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Spicy Latina

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"My mom's Puerto Rican. That's why I'm so lively and colorful."
April Ludgate, acknowledging this trope while inverting it, Parks and Recreation
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Latin women in media (particularly American media) are usually portrayed as sultry temptresses with fierce tempers. The old westerns and pulp fiction usually depicted them as raven-haired, olive-skinned, and red-clad, with an accent that can melt butter. Modern portrayals, however, are usually more urban.

This character is very Hot-Blooded and confrontational, and often times has a rough background where they had to learn to defend themselves. They usually display an almost Tsundere-ish quality of having a soft side that occasionally peeks out from their tough exterior. Expect the Spicy Latina to be a good fighter who can take care of herself, which ironically can lead to her becoming the designated early casualty. There's also a crossover with Mama Bear in some cases. The Spicy Latina can make for a great Femme Fatale for The Hero. Even if the Spicy Latina is a bit tomboyish, she will be irresistible. If not tomboyish, she's usually wearing a lot of sexy tight clothing and she would happen to be very flirty. Despite this, she is often a devout Catholic.

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When they aren't masculine, a Spicy Latina will usually be a great beauty and highly sought after, as well as being an accomplished fighter. For a male hero, having her as a Love Interest is therefore an indication of unusual prestige, self actualisation, and both psychological and physical strength, since he will need to be able to restrain her fiery nature and martial ability at times, without destroying the relationship.

Close cousin to the Sassy Black Woman, but generally more erotic (the two tropes can overlap if the character is mixed or Afro-Latina). Also see Latin Lover — and speaking of which, the same rule about particular non-Latin ethnicities still counting also applies here. Its Old World analog is the Hot Gypsy Woman and there are also similarities with the Balkan Bastard and Rambunctious Italian. Overall, an enduring character-type, even if the characters themselves are not.

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Important Note: just because a Latina character is attractive does not necessarily make her fiery or spicy. A Latina played as a down to earth Girl Next Door or a bubbly Brainless Beauty is not an example of this trope because such a character lacks the attitude and personality of the Spicy Latina. Please keep this in mind while adding examples.


Examples:

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    Anime & Manga 
  • Michiko and others from Michiko & Hatchin. She definitely fits the bill as she's always raising havoc and dressing up seductively.
  • Roberta Cisneros from Black Lagoon, also known as the Bloodhound. She was a former guerrilla agent from Cuba in Castro's revolution, who was known for his high proficiency and assassination skills as a mercenary. She later went to live in Venezuela to serve as a maid to a boy called Garcia, the son of a man who once saved her life. We later see that her skills have not deiminshed in the slightest, when she demolishes a gang of Colombian mafia members all by herself with a rocket launcher and lots of bullets.
  • Nadie from El Cazador de la Bruja. Basically every female character in the show other than Ellis (Canadian), Blue-Eyes (White American), and Lirio (not 'spicy') is this. Though Nadie may actually be Zuni.
  • Ermes Costello from JoJo's Bizarre Adventure: Stone Ocean. Stand User, The Lancer, Hot-Blooded, Phenotype Stereotype, and Dread Lock Warrior, all in one.
  • Lara from School Rumble. While the sexiness aspect isn't played up, she's certainly a Hot-Blooded amazon.
  • In One Piece, the country of Dressrosa (which is based on Spain) is famous for these. Every time a man cheats on or just disappoints a Dressrosan woman, she will stab him.
  • Anita in Hi-Speed Jecy is the leader of a guerrilla force engaging in a war against President Markham, who is considered to be a dictator.

