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Elite is a Spanish thriller teen drama, created by Darío Madrona and Carlos Montero. The show was released world-wide by Netflix in 2018.

The show has format in which it switches back and forth between a murder investigation where several characters are questioned by the police on the murder of one of them and the past, where the story of three students from a humble, recently destroyed school get to go to a famous private school, Las Encinas, where their coming causes great disturbance in the social order of the school. Samuel, a well meaning guy falls for the rebellious daughter of a rich family, Marina; Nadia, the youngest daughter of a humble Muslim family faces prejudice on school while Marina's older brother, Guzman, and his "girlfriend", Lucrecia, try to find a way to bring her down from her pedestal; Christian, a fun loving guy finds himself in an odd new relationship when a longtime couple, Carla and Polo, bring him in the middle of them physically and emotionally.

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The show was renewed for a second season, which was released on September 6, 2019. This time, a student at Las Encinas goes missing, and the mystery follows the back and forth format.

Not to be confused with the video game Elite.

Due to the nature of the show, all spoilers will be unmarked

Tropes

  • Abusive Parents: Carla's parents are shown in season 3 to be absolute nightmares, especially her father. He firstly threatens to harm Samuel, whom he knows Carla loves, so that way she will comply with what he wants and not risk his shady business dealings being exposed. Then he essentially prostitutes her to her wealthy classmate Jeray, having her basically act as an accesory rather than an equal partner with her own mind, to save the family's bankrupt wineries. It is revealed in a later episode that her mother knew the entire time and agreed to this, encouraging Carla to maintain the relationship
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  • The Ace: Nadia became quickly the best student of her class surpassing even Lucrecia who stays this even after. To a lesser degree than both girls , Marina as well can count being the third best student but less emphasied than Nadia and Lucrecia.
  • Actor Allusion: Kevin McHale's season 3 cameo had him play a character called Bill McKinley, when one of his most famous roles was as a William McKinley High student.
  • Affectionate Nickname: Samu for Nano, but Samuel's other friends call him this sometimes too.
  • Alliterative Family: The Muñoz family: Antonio (father), Azucena (mother) and Ander (son).
  • All Work vs. All Play: Played directly in the first episode with Nadia is all work and Christian is all play. Nadia said her only goal is studying and prefers stay with what she knows while Christian is a party lover and enjoys trying new things as his threesome storyline with Carla and Polo. Became downplayed due to Nadia's Character Development.
  • Alpha Bitch: Lucrecia, for the most part, as she looks down on all the new students.
  • Ambiguously Bi:
    • Christian. He entered Polo and Carla's complicated threesome in an attempt to get with her, and actually mildly annoyed that Polo is in the package. He learns to accept Polo's presence with Carla and eventually even start reluctantly experimenting with Polo by kissing him and once having sex with him, but it's clear he is experimenting more than enjoying and it's not clear whether he likes men.
    • Rebeca is attracted to Carla, as well as Samu.
  • Batman Gambit: In the second season finale, we find out that Samuel going missing was actually a plan made by him and Guzman to force Carla into confessing that Polo killed Marina and she covered for him as Samuel figured that Carla developed genuine feelings for him during their fake relationship.
  • Bear Hug: Nano gives one to Samuel—complete with picking him up and spinning him around in the pilot episode when he gets out of prison.
  • The Beautiful Elite: Lampshaded by the English Teacher Martin in the pilot about the students of Las Encinas (a private school) who are "The Leaders of Tomorrow". Many of them are rich and wealthy socialites being present at important events.
  • Because You Were Nice to Me: Cayetana has this relationship with Polo as of the Season 2 Finale. He helped her and her mother at their lowest points, when everyone else had abandoned them. So she helps him to get away with his murder of Marina, by hiding the murder weapon from the police.
  • Belligerent Sexual Tension:
    • Christian and Lucrecia when he teases her and she mocks him, it's obvious mostly due Christian's flirtatious nature.
    • Nadia and Guzman at first. With some sparks between them, they initially dislike each other as he try to seduce her only to "put her in her place" and she blackmailed him for Samuel stays at Las Encinas. Though they learn to know each other falling quickly in Unresolved Sexual Tension.
    • Lucrecia and her half brother Valerio as well during season 2. They teasing each other a lot and making out at the same time.
