Since debuting last year, the Starz series Vida has garnered critical acclaim but also has served up a different type of Latinx narrative on TV. The series takes place in East Los Angeles, but it isn’t a typical Latinx story of cholos and gangs that Hollywood tends to love. Vida, which recently premiered its second season, folds in relevant LGBTQ storylines, familial issues, cultural nuance and the impact of gentrification to create a layered dramedy — and this is largely thanks to the show’s creator Tanya Saracho.
Saracho’s experience stems from the theater, which paved the way for her to cut her teeth in writers rooms. After paying her dues, she kicked down the door and put Vida on the map, a very Latinx show that doesn’t use culture as a novelty — she also plans to carry this mind-set into Brujas, which is currently in development.
Saracho has become one of the touchstone voices for Latinx representation. Along with her sister from another mister (and friend of the New Hollywood Podcast) Gloria Calderon Kellett, Saracho has called attention to the lack of Latinx-fronted narratives in TV and film that aren’t cholo- and cartel-driven. She stopped by the New Hollywood Podcast to talk about Latinx representation, the new season of Vida, her eyebrow-raising experiences as a “diverse hire” and her obsession with Anglo-centric dramas.
Listen to the episode below.