entertainment

13 Movies You Will Heart If You Adore The Best Telenovela Characters Of All Time!

Telenovelas, culebrones, comedias… however you might call them, televised episodic melodrama is an important cultural industry in all of Latin America and among the huge Spanish-speaking and bilingual communities in the United States.

Telenovelas often involve a central story of love filled with obstacles and intrigues. The two main characters usually come from very different socioeconomic origins. All of this is spiced up with romantic triangles and often with secret identities… And of course steamy kisses and slaps, lots of head-turning slaps!

Central to the success of a telenovela are legendary characters that have no shades of gray: they are either too good or the meanest SOBs on Earth. If you love to love or love to hate some of these characters, you will enjoy some of these  movies.

1. If you love to hate Soraya from Maria la del Barrio… 

Credit: Maria la del Barrio. Televisa

The best villain of all time and now a worldwide famous meme. She was bitchy and evil. And incredibly funny. 

You will like: Ursula in The Little Mermaid

 

Credit: The Little Mermaid. Disney.


She is ruthless in her evil ways and is just so dismissive and has zero political correctness. You will enjoy hating her! 

2. If you love to love Maestra Jimena from Carrusel

Credit: Carrusel. Televisa.


We have all fantasized with having an understanding and amazing teacher like her…. she was equally tough and caring.

You will like: Louanne Johnson in Dangerous Minds

Credit: Dangerous Minds. Hollywood Pictures.


Michelle Pfeiffer plays an ex-Marine who teaches literature at a rough high-school and gets the kids straightened up and motivated. You go, girl.

3. If you love to hate Catalina Creel from Cuna de lobos

Credit: Cuna de lobos. Televisa.


She was evil beyond belief and didn’t hesitate to kill even family members in her journey to total power and vengeance. 

You will like: Cruella de Vil in 101 Dalmatians

Credit: 101 Dalmatians. Disney.


She wanted to make a coat out of puppy fur… let that sink in. Point made. 

4. If you love to love Juan Del Diablo from Corazón Salvaje

Credit: Corazón Salvaje. Televisa.


The late Eduardo Palomo played a sexy and cheeky pirate in this classic period telenovela about a love triangle in the Mexican beachside.

You will like: Dr. Peter Blood in Captain Blood

Credit: Captain Blood. Warner Bros.


Errol Flynn plays a savvy and adventurous captain in this 1935 Hollywood classic!

5. If you love to love Marimar from Marimar 

Credit: Giphy. Anonymous.

Of all the Maria characters that Thalia played in the 1990s, Marimar is the most adorable: a girl who grows up in the beach, with sun-kissed skin and a killer smile. 

You will like: Amelie in Amelie 

Credit: Amelie. Miramax.


Our favorite naive French coqueta. She is as shiny and cute as Marimar, and just as secretly cheeky. 

6. If you love to love Tanya and Ana Maria from Dos mujeres un camino

Credit: Dos mujeres in camino. Televisa.


Bibi Gaytán and Laura León play a couple of women, the lover and the wife, who are in love with the same man. They don’t really hate each other, which makes for an interesting and different plot.

You will like: Vicky and Maria Elena in Vicky Cristina Barcelona

Credit: Vicky Cristina Barcelona. MediaPro.


Scarlett Johansson and Penelope Cruz play a couple of free spirits who are both in love with a Spanish bon vivant painter. 

7. If you love to hate Aurelio Casillas from El señor de los cielos

Credit: El señor de los cielosTelemundo.


Based on the real kingpin Amado Carrillo Fuentes. This character is so charming he makes us forget about his evil wrongdoings and the pain he brings to thousands of people affected by drug violence. 

You will like: Tony Montana in Scarface.

Credit: Scarface. Warner Bros.

Al Pacino plays this character to perfection. Montana is a violent and powerful drug dealer who thinks he is above the law and anything else.

8. If you love to love Betty from Yo soy Betty, la fea

Credit:Yo soy Betty, la fea. RCN.

Dozens of versions of this Colombian telenovela have been made, which talks about the appeal of the archetypical story of a woman who blossoms after falling in love. However, it is problematic in terms of how it deals with body image issues.

You will like: Gracie in Miss Congeniality 

Credit: Miss Congeniality. Castle Rock Entertainment.


Sandra Bullock plays an FBI agent who finds her inner femininity by participating in a beauty contest. She is so damn funny and so damn cute! 

9. If you love to love Fernando Mendiola Saénz in La fea más bella

Credit: La fea más bella. Televisa.


Jaime Camil played Betty’s romantic counterpart and boss to the dot in the Mexican version. This might be the role that got him a job in Jane the Virgin as Rogelio De la Vega!

You will like: Professor Henry Higgings in My Fair Lady

Credit: My Fair Lady. Warner Bros.


The archetypical character of a high class man who finds the beauty and intelligence in a lower class woman. Kind of sexist, but a bit charming. 