    • Samuel and Carla in Season 2. They get close at first only to manipulate each other for their respective goals starting to make out. After developing true feelings to each other, they are in Unresolved Sexual Tension.
  • Betty and Veronica:
    • Marina (Archie) zig-zags between older, troubled Nano (Veronica) and her sweet, supportive classmate Samuel (Betty)
    • Played with when it comes to Guzman (Archie), Lucrecia (Veronica) and Nadia (Betty). Lucrecia would - under ordinary circumstances - be considered the Veronica: rich, edgy, sexy. Nadia would usually be the Betty; a working-class girl of modest means, pretty but relatively conservative. However, Lucrecia has been a part of Guzman's life far longer than Nadia has, and their dynamic takes on a different role as a result, with Lucrecia arguably the Betty to Nadia's Veronica.
    • The Carla/Polo/Christian relationship has this in different dynamics, depending on who is the Archie. With Carla as the Archie, Christian is the Veronica to Polo’s Betty. With Christian as the Archie, Carla is the Veronica to Polo’s Betty. With Polo as the Archie, Christian is the Veronica to Carla’s Betty.
    • Carla/Samu/Rebeca: Samuel is Archie, rich girl Carla is Veronica and his female friend Rebeca is Betty.
    • Guzman unknowingly plays the Veronica to Valerio’s Betty for Lucrecia.
    • In Season 3 with the addition of Malick in Omar/Ander and Nadia/Guzman relationships, we have Omar as the Archie, his sick boyfriend Ander as the Betty and the new character Malick as the Veronica. But as Nadia's boyfriend, he's himself the Betty to Nadia's Archie and Guzman's Veronica and also the Archie to Nadia's Betty and her brother Omar's Veronica.
  • Beware the Nice Ones:
    • Carla was by far the nicest member of the popular clique (after Ander) at the start of the show, but as Marina threatened her own family as well as Carla's, she takes a much more sombre approach to issues. She eventually takes over as the Big Bad of the show, becoming manipulative and controlling Christian and Polo to make sure that Nano gets arrested.
    • Arguably, Marina is this trope. She's initially sweet and kind in the first episode, but as her life spirals more and more out of control, she resorts to blackmailing Martin, organising a theft with Nano, etc.
  • Big Bad:
    • By the final episode of season 1, Carla takes this post. While she wasn't the one who killed Marina, she is the reason why she is dead, and goes to lengths to make sure that Polo is not punished and keeps Christian under her thumb at all times.
    • In Season 2, Polo for Guzman and Samu, when they find out he killed Marina.
  • Bilingual Bonus: When Nadia and her family (and Lucrecia, occasionally) speaks in Arabic.
  • Blackmail:
    • Lu gets to become the teacher's favorite again by bribing him with a proposal of getting him the adopted child he wants, at the cost of her getting to the top of the class over Nadia. When Marina overhears this, she forces the teacher to keep quiet about her drugs by telling him that she'll tell on him.
    • Carla's father bribes Christan and his family for an all expenses paid surgery and physical therapy in Switzerland to ensure he keeps quiet about Carla's involvment in Marina's death.
    • Lucrecia tries to force Nadia to lose her scholarship or else she'll send her and Guzmán's sex tape to her parents and the entire school
      • This backfires when Nadia turns the tables on Lu, threatening to tell everybody about the "Valerio Thing" if Lucrecia senda the tape out. This is enough for her to back down.
    • Nadia tries in Season 3, but doesn't go through with it.
  • Black Sheep: Omar is his family lampshaded by himself. Valerio too as he's The Unfavorite.
  • Blonde, Brunette, Redhead: In Season 1, there is out of the rich teens: Carla (Blonde), Lucrecia (Brunette) and Marina (Redhead). Counting all female main characters in the same season , there is Nadia sharing the brunette position with Lu.
  • Blue Blood: Carla's always referred to as "the marchioness" or "the marchioness's daughter", thanks to her mother, who's a marchioness.
  • Brainy Brunette: Lucrecia and Nadia qualify, as the top 2 competitors for the trophy. Subverted when they get disqualified and redheaded Marina wins.
  • Brother–Sister Incest: Lucrecia and her older half brother Valerio had a sexual relationship in the past. When Valerio begins attending Las Encinas again, he wants to resume their relationship. Lucrecia doesn't, but she can't help but indulge him from time to time. Then it's revealed that she was the one who started their relationship in the first place.
