After two successful seasons, the award-winning documentary series “Illegal” with award-winning journalist Mariana van Zeller returns today, Thursday, February 23, at 10 p.m. on National Geographic with its third season, airing over ten weeks, bringing a new perspective on the structure and workings of the most dangerous black markets in the underworld.
In each episode, the journalist captures a different black market, from drugs and phantom weapons to human organs and fight clubs, to meet the players, learn the business and better understand the world’s multi-billion dollar underground economy. If we’ve already piqued your interest we share four reasons why you should watch National Geographic’s new season of Illegal with Mariana van Zeller.
And if you want to get an idea of the first two seasons, the Playtech editorial team did an interview with Mariana van Zeller that you can read right here.
You’re confirmed that reality is full of surprising situations
What’s extraordinary about National Gegraphic’s documentary series “Illegal with Marian van Zeller” is that the reality of black markets is often more thrilling.
In Season 3, Mariana van Zeller will examine how the organ trafficking market works – a shady underworld of transplant tourism, a trade that connects desperate patients in the world’s richest countries with desperate donors facing their own brutal realities. A black market with a global trade worth an estimated $1.5 billion.
Another topic debated will be LSD, which is making a comeback due to growing belief in its healing powers. Clandestine therapy is booming, with the drug being used to treat abuse, depression and trauma of all kinds. Yet LSD remains 100% illegal, which is why a number of the chemists responsible for supplying the world with it remain a closely guarded secret. Mariana is on a mission to find one and understand the secrets they keep.
A unique narrative experience
National Geographic’s “Illegal” documentary series brings real-life footage directly into the public consciousness. These are powerful stories told in a unique way by award-winning journalist Mariana van Zeller.
Episodes like “Smuggling Oil,” part of the series’ third season, took months of research, during which Mariana set out on a 3,000-mile journey from Africa to the Middle East to discover how black market oil fuels terrorist groups around the world. Her investigation uncovers how this ‘black gold’ is stolen, smuggled and finds its way into the hands of America’s most dangerous enemies.
Learn more about areas you thought you knew
The beauty of this documentary series is that it gives audiences new perspectives on familiar subjects. One problem the whole world faces every day is cybercrime. The first episode airing Thursday, February 23, on National Geographic brings to the forefront a topic that has crossed the U.S. border: cyber hackers.
Cybercrimes such as credit card scams, identity theft and ransomware are the fastest growing black markets in the United States, making data a more valuable commodity than gold, guns and drugs. Mariana is on a mission to understand how our personal and financial information is stolen, sold and distributed by a shadowy network of hackers and thieves, exposing a network of global proportions.
Discover how the world really works
Cryptocurrencies have become mainstream and made billionaires around the world, but this get-rich-quick fever, combined with a lack of government oversight and regulation, has created the perfect opportunity for scammers.
In this episode of the documentary series Illegal, Mariana van Zeller joins a team of cryptocurrency rug pull scammers who show her how they make millions of dollars in just a few weeks.