Yesterday I asked if networks were finally adding more diversity to their fall lineups, and today it seems like it might actually be true. Only problem? They seem to want people of color to play to the stereotype.
Tentatively titled Devious Maids, the show is based on the popular Mexican telenovela Ellas son…la alegría del hogar, and follows four maids as they work for some of Beverly Hills’ wealthiest families while pursuing their own dreams. The show will reportedly star veteran actors Judy Reyes, Roselyn Sanchez, Ana Ortiz, and Dania Ramirez.
While some may cite this as a coup for Latinas–I mean, when was a show anchored by four Latina leads? Others, however, are wondering why these women have to play maids (and who are their bosses? hmm), one of the most common roles Latina actresses are forced to play.
As Dodai Stewart of Jezebel notes:
The problem is, very rarely are [diverse] parts open to women with Latina backgrounds. Even Jennifer Lopez played a maid. And think of Teresa Yenque, who has been on seven different episodes of Law & Order: SVU, and played “Cleaning Lady,” “Housekeeper,” and “Housekeeper/Nanny.”
Many black folks wouldn’t support The Help because they felt–as amazing as they were–Octavia Spencer and Viola Davis’ roles as black maids in the South was just another example of black women being forced to play into a deep-seated stereotype–and then celebrated for it. So it remains to be seen if Latinas will rally around this show, although I’m sure they’d love to see themselves represented in other ways.
What do you think?