  • Camp Gay: Omar shows shades of this in Season 2 as he acts like a housewife since he lives at Ander's house.
  • Cassandra Truth: Nano and Guzman don't believe Samuel when he tells them that Polo is Marina's killer. At first.
  • Chronic Hero Syndrome: Guzman despite being a jerkass, haves the tendency of trying help peoples who he cares about mostly Ander, Polo, Nadia and of course Marina despite generally they don't ask his help showing his overprotective nature. Often lampshaded by Nadia as he want play "the shining knight".
  • Coming-Out Story: Ander is given one throughout the show.
  • Conflicting Loyalty: In season 2, Polo confesses to Ander that he's Marina's killer. This puts Ander at a crossroads—does he cover for Polo and protect their friendship? Or does he let integrity win over and tell Guzman the truth? He chooses the former, which effectively ends his friendship with Guzman.
  • Corrupt Corporate Executive: Guzman and Marina's father, who's involved in a corporate fraud and responsible for San Esteban's collapse, and Carla's father, who does business with him.
  • Devoted to You: Carla gets this obsessive level of loyalty from Polo, Samuel, and Yeray. Polo, her boyfriend from the time they were twelve, is so dedicated to trying to win her back that he confronts Marina in an attempt to get the watches back for her and save Carla’s family’s secrets, only to end up murdering Marina in a fit of rage after she insists that Carla is just using him and despite hooking up with Ander and beginning a relationship with Cayetana and Valerio reaffirms shortly before his death that Carla was ultimately the love of his life. Samuel, despite initially only getting involved with Carla to investigate and expose who really murdered Marina, eventually falls in love with Carla for real, and is driven by this to beat Nano nearly to death when he corners her, and is willing to overlook Carla covering up for and lying about Polo for months, as well as taking back her accusation at court. Yeray has been in love with Carla for years because she made a comment defending him when he was being cyber-bullied over his weight, to the point that even saves her family’s winery business. Christian as well, at first, but eventually the guilt and anger over Carla manipulating him into staying quiet about Polo killing Marina whilst Nano rots in prison gets to him and he turns on her.
  • Died in Your Arms Tonight: In Season 3, Polo is stabbed in the chest with a broken bottle and falls from a floor above onto the ground. He dies after a tearful Guzman forgives him, holding him in his arms.
  • Dirty Coward: In Season 2, it's shown that Polo would rather have Nano, an innocent man rot in prison or possibly be executed for a crime he didn't commit than turn himself in to the police and confess the truth to Guzman.
  • Dramatic Irony: So much with Nadia and Lu.
    • In Season 1, Lu dares Guzman to seduce Nadia and take a video of him taking her virginity after Nadia catches them screwing in the school showers. Guzman falls in love with Nadia instead.
      • And then in Season 2, when Nadia has sex with Guzman (in the school showers!) it ends up being recorded and Lu sends it to the whole school, so in the end, it happened anyway. (Although by now Guzman has very different feelings on this.)
    • In Season 2, Samu catches Lu and Valerio making out. When Nadia counter-blackmails Lu about 'the Valerio thing', Lu mistakenly assumes that Samu told Nadia, when in reality, it was Valerio himself.
  • Driven by Envy: In Season 3, during the pool party, knowing Carla's drug addiction Rebeca takes advantage of Carla by selling her drugs. The drugs she sold made Carla collapse and fall unconscious into a pool. Rebeca later admits in a genuine apology it's by jealousy she made this.
  • Driving Question:
    • Season 1: Who killed Marina?
    • Season 2: What happened to Samuel?
    • Season 3: Who killed Polo?
  • Drugs Are Good vs. Drugs Are Bad: Played with. There's a lot of alcohol, pot and pills in this series. Heck, Omar is a drug dealer. However, Guzman's biological parents died of drug addiction, and he is almost militant about people using drugs (see: his intervention with Ander, and his confrontation with Marina). When Nadia accidentally gets high, she propositions Guzman... who recognises that she isn't herself. Guzman himself is shown using drugs and alcohol in season 2 while grieving for Marina.
  • Dude Magnet: Carla, obviously. Well, there's her longtime boyfriend Polo, Christian, Samuel and Yeray. Even Ander and Omar (a gay couple) are not insensitive at her.
  • Even the Guys Want Him: Polo realised he was bi because of Guzman.
