Los Espookys Season 1, episode 1 (debut 6/14/19): Cassandra Ciangherotti, Ana Fabrega, Bernardo Velasco, Julio Torres. photo: Jennifer Clasen/HBO
(Photo by Jennifer Clasen/HBO)

TV Shows That Celebrate Latino Culture

Hispanic actors have been part of the TV ecosystem practically since the medium was born, but it took Lucy’s love of Ricky Ricardo in 1951’s I Love Lucy to highlight the intimate family life of a Latino character and help set aside a strict vaqueros-and-villains tradition of Latino characters on TV. Stereotypes still appear — these days more often as drug dealers and human traffickers — but TV has evolved so that representation is no longer simply superficial or disparaging.

Take HBO’s refreshingly surreal Los Espookys. Fred Armisen wanted to create a show “that isn’t an explanation of Latino culture, that’s moving past the foreignness of it,” the former Saturday Night Live talent told The New York Times about the Spanish-language series he co-created with Julio Torres and Ana Fabrega for the U.S. television market.

Los Espookys follows a group of friends who fake horror events for a living in an unidentified Latin American country. The show stars Torres, Fabrega, Cassandra Ciangherotti, and Bernardo Velasco, with José Pablo Minor and Armisen as a recurring guest star. Season 1 is also Certified Fresh at 100% on the Tomatometer with 23 reviews.

As Hispanic Heritage Month comes to a close, we take a look at some American TV series that not only feature Latino (or “Latinx,” if you prefer) actors, but embrace Hispanic culture overall. Some will be familiar, like ABC’s Ugly Betty, The CW’s Jane the Virgin, and Netflix’s reboot of One Day at a Time (renewed for season 4 on Pop). Netflix has done a fantastic job of also introducing U.S. audiences to Spanish-language series that resonate broadly, like Elite (91% Tomatometer score) and Money Heist (100%), but those series weren’t necessarily made with American audiences in mind, and so we’ve left them off of this list.

Read on to see which U.S. television series have celebrated Hispanic culture. Don’t see your favorite on our list? Hit the comments section with the titles you love, and we’ll add your recommendations.

The Bridge (FX) (2013)

Synopsis: Two detectives - one from the U.S., one from Mexico - must work together to track down a killer who... [More]

Brooklyn Nine-Nine (2013)

Synopsis: A sitcom following the lives of a group of detectives in a New York precinct, including one slacker who is... [More]

Cristela (2014)

Synopsis: An ambitious Mexican-American law-school student struggles to balance her career with her family life.... [More]

Devious Maids (2013)

Synopsis: Maids try to realize their dreams while working for wealthy families in Beverly Hills.... [More]

Synopsis: An adventurous young girl uses her knowledge of Spanish and English as she solves mysteries and explores new sites with... [More]

East Los High (2013)

Synopsis: Two teen cousins fall in love with a popular football player at an East Los Angeles high school.... [More]

Synopsis: Teen Princess Elena rules the magical kingdom of Avalor. She looks up to the grand council for guidance. In her... [More]

Synopsis: TV's first great sitcom centered on a zany New York housewife who wants desperately to get into showbiz and her... [More]

Los Espookys (2019)

Synopsis: From Julio Torres and Ana Fabrega, alongside Fred Armisen and Lorne Michaels of "Saturday Night Live," the primarily Spanish-language show... [More]

The Fosters (2013)

Synopsis: A lesbian couple head up a multiethnic family comprised of a biological son and a few adopted kids.... [More]

Lopez (2016)

Synopsis: A successful comedian struggles to maintain his working class, Latino roots while living an affluent, celebrity lifestyle.... [More]

Jane the Virgin (2014)

Synopsis: A comedy-drama following a chaste young woman who is accidentally impregnated via artificial insemination as she struggles to inform her... [More]

One Day at a Time (2017)

Synopsis: A remake of Norman Lear's classic 1975 sitcom revolves around a Cuban-American family headed by a recently separated military mom... [More]

On My Block (2018)

Synopsis: A coming-of-age comedy about four bright and street-savvy friends navigating their way through the triumph, pain and the newness of... [More]

Synopsis: A New York woman struggles to adjust to life in a federal prison.... [More]

Narcos (2015)

Synopsis: This raw, gritty series chronicles the gripping real-life stories of the drug kingpins of the late 1980s and the corroborative... [More]
Directed By: Andrés Baiz

Matador (2014)

Synopsis: A popular soccer star lives a secret double life as a covert operative for the CIA in this action-adventure series.... [More]

Mayans M.C. (2018)

Synopsis: A Sons of Anarchy spinoff from Kurt Sutter.... [More]

Modern Family (2009)

Synopsis: A mockumentary-style sitcom chronicling the unusual kinship of the extended Pritchett clan, a brood that includes patriarch Jay; his younger... [More]

Synopsis: A woman escapes from a Mexican cartel and rises to become a drug "queenpin" in America.... [More]

Synopsis: Budding secret agents Carmen and Juni Cortez and their fellow students protect the world from the evil forces of S.W.A.M.P.... [More]

Ugly Betty (2006)

Synopsis: A bright but ordinary-looking woman is a fish out of water working at a glitzy fashion magazine. Adapted from a... [More]

Vida (2004)

Synopsis: "Vida" is a half-hour drama series focusing on two Mexican-American sisters from the Eastside of Los Angeles who couldn't be... [More]

Synopsis: Comedy about a family of wizards living in New York City who sometimes use magic to get out of tricky... [More]

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