Entertainment

These Over-The-Top Personalities Have Given Us Some Of Our Favorite Reality TV Moments

While Latinos have been shut out of reality TV for the first decade of its genre, we have seriously exploded on the screen. Can you even imagine a world where Cardi B., Joseline Herandez or Carmen Carrera weren’t household names?

Here are the Latinos who carry their shows!

1. Cardi B., “Love & Hip Hop New York”

CREDIT: VH1 / YouTube

She used to strip right across from her school and worked her way into Billboard’s top charts. We can thank #LHHNY for introducing Cardi B’s Dominican realness to the show and all the bangers that have blossomed with it.

2. Evelyn Lozada, “Basketball Wives”

CREDIT: @evelynlozada / Instagram

This Boricua made her claim to fame with basketball star Carl Crawford on “Basketball Wives,” but she’s working her spin-off, “Livin’ Lozada.” …and she’s here for Cardi B, too.

3. Joseline Hernandez, “Love & Hip Hop Atlanta”

CREDIT: @joseline / Instagram

Presenting thee Puerto Rican Princess of reality TV. Hernandez quit #LHHATL in a firestorm. If you missed her, prepare yourself for her new spinoff: “Joseline Takes Miami.”

4. Patricia De León, “Rica Famosa Latina”

CREDIT: @patriciadeleonb / Instagram

She’s a Panamanian bombshell (read: beauty pageant winner), actress and TV host. In the latest season of Rica, “Famosa, Latina,” Patricia De Léon is living life unfiltered and was recorded getting into a physical fight with Luzelba Mansour.

5. Luzelba Mansour, “Rica Famosa Latina”

CREDIT: @luzelbamansour_fanclub / Instagram

The two of them were seen at dinner when Patrica De León attempted to throw water in her face, but when Mansour went to defend herself, her arm was sliced open. The star needed 30 stitches. Ouch!

6. Bianca Espada, “Rich Kids of Beverly Hills”

CREDIT: @biancaespada / Instagram

She’s the newest addition to “Rich Kids of Beverly Hills,” and we love seeing rich Latinas as close to IRL as it gets. Spoiler alert: she’s the best new cast member.

7. Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi, “dThe Jersey Shore”

CREDIT: @snooki / Instagram

Snooki is the long lived queen of making out with guidos and doing whatever tf she wants on “The Jersey Shore.” This babe is reppin’ Chileans on show and has since had a family of her own.

8. Jwoww, “The Jersey Shore”

CREDIT: @jwoww / Instagram

Snooki’s BFF, JWoww is half Spanish and half Irish. These are the only photos in existence where they are not attached at the hip. JK (but seriously, #friendgoals).

9. Ronnie Ortiz-Magro, “The Jersey Shore”

CREDIT: @ronnie_ortiz_magro_ / Instagram

Half Puerto-Rican, half Italian, Ortiz-Magro is 100 percent guido Puerto Rican, and has a short temper to prove it. We love Ortiz-Magro for being proud of his roots on and off the air!

10. Laurie Hernandez, “Dancing with the Stars”

CREDIT: @lauriehernandez_ / Instagram

At only 16, and already a gold medalist gymnast in the freakin’ Olympics, Laurie was a favorite to begin with and became the first Latina to WIN “Dancing with the Stars!” Get it, Laurie!

11. Carmen Carrera, “RuPaul’s Drag Race”

CREDIT: @carmen_carrera / Instagram

Try to find us not talking about Carmen Carrera, the Puerto-Rican Peruvian goddess originally found on “RuPaul’s Drag Race.” Carmen has since come out as trans and is modeling for some huge brand names both commercially and on the runway! Get it, girl!

12. Paula Abdul, “American Idol”

CREDIT: @paulaabdul / Instagram

We grew up watching Paula try to be the balanced judge on “American Idol,” but her famedom goes way back to being a star cheerleader for the LA Lakers and top choreographer. Thank you for your service, Abdul.