  • Even the Girls Want Her: Rebe reluctantly admits to Ander that she finds Carla hot.
  • Everyone Is a Suspect: As the show goes on, it's clear that Marina was getting under everyone's skin and screwed a lot of people over. In the last two episodes, to varying degrees, every main character had a reason to want her dead.
  • Everyone Loves Blondes:
    • As a Dude Magnet Carla attracts several guys as the show continues.
    • Cayetana as well. She's caught attention of students (especially Lu and Valerio) during her first day at Las Encinas.
  • Ensemble Cast: It's hard to point out who is the main character of the show, seeing as there are a variety of plot lines that get about the same amount of screen time.
    • In Season 1, it's easy to put Samuel as the main character, Marina arguably was it, but even then, there was a number of plots in which she wasn't involved and all major characters would get a lot of screentime anyway.
    • Even in Season 2, while Samuel definitely becomes the main focus, he still shares the screen with other characters.
    • In Season 3, one could argue it is Polo who has the spotlight.
  • Fiery Redhead: Marina who is rebellious and self-destructive.
  • Fire-Forged Friends: Samuel and Guzman start off very antagonistic towards one another, and Marina's death makes things worse, but once Guzman finally believes that Nano is innocent and that Polo is the real killer, the two come up with a plan to draw Carla out which consists of Samuel pretending to be missing and Guzman covering for him during the police interrogations. The final minutes of the season 2 finale show them warmly hugging and wishing each other a Happy New Year.
    • In Season 3, the gang all become this. Special shout-out to former frenemies Nadia and Lu, after Lu and Nadia help each other to score and share the academic scholarship to Columbia University.
  • Five-Man Band: In Season 1, to constrast with the three transferred students (Samuel, Christian and Nadia) forming a Freudian Trio (see below) even sometimes they tend to an evil version of their respectives roles (except Ander) :
  • Foil:
    • Christian and Nadia. Both are new scholarship students in Las Encinas and are of modest family but they don't have the same way to move forward. Christian is more easy-going, sociable and conflictual while Nadia is more laid-back, lonely and calm . But both want to reach at the top (socially for Christian and academically for Nadia) in adition with a ambitious nature. They constrast on the social scale and the academic scale. On the social one, Christian is socially comfortable while Nadia is a kind of loner. But on the academic one, Nadia is the top of their class while Christian himself said he's very bad at school.
    • Nano and Guzman. Both have a Big Brother Instinct being fiercely protective of their respective sibling. They also fell in love with a girl of a opposite background (Marina for Nano and Nadia for Guzman) who at first they only wanted get close for a diferent goal. Both are impulsive but if Nano is the foolish sibling (Samuel being the responsible one) , Guzman is the responsible one (Marina being the foolish one) . In fact, if Nano brings trouble in his family (literally), Guzman is the one who makes his possible for relsove his family's problem (like his father's arrest).
    • Marina and Carla. Both are rich and somewhat conflicted with their wealthy status with Carla who doesn't enjoy her life already traced and Marina who doesn't stand her family's snobbish attitude especially her father's. Consequently they try to deviate of their respective path. Which conducted them to hang out with working-class guys (Samuel and Nano for Marina and Christian for Carla) being the Uptown Girl for them and as the middle one in their respective Love Triangle.
  • Foolish Sibling, Responsible Sibling:
    • Guzman is the responsible sibling, being much more dedicated to his family than the rebellious Marina, who always finds ways to rage against her family.
    • Nadia is the responsible sibling for both Omar and her missing sister. Nadia is a girl dedicated to her grades and studies that never gets in trouble, while Omar is know for getting into trouble and their parents eventually find out he's been dealing drugs, their missing sister was a Hard-Drinking Party Girl that was a disappointment to her family. Eventually downplayed as Nadia also starts lying to her father, though to a much lesser degree than any of the others.
    • Samuel is far more responsible (and, arguably, intelligent) than his brother Nano, who can't seem to catch a break even when he's out of jail.
    • It sort of looks like Lu is the responsible sibling to Valerio's irresponsible sibling, but subverted and zigzagged often.
  • Foreshadowing:
    • Christian says that he didn't like the "meat" of his, Polo and Carla's dinner together, which is an euphemism for Polo to be in their sex lives. Carla argues that he didn't even try the meat. Later in that episode, Christian kisses Polo. A few episodes later, they have sex.
