This is not your abuela’s telenovela: For the first time in history, Univision is going to launch a primetime telenovela with two male stars as the lead power couple.
No, it’s not the first time that gay characters have been featured in a telenovela, but it is the first time one will feature gay lead characters.
The new show will be in Spanish and is called “El Corazón Nunca Se Equivoca” (The Heart is Never Wrong), and it’s a spinoff of the Mexican telenovela, “Mi Marido Tiene Más Familia,” (My Husband Has More Family).
The telenovela will feature two already very popular gay characters.
Viewers will follow the love story of Cuauhtémoc (Joaquín Bondoni) and Aristóteles (Emilio Osorio), the popular couple from “Mi Marido.”
The young men will take on challenges in today’s less than accepting society and face challenges together.
Fans are so in love with the couple, they’ve earned their own ship-name:
Aristóteles + Temo = Aristemo. Too f-ing cute.
Fans of the show and the LGBTQ+ community have flooded Twitter with their Aristemo appreciation.
Many of them express how the novela’s couple has inspired them with confidence and happiness.
It’s not the first time that gay characters have been featured in a telenovela, but Univision is breaking barriers by casting them in leading roles.
In 2013, Univision made international headlines with a memorable same-sex wedding between two men in “Amores Verdaderos” (True Lovers). And in 2018, even more LGBTQ+ characters made their debut in both English and Spanish-language shows, including “One Day at a Time”, “Élite”, “Vida”, “Casa de Las Flores”, and “Amar a Muerte.”
These telenovels are sharing the identies of queer Latino people and so much more:
Shows such as “Mi Marido” and hopefully soon too, “El Corazón Nunca Se Equivoca,” show real-life scenarios that people of the Latino LGBTQ+ community face on the reg. And this can lead to more acceptance from family members and friends.
And don’t worry, you can totally watch it with your abuela.
“El Corazón Nunca Se Equivoca” is being filmed in Mexico but don’t worry you’ll be able to watch in the U.S, although an official air date hasn’t yet been shared.
We’ll be the first tuned in to watch this power couple take the telenovela scene by storm!
Sometimes, fashion is more than just a mirror of society. In a few instances, the fashion industry has actually been responsible for reshaping reality rather than just mirroring it. One way it does this is by breaking taboos and introducing marginalized ideas into the mainstream. The current visibility of transgender people is a development that the fashion world has embraced in recent years. Granted, fashion’s focus on the topic is, more often than not, on the “blurring of traditional lines between genders” to explore androgyny, but many designers and brands are currently emphasizing on a ‘gender-neutral’ and non-binary ethos. The editorial side of fashion however, has been a bit slow to embrace representation and support genderqueer people—but this month, Vogue Mexico and Latin-America, in collaboration with British Vogue, are leading the charge, by dedicating their cover story to a small group of people in Juchitán Oaxaca who seek to live outside of binary labels: Los Muxes.
Vogue Mexico and Latin-America has proven to be the most ‘woke’ publication of Conde Nast’s portfolio this year.
The magazine has doubled up on its efforts for representation and diversity. Just this year they made history by featuring an indigenous woman, Yalitza Aparicio, on the cover of a magazine for the very first time, ever. A few months later they featured four Afro-Latinas on their cover and opened the floor to discussion about what being Afro-Latina means. Just last month they honored indigenous women of different parts of Latin America for their 20th anniversary issue. And now, the magazine is shining a light on a centuries-old non-binary indigenous community of rural Mexico, and introducing them to the world.
In recent years, Oaxaca has become somewhat of a trendy destination.
The Zapotec state is a multicultural hub in the south of Mexico known for its delicious climate, rich food and complex history. The people of Oaxaca have fought hard to keep a lot of their centuries-old traditions and beliefs alive, and one of these beliefs —or rather, a group of people— is called “muxes.”
In Juchitán, a small indigenous town in Southern Oaxaca, a community of individuals known as ‘Muxes’, seek to live free of binary labels “male” and “female.”
