Entertainment

The Hilariously Dark And Dramatic Cast Of ‘Los Espookys’ Will Make You Jajaja Until Your Side Splits

The representation of Latinos in mainstream television and film comedy in the United States ha dejado mucho que desear, to say the least. From stereotypical and frankly a bit racist characters such as Gloria (Sofia Vergara) in “Modern Family” and Pedro in the cult film “Napoleon Dynamite,” to half-baked personajes like Fez in “That 70s Show”(we assume he was Latino, although it was never clarified!), Hollywood has done a disservice to one of the biggest minorities in the United States (and when we do have a great show like “One Day at a Time,” they cancel it, canijos!). Latinos have become a growing cultural and financial influence in the U.S. entertainment market, and Spanish? A linguistic powerhouse that seems to have no end in sight. Just think about this: more than 41 million people speak Spanish as a first language (about 13% of the population), and los esteits is home to nearly 12 million bilingual Spanish speakers. If you are a TV exec it would be foolish not to consider these staggering figures when commissioning new projects. 

That is why the new 30-minute HBO comedy, “Los Espookys,” spoken primarily in Spanish is such a big deal. “Los Espookys”is a quirky comedy developed by Fred Armisen, Ana Fabrega and Julio Torres, who also happen to be three of the main actors. The show follows a group of horror fans who offer a very unique service: they create scary situations for wealthy clients. The humor is offbeat, just like Fred Armisen’s ode to hipster culture, “Portlandia,” which made us LOL and cringe in equal measureBut of course, there is an added element of amazing Mexi-kitsch: melodrama telenovelero and plenty of references to low budget horror (the episode titles remind us of a good old El Santo movie). The reviews for the show have been great. Fabrega and Torres wrote all episodes and Variety says: “Fabrega and Torres infuse every scene with so many rich and unexpected punchlines that there’s truly no knowing where it might end up, making “Los Espookys” a comedic rarity”. Not bad, eh? 

Here’s who is who in this team of misfits who star in what promised to be the unexpected hit of the year. 

Julio Torres as Andres

Credit: Instagram. @losespookys

Torres, one of the show’s creators, is as young as he is talented. He is a writer for “Saturday Night Live,” so we know that the comedic quality is there! He is merely 32 but already one of the up and coming talents in the industry. He was born in El Salvador and migrated to the United States just ten years ago. And the kid’s got talent: can you imagine writing for the semillero of comedic talent (SNL) and spearheading an HBO show? Remember those “Melania Moments” segments in SNL? Well, Torres wrote them. He started his career in Brooklyn and later with very popular stand-ups on YouTube. His character is also an heir to a chocolate empire. He says of his character: “I personally love high drama as comedy. Playing someone who is so put-upon and just burdened by the drama in his world felt really funny. Me and this character, we’re both very drawn to beauty—like moths to a flame. And we’re very particular. Things have to go a certain way or else they’re not good. I feel like in my worst moments I do behave like that. But a key difference is that Andrés is very passive—at least in the beginning”. 

Get to know him on Twitter: @juliothesquare

Bernardo Velasco as Renaldo

Credit: Instagram. @losespookys

Bernardo Velasco is a Mexican actor best known for his constant presence in his country’s independent film industry. He is best known for his role of Bosco in the film “Museo,” a heist movie co-starred with Gael Garcia Bernal, which tells the story of a highly publicized robbery in the National Anthropology Museum in Mexico City. He has that rugged Mexican look, paisa! Renaldo is the leader of the group, a total fanatic of gore films who takes every case to the extreme. 

Cassandra Ciangherotti as Ursula

Credit: Instagram. @losespookys

Like Bernardo Velasco, Cassandra Ciangherotti is best known for his work in Mexican independent cinema. She has appeared in films like the Netflix dark comedy “Time Share” (watch it as soon as you can, it is an indictment on the cult-like structures of all-inclusive resorts), the horror movie “The Similars” and the teary road trip “Viaje Redondo.” She is also a producer. By the way, she comes from Mexican acting royalty: she is the daughter of late actor Fernando Lujan, and sister of telenovela villain Fernando Ciangherotti. More recently she was part of the cast of the chick flick hit “Solteras.” We are sure she will have a great career in Hollywood… but please, Cassandra, don’t let anyone typecast you! 

