Latino representation has come a long way over the last few years, but there’s still a whole lot to be desired from US film and television. Not only have roles become more stereotypical over the last few years, but studios and networks are still profoundly averse to reflecting the experiences of more marginal populations within our broad demographic category.
That includes the struggles of poor, undocumented, LGBT, and female Latinos who don’t always fit neatly into the glossy, brand-friendly image of “diversity” peddled by the dream factory. But luckily, thanks to the constant proliferation of new technologies and platforms, fixing the problem is now as simple as picking up a camera and doing it ourselves.’
And that’s precisely what Bay Area artist-activists Julio Salgado and Jesús Iñiguez did when they founded the media collective Dreamers Adrift back in 2010. Beginning with their web series Undocumented and Awkward – which starred Salgado in an endless litany of awkward situations revolving around his undocumented status – the duo eventually turned their topical, autobiographically-tinged situational comedy on their own friendship with Osito.
Now going into its fourth season, Osito finds comedy in the mundane, everyday interactions of a “homo-hetero friendship” that breaks down stereotypical representations of men of color, and offers a broader vision of the undocumented experience. Covering everything from the male g-spot to smoking weed while undocumented, Osito proves that there’s just as much universally appealing comedy to be found on the margins as there is in mainstream media’s whitewashed, upper-middle class fantasy land.
But unfortunately even labors of love cost money, and Salgado and Iñiguez are looking to up their production value by hiring a team of writers and crew members to bring their original vision to the next level. That’s why they’ve turned to their fans, supporters, and allies in hopes of raising $10,000 for Osito’s fourth season and bring honest undocumented and queer Latino representation the quality it deserves. Check out the campaign here and if you believe in this project, donate what you can.