez) move to Mexico City to make a name for themselves. As though making it in the world of stand-up isn’t hard enough, Alexis, who’s blind, and Charlie, who has cerebral palsy, seemingly have the odds stacked against them. But that doesn't stop either of them. The show is not what you’d expect, and you’ll be laughing nonstop from beginning to end during such scenes as a mugger refusing to rob Alexis because he’s blind. Alexis doesn’t shy away from being blind, using his condition as a muse for his jokes and defusing the awkwardness in the room by allowing the audience to laugh with the blind kid.

Watch “Nothing to See Here” on Netflix.

‘Alpha Males’ / ‘Machos Alfa’ (2022 to Present)

A group of men seated on a couch laugh in this image from Contubernio Films.
These men in their 40s are inseparable. (Image: Contubernio Films)

“Alpha Males” follows a tight-knit group of 40-somethings in Madrid as they try to navigate a world that’s seemingly leaving them behind. Although they’re machistas (misogynists) who lie to their wives and girlfriends as often as they meet up to drink (which is a lot), the series explores the fragility of the male ego by exposing the characters to modern themes such as consensual non-monogamy, women who are the breadwinners in the relationship, Tinder dating, and more. As the show progresses and the group joins a class aimed at deconstructing masculinity, these alpha males slowly shed their toxic masculinity — but not all of it, which keeps the show interesting beyond the first season.

Watch “Alpha Males” on Netflix.

‘Money Heist’ / ‘La Case De Papel’ (2019 to 2021)

A group of armed people in masks in this image from Atresmedia.
Since the show’s release, this creepy Salvador Dali mask has become iconic. (Image: Atresmedia)

If you like heist shows and movies, this is an easy sell. The Professor, the heist’s mastermind, puts together a team of crack thieves who go by code names such as Berlin and Denver. The group targets the Royal Mint of Spain, taking as hostages a group of high schoolers on a field trip. The show flips back and forth between the action inside the Mint and flashbacks of the team’s training with the Professor, providing additional context on the plan and relationships among various crew members. It’s a bit long in the tooth at five seasons, but it’s arguably the quintessential Spanish-language show on Netflix.

Watch “Money Heist” on Netflix.

‘Elite’ / ‘Élite’ (2018 to Present)

A high school student in uniform gives a presentation in this image from Zeta Producciones.
No matter what, Samuel (Itzan Escamilla) is always involved in the most drama in every season he’s in. (Image: Zeta Producciones)

“Elite” is like a mix of “Gossip Girl,” “Riverdale,” and “Euphoria,” centering on a revolving cast of Spanish high school students who, when they’re not partying or engaging in “extracurricular activities,” are involved in a new murder every season. Each season sees old students leave and new students take their place, but the high-stakes drama of this elite high school never fails to captivate. Murder, betrayal, and secrets are around every corner, which is a formula that has worked for seven seasons. The show will be coming to an end after its eighth season, making it one of the longest-running Netflix series.

Watch “Elite” on Netflix.

‘Club de Cuervos’ (2015 to 2019)

A man and woman at a funeral in this image from Alazraki Films.
Chava (Luis Gerardo Méndez) and Isabel (Mariana Treviño) start plotting each other’s downfall before their dad is even buried. (Image: Alazraki Films)

“Club de Cuervos,” which translates to Club of Crows, follows the story of two feuding siblings jockeying for control of Cuervos F.C., the soccer team left behind by their late father. Chava (Luis Gerardo Méndez) is the typical trust-fund playboy who has never done an honest day’s work, while Isabel (Mariana Treviño) is the tightly wound, type-A prodigy with experience running the club. The show has little to do with soccer and more to do with power dynamics, backstabbing, family legacies, and everything else that makes shows like “Succession” great. The comedy series is also hilarious, with Chava and Isabel’s antics taking center stage in every episode.

Watch “Club de Cuervos” on Netflix.

‘Narcos: Mexico’ (2018 to 2021)

A well-dressed man sits in an office in this image from Gaumont International Television.
Diego Luna is one of Mexico's greatest actors, proving that he has the range to play a villain in this series. (Image: Gaumont International Television)

It’s upsetting that so many Spanish-language shows are based on narcos, but “Narcos: Mexico” is thrilling to watch with stellar writing that’s brought to life by stars such as Diego Luna, Michael Peña, and Tenoch Huerta. The series covers events that happened during the rise of Mexico’s major cartels, but it should still be consumed as fiction. “Narcos: Mexico” has a tendency to glorify the villains who ruined the country, as well as the DEA, but it’s still one of the best-made Spanish-language shows on Netflix.

Watch “Narcos: Mexico” on Netflix.