13. Cyn Santana, “Love & Hip Hop New York”

CREDIT: @cynsantana / Instagram

Cyn Santana is an Afro-Latina, of Salvadorian and Dominican descent. We know her from “Love & Hip Hop,” but she’s still telling people like it is long after her departure. Like that time trolls told her her nose was getting “too big” during her pregnancy and called the troll out.

14. JR Martinez, “Dancing with the Stars”

CREDIT: @iamjrmartinez / Instagram

When he was just 19, Martinez was on a routine patrol with the U.S. Army, when he suffered major burns across a third of his body and face. Since then he’s become a motivational speaker, father, actor AND the Season 13 winner of “Dancing with the Stars.”

15. Juan Pablo Galavis, “The Bachelor”

CREDIT: @juanpagalavis / Instagram

After 11 years of programming, Juan Pablo Galavis was the very first bachelor of color in the show’s history. An ex-soccer player who grew up in Venezuela, people super hated him when he didn’t truly fall in love with anyone after spending, like, 40 hours with them. Can you blame him?

16. Adore Delano, “RuPaul’s Drag Race”

CREDIT: @adoredelano / Instagram

Danny Noriega (Adore Delano) was one of the first openly gay contestants on “American Idol.” Now, she’s a well-rounded Renaissance Queen on “RuPaul’s Drag Race.” With the voice, the looks, and the diva presence, we hope becomes a permanent fixture of the show.

17. Yara Sofia, “RuPaul’s Drag Race”

CREDIT: @yarasofiapr / Instagram

Yara Sofia is the Puerto Rican drag queen we all aspire to be. She’s so fierce that she was invited back for the All Stars season, even though there may have been a lip syncing debacle. We’re here for her.

18. Amara La Negra, “Love & Hip Hop Miami”

CREDIT: @amaralanegraaln / Instagram

She’s Dominican, she’s black and she’s damn proud of where she comes from and where she’s going. We love her from #LHHMIA, and, now we get to hear her on Spotify! You better go support.

19. Christina Milian, “Christina Milian Turned Up”

CREDIT: @christinamilian / Instagram

Esa Cubana has her own reality TV show after becoming a breakthrough songwriter/singer, dating Nick Cannon for a few years, and even starring in “Be Cool” with John Travolta and Uma Thurman. Christina has had a well-rounded career and now we get to see how she does it all on her own show!

20. Rogelio de la Vega, “The De La Vega-Factor Factor”

CREDIT: @rogeliodelavega / Instagram

Oh, how I wish we could bear witness to this (#fakenews) “Jane the Virgin” reality TV show starring character Rogelio de la Vega and his fake wife, The High Dollar Matchmaker. Good thing we have a zillion other reality TV shows to keep us busy!

Netflix’s ‘Gentefied’ Renewed For Season 2, Fans Overjoyed

Entertainment

Netflix’s ‘Gentefied’ Renewed For Season 2, Fans Overjoyed

gentefied / Instagram

Any and all news is welcomed right now and Netflix came through this week. “Gentefied” is coming back for a second season and this is absolutely not a drill. Soon we will be back in Boyle Heights with Ana, Chris, Erik, and the rest of the cast we have come to love so much.

Netflix has confirmed “Gentefied” for a second season.

The show is a fan favorite for Netflix with praise and love pouring in for the groundbreaking show. “Gentefied” is set in Boyle Heights and it is all about the fight against gentrification. The show premiered this year to big fanfare and excitement from Latino Netflix users. The show, created by Marvin Lemus and Linda Yvette Chávez, was picked up for an eight-episode run of the 30-minute show.

The show is one of the most relevant portrayals of the Latino experience in the 21st century.

The show highlights the plight of gentrification on communities across the U.S. Boyle Heights in Los Angeles has been the center of growing tension as the neighborhood slowly gentrifies. Rising rents have forced some residents and businesses to close and leave because of the changing demographic in the neighborhood.

Hearts are full as everyone celebrates the news of a whole new season.

The show originally premiered at the 2017 Sundance Film Festival as a digital series. Lemus and Chávez debuted the show and it was an instant hit with festival-goers. After three years of waiting, the show was released by Netflix and became a national hit. The show has shone a light on the cost of gentrification for more Americans than knew about it before the show aired.