The word muxes also spelled muxhes in some instances, comes from the Spanish word for woman “mujer,” and it generally represents people who are assigned male at birth, but identify as non-binary. Muxes have their own gender identity, different from what the West has traditionally dubbed to be female and male.
The iterations among the Muxe community and their self-identifications vary – some identify as male but are female-expressing, while others identify as female and are more closely associated with Western culture’s understanding of transgender. In their culture, the term “third gender” might be more suitable to define Muxes.
Muxes are ‘dual’ beings, they don’t believe in being ‘female’ or ‘male’, they simply are.
“To be muxe is a duality. We carry out the role depending on the circumstances, sometimes I might seem like a man, and others like a woman,” says Pedro Enriquez Godínez Gutiérrez, a person known locally in Juchitán as “La Kika,” in an interview with Vogue Mexico. Apart from being a muxe, he’s the Director of Sexual Diversity of Juchitán Town Hall.
Muxes have lived in Juchitan since pre-hispanic times, there are a few indigenous legends that explain their origins and give a faith to the antiquity of their existence.
There are two legends in Juchitán, that recount the origin of Muxes. One says that San Vicente Ferrer, the holy patron of Juchitán, had a pocket with holes in it, from which they fell out of. Another version says that as he walked the earth, San Vicente Ferrer, always carried three bags: one with male seeds, another loaded with female seeds, and a third that contained both seeds, mixed up. This last bag was the one that broke as he walked through Juchitán, and that is why there are so many muxes there.
The people of Juchitán are a sort of pre-hispanic family. In this town the women are as strong as the men and muxes are as respected as both men and women. Ironically, the system of tolerance and respect that’s existed there for centuries is considered ‘modern’, elsewhere.
Mixes are a community that not even the 21st century can wrap its head around.
“Gubixha bizaani guirá neza guzá ca,” writes Vogue Mexico, is Zapotec for “the sun illuminated all the roads they have walked”, and perhaps that is why they can walk the streets without fear in a predominantly Catholic country that still struggles to offer equal rights for women and that is mostly intolerant of sexual orientations and preferences, Juchitán remains greatly untouched by this hate. Muxes walk the streets with flowers in their hair, they wear light huipiles —a traditional garment worn by indigenous women— and colorful skirts. This indigenous town is a model of how a culture can make space for life outside of the binary. Juchitán is an example to even the most progressive cities of the world.
Vogue Mexico and Latin America teamed up with British Vogue to celebrate both British and Mexican talent.
The collaboration marked the first time both publications work together on a joint story. The experience allowed both publications to exchange ideas and share their cultures. Vogue Mexico’s cover, featuring Estrella, one of the muxes from Juchitán, was shot by Tim Walker, the iconic British fashion photographer, and the story will be published on both magazines for the month of December.
Vogue Mexico’s Editor-In-Chief took to Instagram to share the news of the cover story.
“It’s finally here!!! We are releasing one of our December covers early as it is a special joint collaboration with @britishvogue – thank you @edward_enninful for featur[ing] the beauty of MEXICO in the pages of British Vogue. No one could have captured the magical realism better than Tim Walker and Kate Phelan. Stay tuned for more!” wrote the Mexican editor Karla Martinez de Salas on her personal Instagram page.
Vogue Mexico’s December issue will be available nation-wide starting December 1st.
And no, we’re not talking about ‘The Assassination of Gianni Versace’, that’s a different Versace-themed glamorous murder-mystery. This time, the Italian fashion house, known for its drama and campy decadence, produced a whole bite-sized Telenovela featuring its holiday 2019 collection. Think Veronica Castro in the 80s; big perms, bold statement jewelry, betrayal, murder and tax evasion. Not even Telemundo could’ve thought of a more twisted and fabulous story.
Versace’s Holiday Saga is a tumultuous and OTT Telenovela.