    • Carla kisses Polo when he is being called in for questioning, whispering in his ear that the police suspect Guzman to be the killer. The final episode reveals that she was in on the murder that Polo committed, and was trying to warn him about it.
  • Freudian Trio: The three transferred students can fit the trope at the beginning:
    • Christian is the Id as he's playful and hot-headed
    • Nadia is the Superego as she's level-headed and studious
    • Samuel is the Ego as he is not hot-headed as Christian and studious as Nadia.
      • Ander, Guzman and Polo can fit the trope too : Ander (Superego) is laid-back, Guzman (Id) is impulsive and Polo (Ego) is the balance between them as he can be agree with Guzman's actions as he can be with Ander's personality.
  • The Friend Nobody Likes:
    • By the end of Season 1, Marina. Best shown when she goes on stage to accept her award and nobody in the main cast claps for her, apart from Samuel.
    • Polo in Season 3.
  • Gayngst: Omar is terrified of coming out to his conservative father, and in an attempt to live free, he starts gathering money by selling drugs to leave and live by himself someday. He says that he lives in a prison already so he doesn't fear being arrested. The angry and hurt reaction of his father when he hears rumors about Omar being gay is enough to justify this.
  • Good Girls Avoid Abortion: Nadia points Marina to an underground clinic where Muslim girls go, where she can get a safe abortion, not agreeing with it, but at least wanting Marina to be safe. Nano accompanies her, last minute, though, she backs out from getting the abortion and wants to keep the baby, running away with Nano to start a new life.
  • Gratuitous English: Lucrecia in particular , makes this frequently.
  • Green-Eyed Monster: There is few examples:
    • It's clear Lucrecia becomes jealous of Nadia because she took from her The Ace status in the class and also because her Love Interest Guzman falls in love with Nadia. Consequently she insults Nadia on the later's religion. Also with Valerio, glaring him with a jealous streak when he flirts with Rebeka, Cayetana or Nadia.
    • Polo too as he seems to feel like the third wheel in his threesome with Carla and Christian as the two seems prefer each other. That explain why he attacks Christian during the penultimate episode of season 1.
    • In Season 2, the new girl Rebeca who had a crush on Samuel, becomes jealous of his relationship with Carla and despises her.
  • Happily Adopted: Guzman... Or so it seems.
  • Has a Type:
    • Polo and blonds like Carla, Cayetana and Guzmán.
    • Marina and boys from the other side of the socioeconomic spectrum: Pablo, Samu, Nano.
    • Samuel and the Uptown Girl archetype: Marina, Carla.
  • Headbutt of Love: A somber, familial version between Nano and Samuel happens during season two when Samuel is begging Nano not to go on the run after he has a huge fight with their mother and Guzman tries egging him into violating his bail.
  • Hypocrite:
    • Carla calls her mom out when Christian says he wants to be famous but has no idea of what to do to get there and she says that it's a foolish mindset, pointing out that she did nothing to get the title of marquise.
    • In Season 2, Guzman 'Say No To Drugs' Nunier starts drinking and snorting cocaine while getting on to Polo and Nadia for doing the same.
    • Lampshaded by Lu several times throughout Season 2, almost as though she is proud of it.
    • Ander is quick to call Polo a coward for not telling Guzman the truth behind Marina's death when he himself is also hiding it.
  • Ice Queen: Omar actually calls Nadia this, when she tells him to just suck it up and pretend to not be gay for at least a few more years, saying that he can't shut off his emotions like her.
  • I Just Want to Have Friends: Cayetana's motivation for lying about her working class origins. She just wants to feel accepetd by her fellow classmates, and feels like she needs to pretend to be rich to do so.
  • I Love You Because I Can't Control You: Implied with Carla in regards to Samuel. She easily had two guys, Polo and Christian, wrapped around her finger in season 1. Samuel, however, refuses to play by her rules, so she lets him see Beneath the Mask. Although she denies she ever had real feelings for Samuel, it's clear to viewers based on her reaction to him supposedly going missing that she did develop them. This is why, despite the relationship taking pretty much everyone by surprise, fans have embraced the twisted pairing with open arms.
  • Insistent Terminology: Lu and Valerio are half siblings, as they remind anyone who calls them sibling. The implication is that they push this argument because makes their incest "lesser."
  • Internal Reveal:
    • The plot reveals to many characters that Marina is HIV positive little by little to several characters in Season 1.
