According to the DGA Report, 2019 was record breaking for women of color behind the camera. For the first time, approximately HALF of all episodic television was directed by a woman or minority. That’s up 29% from five years ago. As exciting as this is, that means that 50% of all television is still directed by white men. Since only TWO shows on air are currently produced and directed by Latinas, check out this handy guide to Latina-Centric television streaming or airing now.
1. Vida – Starz
Tanya Saracho – Showrunner
We’ve listed Tanya Saracho here, but this is truly a Latinx lead production. Nearly everyone who has touched Season 1 of Vida has been Latinx, queer, and/or a woman. This is incredibly important, because the show centers on two sisters who move back to their hometown when their mom passes. As queer secrets are revealed, they create a new family and learn to grieve and grow together.
“You’re not brown enough, you’re not light enough, you’re not Mexican enough. Your Spanish is not good enough… [Yet,] We are steeped in the dominant culture. It reminds us of our otherness every day.” – Tanya Saracho
2. One Day At a Time – PopTV
Gloria Calderón Kellet – Showrunner
Originally a Netflix original, this three-camera family sitcom follows three generations of a Cuban family and their landlord in Echo Park as they navigate the harsh realities of Latinx-Living in modern America. Through stories about immigration, deportation, queer teens, mental health, and more, this family will having you wiping tears from your face as you laugh and cry at topics that touch all of our hearts. a notable quote from the showrunner or Latina lead.
“I am very aware of the impact that television has on people, in changing perceptions.” – Gloria Caldéron Kellet
3. Pose – FX
Blanca Evangelista – MJ Rodriguez
This world juxtaPOSEs the fabulous and the perilous, showcasing more trans characters than ever before seen in a scripted show. Watch this HIV positive Afro-Latina raise up the queer, homeless youth around her and provide them with a home under the House of Evangelista Set in the infamous Ball Culture of 80s Harlem.
“Not a lot of people understand our stories. Not a lot of people even know about us and our movement. To be able to convey these powerful stories through the television screen is pretty groundbreaking” – MJ Rodriguez
4. On My Block – Netflix
Monse – Sierra Capri
On My Block features a quartet of tight knit friends as they battle their way through middle school, puberty, and perils del barrio that seek them out. Monse is an exceptional writer, a tomboy, and caught in the middle of forbidden love, gang wars, and the ever-present virgin-whore dichotomy. She stands up and fights, and finds that she often has to take the lead among her dysfunctional band of misfits.
“I have no gene for giving a damn.” -Monse
5. Queen of the South – USA
Teresa Mendoza – Alice Braga
With two powerful Latina characters at the forefront, you’ll be in store for some intense, action filled drama. Teresa Mendoza gets sucked into the world of high level drug dealing, at the mentorship of Doña Camila Vargas, the head of a cartel in Texas.
“There’s only one way to be safe in this business, to become powerful enough that no one can touch you.” – Teresa Mendoza
6. Charmed – CW
Macy, Mel, Maggie – Madeleine Mantock, Melonie Diaz, Sarah Jeffrey
The CW has been actively making space for Latina-lead programming. Starting with Charmed… Based on the 90s series of the same name, the CW re-created a series about three witchy sisters who must navigate the pressures of growing up, being a woman in a patriarchal world, and in the new series, doing all this as a woman of color. While WB Charmed actively acknowledged the work a woman must do in simple activities such as dating, CW Charmed actively acknowledges that walking through the world as a woman of color presents wildly different challenges than we’ve seen on this show before.
“You’re better together, your differences are your strengths, and nothing is stronger than your sisterhood. Nurture that.” – Marisol Vera
Image Credit (Cover): wsbuzz.com