Low key, it has made for perfect binge-watching during this quarantine.

There isn’t a whole lot any of us can do at the moment. Most of us are at home because of self-isolation and social distancing guidelines designed to save lives during the pandemic. Might as well us some of your time to watch and support and very important moment in our community. This kind of representation is something that Latinos have been asking for.

While excited, some fans want more, like a cross-over with Starz’s “Vida.”

Now, just to be clear, we are not concerned with what it takes to make this happen. Netflix and Starz can come up with the actual plan. We are just going to be here waiting to be heard so we can all have the kind of cross-over the world deserves. Just imagine a chance for those two shows to collide in Latino excellence.

Now we wait for an air date.

We are patient. We will be here when you are ready. All you have to do is let us know when to tune in and you know we are coming through.

READ: I Watched ‘Gentefied’ On Netflix And These Are My Brutally Honest Thoughts

Critter’s Brutally Honest Review Of ‘Insecure’ And If It Deserves The Hype

Entertainment

Critter’s Brutally Honest Review Of ‘Insecure’ And If It Deserves The Hype

Insecure / HBO

Welcome to my review of the HBO series, “Insecure,” the show that has given the Black community visibility, and accurate lighting, for seasons and I recently came across it and I cannot get enough. Why did I wait so long to watch this highly-praised series? This series centers around Issa, a young modern-day Black woman living in Inglewood, Calif., just trying to get her sh*t together. She’s a little weird, but good-for-TV kind of weird.

Honestly, this is Issa Rae’s world and we’re all #blessed to be living in it, mis bebés.

Here’s a photo you can print at home to build your very own Issa shrine.

Credit: Insecure / HBO

La mía tiene those little succulents in a salsa “El Pato” can, but feel free to do you. 

So, let me lay down some Queen Issa backstory. Before she exploded with her hit series “Insecure,” she wrote and starred in her own web series called: “The Misadventures of Awkward Black Girl.”

Credit: Issa Rae Presents / YouTube

I checked it out. It’s basically “Insecure,” pero sin HBO production dollars (click here for a link to the first episode). Despite being low budget, the web series caught the attention of Pharrell Williams, el hombre ese who looks like a 20-year-old muchacho que canta “Happy.” You know the song. They play it at every wedding and all your pinche tías se alocan and awkwardly try to reformat their salsa pasos to it.

“Because I’m happy… Clap along if you feel like…” Dale tía! Your dance moves no calan, pero no le hace!

Credit: Happy / Columbia Music

After Pharrell posted the second season of her series on his YouTube channel, the show took off, eventually getting the attention of HBO. That’s when “The Misadventures of Awkward Black Girl” took on its final evolutionary form.

It morphed into “Insecure,” cabrones.

Creit: Pokémon

Now, let’s jump into the series. So I don’t spoil the show and dissect every single season (because y’all got tarantulas to trade on Animal Crossing), I’ll just speak to the main characters of the show. Y si los personajes les parecen “pipiris nice,” pues a huevo.  

Meet Issa: she likes to talk to mirrors and get freaky deaky.

Insecure / HBO

Earlier when I asked if y’all ever bought chones at Rite Aid, I wasn’t trying to be a cochino. I know you thought I was. But I wasn’t. In season one, Issa gets caught underwear shopping at Rite Aid. That’s a beautiful intro to Issa. The girl is struggling and she obviously isn’t trying to earn seduction points con sus chones baratos. 

She’s been in a five-year relationship with her unmotivated man. She works for a non-profit after-school program in Inglewood and she’s insecure af. The insecurity comes mostly from frustration out of not living the life she wants to live. She’s constantly talking with a different version of herself she sees in the mirror. Mirror Issa es una chingona. She raps. She doesn’t even care about anything and she’s ready to get it. 

Mirror Issa is all the things current Issa is not. But damn, the show gets so real. Issa (the real Issa) is not afraid to show how human flaws can bring out the cringe in people. In the show, you’ll see her character do questionable things, but the truth is we have all been there, fam. Issa’s vulnerability is what makes the show incredible. It’s a very true reflection of how we are.   

