9 Iconic Latina TV Moms and Why We Love Them

Latina TV moms from shows like "Gordita Chronicles", "George Lopez", "One Day at a Time" have made an impact

Latina TV moms

Credit: NBC/Warner Brros/Netflix | Courtesy

With Mother’s Day upon us, it is time to celebrate our mamis, both in real life and the fictional moms that had an impact in our lives. From the iconic matriarch Angie Lopez played by Contance Marie on George Lopez to Penelope Alvarez as a single mom on One Day at a Time to Adela Castelli on Gordita Chronicles as an immigrant mom living the American Dream while staying true to her roots. These characters have made us feel seen despite the fact that representation of the Latinx community remains low on television. Seeing a wide array of Latina moms on TV showcased how motherhood is not one size fits all and yet they each found their own way to celebrate their Latinidad. From being headstrong about their opinions to teaching their children about their cultura, these Latina TV moms have made us laugh and made us see a little bit of our mamis on the small screen. Read one to learn about nine of our favorite Latina moms on the small screen.

Penelope Alvarez – One Day at a Time

An Army veteran, nurse, and mother of two, One Day at a Time’s Penelope (played by Justina Machado) is an example of the strength our mothers have. Through her storyline we see her life as a single mother grappling with her own mental health issues while maneuvering getting back in the dating scene after a divorce and being the best working mom she can be. She faces struggles parents can relate to such as helping her children understand colorism or learning about her daughter’s queerness in the context of a Latinx household. Through her relationship with her own mother, Lydia (played by Rita Moreno), we also get to see her being mothered while also learning how to mother and how she aims to do things differently while also keeping certain traditions alive.

Geny Martinez – On My Block

Played by Colombian actress Paula Garces, On My Block’s Geny is all of our moms. She runs a tight ship in her household and has the answer to everything. With a full house, she is running from place to place and has her husband to rely on when necessary. From being rightfully concerned about her son Ruby’s actions to caring for her mother-in-law, Geny represents all the Latina mothers that are holding it down for their families. Even when stressful situations bring chaos to her home, she always finds a way to love and understand her children before anything.

Jane Villanueva – Jane the Virgin

Jane the Virgin centers motherhood and three generations of Latina moms centered on Jane (played by Gina Rodriguez) who was raised by her mother, Xiomara (Andrea Navedo) and abuela, Alba (Yvonne Coll). The series follows Jane who, after being accidentally artificially inseminated, has to prepare for motherhood which completely disrupts her life plans. Along her journey, her mother and abuela are with her every step of the way as they struggle with their own experience as mothers. From being a working mom and a student to dealing with being a first-generation Latina trying to break certain cycles while staying true to her roots, Jane and her mami and abuela shared the ups and downs of being Latina moms of their respective generations.

Gloria Delgado-Pritchett – Modern Family

Modern Family’s Gloria, played by Sofia Vergara, is undoubtedly one of the most iconic Latina TV moms. She married into a non-Latinx family so when it comes to her son Manny and their Colombian culture, she is strong-willed in keeping that part of their identity alive. She’s fiercely confident and is dressed to the nines at all times which we can relate to when we think of our moms’ sense of fashion and need to be all dressed up just to go to the mercado. She’s known for being unabashedly proud of her roots, never losing her accent, and always prioritizing family and being a very proud mami.

Gabrielle Solis – Desperate Housewives

Known for her impeccable taste and witty comebacks, Desperate Housewives’ Gabrielle Solis, played by Eva Longoria, gave us a new perspective on Latina motherhood. Tropes often dictate that maternity is supposed to be innate to Latinas, and that was not the case for Gabrielle. Despite not wanting children for the first half of the series, Gabrielle’s story as a new mother showed us an example of what first time mothers go through when adjusting to life with kids. Though her transition was not easy by any means, through her character development we see her confidence and strong sense of self translate to teaching her children to face the world head on.

Angie Lopez – George Lopez 

George Lopez is one of the most well-known Latinx sitcoms and Constance Marie’s portrayal of Angie was a trailblazing role for Latinas on TV. Her character’s kind and warm presence served as the perfect complement to her husband, George’s, often over-the-top antics. She constantly made us laugh with her fun husband-wife dynamic and reminded us to look at the bright side of things.

Rosie Lopez – Lopez vs. Lopez

Selenis Leyva’s Rosie is a reminder that moms can and should have fun and that there is life after divorce. Like our mothers, she always looks after her daughter, Mayan, often doing what she can to help her heal her relationship with her father. Whether it’s being a loving abuela to Chance or throwing shade when it’s called for, Rosie is the fierce mom who will always speak up. Her sense of style, confidence, and resilience are inspiring and serve as reminders that Latinas can do anything they set their mind to. As a proud Afro-Latina and jefa, she’s also a reminder that Latina moms are not a monolith.

Gabriela Cañero-Reed – Diary of a Future President

Another iconic Latina mom played by Selenis Leyva is no other than Gabriela Cañero-Reed from Disney+’s Diary of a Future President. A widowed single mother and lawyer, Gabriela is an example for her children and stands by them whenever they need her. Through her character, we see a mother looking to restart her love life following the death of her spouse and with that journey, meshing both her personal and family life together. As a Latina in law and single mother, Gabriela is a powerful representation of all the roles a Latina takes up in the world and that one is never too old to find love again.

Adela Castelli – Gordita Chronicles

Diana Maria Riva stars as matriarch, Adela Castelli in Gordita Chronicles—a series following a Dominican family who migrate to Miami in the ’80s. Adela’s character is loud, loving, and loyal to her roots and familia, embodying the essence of many Latina moms. A woman who proudly shows her children and anyone who will listen how much pride she has in her culture and despite striving for the “American Dream”, she will always stay true to who she is. Her role showed us the highs and lows many immigrant moms face in assimilating to the U.S. while also trying to stay true to their roots.

In this Article

desperate housewives diary of a future president George Lopez gordita chronicles Jane the Virgin latina mom latina tv moms latinas in tv lopez vs. lopez Modern Family On My Block one day at a time
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