Spanish-Language Movies on Netflix

‘Society of the Snow’ / ‘La Sociedad de la Nieve’ (2023)

A group of people sit beside a downed aircraft in this image from Misión de Audaces Films.
For 72 days, the survivors of the crash called the front half of the crashed airplane their home. (Image: Misión de Audaces Films)

If you think you know what happened among the survivors of the Uruguayan Air Force Flight 571 crash, think again. With over 100 hours of interviews with survivors of the crash, director J.A. Bayona tells a gruesome, often sickening story of survival that’s not for the faint of heart. With the most disturbing depiction of a plane crash to date, “Society of the Snow” doesn’t beat around the bush, examining with a magnifying glass the hard decisions made in the name of survival. The movie could be classified as survival horror, but it’s also inspiring. The film is shot beautifully by cinematographer Pedro Luque, and the cast, comprising mostly newcomers, is spot on.

Watch “Society of the Snow” on Netflix.

‘The (Almost) Legends’ / ‘Los (casi) ídolos de Bahía Colorada’ (2023)

A band plays music in an auto shop in this image from Alebrije Cine y Video.
Despite being vocal about his distaste for banda music, Romeo (Benny Emmanuel) secretly loves to sing — and he’s quite good at it. (Image: Alebrije Cine y Video)

If you didn’t get enough sibling rivalry with “Club de Cuervos,” then “The (Almost) Legends” should hit the spot. This Mexican comedy follows Romeo (Benny Emmanuel) and Preciado (Harold Azuara) as they attempt to make their late father proud. Preciado follows in his father’s footsteps by becoming a banda musician, while Romeo attempts to become a big-time novela actor in Mexico City. When an iconic endurance rally race returns to their hometown, the brothers unite to win it for their father, who participated in the race many times but never won. 

At 97 minutes, “The (Almost) Legends” is the perfect lazy Sunday watch, providing plenty of laughs in its short runtime. If you have ties to Northern Mexico like I do, you’ll appreciate the film’s use of the regional dialect, which was authentic enough to make me miss home.

Watch “The (Almost) Legends” on Netflix.

‘The Great Seduction’ / ‘La Gran Seducción’ (2023)

A waitress points to a menu in this image from Pimienta Films.
After stalking the doctor’s social media, the local restaurant begins serving his favorite: chicken tikka masala. (Image: Pimienta Films)

This isn’t what you think — it’s not a rom-com. It’s a story about a group of locals attempting to seduce a doctor to live in their town, which is necessary for a fish-packing company to build a plant on their island. Like in a typical rom-com, the townspeople change who they are and what the town is to seduce the doctor. Memo Villegas, a rising star in Mexico, is as funny as ever, but there’s more to this film than just laughs. If you like underdog stories, you’ll be into this one. 

Watch “The Great Seduction” on Netflix.

‘I’m No Longer Here’ / ‘Ya No Estoy Aqui’ (2019)

A group of friends pose for a picture in this image from Panorama Global.
This image is taken before Ulises leaves home. When he returns, Los Terkos is no more. (Image: Panorama Global)

If I could recommend only one project from this list, it’s this film directed by Fernando Frias. In “I’m No Longer Here,” Ulises (Juan Daniel García Treviño) and his group, Los Terkos (The Stubborn Ones), just want to dance to Cumbias Rebajadas, a slowed-down type of Cumbia. But when Ulises’ life is threatened by local gang members, he must leave Monterrey for New York, where he slowly loses his identity. In the end, Ulises goes home after being deported, finding that everything has changed. 

“I’m No Longer Here” is a coming-of-age story as much as it is a story about the Mexican diaspora, immigration policy, and Mexico’s ongoing struggle with cartel violence.

Watch “I’m No Longer Here” on Netflix.

‘Lorena, Light-Footed Woman’ / ‘Lorena, La de Pies Ligeros’ (2019)

A woman looks at a shoe in this image from No Ficción.
Lorena, who wears huaraches on her runs, says the shoes sent to her by brands must not be good because they’re worn by her competitors. (Image: No Ficción)

Lorena Ramirez is a shy, unassuming indigenous Tarahumara woman from Chihuahua, Mexico. She’s also one of the best female endurance runners in the world. She participates in ultra-endurance races as long as 100 km (62 miles), running in traditional dress and leather huaraches, which turned her into a star in Mexico and around the world. This short documentary explores the duality of Lorena, contrasting her quaint life tending her family’s cattle with her life as a world-traveling endurance runner. Lorena is a singular athlete focused on the task at hand. She’s not afraid to brush off fans or ridicule potential sponsors’ shoes in her pursuit of first place. If you have a half-hour to spare, you owe it to yourself to give it a watch. 

Watch “Lorena, Light-Footed Woman” on Netflix.

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