10. If you love to hate Rubí Pérez Ochoa in Rubí

Credit: Rubí. Televisa.


Deliciously played by Bárbara Mori, Rubí is a complex character that has a poor background, but hangs out with the rich kids thanks to her hardworking sister who puts her through a private university. She is de cuidado!

You will like: Marquise de Merteuil in Dangerous Liasons 

Credit: Dangerous Liasons. Lorimar Film Entertainment.


Glen Close plays a socialite who knows how to wreak havoc among the rich and beautiful, just like Rubí. Aguas con ella!

11. If you love to hate Rodrigo Montalvo Santos from Destilando amor

Credit: Destilando amor. Televisa


The typical rich jerk who goes overseas and promises his poor girlfriend to come back. Sorpresa! He doesn’t.

You will like: Tony Stark from the Iron Man franchise

Credit: Iron Man. Marvel Studios.


He is the rich heir who just teases his romantic interests (his assistant in this case) but never fully commits. Que pase el desgraciado!

12. If you love to love Gaviota from Café, con aroma de mujer

Credit: Café, con aroma de mujer. RCN.


This Colombian culebrón on which the Mexican Destilando amor is based. Instead of agave plants the rich family harvests coffee. The female lead is a young and passionate woman who falls ill of love. Saquen los kleenex. 

You will like: The girl in The Lover

Credit: The Lover. Film A2.


In colonial Indochine (now Vietnam) a young woman falls in love with a rich businessman and starts a torrid romance. Steamy as it gets. We never get to know the characters´names. 

13. If you love to love María Inés Domínguez de Sanmillán from Mirada de mujer. 

Credit: Mirada de mujerAzteca Trece.


This telenovela broke with a taboo in Mexican society. It showed a love affair between a middle-aged woman and a younger lover, played by Ari Telch (think Mexican Tom Selleck).

You will like: Liz Gilbert in Eat Pray Love

Credit: Eat Pray Love. Columbia Pictures.


Julia Roberts played the main character beautifully, helping millions of women believe that it is not only men who are entitled to change their life.

21 Things You Didn't Know About El Chapo

Entertainment

21 Things You Didn’t Know About El Chapo

Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán has been part of the popular imagination in Mexico and all over the world for decades. The supposed leader of the powerful Sinaloa Cartel has become a celebrity due to his extravagant prison brakes, the network of tunnels he allegedly built to smuggle drugs to the United States.

El Chapo is currently undergoing a highly publicized trial in Brooklyn, as he was extradited to the United States. With this trial, as well as the release of the highly anticipated Netflix show Narcos: Mexico, where his character is expected to make a cameo, El Chapo is as relevant as ever. Here are some facts and possible facts about this elusive and mythical figure.

1. First things first, Chapo means “Shorty”

Credit: El Chapo. Netflix/Univision.

Wonder where the famous moniker came from? Guzmán stands 5 ‘6″ tall. El Chapo is quite short, so his nickname is basically Sinaloa slang for “shorty”. El Chapo is a small but commanding figure, sort of a Napoleon of the criminal underbelly.

2. He is considered by some to be a modern Robin Hood

Credit: Drug Lords: El Chapo. Netflix.

El Chapo has always been vocal about his humble origin and his despise of government corruption. He has built roads and schools in his native state of Sinaloa, which is why some consider him a working-class hero.

3. According to some sources, he began selling marihuana as a minor

Credit: Giphy. @homeofhiphop

He lived in a rural area and by 15 he was supporting his family by selling oranges, cheese and, some claim, pot. Very early on he started understanding the mechanisms of illegal narcotic trade. A self-made dealer who became one of the richest people in the planet.

4. You can buy El Chapo piñatas in Mexico

Credit: pinata. Digital image. New York Post.

Yes, you read that right. El Chapo has become a mythical figure in his home country, and popular culture manifestations like piñatas often depict political figures. After his second escape from a maximum security prison numerous piñata makers made a killing. When he was finally captured for good the piñatas were quickly updated.

5. He had a girlfriend while in prison

Credit: zulemahernandez. Digital image. Proceso.

When he was first in prison before escaping in 2001, Chapo had a girlfriend. Her name was Zulema and she was a former police officer. She was murdered upon her release from jail, possibly because of her relationship with the kingpin.

6. Chapo masks are now common for Halloween and Día de Muertos

Credit: 9d8c1960e867aa18ebf8d1237a2ea7ce57f09597. Digital image. Digital Journal.

Just like some scare kids wearing Trump masks on Halloween, Mexicans wear masks of hated politicians and other public figures. El Chapo masks are a common feature at Halloween parties and other events.

7. He once lined the road leading to his house with human bodies

Credit: Apocalypse Now. Zoetrope Studios.

