Bravo has cornered the market of rich women fighting on screen, so it was only a matter of time before someone informed the network about the ladies of San Antonio, Texas, who live for the drama. In the debut episode of Texicanas, a new show that follows the lives of six Mexican women living in the metropolis that’s less yeehaw and more bilingual, the reality TV universe dives deep into Spanglish wonder. Inject it straight into my heart, please.
Like any new Bravo program starring approximately one hundred perfectly manicured protagonists, the premiere spends a lot of time trying to explain how everyone knows each other (it’s impossible to grasp, but I hope will be teased out through the season). The show opens at Mayra Farret’s house, where the rest of the stars have congregated for a Cinco de Mayo party despite the fact that none of them actually celebrate the Battle of Puebla. The women mostly just love an event, and most of the central cast members show up: Farret, Penny Ayarzagoitia, Lorena Martinez, Anayancy Nolasco, Karla Ramirez, Luz Ortiz, and Luz’s friend Janet, who is the spitting image of Dolly Parton and says things like, “My husband says I have champagne taste on a beer budget. And I don’t even drink beer!”
A lot of internal conflict has already been established, but here’s what I could glean: Mayra and Luz hate each other. Luz called Mayra “anal,” which was miscommunicated as “ano” or “butthole” in Spanish. Because of this, Luz wasn’t invited to Mayra’s surprise birthday party. It’s low stakes, but I’m invested, mostly because the characters are so charismatic. Anayancy, by far my favorite and the youngest of the group, introduces herself by saying, “I came from a pretty wealthy family and I never had to do anything as I grew up.” A producer off-screen is heard asking her, “Really, you never had to do anything?” She retorts, “No... A chore was something that somebody else did for me.” Midway through the episode, she tells Mayra she wants to pivot to becoming an activist. I am so ready for it.
If Texicanas does anything for a lot of English-speakers (other than, you know, entertaining us) it may familiarize viewers with a part of Texas that isn’t all cowboys and guns, and as a Texas-born Latina, I’m stoked for that. At the very least, I do appreciate that Texicanas takes the time to define words like “chismosa,” Spanish for gossip, and “maschista,” a sexist man who expects women to do everything for him, so the future of the show won’t have to handhold white viewers. At least, let’s hope it won’t.