    • The fact that Ander and Omar are gay is revealed to Samuel, Nadia and Guzman after the benefit party of Carla's mom.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Guzman, despite his snobby and douchey ways, genuinely cares for his sister and his friends. Over time, he also goes through Character Development, since he's in love with Nadia, whom he initially gets close to embarrass her for catching him and Lucrecia making out in the school's restroom.
  • Jigsaw Puzzle Plot: Each episode contains one very big piece of information that reveals what happened bit by bit: to Marina in Season 1, to Samu in Season 2, and to Polo in Season 3.
  • Jumping Off the Slippery Slope: Polo and Carla might have been a little mean, but they were overall on the nice aspect of the rich kids. In the final two episodes of the show, Polo becomes essentially insane when Carla breaks up with him and kills Marina in an attempt to get together with her, while Carla herself resorts to all kinds of manipulations to get Marina to return the clock and when she dies, controls Christian and Polo to get Nano to be arrested for it.
  • Knight Templar Big Brother:
    • Guzman is this towards Marina, to the point of beating her boyfriend almost to death after he (unwittingly) infected Marina with HIV.
    • Nano hints he's this in Season 2 when he says he'd be just as violent as Guzman if he thought anyone hurt Samuel.
  • Lady and Knight:
    • In Season 1, Marina's Lady to Samuel's Knight. As the season advances Marina became a Fallen Princess with several persons who dislike her. But Samuel despite her betrayal (she cheated on him with his brother), stays concerned about her being the last person who try to help her before she was killed by Polo in the season finale.
    • Played straight in Season 2, there is Carla's Lady to Samuel's Knight. Carla is rich, princess-like and daughter of marchionness while Samuel is caring and protective with her to the point of beating his older brother for her proving his devotion to her.
    • Though it's mostly partial depite it's often lampshaded, Guzman's Knight to Nadia's Lady in an interesting way. Having a Chronic Hero Syndrome, Guzman always want help her and displays a chivalrous nature with her. But Nadia who doesn't fit the lady position not having a noble and rich status and even frequently denies this as she doesn't want to be in need of rescue.
  • Leaning on the Fourth Wall: Ander looks directly into the camera, after having lied to the detective about what happened between Guzman and Pablo two years before the events of the series.
  • Lovable Alpha Bitch: Carla is this being one of the richest girls of Las Encinas as the daughter of a marchionness. And in contrast to Alpha Bitch Lucrecia (the other girl of the popular clique) , she doesn't look down the new students staying at least neutral and aloof. But that doesn't mean she's not silver-tongued when she wants. Become subverted when she falls more in the Manipulative Bitch status.
  • Love Dodecahedron: In the second season, things get messy—Valerio loves Lu, who's obsessed with Guzman, who's in love with Nadia. Cayetana loves Polo, who still (initially) loves Carla, who has this thing with Samu, who Rebeca is crushing on.
  • Love Triangle:
    • In the first season:
      • Played with in regards to the polyamorous relationship between Carla, Christian and Polo. Polo eventually starts getting jealous of the fact that it seems that Christian is only interested in Carla in their relationship.
      • Guzman is in a relationship with Lu, but has to seduce Nadia in an attempt to make her keep quiet about them having sex in school. During the plot, however, he ends up falling for Nadia and realizing Lu is a bad influence, though she keeps chasing him while he chases Nadia.
      • Another one arises between Samuel, his brother Nano and Marina, as both brothers fall for her.
    • In Season 2, new girl Rebeca feels this way for Samu, but he's sleeping with Carla, who winds up developing genuine feelings for him.
  • Manipulative Bitch: Carla becomes this once she steps up as the Big Bad, being able to manipulate Christian into being silent.
    • Marina arguably becomes this in season 1 as she strings along Samuel while making plans to run away with Nano. In the season finale, she tells Samuel that she's leaving with Nano but also tells Nano that she's changed her mind about running away and wants to stay.
    • Polo also starts becoming like this in Season 2, specially in relation to Ander.
  • Meaningful Name: Quite a few examples.
    • It can't be any coincidence that Lucrecia's name sounds very much like Lucrezia Borgia, famous beauty and scion of the infamous Borgias. The name Lucrezia also means “profit and wealth,” which fits Rich Bitch Lucrecia like a glove.
