'The thrilling new Gossip Girl-style show on Netflix I binged in less than a day.'

Hello, fellow bingers. Or, as they say at Las Encinas, hola.

Eight hours (my new record time of watching television straight) was all it took for me to watch the newest teen thriller TV series that dropped on Friday October 5.

And let me tell you, it was eight hours of bliss: elite high schoolers, Spanish boys, blazers, cliques, drugs, alcohol, partying, and oh so steamy goodness.

The new Spanish-language drama Elite is on the top of every Netflix junkie’s tongue. The thriller is centred around three working class teenagers who attain scholarships to the prestigious private school Las Encinas when their high school quite literally collapses to the ground.

The clash of these two exceedingly different worlds, one of elitism and extreme wealth, the other of working and complicated family lives, lead to the overarching crux of the plot…

The murder of fellow student Marina (María Pedraza), who happens to be one of the only richies who doesn’t want to embrace her status or conform to it.

Amid the characters being interrogated, Elite showcases similar brooding styles to that of How To Get Away With Murder and Big Little Lies, in which flashbacks unfold in every episode in the build up to the day of the murder. Every focal character, and I would say there are about nine, have a plethora of secrets each, with every episode revealing a little bit more about why they are the way they are and how involved they were in the victim’s life.

There hasn’t really been a teen drama that toys with this level of raunchiness and MA-rated themes since Gossip Girl and Skins back in 2007, where once shocking sexual and drug themes now seem half-prudish.


Despite drawing comparisons to Gossip Girl with its almost identical uniforms, elitism and scheming – there’s even a Blair Waldorf-type with the occasional headband and all – Elite is a dark and juicy thriller in its own right.

I mean, before Gossip Girl, The OC was the show my mum didn’t know whether to let me watch – another coming-of-age teen drama about high schoolers with too much money that also dealt with themes that were once considered taboo.

Amongst the investigation of Marina’s murder as well as the exploration of a few budding friendships and romances, Elite covers Islamophobia in Europe through character Nadia (Mina El Hammani), a smart and devout Muslim who struggles with her identity and culture.

And something else not seen much on screen nowadays is HIV, which is still prevalent as ever. Elite manages to touch on the disease in a way that isn’t in your face, that isn’t victimising. It’s just an accurate representation of the way in which some people live and treat the illness today.

You don’t just want to know who killed Marina, you want to know why they did it, you want to know why Nano (Jaime Lorente) has gang members terrorising him, you want to know why Nadia is so put off by top man on-campus Guzman (Miguel Bernardeau), and why Marina’s brother was trying so hard to protect her from life itself.

You can thank me later for the some of the most thrilling (and sexy) hours of your TV life. Ciao.

Elite is available to stream on Netflix now.