    Comics 

    Fan Works 

    Film - Animated 

    Film - Live Action 
  • Vasquez in Aliens fits the aggressive and confrontational aspects but not the sexual ones - as she's The Lad-ette (though does have a close relationship with Drake).
  • Lupe Velez, who committed suicide in 1944 having made the "Mexican Spitfire" comedies, embodies this trope in how she was presented, marketed, and perceived, let alone the way she was expected to perform in films, as evidenced by her nicknames "Mexican Spitfire" and "The Hot Pepper". She may be the Ur-Example of this trope in film.
  • Carmen Miranda who was actually a Portuguese-born Brazilian, but who still for a certain generation embodies that "South of the Border" attitude and personality.
  • Rita Moreno played these in most of her films, notably West Side Story (which won her an Oscar) - saying that most of her career was spent barefoot in westerns and gang stories. She spoke with an American accent naturally but was forced to put on a stereotypical 'Latin' one for most of her roles (an exception is her debut film So Young, So Bad).
  • This trope has pretty much defined Michelle Rodriguez's career. From her breakout role as the tough-as-nails Diana in Girlfight, to the tough-as-nails mercenary Rain Ocampo in Resident Evil, to the tough-as-nails Letty Ortiz in the The Fast and the Furious series, to the page image, the tough-as-nails Chris Sanchez from S.W.A.T., she's pretty much the modern-day image of the masculine version of this.
  • In The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants Carmen's hurt feelings and temper lead her to throw a rock through her father's dining room window and then run away.
  • Maria Elena (Penélope Cruz) in Vicky Cristina Barcelona. Although in this case the 'spice' comes from severe mental health problems - she's first mentioned as having stabbed her ex-husband and her first appearance is being saved from a suicide attempt.
  • Salma Hayek's character in Fools Rush In, wherein Isabel Fuentes the sexy, fun-loving, vivacious photographer stirs up the life of the extremely WASPy Alex Whitman (Matthew Perry). Of course, this is also true of Salma Hayek in every other movie role she has ever had.
  • Casey Cordero from The Duff is a feisty Latina hottie and tough girl. Sporty, very attractive, a clever hacker, and being described as a “fiery Latina” in-universe.
  • Juarez from G-Force easily. "You try and put a bow on me you're gonna lose a finger!"
  • For the 1923 film Rosita, Mary Pickford decided that she wanted to play a role besides her typical The Ingenue child ones. The result was her very much Playing Against Type with the lead character. Rosita is an outspoken and tough Spanish street singer.
  • Carlota Joaquina in Carlota Joaquina, Princesa do Brasil is actually born on Spain, but becomes a Brazilian princess after settling in the colony and fits this trope like a glove: dressed like a Lady in Red, hot-blooded and a domineering seductress that Really Gets Around.
  • In Knockout, Sandra is one. She's attractive, extroverted, and is a pro boxer who brags about having beaten men in sparring. She contrasts with Belle, the protagonist, who is also Latina but more reserved.
  • In Lone Star one of the teachers lampshades this when she suggests Pilar date a school supervisor who "has a thing for us hot-blooded Latinas".

    Literature 
  • A Confederacy of Dunces: One of the "hostesses" at the Night of Joy bar is a "Latin" woman (nationality unspecified) who affects this style—to the point of being pushy and abrasive. She also has a thick accent and really bad breath.
  • In the Backstrom novels of Leif G.W. Persson, there is Officer Magdelena Hernandez, a positive product of Sweden accepting refugees from elsewhere. Also Officer Felicia Petterson — a Swede by upbringing, adopted from a South American orphanage by Swedish foster-parents. Bäckström's opinion of them is pretty much Spexico.
  • Amber Sorrel from The Crush plays with this. She's fierce and loyal when it comes to her loved ones, but practices a cool and calm demeanor. She even references this trope by name, saying she doesn't want to be lumped into it.
  • Several women from South America feature in the Sherlock Holmes stories, all of them fiery, passionate... and in unhappy marriages.
    • Beryl, Stapleton's wife in The Hound of the Baskervilles is actually from Costa Rica, and is more or less trapped by her husband so she can't prevent his crimes... until she figures out he's seducing another woman to help him out.
    • Maria Gibson (née Pinto, in Brazil) in "Thor Bridge" as still passionately in love with her American husband, but he had eyes for the governess. Despite the governess rejecting his attentions, the wife still blamed the other woman for the breakdown of their marriage, to the point of shooting herself and framing the governess for it.
    • "The Sussex Vampire" is Ferguson's second wife (from Peru), and accused of sucking their child's blood (she also beat her husband's crippled son from his first marriage). She was doing it to 'save their child by Sucking Out The Poison, but stayed silent because the true culprit was the man's first son, who hated his half-brother for being healthier than him and taking away his father's attention.

