No Pleasing the Unpleasable

The story of Kingpin's critics

By Jose Luis Zuazua
Published on LatinoLA: February 9, 2003

No Pleasing the Unpleasable

Warning: The following story/opinion/counterpoint is in opposition to the articles written by Alejandro J. Diaz & Frank Arzaga, two writers who posted their negative thoughts on NBC's new show "Kingpin."

"Is it me..." by Frank Arzaga at http://latinola.com/story.php?story=722

"It's Just A Bad Show " by Alejandro J. Diaz at http://latinola.com/story.php?story=726

I agree 100% with Frank Arzaga's article. Mr. Diaz, though, I have a question for you: what did you expect? Arzaga's column was actually hitting on some very important notes, while Diaz's column seems like he hated the show before it even aired.

He was close-minded, like the show's Uncle/Head of the Gang and his son, played by Jacob Vargas.

Sure, the show has some EXTREMELY negative depictions of Latinos, but what do you expect from a show written by white guys? If the show had been written by Latinos, I'm sure you wouldn't be complaining.

This is entertainment. This is NBC, a network which produces "American Dreams" and "Friends" two shows with as much color as El Santo's mask. Speaking of El Santo, do his movies depict Mexicans as evil scientists? Is there a Dr. Frankenstein living in the state of Morelos? How about all those Narco-traficante movies? Or the sex comedies?

All these items, whether it's drugs, sex, or Masked Wrestlers fighting Martians, obviously sell. That is why they're made.

There are a lot more problems within our people that should be addressed, INSTEAD of some TV show. There are PLENTY of films being made right now that show Latinos as we really are: Human Beings.

Instead of laughing at "Kingpin", or picking on it, do something to change it in your own life. "Kingpin" isn't to be taken seriously. The fact that a Puerto Rican is playing a Mexican is proof enough (and that's not the first, second or third time that has happened).

Why not take it seriously? Because this is the kind of MIERDA people like seeing.

People who wear the "Chicano" slogan proudly, obviously forgetting, or in some cases, not knowing what that word means. People who point the finger at others instead of themselves.

Ever watch "the Sopranos"? That show is worse (as far as negative stereotypes ar concerned) than "Kingpin." How about "Goodfellas" or "Casino?" I, as an amateur filmmaker, have stories that don't have glorified stereotypes. I have stories/social commentaries about Latino cops, crooks, falsly accused men, librarians, wronged/mistreated women and gangsters: types of people that exist in ALL CULTURES. The same as Akira Kurosawa made about JAPANESE people. The same that Alfred Hitchcock made about ENGLISH people and Cary Grant. The same as Vittorrio De Sica made about ITALIANS.

But even I need an escape every once in a while. Let me watch my unbelievable show EN PAZ!

About Jose Luis Zuazua:
Jose Luis Zuazua is president/founder of his own mini production company, ZuazuaFilm, and has completed/written/directed three video shorts, one animated film and in preproduction on a new film.

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