      • Even funnier when it's revealed in Season 2 that Lu had an incestuous relationship with Valerio. Rumours of incest plagued Lucrezia Borgia during her time.
    • Carla is the feminine form of the name Carl, which means “free man.” Very befitting the hedonistic Carla.
    • Nadia means “hope,” which fits the very ambitious and driven Nadia.
    • Marina means “of the sea,” which is eerie when one considers that the trophy used to murder her is currently at the bottom of the lake.
  • Mock Millionaire: Cayetana, whose mother turns out to be a janitor.
  • Mutual Envy: Between Rebeca and Carla over Samuel. Both actually admit to be jealous of each other in season 3 last episode.
  • My Sister Is Off-Limits!: Guzman is this with Marina threatening Samuel to stay away from her in the pilot.
    • Lucrecia is an inverted example of this trope with Valerio being the jealous type and for not reveal their Brother–Sister Incest status.
  • Not So Different: As Guzman lampshaded this in Season 1 second episode, he and Nadia are this. Both are religious, the responsible siblings of their respective family, respect their parents and in addition they are good swimmers.
  • Nouveau Riche:
    • Rebeca, whose mother got rich recently in drug business, or as she said it, she "won the lottery". She's also always seen wearing big gold jewelry.
    • Yeray. He was a Scholarship Student when he first got into Las Encinas and would later find success in a dating app, making himself a very wealthy Self-Made Man who's always seen driving in sports cars.
  • Odd Friendship: Nadia and Valerio's friendship in season 2.
  • Open-Minded Parent: Ander's mom. Not only she accepts her son for being gay, but also supports his relationship with Omar, despite knowing about his drug dealing business that involves one of her students, considering her position as the principal of Las Encinas.
  • Opposites Attract:
    • Guzman and Nadia. He's a Christian impulsive and arrogant socialite while she's an Islamic self-censored and humble outsider. Though they shown to be Not So Different.
    • In Season 2, Samuel and Carla. They actually have no many similarities due to opposites social backgrounds except a feeling of loneliness during this season.
  • Parents as People:
    • Nadia and Omar's father loves his children very much, but suffers on the culture shock of being out of Middle East. His controlling nature basically scares away his children, but it also comes from a place of genuine fear as their older sister lacked any kind of self-control and ended up leaving the family.
    • It's obvious how much Samuel and Nano's mother loves her children, but things come to a head in Season 2 when she and Nano get into a huge fight about Nano getting caught up in trouble right after she and Samuel worked to earn money to bail him out of jail. She tells him to leave, and he obliges her. She's later shown to be devastated by this.
    • Polo's mothers in Season 3. They both try to pull their weight, try to repair Polo's image after Carla's accusations and argue about it.
  • Politically Incorrect Villain: Lucrecia, who seems to be always against Nadia's Muslim background, from criticizing her for wearing a hijab to calling her a "Taliban girl". Ironic, considering her parents are diplomats and Lu is said to have lived in Abu Dhabi for 2 years.
  • Polyamory:
    • Carla and Polo have a dying relationship and decide to experiment with Christian to try to resuscitate it. They end up involving Christian in their relationship, leading to Carla dating both of them while Polo and Christian experiment with each other.
    • Polo seems to be a magnet for this; in Season 3, he gets into a brief relationship with both Cayetana and Valerio.
  • Promotion to Parent: Downplayed due to the fact that Samuel's mother is present, but with Nano being in prison, Samuel effectively becomes the second breadwinner of the family.
  • Replacement Goldfish:
    • It’s implied that Cayetana fills this role for Polo, replacing both Carla and Christian who had abandoned Polo. Like Carla, Cayetana is a beautiful blonde woman who is surprisingly calculated and manipulative- and both Carla and Cayetana, at separate points, help Polo to cover up that he murdered Marina. Like Christian, Cayetana is an exuberant and charismatic Social Climber, with a strong interest in building an Instagram fame—Lucrecia even snidely remarks on the similarities between Christian and Cayetana.
    • In Season 3, Valerio fills this also for Polo in their threesome with Cayetana acting as the missing piece between Polo and Cayetana. That reflects Christian inside the Carla/Polo long relationship as a refresh. Both allow Polo to be comfortable with his bisexuality and Carla/Cayetana to explore more their sexuality. And they have similar personalities, both are wild cards: flirtatious, love parties and drugs and are not scholarly brilliant.
