Welcome to our review of “Griselda,” the highly anticipated TV series that premiered on Netflix in 2024. In this review, we’ll delve into the complexities of the show, examining its portrayal of crime, identity, and the Latinx community. Join us as we explore the narrative, characters, and social commentary presented in “Griselda.”
Breaking Stereotypes or Reinforcing Them?
One of the main concerns going into “Griselda” is whether it would perpetuate negative stereotypes about Latinos and immigrants. The show attempts to address this issue by featuring a Latina detective, June, as the primary protagonist.
Played by Juliana Aidén Martinez, June partners with another Latino officer to bring down the powerful cartel boss, Griselda, portrayed by Sofia Vergara.
The Multicultural World of June vs. the Latinx World of Griselda
While June’s world is diverse and multicultural, Griselda’s world is predominantly Latinx. This contrast raises questions about representation and the potential for reinforcing harmful stereotypes. Griselda’s associates are mostly Colombian and Cuban, further highlighting the focus on Latinx criminality.
The missed opportunity to portray regular community members, who are neither cops nor criminals, is evident when Griselda’s mother praises her criminal activities. Even Latinxs who appear respectable are depicted as criminals in “Griselda.” This aspect of the show may leave viewers feeling conflicted about the narrative choices made.
A Familiar Path of Crime and Tragedy
“Griselda” follows the familiar trajectory of a crime story, with the protagonist making a series of decisions that lead to a life of crime and cruelty. The show doesn’t shy away from portraying the dark side of Griselda’s activities, including violence and drug use. The bacchanal scenes are both captivating and foreshadow the inevitable downfall that awaits Griselda.
Sofia Vergara’s Captivating Performance
Sofia Vergara brings her star power to the role of Griselda, impressively portraying the complex character. Male characters within the show often express confusion, unsure whether they want to kill or be intimate with her. This ambiguity adds depth to the character and invites the audience to question their own reactions. Vergara’s performance is a highlight of the series.
Gender and Cartel Leadership
One aspect that sets “Griselda” apart from other cartel-based stories is its focus on a female narco. Griselda Blanco was a real-life figure known as “La Madrina,” and her femininity was notable in a male-dominated world. However, the show fails to provide a fresh perspective on female cartel leaders, as we’ve already seen similar portrayals in other popular series like “Queen of the South.”
Is “Griselda” a Necessary Addition?
Despite its attempt to showcase a female narco, “Griselda” ultimately falls short in delivering a unique perspective. Griselda’s character is not significantly different from her male counterparts, and the show doesn’t provide substantial social commentary or insights into Latinidad. While it offers meaty roles for Latinx actors, it doesn’t escape the confines of cliché.
In conclusion, “Griselda” presents a complex narrative that attempts to address stereotypes and showcase a female narco. While it succeeds in some aspects, it ultimately falls into familiar tropes and fails to provide a fresh perspective. Sofia Vergara’s performance shines, but the show lacks a strong social commentary that could have elevated it further.
1. Is “Griselda” based on a true story?
Yes, “Griselda” is inspired by the real-life story of Griselda Blanco, also known as “La Madrina,” one of the most famous narcos in history.
2. Does “Griselda” offer any commentary on Latinx representation?
The show attempts to address Latinx representation by featuring a Latina detective as the protagonist. However, some viewers may find the portrayal of Latinx characters and their association with criminality to be problematic.
3. Can “Griselda” be considered a feminist series?
While “Griselda” focuses on a female narco and highlights Griselda Blanco’s femininity, it doesn’t offer a substantial feminist perspective. Other series, such as “Queen of the South,” have explored female cartel leaders in more depth.