Meet Lawrence: Issa’s boo who is always a step behind.

Credit: Insecure / HBO

Lawrence (played by Jay Ellis), is Issa’s long-term love interest. Lawrence’s thing is, the dude is always a step behind. Your amá would refer to him as someone “que no se pone las pilas.” When his relationship is in trouble, Lawrence doesn’t act on it. When he gets a dope app-development job, he pitches an out-dated app idea called “Woot-Woot.” I don’t wanna spoil anything, so I’ll just say the dude siempre espera que las cosas le caigan en su mano. For the record, Lawrence isn’t necessarily a bad guy, but since he’s slow to realize things he ends up having to clean up a lot of messes he could’ve avoided if the menso had just acted a little sooner. As you continue to see more of his character, you’ll realize you can’t judge Lawrence too harshly because we’ve all been a little bit of a Lawrence at one time or another.

Meet Molly: Issa’s BFF who is bothered by everything.

Credit: Insecure / HBO

Molly is a mess. Guuurrll, let me tell you. On the outside, this comadre is hella-put-together: she’s a lawyer, has a fancy apartment, she’s got a super precioso French Bulldog, you guys, no mames, es un pinche tamalito de cuteness.

Pero por dentro la doña Molly se está pudriéndo, guey. Molly’s biggest issue throughout the series is her tendency to sabotage all her relationships. Why? Because everything bothers her. 

This is my theory on Molly: she’s got a perfect set up. You can tell she put up a vision board of her dream life as a kid and she made it all happen. She probably got good grades, worked hard, y a huevo todo le salió bien. Osea, she’s kind of a chingona. BUT, I think Molly assumes acquiring the perfect man works the same way. But no. It 👏 does 👏 not 👏 work 👏 that 👏 way 👏. Although you can work your butt off and one day buy your dream car, you can’t just work your butt off and buy yourself the perfect man. Imagine walking into the tianguis and perfect men are being sold a tres por 10.” My wife would be there now making it rain $10 bills and asking if they come in extra tall and handsome. 

If you want a perfect relationship, you need to find that person willing to work to build a perfect relationship with yourself. Molly dismisses guy after guy because none of them come standard with all her preferences and ideals of a perfect man. Sorry, Molly. If you want perfection, go get you some Gucci, but don’t count on no man being everything you ever wanted right out of the box.  

Meet Kelli: my personal favorite character.

Insecure / HBO

I’ve put y’all through enough reading today, but just know that if you watch the show, Kelli is a cochina y una loca and she’s gonna make you pee yourself. She has some of the funniest moments in the show — especially the Coachella episode in season 3. Kelli is also a ride or die friend and every group of friends has a Kelli. If you don’t got a Kelli, go get yourself a Kelli.

Speaking of friendship, friendship is one of the strongest themes of the show. Besides all the pedos and drama Issa faces in the series, her girl squad is the only thing that is a constant in her life. And this is refreshing to see because we need more stories with people of color sticking together. Even though Molly goes through men as fast as I go through Flaming Hot Cheetos, and Issa has drama with her own man and work, and Kelli and Tiffany (who I did not mention in this review…but, you’ll totally understand why when you watch the series and meet Tiffany) have their own thing going, the girls always come together. The episodes where they have girls-only getaways are the realest. They unpack all their issues, and they call each other out on their issues, sin tantita pena. This show will definitely make you call up your girls to thank them…and then ask them if they’re still going out con ese sin vergüenza. 

To sum everything up nicely, should you watch “Insecure”?

Mmm-hmm. The show speaks to a generation of young people trying to grow past their own flaws and insecurities, and very few shows do this in a relatable way let alone featuring stories of people of color. Even though you’ll feel seen from the most embarrassing aspects, “Insecure” te va ser cagar de la riza. 

Oh and I almost forgot to mention the music on the show is 🔥! Click this link for the Spotify playlist. Tus nalgas me lo van a agradecer.

Enjoy the show and keep it spicy, fam. And binge it on HBO NOW while you can get a 7-day free trial.