This week Telemundo unveiled their lineup for the 2015-2016 season at Upfronts 2015 in New York. Of particular note is the television series the network is set to air about the late Reina de Salsa, Celia Cruz. This would be the first television biopic about the Cuban born super star by a major network. No other details have been revealed, but we’re definitely hoping they do her life and story justice. ¡Azucar!
By Juan Alanis in Cositas Latinas, Entertainment, Mexican Culture, Mexican Lifestyle No Comments Tags: #mexistyle, Juan Alanis, Juan of Words, Juanofwords, language, lifestyle, mexican, mexican lifestyle, mira quien baila, more accepting, mqb, new era, same sex partners, samy, samy breaking new ground, samy from miami, samy on mira quien baila, sexuality and latinos, Spanish, spanish language television and sexuality, television, Univision
So Samy is on Mira Quien Baila this season. “Samy from Miami” to be more precise – who knew? That in it of itself is not really that much of a shock. I mean what else is the Divo up to these days? What was kind of a little eyebrow-lifting, last night, on the premiere Univision’s hit series, is just how open the once-mum-about-his-sexuality hairdresser now was about his relationship with longtime partner Alex.
The happy couple have been together for 36 years. This was also the first time I had ever heard Samy speak so candidly about his sexuality.
Ten years ago this would never have happened. Much less would it have been aired on Univision or Telemundo, on prime time, for that matter. Hell, not even a couple of years ago would this have likely happened… I don’t think.
So, what does that say about us?
Are we more accepting now of different lifestyles? Are we finally at the point as a US Spanish-language television watching audience where we can view same sex partners in a different, less slapstick, “poking fun of” or insulting sort of way?
I guess in a way that remains to be seen… depending on how much support Samy is able to garner and how long that support is able to keep him on the show.
Could Samy quite possibly be breaking new ground?
By Juan Alanis in Cositas Latinas, Entertainment, News/Politics 1 Comment Tags: #mexistyle, abc devious maids, Ana Ortiz, Dania Ramirez, devious maids, devious maids lifetime, devious maids on abc, entertainment, Eva Longoria, eva longoria devious maids, hollywood, Juan Alanis, Juan of Words, Juanofwords, Judy Reyes, latino entertainment, Latinos, latinos in entertainment, Latinos in Hollywood, latinos in television, latinos on television, lifestyle, lifetime, lifetime devious maids, lifetime eva longoria, lifetime picks up devious maids, lifetime susan lucci, Marc Cherry, mexican, mexican lifestyle, Roselyn Sanchez, susan lucci, television
For a brief moment it seemed nobody was going to be able to watch Eva Longoria’s Devious Maids. After ABC opted not to pick up the show, which the Desperate Housewives star had co-produced with her Desperate Housewives producer Marc Cherry, it appeared that might have been the end of the line for the somewhat controversial program. Well, as it so happens, the cable network Lifetime decided the show was at least good enough for a one season trial run. They’ve picked up 13 episodes of Devious Maids and are planning to air it in early 2013.
Now despite all of the flack Longoria has received for producing a show in which Latinas star as housemaids of all roles, I’m still kind of excited to see a pilot episode. Why?! Because this time it sounds like the story is going to be told from the perspective of “the help” rather than that of her employers. If I’m not mistaken, it’s supposed to be more of a comedy… based on the Mexican telenovela Ellas son la Alegria del Hogar. I also think Eva’s defense of her series is pretty bad ass:
When we get any sort of backlash like that-‘Oh, they’re just playing the stereotypical maids’ – my immediate response is, ‘So you’re telling me those stories aren’t worth telling. That those people are lesser than. That their stories aren’t worth exploring. That they have no complexity in their life because they’re a maid?’
The Longoria produced project will star Ana Ortiz (Ugly Betty), Roselyn Sanchez (Without a Trace), Dania Ramirez (Heroes), and Judy Reyes (Scrubs), as well as apparently Susan Lucci.
Kudos Lifetime! For at least giving this show a chance. It definitely sounds a lot more compelling than Rob!
By Juan Alanis in Cositas Latinas, Entertainment, Mexican Culture, Mexican Lifestyle, News/Politics 1 Comment Tags: #mexistyle, alejandro sanz, Aleks Syntek, espinoza paz, jenni rivera, Juan Alanis, Juan of Words, Juanes, Juanofwords, la voz, la voz mexico, latino entertainment, latinos in entertainment, latinos in television, lifestyle, lucero, mexican, mexican lifestyle, mexico, Miguel Bose, paulina rubio, televisa, television, the voice, the voice mexico
The only problem, it doesn’t air this side of the border. I’m talking about Mexico’s version of The Voice – appropriately titled La Voz México – and until today, I didn’t even know this show existed. Now, ya no me aguanto las ganas that one of the major US Spanish-language networks will pick up this show so we can all watch it together. If you’re thinking “wait, a reality show Juan – seriously?!” Hold on a minute, hear me out. Last season the coaches were Lucero, Espinoza Paz, Aleks Syntek and Alejandro Sanz. All artists whose music I enjoy! This second new season, rumor has it, the new coaches will be Paulina Rubio, Jenni Rivera, Miguel Bose and Juanes.
