(L-R) Actors Oskar Rodriguez, Alexandra Rodriguez, Vannessa Vasquez, Danielle Vega and Gabe Chavarria cast of East Los High attend The 30th Annual Imagen Awards at Dorothy Chandler Pavilion on August 21, 2015 in Los Angeles, California (Photo : JC Olivera/WireImage/Getty Images)
The teen soap “East Los High,” is getting a lot of positive reviews from critics. The show is moving close to Season 4 as more people discover more reasons to watch.
WNYC revealed that “East Los High” is about a group of teenage high school students, who are mostly Latinos, who attend East Los Angeles. Each episode lasts about 20 minutes, although fans can get more from the characters in social media sites. The show writers and producers wanted to create a hit show that will aid young Latinas make smart choices in life.
NPR wrote that the show is actually more than just a soapy teen drama. It is actually a social experiment, where social scientists and health workers collaborated with screenwriters and studio executives to send a powerful message to their target audience. The experiment began a few years ago with executive producer Katie Elmore Mota, who wanted to introduced more diversity on television. She tapped nonprofit groups and public health networks to come up with a show that would have a positive impact among Latino teens. The target audience involved Latinas from their late teens up to their early 20s, although the basic stories on love and betrayal are universal.
“It’s rare for academics and Hollywood types to team up like this. It gave me the opportunity to ask about some of the things going on at his high school. It’s just so much fun to watch! And if it gives you important messages, all the better,” said SuruchiSood a Drexel University public health researcher.
Writers Kathleen Bedoya and Carlos Portugal stated that the concept was to enter the minds of actual teenagers and portray them in a convincing manner to make healthy choices despite difficult situations. The showrunners had to streamline the plot, so that they do not appear moralistic or preachy.
The storyline covers real-world problems and issues that teenagers are dealing with at present, like pregnancy, family conflicts, sexually transmitted disease and cheating boyfriends. The series was filmed in Boyle Heights in East LA.
Based on the same WNYC report, Buffalo State and University of Texas researchers have been observing the effect of “East Los High” on teenagers with very promising results. Hopefully, the show will continue to evolve and attract more teenagers to help them learn how to deal with real-life situations better.
“East Los High” streams on Hulu on weekdays. The entire series is available to Hulu Plus subscribers.