Film And TV Latino Dads That We Just Want To Hug Like Our Own
Latino dads in film and television have given us tender and llegadores moments. In general, these men are torn between traditional Latin American gender roles (they have to be strong, impenetrable, the providers) and being vulnerable and, well, just human beings. This list includes characters from both Hollywood and Latin American entertainment industries. These characters have charmed us and made us think of our own dads, their struggles, dreams, and tribulations.
Rogelio De La Vega (Jaime Camil) in “Jane the Virgin”
Type of papá: cursi but sweet
He is silly on the outside, but on the inside, he is a nice man who wants to make up for lost time. When he finds out he has a daughter he immediately puts on the dad suit and becomes emotionally available for our Jane.
Ignacio Suarez (Tony Plana) in “Ugly Betty”
Type of papá: preocupón and accepting
Raising dos chamacos by himself hasn’t been easy, but he is supportive even though he worries way too much sometimes. Don’t all daddies do that, though?
Carlos Galindo (Demian Bichir) in “A Better Life”
Type of papá: heroic but tough
The story of Carlos resonates with millions in the United States. He lives in the shadows due to his illegal status, but he does everything to provide for his teenage son.
Miguel’s dad (Jaime Camil) in “Coco”
Type of papá: conservative but a sweetheart
He is the epitome of the Latino dad: he wants his son to follow on his footsteps, but eventually gives in and understands that everyone has a life of their own and Miguel needs to follow his musical dreams.
Abraham Quintanilla (Edward James Olmos) in “Selena”
Type of papá: luchón and encouraging
The patriarch of the Quintanilla clan is a true leader who wants to bring out the best in his offspring… even though peca de rudo at times.
Raúl (Jorge Cervera, Jr.) in “Real Women Have Curves”
Type of papá: supporting
This movie about a Chicana teen who wants to go to college is a gem. Her mom disapproves because she wants her to work and chip in with the house expenses. Her dad says ni madres, that girl is going to college.
César Chávez (Michael Peña) in “Cesar Chavez”
Type of papá: idealistic and passionate
The story of the Latino leader is a testament to the power of will. He knew what the best he can do for his children is creating overall better conditions for Latinos and that is what he does!
Cole Marquez in “Dora The Explorer”
Type of papá: amoroso
Nothing like a cool dad that lets his daughter’s imagination run wild!
Diego (Jesus Ochoa) in “Sangre de mi sangre”
Type of papá: brave enough to fight his own demons
This unjustly underrated indie film tells the story of a migrant worker who is due to receive his son in Brooklyn… but his son’s identity is stolen by an impostor. Tough to watch but very rewarding.
José Rivera (Johnny Laboriel) in “Carrusel”
Type of papá: Dignified
It is not easy to be Afro-Mexican due to the still persisting racism that exists in some sectors in Mexico City. Cirilo’s dad was dignified and didn’t let discrimination impact his son’s identity.
Don Plutarco (Angel Tavira) in the Mexican film “El violín”
Type of papá: political activist and idealistic
This low-key but moving indie film tells the story of Don Plutarco and his son, who are musicians but also guerrilla fighters. A story about how activism and the fight against injustice is passed on from generation to generation.
Valentín (Eugenio Derbez) in “Instructions not Included” (No se aceptan devoluciones)
Type of papá: a bit clueless but very loving
The ultimate movie about the daddy-daughter bond. After unexpectedly receiving a kid at his doorstep, this former ladies man makes fatherhood his way of life… until something threatens this everlasting bond.
George Lopez as himself in “George Lopez Show”
Type of papá: chistoso, duh
A sort of “Everybody Loves Raymond” for Latino audiences. Can you imagine having un papito that is so funny that he cannot even regañarte without making you laugh, mijo?
Javier Delgado (Benjamin Bratt) in “Modern Family”
Type of papá: desmadroso but a bit caring
Just like in any culture, sadly there are many Latino absentee fathers and Manny’s is one of them. But, truth be told, he does step up when he needs to. We just wish he did more for his son.
Federico Diaz (Freddy Rodriguez) in “Six Feet Under”
Type of papá: hardworking
Rico is the perfect example of the family man who works his butt off to provide for his family. He is also available to his two sons, who seem to be a bit of a handful, dicho sea de paso!
César (César Costa) in “Papá Soltero”
Type of papá: incondicional
A single dad with three teenage kids… this show influenced a whole generation of Spanish-speaking audiences. César and his famous sweater collection became the epitome of the caring and often confused Latino dad.
Don Ramón (Ramón Valdés) in “Chespirito”
Type of papá: fun, fun, fun
The father of La Chilindrina in the show that made Mexican television influential the world over. Don Ramón is a cultural icon even today, due to his nutty sense of humor and his incorruptible fatherly love.
José Sanchez (Jacob Vargas) in “My Family”
Type of papá: old-school
An epic story directed by Gregory Nava about three generations of Mexican-American migrants. The patriarch travels to the U.S. in search of a better life and sets roots in el gabacho.
Edy Rodriguez (Alfred Molina) in “Nothing Like the Holidays”
Type of papá: a bit clumsy
Alfred Molina is super funny as a dad who is slowly but surely entering his golden years…. but will they be golden if his wife decides to leave?
Kraken (Ricardo Darín) in “XXY”
Type of papá: protective
This Argentinian film tells the story of Alex, a person who was raised as a girl despite having both male and female sex organs. While everyone wants Alex to be “normal”, Kraken wants what is best for his child: uniqueness, being themselves.
OK, this last one is actually awful but we had to include him. Ready? Luisito Rey (Óscar Jaenada) in “Luis Miguel: La Serie”
Type of papá: THE-WORST-DAD-EVER
He has become a cult figure due to his overall awfulness. The things he does to his talented son. He has become a meme factory.
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