9 Latinos On TV Who Awesomely Defy Stereotypes


It’s no secret that media representation of Latinos is, to put it mildly, not great.  Very few are present in mainstream TV and movies and, more often than not, we’re cast to play stereotypes and/or minor roles. The world needs to see more realistic Latinos reflected back into their living rooms. You know, the awkward Latinos. The smart Latinos. The downright weird Latinos. So let’s take a moment to celebrate the awesomely odd Latinos we DO get to see (and hope that soon we’ll get to see many, many more):

April Ludgate

Credit: NBC / Tumblr

April was not here to entertain you, be the sassy best friend or be reduced to just another pretty face. In fact, she’d rather you not be happy at all, because super happy people are kind of annoying. It was pretty great (and different) to have a Latina on TV who was smart, sarcastic and flawlessly flawed.

Amy Santiago

Credit: NBC / Rebloggy

We say this with love: Amy’s a dork. Like, the dorkiest dork who ever dorked. But her dorky weirdness is just so endearing! She’s a people pleaser, an overachiever and truly, incredibly, hopelessly awkward. Just like a lot of us are, tbh.

Rosa Diaz

Credit: NBC / Kiss My Wonder Woman

Rosa is a badass to the core, but don’t let her tough exterior fool you: she is layered and is half of the greatest current-day sitcom friendships we’ve seen in a while. Her toughness is balanced by the fact that she’s… kind of weird. Like, owns-an-ax-and-doesn’t-let-her-coworkers-know-where-she-lives level weird.

Cristela Hernandez

Credit: ABC/ Gossip Lovers

Cristela was a combination of incredibly ambitious and kiiiind of prone to complaining, which is realistic af to most of us. Sure, she wasn’t always the nicest sister or best employee in the whole world, but she was always smart, loyal, funny as hell and HUMAN.

Carmen Peña

Credit: PBS / YouTube

Carmen was, in a word, awkward. Especially around dudes. She was the good kid while her brother, Joe, was the troublemaker of the family. It’s a dynamic a lot of girls growing up in Latino families, especially immigrant and exile families, can really relate to. Cheers to the weird, nerdy girls!


Credit: ABC / Tumblr

Manny is basically an old man trapped in a kid’s body. He takes his coffee black, values good old-fashioned manners and dresses like your dad at a family BBQ. He’s weird in the most awesome way, especially because he doesn’t compromise who he is to fit in. Do you, Manny.


Credit: Netflix / BuzzFeed

How often do we get to see emo/goth/alt Latinas on TV? Flaca, besides having impeccable taste in music, is an example of taking a character that could very easily have been reduced to a stereotype, and making her complex, complicated and someone we’ll always want to know more about it.

Betty Suarez


Credit: ABC / HuffPost

Betty started off as a fish out of water in the fashion world, her quirkiness and awkwardness confusing many of those around her. She didn’t really fit in with the beauty standards of her peers and she knew it. Eventually, she developed a sense of confidence and independence that we couldn’t help but root for. Stay awk, Betty.

And finally this kid, who just wants to be hardcore

Credit: Chilevisión / Pixfans


READ: 6 Myths Latinas Can’t Live Down Thanks to Stereotypes on TV

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Meet Lucia Quiej, The Woman Who Put A Face To The Immigration Debate


Meet Lucia Quiej, The Woman Who Put A Face To The Immigration Debate

This undocumented Guatemalan woman stole the show.

The biggest moment of Wednesday’s presidential debate—the “Latino debate” since, after all, it was organized by Univision—didn’t come from Bernie Sanders or Hillary Clinton; it came from a Guatemalan woman who shared her pain with the world. Lucia Quiej stepped out of the shadow that every undocumented immigrant lives in and bravely told both candidates that her family was torn apart because her husband was deported for not having a driver’s license.

Lucia Quiej is a reminder that when it comes to immigration, it’s actual human beings we’re talking about.

It’s easy to be anti-immigrant when you think about the topic in the abstract: “THEY are coming into OUR country to take OUR jobs and drain OUR resources.” Under that framing, undocumented immigrants come across as faceless invaders. Lucia Quiej isn’t an ominous threat just waiting to take what’s yours. She’s a single mother trying to provide for five children. She too experiences frustration (yo, raising kids is hard!); she too feels pain, sadness, and suffering. (Did we mention her husband, who likely provided financial and emotional support, got deported?)

Lucia Quiej is the rule, not the exception.

What happened to Lucia Quiej and her five children wasn’t an isolated incident. In fact, her experience is all too common in Homestead, Flo., an agriculturally-driven city outside of Miami with a big immigrant population.

“There a lot of people here with ankle monitors, many children whose parents were taken away by Immigration,” Quiej told Progreso Weekly in 2014. “In Homestead, there’s nothing; only despair.”

WATCH: This FWD.us Video Shows the Disturbing Reality of Mass Deportation

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