The concept was first ideated in collaboration with the American artist Sarah Baker and the UK art and fashion journal; Baroness Magazine. The six-part micro-telenovela includes all the traditional elements of Latino soap-operas that we’re all too familiar with; such as a filthy-rich family who owns an over the top mansion, a greedy antagonist (usually a sexy female), the wronged husband, the ingenue and the sketchy accountant.
The protagonist, Angelina, is a rich business woman who is suspected of having committed a crime.
Constructed as a series of letters written by the protagonist to Donatella herself, the story follows Angelina (played by Baker), the CEO of Narcissist Records who has been accused of stealing the smash hit “Spritz Me With Your Love” (lol), from an uncredited writer.
In telenovelas, people return from the dead, blackmail each other and plot the protagonist’s demise, and Versace’s version isn’t short of all that drama.
The writer of the song is in fact Angelina’s boy toy, “Angelo,” who —in true Telenovela style— appears to have mysteriously died after falling off a cliff. Angelina, suspects that her archenemy The Baroness—Angelo’s wife— played by top model Helena Christensen, is to blame.
If it all sounds twisted, over the top dramatic and just all around extra; wait until you see the visuals.
The 6 mini-episodes not only feature fabulously dressed models clad in all Versace outfits, but also a huge assortment of random Versace-emblazoned items. There’s Versace silverware, a Versace pool float, a Versace volleyball, a Versace ash tray, Versace martini glasses, and the list goes on.
By this point, if you grew up watching Telenovelas, you should know that nothing is as expected.
Telenovela plotlines are a twisted business. If you’ve watched classics like ‘La Usurpadora’, ‘Los Ricos Tambien Lloran’, ‘Rubi’, or ‘Maria Mercedes’, you’d know better than to assume that things will follow their natural course. In Versace’s story; Angelo is of course, not dead. The accountant is plotting to frame Angelina and marry her daughter —the ingenue— to keep Narcissist Records for himself. Angelina had an affair with her frienemy ‘The Baroness’s’ husband Angelo, and The Baroness is actually… drumroll please… an undercover spy.
You can watch the six-part series on Versace’s holiday campaign website.
Versace unleashed the first full episode as well as a director’s cut on their Youtube channel. The Italian house’s complete 6-episode soap opera, is available to view for free in the form of a ‘Versace Holiday Saga’ on the brand’s website.
There will also be a print edition of the story.
The actual print edition of the art and fashion magazine ‘Baroness’ will feature the story alongside an accompanying editorial shoot —which seems to be even steamier than the video clips.
Donatella’s take on the classic soap-opera has all of our Telenovela-loving hearts, obsessed.
Versace knows the importance of spectacle and drama. Donatella embraces over-the-top luxury and this tongue-in-cheek take on the campy Telenovela, is evocative of the 80s and 90s classics, us Latinx millennials, grew up watching. Angela and The Baroness might as well be characters in ‘Maria Mercedes’ or ‘Los Ricos Tambien Lloran’ and we can’t stop watching. It’s ridiculous and we’re sure you’ll love it, too.
As ridiculous as the narrative might seem, The Versace Saga gives us every single thing we need out of a Telenovela: sex, scandal, intrigue, decadence and sisterhood.
After the unravelling of the scandalous lives of the female protagonists, the campaign teaches us an important lesson in empowered sisterhood. Dismantling the misconception of ruthless powerful women in popular culture as spiteful, Angela and The Baroness actually patch things up and work together to unmask the real villains; Jacob and Angelo.
In this project, Baker and Donatella aim to subvert the judgement of ‘passional’ soap-star females fueled by theatricality. Instead they celebrate sisterhood by wrapping up the story with a collaborative female effort to overthrow the pangs of blackmail and deceit.
The holiday campaign features Versace Cruise 2020, and a wide selection of the brand’s famous medusa, emblazoned on household items. The collection is now shoppable on versace.com
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