8 Latino TV Stars Who Defied Stereotypes

Jun 16, 2016

We’ve all have seen them before – the sassy friend, the uneducated criminal, the ditzy sexpot. We may be used to seeing these kind of Latino TV stereotypes for most of our life, but finally television is catching up to reality. Let’s celebrate these 8 Latino characters that have changed up the TV game!

  • Betty Suarez


    A smart, ambitious, endearing Latina  who doesn’t give up easily – Betty Suarez (actress Angelica Ferrera) awkwardly finds her way through the fashion world – all the while confidently rocking braces, a curvy physique and a Guadalajara poncho!

  • Amy Santiago


    Fiercely competitive and totally awkward, oh let us count the ways why we love Detective Amy Santiago! Amy (actress Melisa Fumero) sucks at salsa dancing, is super quiet and is absolutely clueless about social interactions – basically the anti-stereotype for Latinas on TV.

  • Flaca


    A Latina in prison can so easily be a cliched stereotype but Orange Is The New Black’s Flaca (actress Jackie Cruz) epitomizes the Emo culture. Obsessed with The Smiths and Depeche Mode, she wants you to think she’s tough as nails but dig deeper and you find an endearing and interesting kind of diversity.

  • Manny


    Manny (actor Rico Rodríguez) is a pint-sized enigma. Outgoing and far more mature than his age, he prefers drinking coffee and dressing like a grandpa over riding a bike or playing Xbox. With a passion for life, this kid isn’t afraid to wear his heart on his sleeve!

  • April Ludgate


    Evolving from uninterested college intern to apathetic employee, April (actress Aubrey Plaza) made us fall in love with her for her deadpan witty one-liners on the sitcom Parks and Recreation. She’s fiercely intelligent, endlessly quirky, and abrasively sarcastic – making her vastly different from the stereotypical images of Latinas portrayed on TV.

  • Cristela


    Cristela Hernandez (which is no other than comedian Cristela Alonzo) somehow balanced her professional life as a sassy and sarcastic aspiring attorney with her traditional Mexican-American family. Educated, funny and ultra-relatable – we were sad to see this character get canceled! Did you know that she was the first Latina to create, produce, write, and star in her own primetime comedy? ¡Aplausos!

  • Rosa Diaz


    Considered the “badass” detective in the precinct – Rosa (actress Stephanie Beatriz) is tough, smart and terrifying – but don’t let the leather jacket and permanent scowl fool you.  From her little oddities (she owns an axe!) to her loyal friendships, this Latina proves to be multi-dimensional.

  • Carmen Pena


    In America’s first bilingual sitcom: Qué pasa USA?, Carmen (actress Ana Margarita Menéndez) was the quintessential good girl daughter of an immigrant Cuban family. Boy shy, smart and socially awkward – you couldn’t help but relate to her!

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