The Spanish-language Netflix series features a heady mix of endless partying, intense friendships, and romantic trysts with a side order of murder. It's hard to graduate under these conditions, and having to repeat the final year means some of the original cast are making a return.
To celebrate “Elite Week,” the streamer is releasing a series of four short stories focusing on fan-favourites, which will fill in the gap between the explosive end to the third season and the highly anticipated new Elite cast and characters (including a prince!).
High octane plots so far include two whodunit murder mysteries, blackmail, polyamorous relationships, a drug empire, and cancer.
*Warning: spoilers for Elite season three ahead!*
Each season has followed two timelines that slowly come together (similar to How to Get Away with Murder and Big Little Lies) to up tension and dramatic stakes. The arrival of three scholarship students from working-class backgrounds in the first-ever episode pointed to inherent snobbery and instant rivalries that shifted toward friendship, crushes and dating in secret.
The murder of the recently-reformed wild child Mariana Nunier (María Pedraza) caused a ripple effect throughout all three seasons, but the killer finally admitted his guilt after he was ostracised by almost everyone he knew. Polo Benavent (Álvaro Rico) hit Mariana over the head with an ornate winged trophy in a bid to protect his then-girlfriend Carla Rosón (Ester Expósito) family from being destroyed for illegal construction activities that led to the collapse of the local school — and the reason why the three scholarship students are attending Las Encinas in the first place.
At the start of season three, Polo is revealed to be the dead body lying on the nightclub floor and the suspect list was long. Multiple characters had suffered since he got away with murder and it is quicker to check off who didn’t want revenge. It is hard to imagine how the Elite writers will up the stakes and what new mystery awaits when the series returns with eight new episodes on Friday, 18th June.
In case your recollection of the last season is hazy (it did premiere more than a year ago) here is everything you need to remember.
Elite season 3: Recap and ending explained
The Teatro Barceló nightclub where Omar Shanaa (Omar Ayuso) works is the prime party hotspot and has been central to many Elite hook-ups and fights. It's host to the Las Encinas graduation party and this is also where Polo meets his grisly end, and his dramatic fall through the glass onto the dance floor is not the first of his wounds. A broken champagne bottleneck is the murder weapon and the initial confrontation occurs in the empty bathroom.
Polo has earned the wrath of many, as not only is it common knowledge that he killed Mariana, but his mothers have withdrawn the scholarship money that was going to send Lucrecia "Lu" Montesinos (Danna Paolo) and Nadia Shanaa (Mina El Hammani) to college in New York City. Lu’s family is extremely wealthy but she has been cut off and disowned after her father found out that she had initiated a sexual relationship with her drug-dealer half-brother Valerio (Jorge López).
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Without that money, neither Lu nor Nadia can afford to attend a prestigious university (and especially not one in the United States) and this put a giant question mark on their post-high school plans. At the club during the fateful graduation night celebration, an inebriated Lu throws her drink at Polo before she accidentally drops the champagne bottle that will become the murder weapon.
Lu is not the only one who goes after Polo in public as Samuel “Samu” García (Itzan Escamilla) picks up a knife from the bar with the intent to use it. This impulsive act is only halted when his former enemy, Mariana’s hot-headed brother Guzmán Nunier (Miguel Bernardeau) implores him to not ruin his life for a moment of vengeance. Samu’s rage stems from the fact his brother was wrongly accused of killing Mariana and is currently a fugitive on the run. He begs Rebeka "Rebe" de Bormujo to get her drug lord mother to send someone to scare Polo for what he did.
Reba has a huge crush on Samu but refuses to sanction this plan and the season ends with her begging her mother to quit this dangerous world. Guzmán’s stops Samu from hurting his ex-best friend but emphatically states to Polo that he will never forgive him — even after Polo has informed him that he plans on turning himself in and has convinced his mothers to give Lu and Nadia the scholarship prize.
Those who have stuck by Polo through it all also have a motive, such as the recently dumped Cayetana “Caye” Grajera (Georgina Amorós). At Las Encinas, it not unusual for a throuple to thrive (this is the second one Polo is involved in) and the Caye, Polo, Valerio dynamic flourished as a result of them all being shunned by their peers. Polo’s one remaining friend before he fell to his death is Ander Muñoz (Arón Piper) who had been keeping his pal's secret while dealing with coming out and then being diagnosed with leukaemia.
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It's when Polo goes to dry the champagne-soaked shirt that Lu confronts him in the bathroom to yell at him once more. She is angry about the scholarship and makes a point of telling Polo the name of everyone he has hurt. “I’ll protect my loved ones,” she says while threatening him with the broken bottle. Instead of defusing the situation, he tells her that no one has ever loved her. In the heat of the moment, Polo is stabbed in the chest and the injured teen says that he knows she didn’t mean to. He staggers out onto the first-floor area and this is when he stumbles and falls through the already weakened glass panel. Guzmán rushes to his side and gives his ex-best friend the forgiveness he never thought he would receive.
Rather than sell Lu out, a plan is concocted so the police have no solid evidence for a conviction. Each of them touches the murder weapon so all of their fingerprints are on it (they even get Polo’s on there to suggest he took his own life) and because some witnesses saw Lu go in the bathroom after Polo, they come up with a solution to keep her out of jail. Each of the teens accuses someone different and this means that every witness story cannot be corroborated. Polo’s assessment that no one loves Lu is disproved in this act of “I am Spartacus” unity, and Samu is also quick to point out how the police failed at catching Polo in the first place. Because Ander thinks he is dying, he volunteers to take the blame, but the group effort wins out. Polo’s mothers also confirm that he killed Mariana and both cases are closed.
Lu, Nadia, Omar and Malick D. (Leïti Sène) are scheduled to leave for New York at the same time Ander is getting his latest medical results. Instead of boarding the plane, Omar chooses to stay with his recent ex-boyfriend and tells Ander he will be there to the bitter end – it's good news though as Ander is in remission. Meanwhile, Guzmán and Nadia have proclaimed their feelings for each other and pledged to do long distance. Also leaving to study abroad is Carla and she has put Valerio in charge of her family’s winery business, much to her criminal father’s chagrin. Before graduating, Rebe, Valerio, Guzmán, and Samu were expelled from Las Encinas for dealing drugs and bullying. All but Valerio are retaking their final year along with Ander and Omar, while recent graduate Caye is working at the school in the same janitor role her mother previously had... let the senior year shenanigans commence!
Will everyone survive the new school year? And how will the new Las Encinas teens fit in with the old?