  • The Reveal:
    • Polo killed Marina, in an attempt to get the watch back and with that get Carla back.
    • Samuel was never missing. He was hiding out at Guzman's grandparents' estate to force Carla into confessing the truth behind Marina's death.
    • When Lu accidentally kills Polo, and he hits his head on the glass, after trying to make it out, only for the glass to break and for him to fall
  • Rich Suitor, Poor Suitor: Rich diplomat's daughter Lucrecia and working-class Nadia for Guzman. Also Polo (rich suitor) and Christian (poor suitor) for Carla.
  • Scholarship Student: Samuel, Nadia, and Christian are given scholarships by their old school's construction company (owned by Marina and Guzman's father) to attend the prestigious Las Encinas.
    • Cayetana joins them in Season 2.
    • Nadia and Lu battle it out for the scholarship to Columbia in Season 3.
  • Ship Tease: Valerio gets a lot of this in Season 2, with Rebeca and Cayetana, and later in the season with Nadia, of all people!
  • Shout-Out:
    • During Rebeca's Halloween party, Omar and Ander dress up as Dr. Frank-N-Furter and Rocky Horror, from The Rocky Horror Picture Show.
    • Lucrecia goes as Frida Kahlo
    • The Salvador Dali masks that turn up during the Halloween party is a fun shout out to Money Heist.
  • Sibling Triangle: Samuel is infatuated with Marina, who starts a relationship with him despite sleeping with and feeling a mutual desire for his older brother Nano.
  • Socially Awkward Hero: Samuel is this in opposite with the majority of the main cast. Despite they are not popular, he begins to take part at parties and events like his other classmates.
  • Straight Gay: Both Omar and Ander. Omar averts this in season 2.
    • In Season 3, Malick
  • Teen Pregnancy: Marina is revealed to be pregnant with Nano's child.
  • Two Girls and a Guy: In season 2, there are Rebeka and Cayetana (who took Christian's place when he leaves) the girls and Valerio the guy.
  • Two Guys and a Girl: As the new students, Samuel and Christian are the boys while Nadia's a girl.
  • The Unfavorite: Valerio is this in contrast with her half-sister Lucrecia as she's a Daddy's Girl and him the Black Sheep of the family.
  • Uptown Girl:
    • Marina, for both Samuel and Nano.
    • Gender flipped with her brother, Guzman, for Nadia.
    • Carla for Christian, and then Samuel.
    • Ander is the male version, for Omar.
  • Unresolved Sexual Tension: As an extent of Will They or Won't They? trope few couples haves some of this but especially:
    • Nadia and Guzman in spades . There is a lot of sexual and romantic tension with repressed feelings. In the first season, after some BST in the beginning, Guzman develops feelings for her and despite she says they're only friends, she shown some attraction towards him. Sometimes, they stare each ocher's lips especially Guzman. As the story advances, the constant sexual tension had increased both loving deeply each other.But there is many obstacles between them as Lucrecia, Nadia's parents, the fact they don't have the same religion... Though after it's somewhat resolved in Season 3 finale.
    • Carla and Samuel as well. After they have developped feeling for each other despite trying to manipulate the other, they didn't get together as the situation becomes more complicated with Samue's disappearance. In Season 3 though they dating other persons (Rebeka and Yeray respectively) , they always had the other in their mind lampshaded by Rebeka and Carla in the last episode discussing the trope. Finally, they don't.
  • Wham Shot:
    • In the very first episode, Samuel looking into the body bag to see who was the murder victim: Marina.
    • The very last shot of season one has the location of the murder weapon. The trophy is at the bottom of the lake.
    • Season 2, with Samuel's bike, and then his bloody blazer. And then again, when Samuel turns up alive.
    • Season 3, with Polo's body. Then when Cayetana ends up as a janitor in the final shot at Las Encinas.
  • Will They or Won't They?:
    • Omar and Ander: They do, at the end of Season 1. Then they break up during Season 3 only for them to reunite in the finale.
    • Nadia and Guzman: They don't during Season 1, then they get together during Season 2 but break up before the Season 2 episode finale, and then eventually do in Season 3.
    • Valerio and Lu: They don't.
    • Carla and Polo: They don't.
    • Carla and Samu: They don't.
  • Worthy Opponent: At the end of Season 2, Carla concedes defeat after Samuel turns up alive and she confesses to the police about her and Polo's part in Marina's murder.

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