I like all of these artists! The premise of the show is pretty much the same as the US’s The Voice with Christina Aguilera – the judges pick a group of hopeful singers to coach and compete against one another for the ultimate title of La Voz México. The winning musical talent earns a recording contract and other prizes, but for me, the best part of the show is watching the interaction between the coaches and their teams, as well as with one another.
Ya sé… it’s a copy, but it sounds and looks like something very refreshing compared to all the pointless drama of Nuestra Belleza Latina. Check out the first episode from last season (there’s a performance in there from all of the coaches together):
Univision, Telemundo… let’s make this happen!
By Juan Alanis in Cositas Latinas, Entertainment, Mexican Culture, Mexican Lifestyle, News/Politics 2 Comments Tags: #mexistyle, cristina, cristina leaves tv, cristina saralegui, el show de cristina, Juan Alanis, Juan of Words, Juanofwords, lifestyle, mexican, mexican lifestyle, pa lante con cristina, pa'lante con cristina, Telemundo, telemundo ends contract with cristina, television, Univision
It wasn’t too long ago that Cristina Saralegui was in her prime. She was the queen of Spanish-language television and EVERYONE – and I do mean everyone – knew who she was. Cristina was often referred to as the “Oprah Latina” and her show, El Show de Cristina featured all the biggest names in entertainment and everything else. Being on Cristina was like being on Oprah only in Spanish… I always assumed since I’ve never been on either show, but for entertainers, at least, it seemed like it was a milestone in their careers to make it onto Cristina. Like a sign of sorts that they had made it, that they had arrived!
No sé… it would have been for me.
A couple of days ago, the 30-plus year journalism veteran, announced herself that she would not be returning to Telemundo with her latest television endeavor Pa’lante Con Cristina after only one year. Cristina very famously left her previous home at Spanish-language giant Univision a couple of years ago when reportedly her contract had not been renewed. I guess you could say that was the beginning of the end for the Cuban American Cristina… at least on television.
I know her shows were no longer as compelling as they once were, and that for whatever reason a lot of people dislike her now, but for me, Cristina will always remain the Queen of Spanish-language television. Thinking of her, making that signature thumb salute of hers, always puts a smile on my face. It feels like home. Like a part of who I am. And a part of my identity. Somewhere in my mind and heart there will always be a spot for Cristina.
This is how I want to remember Cristina Saralegui, the talk show host:
Buena suerte on your new proyectos, Cristina! ¡Pa’lante!
Remember… ¡pa’tras ni pa coger impulso!
By Juan Alanis in Cositas Latinas, Familia, Mexican Parenting 2 Comments Tags: #mexistyle, bicultural, bicultural children, bicultural kids, bilingual, bilingual children, bilingual education, bilingual kids, challenge of making children bilingual, child, children, connecting through, connecting through spanish language, connecting through spanish television, connecting through television en espanol, Education, en espanol, familia, Juan Alanis, Juan of Words, Juanofwords, kid, kids, latino, learning, lifestyle, mexican, mexican lifestyle, parenting, parents, raising, raising a bilingual child, raising a bilingual kid, raising bicultural child, raising bicultural kid, spanish language, spanish language television, television, television en espanol
Just the other day we were sitting at my parents house watching Sal y Pimienta. If you’re not familiar, it’s one of those wickedly addicting and hilarious celebrity gossip shows that Univision airs regularly on their national network. They’re hilarious because the hosts and guests on the show spend the entire hour talking crap and poking fun at anyone in the limelight, almost always taking jabs at each other too. While it might sound pretty harsh, in truth, it’s all in good fun. Everything is pretty much for the show, and I guess that’s what makes it work. Pero bueno, I digress.
This particular Sunday, the beauty competition Nuestra Belleza Latina had just announced their winner and the Sal y Pimienta hosts were busy spitting their veneno – that’s what they like to call badmouthing – about the contestants and the judges on the show. Anjelica and I were cracking up at some of the things they were saying, then all of the sudden El Gordo de Molina and Lili Estefan were on the screen.
Edgar sat up and this happened:
Edgar: Hey, it’s that guy and the lady from El Gordo y La Flaca!
Me: You know who those people are?
Edgar: Yeah, it’s El Gordo y La Flaca.
Me: How do you know who they are?
Anjelica: You watch them, Edgar?
Edgar: Yeah… I watch them sometimes with grandma.
Me and Anjelica: (laughing and shaking our heads)
This single conversation got me thinking. It reminded me of the many times I sat in front of the television screen with my parents watching telenovelas like Rosa Salvaje and Marimar, variety shows like Sábado Gigante, Siempre en Dómingo and El Show de Johnny Canales, even things as menial as the five o’clock and 10 o’clock newscasts in español everyday. I did know these things had definitely had an impact on my own cultural identity and immersion, I just hadn’t really thought about how they had also helped to strengthen our familial bond.
It’s funny how even the smallest things count.