Get to know her on Instagram: @cassandraciangherotti

Ana Fabrega as Tati

Credit: Instagram. @losespookys

At just 27, Ana Fabrega has already established a name for herself as a stand-up comedian. We can actually say that she is a star of the social media generation: she first gained notoriety for her short, quirky and frankly weird Twitter videos. And she is not afraid to get political, mainly supporting women like Elizabeth Warren (see here!). She was born in Arizona and then moved to New York. She started doing stand up and el resto es historia. Long story short: Fred Armisen identified her amazing talent and she is now a member of “Los Espookys!” The role in this new HBO show seems to fit her perfectly. She told New Now Next: “I’ve always liked the idea of work giving your life meaning. So I wanted to play someone who was struggling to find meaning within herself and turning to work to satisfy herself. And in some ways, that’s really real, to me anyways. Because I’m deeply unsatisfied.” Funny and true! We love Ana, she has that Chaplinesque presence that not many contemporary comedians have. 

Get to know her on Twitter: @anafabregagood

Fred Armisen as Tico

Credit: Instagram. @losespookys

This super funny dude, whose full name is Fereydun Robert “Fred” Armisen, is a total legend in the industry. He was born in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, in 1966. He was a cast member of Saturday Night Live for nine years (2002 to 2013)! He then created the beloved show “Portlandia,”in which he equally made fun of and had fun with hipster culture in Portland. “Portlandia”brought him worldwide fame and Emmy nominations. His madrecita santa, Mirabal Level, was born in Venezuela. His paternal grandfather is Korean, so Fred is truly a son of a globalized world! We guess that his multicultural upbringing led him to champion this oddball show. Get to know him on Instagram: @sordociego

Jennifer Lopez’s Words About Not Wearing Hoops While Holding A Baby Is The PSA We’ve Always Needed

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Jennifer Lopez’s Words About Not Wearing Hoops While Holding A Baby Is The PSA We’ve Always Needed

SNL / NBC

Jennifer Lopez AKA actress, singer, dancer, producer, businesswoman, fashion designer, fashion icon AKA Hoop Queen returned to the SNL stage after a decade. This time, while boasting about her beauty and brains she also hilarious made fun of her life-long obsession with hoops. 

In the most hilarious sketch from the SNL episode, Lopez made jokes about our love for hoops.

SNL / NBC

Starring as Gino’s Girlfriend, Lopez played the owner of a store with Melissa Villaseñor as Her Cousin. In the sketch the pair do an ad for massive gold hoops that are so luxurious they’ll “turn your ears the color of money.”

In the fun sketch, Lopez is dressed like a more played up Bronx version of herself as she sells jewelry that says, “I fight other women.”  According to Lopez, as Gino’s Girlfriend, the hoops (as we all know) can be worn just a bout anywhere including birthday dinners, anniversary trips, an ex-boyfriend’s wedding, interviews about women on the street with subway problems, confront Barbara, accusing Barbara, crawling back to Barbara and Saturday Mass. The skit jokes that you can wear them to. Christening and just about everyone will think you look like a “rapper’s accountant.” 

The sketch even made fun of our propensity for putting words in a hoop. 

SNL / NBC

Jabbing fun at our nameplate earrings and vanity necklaces, the Jennifer Lopez skit hilariously featured earrings with names, descriptions, and places on them. The hilarious descriptions of the lot included “diabetic,” and mistakenly created brands like “Couch” for Coach and “DKNYPD” for DKYN. 

The entire sketch, and J.Lo, proved to be a joke machine with the best nod to J.Lo’s Bronx roots.

Watch the full sketch here.

Our No. 1 Boricua, Jenny from the Block, has been an icon through the ages for winning in the music, movie and fashion industries. Rumors swirled around her insuring her signature booty for a over a million dollars back in the 2000’s, but how have we not acknowledged her incredible locks that deserve a policy of its own.

While she’s known for her long waves, J.Lo has never been afraid of mixing it up over the decades. Get ready for the throwbacks.

1. The Classic J.Lo Look

 @creativehairtools / Instagram

This iconic, tousled wavy, waist-length look wouldn’t be complete without her subtle highlights and the way Lopez makes it look so effortless. I’ve tried to get this look. It is a feat.

