There were plenty of hysterical, historic, and heartbreaking moments that took place in 2023. It’s difficult to cut it down to a list of 10, especially since Latines have been in the headlines all year long, but we’ve pulled together some noteworthy occurrences that we’re sure you haven’t forgotten over the last 12 months.
From trailblazing beauty queens to record-breaking performances by athletes and the loss of beloved comedians and activists, here are the 10 moments we can’t forget that happened in 2023.
Shakira’s BZRP Music Sessions #53 Diss Track Release
Who knew the best diss track of the year would come from pop star Shakira? We’re sure her ex, Gerard Piqué, didn’t see any of them coming after their 2022 breakup. “BZRP Music Sessions #53 was co-written by Argentine producer Bizarrap and Colombian singer-songwriter Keityn. The track went viral for its biting and clever lyrics, which included jabs at the woman Piqué allegedly cheated on Shakira with. Keityn said that “spite” was the driving force behind the diss tracks but added that they wanted to write something “without going too far, but not sounding soft either.” Mission accomplished.
Nicaragua Winning Miss Universe for First Time in Country’s History
The 2023 Miss Universe competition started with 84 contestants, but after all was said and done, it was Miss Nicaragua, Sheynnis Palacios, who took home the crown. Her victory marked the first time Nicaragua has won the event and the first time the country has ever made it into the Top 5 finalists. Overall, contestants from Latin America did extremely well. Six made it to the Top 10 and three made it to the Top 5. However, there was no denying Palacios beauty, intelligence, and her unforgettable stride across the stage.
Enkyboys’ Randy Gonzalez Dies At 35 After Cancer Battle
The world lost a great father and talented voice on TikTok when Randy Gonzalez died after his battle with colon cancer. He was 35. Gonzalez was one half of the Enkyboys, a father-son duo best known for their comedy skits on TikTok. Currently, the Enkyboys page has 16 million followers. Since his passing, Gonzalez’s son, Brice, who is a star all his own, was featured in a full season of Lopez vs. Lopez on NBC and the feel-good comedy-drama Flamin’ Hot. Online, he’s also bringing colon cancer awareness to all his fans.
Sofía Vergara & Joe Manganiello Announce Their Divorce
From Rauw Alejandro and Rosalía to Ricky Martin and Jwan Yosef to Cardi B and Offset, there have been several high-profile breakups in the Latine community this year. But none of them hit our hearts as hard as the divorce between Sofía Vergara and Joe Manganiello. After seven years of marriage, the couple called it quits with a joint statement that said it was a “difficult decision” and asked for privacy as they “navigate this new phase of our lives.” Vergara is now dating orthopedic surgeon Justin Saliman. Manganiello is dating actress Caitlin O’Connor. This was Vergara’s second marriage and Manganiello’s first. They did not have children together.
The Soy Rebelde Tour Kicked Off
At the end of the summer, Mexican pop group RBD made their big comeback on stage during their Soy Rebelde Tour. RBD’s reunion kicked off at the Sun Bowl Stadium in El Paso, Texas, where the group performed nostalgic hits like “Sálvame,” “Nuestro Amor,” “Ser o Parecer,” and “Solo Quédate En Silencio.” During the singing of “Rebelde,” the fivesome wore their uniforms from the private school their characters attended in their popular telenovela. This was only one of the many moments that long-time fans had been looking forward to since the tour was announced.
Ronald Acuña Jr. Making History
In late September, Atlanta Braves right fielder Ronald Acuña Jr. did something no one had ever done before in MLB. He became the first player in history to hit over 40 home runs and amass 70 stolen bases in one season. After stealing the base that gave him the record, Acuña Jr. kept the base to mark the moment. Last month, Acuña Jr. was unanimously voted as the 2023 NL MVP after his record-setting year.
Jesús Ociel Baena Saucedo, a Non-Binary Magistrate from Mexico, Found Dead
Magistrate and LGBTQ+ activist Jesús Ociel Baena Saucedo, who was issued Mexico’s first non-binary passport earlier this year, was found dead inside their home in Aguascalientes alongside their partner, Dorian Daniel Nieves Herrera. The deaths are still under investigation. Saucedo had been receiving death threats for months but officials theorized it was a “crime of passion.” This was firmly denied by his family and thousands hit the streets to protest and call for justice for both of them. May they rest in power.
Pedro Pascal’s Mother Sketch on ‘Saturday Night Live’
At the end of his debut on Saturday Night Live on February 4, Pedro Pascal described the experience as the “best night of my life.” Audiences had a great time, too, watching Pascal portray Mario in a TV series adapted from Mario Kart and spoofing the “internet daddy” phenomenon. However, it was his role as an overprotective Latina mother who isn’t too happy with her son’s (Marcello Hernández) new girlfriend that brought the house down. Mamá Pascal didn’t like the fact that she brought vegan sliders to dinner but was impressed that she offered to say grace. “Why didn’t you tell me she was a woman of God?” Pascal says. “Now, where are my grandchildren?”
Amanda Serrano Makes History with 12 Three-Minute Rounds
No matter what happens for the rest of boxer Amanda Serrano’s career, she will forever be known as a trailblazer in the sport. In October, she beat Danila Ramos by unanimous decision to retain all three of her titles. The fight was the first-ever unified women’s championship to go 12 three-minute rounds. In the future, Serrano said she is only interested in fighting three-minute rounds and would not go back to the customary two-minute rounds for women boxers. “I’m blessed and in the position to call the shots in my career,” Serrano wrote on social media.
The Ending of ‘Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse’
If any 2023 film has a lock on an Oscar nomination this January, it’s the sequel Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse in the Best Animated Feature category. As incredible as the first Oscar-winning movie was, the follow-up took superhero films to new heights. The only bad thing about Across the Spider-Verse is that we have to wait for a third installment after it left audiences with a jaw-dropping cliffhanger that none of us saw coming. Miles Morales meeting another Miles Morales from a parallel universe? Spider-Man: Beyond the Spider-Verse can’t come soon enough.