Teresa Mendoza still has come a long way since we met her escaping Mexico in Season 1 of Queen of the South. Get ready for tonight's premiere with a summary of Teresa’s journey and all the people who are still important to her story in Season 4.
Rivalry with Camilla
Camila Vargas took Teresa under her wing to teach her the cartel business, but when Teresa assassinated Camila’s husband Epifanio, they became bitter rivals. Camila made many attempts to kill Teresa -- and yet Teresa let Camila live when the tables were turned. Instead, she banished Camila, threatening Camila’s daughter Isabela should Camila ever try to come out of exile.\
The Sinaloa Route
Teresa comes from Sinaloa, Mexico and escaped to America, becoming a mule for the Vargas cartel. Epifanio became governor of Sinaloa and General Cortez forced Epifanio to work with him to ensure Sinaloa dominated the drug trade. Epifanio basically went to war with Camila, who was running his old cartel.
Epifanio put Boaz Jimenez in charge of his cartel and Cortez got Boaz selling heroin on the side without Camila. Camila lost one of Boaz’s shipments to frame him and he ultimately fled on the run. Then Camila kidnapped Boaz’s son Kique, who happened to be her daughter Isabela’s boyfriend, to bring Boaz out of hiding.
Cortez killed Kique and convinces Isabela it was on Camila’s orders. Teresa then got Boaz on her side by plotting to kill Cortez, his son’s murderer. She left Boaz in charge of the Mexican side of the operation. With Cortez dead, Teresa controls the flow of cocaine from Sinaloa to Phoenix.
The Loyalty of Poté
Poté was a sicario for Epifanio Vargas. When Teresa spared him during her escape from Epifanio, he stood by Teresa’s side as they worked for Camila. Once Teresa broke free from Camila, Poté’s loyalty was to Teresa and he helped her escape to Malta. He wouldn’t give her up, even under torture by Camila (which broke Poté’s shooting hand, but he said he was still willing to die for Teresa). Poté saved Teresa from herself when she suffered a nervous breakdown after the death of her long-lost husband Guero, and supplied her with a plastic gun for her meeting with Bolivian druglord El Santo.
Teresa sets up in Phoenix, AZ
When Teresa split from Camila, Pote was obviously by her side as sicario, and she enlisted King George to smuggle for her. Using methods like liquifying cocaine into booze and selling it on the dark web allowed Teresa to thrive. She formed an alliance with Taza whose reservation can grease the Arizona/Mexico border for shipping. Taza also gave Teresa shelter from Camila’s sicarios. She finally takes over the Sinaloa route to Phoenix, so business should run smoothly from now on, right? With King George running shipping, Boaz in Sinaloa, and Boaz’s brother Javier by Teresa’s side, what could go wrong?
James: It's Complicated
Teresa met James while working for Camila. James’ loyalty to Camila made their relationship forbidden, but that didn’t stop them from having a relationship while on missions together. James rescued Teresa from Camila’s assassination attempt while she was in Malta and went to work for Teresa. Teresa still loved James even when he revealed murders he’d committed in the past, including a child who was accidentally killed because of him. They aren't together though. James turned himself in to the CIA to keep them away from Teresa. Javier stepped up to take James’ place as Teresa’s lieutenant.
The Rise of Castel
Reynaldo introduces his niece Castel at a meeting with Camila. Castel steps in when Camila’s vendetta against Teresa and dealings with Cortez prove bad for Reynaldo’s business. At the end of Season 3, Castel becomes a major player in Teresa’s business and ends the deal Teresa had with her uncle Reynaldo to make a new one for shipping drugs to Phoenix. Castel also gives Teresa the opportunity to kill Camila once and for all, but of course Teresa handled that her own way.
Now, Teresa is headed to New Orleans. Find out what happens when Queen of the South Season 4 premieres tonight on USA!