Starz’s “Vida”: Latinx Writers and Queer Voices Taking Center Stage

Starz’s Vida is a Latinx writers/creators wet dream. There, I said it. No take backs. Hell, it’s a Latinx queer woman’s wet dream. And it’s the kind of content that we need on our screens today.

Vida is a half-hour drama about two Latinx sisters, Emma (Mishel Prada) and Lyn (Melissa Barrera), that are forced to return to their old neighborhood, where they are confronted by some hard truths about their past and mother. And what makes this story a Latinx writers wet dream (besides its Latinx leads that aren’t tanned fake Latinas as we’ve seen other shows do at an alarming rate) is that…IT’S WRITTEN BY AN ALL-LATINX WRITERS ROOM!

Tanya Saracho, who is the showrunner of Vida, was supported by Starz to create a true vision of the Latinx experience and life directly from the people who have lived these moments and were just itching to step on the right platform to get it done.

As if that wasn’t enough, every episode is directed by a woman of color or Latinx. If you’ve watched Ava DuVernay’s Queen Sugar you know what a difference this move makes. When you give women an opportunity to speak their truth and bring it to life in a medium such as TV you get beautiful portrayals that connect to the women who are consuming this content in a deep and personal way. It makes for quality content that is unique, eye-opening, and inclusive.

The beauty of this show doesn’t stop there!

A little too often (a lot of the time, really) queer stories are shut down, excluded, or written by people that don’t have the experience of leading a queer life or even want to put in the research to make sure the story they are telling connects with its viewers. Saracho’s Vida has a writers room where half of the creators are queer and Latinx! The show isn’t going to brush off queer stories and have them as additional stories lines in the background. They will be at the forefront and tied into Emma’s story.

Shows with showrunners, writers rooms, and directors like this are beautiful unicorns that deserve all the love and support for being inclusive, diverse, and honest in their story telling. Vida is definitely going to on our ‘must watch’ list and I hope it’s on yours too!

Vida premieres May 6 on Starz. We’ll be here to give it love, and yes, to review it.

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