2. Big Curls, Little Bob.

 “Voluminous Curls” Digital Image. Allure. 28 May 2018.

J.Lo brought it back to the 1920s by creating a side part, getting in some wide curls and tousling with lots (and lots) of hair spray. How she looks so perfect all the time, we can only guess at.

3. The Sleek Topknot.

 “The Topknot.” Digital Image. Allure. 28 May 2018.

We have all experienced the pain of our mothers combing our hair back into the tightest possible ponytail. According to my mom, it’s a two-fer: a proper hairdo and a way to pull your forehead back and prevent wrinkles. Jennifer keeps it in place with a neat topknot for a sleek, elegant look.

4. The Latina Faux Hawk.

 “The Faux Hawk” Digital Image. Allure. 28 May 2018.

There are faux hawks and then there are Latinx faux hawks. Our faux hawks have more volume and should give you an extra 5-7″ in height. J.Lo does it best.

5. The Loose Slick Back.

 “The Slick Back” Digital Image. Allure. 28 May 2018.

Please note that in order to achieve any of these looks, you will need a good hair gel and a tiny comb. Probably also your own personal hair dresser, if you want to be like J.Lo.

6. The Tight Curl Mid-Part.

 Pinterest

The only way to complete this look is with a chain-neck, metal sheet halter top and butterfly clips to pull back the part. Take me back to the ’90s.

7. The Bandana ‘N Braids Look.

 “[IMG]” Digital Image. The Coli. 28 May 2018.

J.Lo rocked this look at the 2000 MTV Music Awards.

Here’s how to get it: Your hair has to be half-up, half-down, to make your ponytail look longer, and you must be wearing braids to pull this off. A starched headband is also preferable. Also, hoops like J.Lo’s.

8. The Hide Your Hair to Show Off Your Face Look.

 “A Dazzling Headscarf” Digital Image. Allure. 28 May 2018.

When you’re Latina, you can pull this off. When you’re J.Lo, you can get a matching headscarf to go with your sparkly, taupe suit.

9. The Deep Brunette Perm.

 Bewitching Vibe / Pinterest

The early ’90s obsession with deep brown, curly hair was glorious for many Latinas. That baby face rocked it well.

10. Caramel Highlights.

 Untitled. Digital Image. Cosmopolitan. 16 May 2018.

#NeverForget the era of caramel highlights. Our moms did it by squeezing lemon juice in our hair, and the occasional kool-aid for a red tint. J.Lo *might* have used a professional.

11. The 50-Inch Hair Extensions.

 @laurielainehair / Instagram

J.Lo doesn’t usually need to do much to her hair to stun the red carpet, but at this year’s Billboard Latin Music Awards, her iconic hair went past her iconic butt.

12. It grew when she went on stage to perform “Inches.”

 @kayla_jlover / Instagram

ICYMI, the next Billboard Music Award she attended, she wore a $100 bill on her fingernails.

13. Beach Waves.

 @kayla_jlover / Instagram

When your hair is this long, you can give yourself a beach wave look and lose hardly any length. J.Lo smoky eye and glossy lips really glam this look up from beach-ready, to runway-ready TBH.

14. The Side Part.

 @jlo.xox9 / Instagram

This is a look circa the ’90s.

15. The Updated Side Part.

 @kayla_jlover / Instagram

J.Lo let her tresses down loose and wavy, while slicking back just a single side part to show off her face, and earrings. This look is so uniquely elegantly Latina, we think she should trademark it.

16. The Half-Up, Half-Down Topknot.

 @kayla_jlover / Instagram

Meet my daily look (minus 20″ of hair). It’s a mix of a tight, full-face slick back that gives you an up-do and casual look all in one sweep. No fake hair accessories needed for J.Lo.

17. Bring on the volume.

 @kayla_jlover / Instagram

With a dark lipliner to frame her lips, how can she not frame that face with a deep, hairspray-induced voluminous look that can’t be beat.

18. The High Pony.

 @jlo_elo / Instagram

Iconic. Nobody does it better. The look is nothing without a pair of modern hoops, and a teased pony.

19. The Ultra-High Pony.

 @headkandi / Instagram

With the hair wrapped around the band at the top and wide, loos curls splaying out. I have a feeling this is a half-up, half-down look to add more volume, too.