According to the documentary TV show Drug Lords: El Chapo (Netflix), El Chapo liked to make quite a statement when anyone visited his property. He lined up cadavers in his driveway just to show who is boss. Sounds very Apocalypse Now to us to be honest.

8. His current wife is an Instagram celebrity

Credit: Instagram. @emmacoronela

Emma Coronel is a famous Instagramer and former beauty queen. She often posts snapshots of her daily life, messages to her imprisoned husband and even photos of her twin daughter’s lavish Barbie-themed party.

9. He expanded his cartel globally

Credit: Giphy. @netflixlat

The Sinaloa Cartel has been described as the biggest and most complex criminal organization in the planet. Part of El Chapo’s success is due to directly enter faraway markets like Australia without paying intermediaries.

10. He allegedly loves golden and diamond-incrusted guns

Credit: Pinterest. @chicana602

Guns that are custom made by skilled jewelers are a common sight in narco culture. El Chapo is said to have ordered a gun to mark his mention in the Forbes richest people in the planet list.

11. He has been married 3 times and has 9 kids

Credit: african_narco_news__cocaine_joaquín_guzmánLoera_2. Digital image. African Narco News.

He has a big heart, at least according to his turbulent love life. He has 9 kids. He first married in 1977 with Alejandrina María Salazar Hernández, and had César, Iván Archivaldo and  Jesús Alfredo. With his second wife he had Joaquín, Edgar, Ovidio and Griselda Guadalupe.  With his current wife, Emma Coronel, he has twins María Joaquina and Emali Guadalupe.

12. He bought all the red roses available in Culiacán for his son’s funeral

Credit: Giphy. @hackmylife

May 10 is Mother’s Day in Mexico and sons and daughters rush to flower shops to buy a bouquet for su jefecita. 2008 was different though, as the funeral for El Chapo’s son Edgar Guzmán was being held and his father bought all the roses available in the city. Lupillo Rivera wrote a song about the funeral:  “50 mil rosas rojas”.

13. He plans to sue Netflix and Univision over El Chapo TV show

Credit: El Chapo. Netflix/Univision.

Upon the release of the popular Univision/Netflix show, his lawyer claimed during a radio interview that: “Things are happening (in the series) that do not correspond to reality, despite the fact that there is no conviction confirming those events. That represents a grave violation of (Guzman’s) right to be presumed innocent until proven guilty”. For him, the TV show defames El Chapo and sends the wrong message prior to his trial.

14. He lined the US/Mexico border with underground tunnels

Credit: Drug Lords: El Chapo. Netflix.

Besides having escaped prison through a complex tunnel, El Chapo hired expert engineers to move his product across the border through a network of tunnels across the border. He escaped the authorities for years.

15. Forbes considered him the 63rd most powerful person in the world

Credit: Giphy. @netflixlat

Chapo’s power was not only due to his immense wealth, but also to the international reach of his operations and the alleged influence he had on local and international politics.

16. He is an internet celebrity in his own right

Credit: Heavy. Anonymous meme.

His last escape became fodder for meme creativity. The collective mind power of the web came together to create some pretty cool viral content.

17. He used multiple false names to escape the authorities

Credit: memes-fuga-chapo-guzman-004. Digital image. NYC Cafe.

Ge got quite creative. Joel Sánchez, Jorge Ramos Pérez or Sánchez, Raúl Guzmán Ruiz and Francisco Villaseñor were just some of them.

18. He is a religious man

Credit: unnamed. Digital file. El Camion.

According to a bishop, El Chapo is a believer. He professes his love to the Virgin of Guadalupe, like most Mexican Catholics, and to Malverde, an unofficial patron saint of drug traffickers. He has built multiple churches in his home state.

19. He built a fancy mausoleum for himself

Credit: mausoleo-arturo-guzman-pollo. Digital image. Union Jalisco.

Like many drug dealers in Sinaloa, El Chapo has prepared his last resting place. It is a huge mausoleum with air conditioning, TVs, beds and all the facilities so his loved ones can pay their respects when he passes away. Pictured: the 1.2 million dollar mausoleum where El Chapo’s brother Arturo was buried.

20. He was extradited just as Trump had his inauguration

Credit: el-chapo-02-as-gty-180615_hpMain_16x9_1600. Digital image. ABC News.

El Chapo made numerous social media threats to candidate Donald Trump, particularly after his controversial speeches attacking Mexican migrants. In what was seen as an inauguration gift from the Mexican government, Guzmán was handed over to US authorities a day before Trump came into power.

21. According to his lawyer, he paid off two Mexican presidents

Credit: Drug Lords: El Chapo. Netflix.

El Chapo’s trial in a US court has produced a couple of bombshell declarations. The biggest one is an accusation of corruption to presidents Felipe Calderón and Enrique Peña Nieto, who have publicly denounced the cartels. According to these accounts, their campaigns were partly financed by the drug lord.

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