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Our Favorite Animated Movie Characters (Latino Edition)

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Growing up there were few, if any, Latino characters in cartoons or movies. But, times are changing. Today, there are so many characters that my Mexican-American hijo can relate to — and I feel pure joy every time he finds a new one to love. Here are our favorites. What about yours?

Dora The Explorer
For many of us, Dora was the first time we saw a Latino character on an animated show. What’s not to love? Dora is all about adventure, something that all kids can relate to. Dora travels with her monkey, Boots, and solves puzzles along the way while eliciting the help of the viewer. It’s a fun, interactive show that teaches children that when you think something out, and work together to solve quandaries, you can figure it out!

Go Diego Go
True story: I wanted to name my son Diego, and it was because of this character. I’m not alone. There are a quite a few Diego’s at my son’s school. It’s hard to resist the handsome little boy who rescues animals and cares about the environment? You can’t, which is why this was mi hijo’s first positive Latino role model. He has bandaged many stuffed animals because “This is something Diego would do, Mom”.

Handy Mannny
Manny was my niece Mercedes’ favorite character when she was little. My son has been watching Manny since he was a year old, and he loves to sing the ‘We work together’ song. Manny’s cheery attitude to fix anything that is broken with his animated resourceful tools brings a message of ‘can do’ to kids.

Puss in Boots
Although this kitty’s origin is not officially talked about, it is easy to see him as a Spanish cat with his strong Antonio Banderas accent. My nephews and nieces adored him when he was first introduced in the Shrek movies. My son fell in love with this kitty as a toddler and he squealed anytime he watched Puss’ antics.

Nyx from Tinkerbell and The Legend of the NeverBeast
This film is a bit of a hidden gem. It’s fun to watch, and you’ll find a strong character in Nyx (Rosario Dawson), a beautiful fairy who is a loyal friend and resolves to protect the community of Pixie Hollow.

Audrey Ramirez Atlantis
This movie teaches children that you can be tough, yet still caring. Banishing many stereotypes, Audrey is a gifted car mechanic, who proves that she has the grit to save the lost empire.

Maya and Miguel
Twin siblings Maya and Miguel live in a city apartment, and have an eclectic group of friends that mirror many of my son’s own friends. Miguel’s best friend makes his own gadgets and he and his friends are obsessed with soccer. This show is diverse, with all the characters having sweet and enduring personalities.

More Entertainment Ideas:

 

Photo: Getty