Will ABC's new pilot "Devious Maids" help or hurt Latinas?

Good news TV fans--the small screen is about to be graced with a whole lot of lovely Latina faces!  Super talented actresses Judy Reyes (Scrubs), Ana Ortiz (Ugly Betty), Dania Ramirez (Entourage) and Roselyn Sanchez (Act of Valor) have all been recently cast in the new ABC pilot, Devious Maids.

According to the networks description, the show will follow "four maids with ambition and dreams of their own while they work for the rich and famous in Beverly Hills." The creator is Marc Cherry, otherwise known as the man behind the hugely successful soap Desperate Housewives.

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I know what you're thinking--these four amazing Latinas are going to be playing maids? How stereotypical could you get? That was my first (really annoyed!) reaction too. But, after taking a closer look, I discovered that there are some interesting aspects to the show.

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First of all, Cherry has plenty of experience producing now famous and beloved Latino characters (Eva Longoria's Gabrielle Solis anyone?). Plus, though the ladies might work as maids, they won't be portrayed as uneducated. According to reports, Ortiz's character, Marisol, is a woman with a college degree working as a housecleaner for a secret reason. And Reyes' character, Zoila, is a senior maid "whose intelligence is matched only with her humor." Not to mention that a cast with so many Latinos on a major broadcast network is definitely a huge deal!

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Still, it is unfortunate that the show bases its entire premise on one of the most distasteful Latina stereotypes ever. After all, it's not like these women haven't played powerful characters in the past–Sanchez played a special agent on Without a Trace! So do the cons really outweigh the pros?

Overall, I'd say the show is probably worth a try. If Cherry handles the concept right, the show could be a really funny look at what it's like to be considered "the help"--especially when that so often entails being privy to the most intimate and salacious parts of the employer's life. On the other hand, if handled indelicately, Cherry will have a very angry community on his hands. Guess we'll have to watch to find out!

What do you think? Will you watch to see how the show pans out?

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