20. The Short-Term Perm.

 @jlo_elo / Instagram

J.Lo was feelin’ herself with this look, that’s for sure. It’s fun, it’s light and J.Lo is taking it seriously.

21. The Full Slick.

 @fashionstreet_world / Instagram

J.Lo’s Met Gala look this year was a fierce lob. She slicked her hair behind the ear to show off her earrings, and topped it off with a side part. J.Lo

Ariana Grande And Ellen Pompeo Break Their Silence Over Gabrielle Union’s Firing From ‘America’s Got Talent’

Entertainment

Ariana Grande And Ellen Pompeo Break Their Silence Over Gabrielle Union’s Firing From ‘America’s Got Talent’

American actress Gabrielle Union has had a 26-year long career in the entertainment industry. As a Black woman, the 47-year old actress has proven to be one of the most successful actors in her industry. She started her carer in minor roles working her way up from teen movies like “10 Things I Hate About You” to lead roles in films like “Bring it On” and “Deliver Us From Eva.” In recent years, she has also put herself at the forefront of activist movements in and outside of entertainment, speaking up for survivors of assault and frequently commenting on events that have sparked Black Lives Matter interests. When it comes to race, the actress has been particularly vocal. That’s why when reports that the actress had been fried from her work on the show “America’s Got Talent” we weren’t too surprised when it was reported that it was because she had vocalized concerns about racist incidents that had occurred on set.

According to recent reports, Union was let go from her role as a judge on “America’s Got Talent” after she spoke out against racism that had occurred on set.

According to Variety, Union’s firing comes at the hands of two incidents out of several in particular. One included a complaint by Union after comedian Jay Leno made a racist joke about Koreans. According to Variety  “in April of this year, former late-night host Jay Leno visited NBCUniversal in Los Angeles to appear as a guest judge on the network’s unscripted program “America’s Got Talent,” a variety show that seeks out undiscovered musicians, performers, and other quirky artists. On the second floor of a production building on the North Hollywood lot, Leno taped an interstitial segment in the presence of show judges including Gabrielle Union and Julianne Hough. While taping, Leno made a crack about a painting on display in a hallway of Simon Cowell, the show’s executive producer and judge, surrounded by his dogs. Leno joked that the pets looked like something one would find “on the menu at a Korean restaurant.”

The joke, which perpetuated stereotypes about Asian cultures consuming dog meat, reportedly upset Union who told producers to report the joke to human resources at NBC. Variety says in their report the incident was “never escalated to that department.”

Other outlets have reported that Union had received numerous notes about her physical appearance including criticism of her hair. According to Variety, “Union was subjected to a very specific critique — that her rotating hairstyles were “too black” for the audience of “AGT,” a note she received over half a dozen times, according to four sources with direct knowledge of the exchanges who spoke on the condition of anonymity. One network insider disputed the volume of notes, saying there was only feedback about hair continuity for both judges.”

While Union has yet to give a statement about the incidents, other actors are speaking out on her behalf and SAG-AFTRA has reportedly launched an official investigation into her exit.

According to a report by Deadline, sources within SAG-AFTRA (Screen Actors Guild‐American Federation of Television and Radio Artists) ” take issues of workplace health and safety very seriously. We immediately reached out to Ms. Union’s representatives when these reports came to light. It is our practice to work closely with members who reach out to us and their representatives in instances like this, as that usually affords the best protection and best resolution for the affected member.”

In response to the news, actress such as Debra Messing and Ellen Pompeo and singer Ariana Grande have spoken in defense of Union.

In a seperate tweet about the incident, Pompeo called out white actresses for not standing “with your sisters on the front lines” and “cut side deals.” While she never named any actresses in particular many have speculated that she was speaking about Julianne Hough, who worked with Union on the series and was also fired recently. However in a recent statement to Variety claimed that she “had a wonderful time on America’s Got Talent, I loved working with the cast, crew, and producers. I am happy to continue my working relationship with NBC.”

In a seperate tweet of her own, Grande thanked Pompeo for highlighting the incident and encouraged NBC to “be better.”

Hough is set to star alongside her brother in two Christmas specials for the network this month including “Holidays With the Houghs.”