My heart shattered into a million pieces when I heard East Los High was coming to an end, and what was worse — we wouldn’t even be getting a full season to say our proper goodbyes. (Like, hello, there was a lot to wrap up after season 4!) Instead, after four seasons, Hulu decided that East Los High would wrap with a one hour series finale special. Sigh.
East Los High was unlike any other show. It was the first English-language series to feature an all-Latino cast. It also gave opportunities to Latino writers. East Los High centered on what it’s like growing up Latino in the U.S. — in East L.A. to be exact. These are stories that aren’t often told, but deserve so much attention. East Los High also served as somewhat of a guidance tool for teenagers. Sex was always tackled in a way that reminded teens the importance of safe sex, but it never felt preachy. The series also touched on abortion, teen pregnancy, undocumented immigrants, drugs, domestic violence, LGBTQ issues, and the list goes on.
We’re thankful for having had a show like ELH, and with the series finale now airing on Hulu, we’re reflecting on seasons 1-4 and the moments we’ll never forget.
The Bomb Squad rally at graduation
At the beginning of season 4, the Bomb Squad comes together to get Eddie released from an immigration detention center, and raise awareness around undocumented immigrants. They hit the graduation stage wearing chains and shirts that said “Stop the Raids” and “Not One More.” They not only helped with Eddie’s release, they also provided an important lesson around deportation raids and what it’s like living as an undocumented immigrant (a theme that comes to light often in the series).
Ceci becomes a mom
We first see teen pregnancy tackled on the show during season 1, after Ceci becomes pregnant with her (cheating a**) boyfriend Abe’s baby. Ugh — couldn’t stand him. Ceci gets kicked out of her tia’s house, winding up homeless, and soon finds herself wrestling with thoughts of whether to keep the baby or not. Ceci attempts to live with Abe, and his bruja mami Fabiola, but ends up leaving upon realizing Abe will never be who she needs him to be, and goes off to live in a women’s shelter. As time goes on, we see Ceci growing into her own, accepting her new role as a single mom. She even purchases the baby’s car seat herself, knowing that she certainly can’t rely on Abe for it — and there’s no way she’d be leaving her little girl behind at the hospital. Eventually, we meet baby Isela and can’t help but fall in love, just like Ceci.
Prince Royce’s arrival
Oh, Vincent. Where art thou, Vincent? When Prince Royce made his arrival on ELH in season 4 as Vincent, we were all like heart-eye emojis. He brought along new love for Ceci, more high-energy dance battles as the coach of the Bomb Squad’s biggest competitor — and did we mention more steamy scenes?
Lorena and Hernan’s wedding
Did someone call for a Mexican wedding? The union between Hernan and Lorena was certainly one for the books. It brought together Jacob and Gina and Camila as stepsiblings, and of course, the drama was not far behind.
We meet Nick, Jocelyn’s brother from New York, in season 2. Nick has a dream of becoming a music producer, and finds himself running with the wrong crowd to make it come true. Nick’s run-in with transporting drugs for his boss Remy, and the law, eventually leads to his murder in the end of season 3. A heartbreaking rendition of what happens to a lot of our young men growing up in lower income neighborhoods.