‘On My Block’ digs into Hispanic experience

March 20, 2019


High school. The time of our lives. Or so they say. Throughout the Netflix show “On My Block” A group of teens act out what it’s like to go through high school in “the hood.”

The five main characters (Ruby, Jamal, Monse, Olivia and Cesar) go through a series of audience-captivating obstacles. These obstacles include trying to break on of their best friends out of a gang which proves to be very dangerous and difficult.

While binge watching this show during my uneventful summer I noticed how interesting the plot was. This isn’t just some high school drama show where guy finally gets the girl (although those are amazing too). It is so much more.

However it did start off on a weird note. It gave off odd vibes (cliche high school party, childish music, etc.) but I continued to watch because something still kept me intrigued.

Besides the whole experience of what it’s like in high school for this group of friends it also has a mystery behind it.

The mystery involves buried money in the neighborhood which at first to me seemed a little cliche, but then there was more reasoning behind the hidden treasure.

This show seems to obviously be targeted towards a younger audience although it could be interesting to an older audience as well.

The show is great, although some of the acting seems a little forced at times, but just adds to the whole quirky teen phase.

Early on, Monse’s acting seems fake at times and often cheesy. She is supposed to be from the hood however she seems more likely from Fort Wayne. Later, her acting skills improve. 

Nonetheless it’s not very noticeable and she is still one of my favorite characters.

There seems to be many love triangles in this show that make things relatable to the viewers which I think is a nice touch.

As many teens find themselves in this same situation and being able to put yourself in the characters place makes the show all the more better.

I will say, the inclusion of races, backgrounds, etc. are a good contribution to the diversity and uniqueness of the show.

But, there was a “scandal” with one of the characters Olivia. She had a scene where she was supposed to speak Spanish although it sounded terrible and insulting to the Hispanic community.

While the rest of the main characters have ethnic heritage, she does not. Hollywood has a history of putting white actors in roles for people of color. Since this show emphasizes people from different cultures, it’s upsetting that Ronni Hawk got the role instead of Latina actor. 

Despite the backlash from this, the show still has a great wrap and will be back for season two on March 29.

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