    Live Action TV 
  • Ana Lucia Cortez from Lost, not coincidentally played by Michelle Rodriguez. She even seduces Sawyer to get a gun out of him.
  • Kristin Ortega from Altered Carbon, although she is depicted as being skeptical of religion.
  • MadTV parodied this with Debra Wilson and Nicole Sullivan playing Latinas Melina and Lita in a recurring skit.
  • Rosie Perez (sense a trend?) played one on Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, in an episode where her son was molested by her husband (whom he actually met while she was homeless).
  • Ugly Betty is a very intentional aversion of this trope, although her sister Hilda plays it straight, as did Salma Hayek when she guest-starred.
  • Judy Reyes as Carla from Scrubs. Lampshaded when a new Latina nurse is described as "spicy". The Janitor then calls her "a young Carla". Of course, most of the time Carla is a level-headed Team Mom, and any time she does get 'spicy', it's normally for parody sake.
  • A fair few of the characters on the Miami-based Dexter, most notably Lt. LaGuerta. Miguel Prado counts too once you factor in all the Ho Yay.
  • B'Elanna Torres, the half-human and half-Klingon Chief Engineer of Star Trek: Voyager, is a subversion. While she is of Latin heritage on her human side, and she is quite fiery in temperament, her hot-bloodedness is entirely due to her Klingon side. In an episode where she is split into her human and Klingon halves, her human (Latina) half is meek, hesitant, and fragile.
  • Noah's Arc: Despite being male, Ricky fits this trope, being aggressive and somewhat confrontational, flirtatious, highly sexual, and displaying the Tsundere-like inner kindness every so often.
  • Gloria on Modern Family, played by Sofia Vergara. Her hot-bloodedness and Ms. Fanservice tendencies are heavily featured in the show.
    Gloria: I am Colombian! We get excited! My country is covered in coffee!
  • Gabrielle, played by Eva Longoria Parker, on Desperate Housewives. The character is decidedly "spicy" even without the stereotypical accent.
  • Francia Raisa played a no-less spicy character on the made-for-TV third and fourth installments of The Cutting Edge.
  • A gender-flipped example of the trope at work in a show's ads: the TNT show Hawthorne, a medical drama, advertised its first season with somewhat somber music, though occasionally featuring a gospel choir. Then for season 2, they added Latin singer Marc Anthony to the cast. All of a sudden, the ads are filled with exciting salsa music and the ad's narrator promises "Things will be heating up at the hospital!"
  • Food Network used to feature Ingrid Hoffman, hostess of "Simply Delicioso" in this role. The show can still be seen in re-runs on Food Network's spinoff channel, the Cooking Channel.
  • As noted by the page quote, averted in Parks and Recreation. April Ludgate (Puerto Rican on her mom's side) is the resident Snark Knight at the Parks Department and says almost everything in a flat monotone. Not to say that she can't get spicy; it's just not something she normally does. At least not when she's sober.
  • In Wizards of Waverly Place, this is Theresa, when the mood strikes her. Averted with Alex who's too all-American to fit this.
  • Brooklyn Nine-Nine:
    • Downplayed with Detective Rosa Diaz. She is a hot-tempered, strong-willed, sexually confident Biker Babe who's not afraid to get physical, but she also is much more deadpan and stoic than the typical example.
    • Subverted in the same show with Detective Amy Santiago, who is also Latin American but is Diaz's complete opposite, being a buttoned-up, dorky and klutzy goody two-shoes with a competitive streak and plenty of neuroses and insecurities for the both of them.
  • In Blue Bloods, both of Detective Danny Reagan's road partners have been these: Jackie Curatola (played by Jennifer Esposito) and Maria Baez (played by Marisa Ramirez).
  • The nearest that British TV has got to this trope might be Scottish/Spanish actress Michelle Gomez, who brings something of the flamboyant spicy-Latin to everything she appears in, albeit with a Glasgow accent. (Although she played a South American footballer's wife in her first big TV series, The Book Group.)
  • Sophie from Bella and the Bulldogs fits this to a T. She is a Deadpan Snarker, living with a massive number of brothers has made her tough enough to be a Tomboy, yet she dresses and acts like a typical Girly Girl. She also attracts a considerable number of boys, most notably Newt, but rejects all of them and acts like a heartbreaker bordering on Fille Fatale.
  • Trish from Austin & Ally isn't way too attractive, but she is very spicy and her Latina origins are highly emphasized on, complete with a Quinceañera and an Overly Long Name - Patricia Maria de la Rosa. Like the example above, she is quite the Deadpan Snarker as well. And it has to be pointed out that She Cleans Up Nicely.
  • Played for Laughs on Married... with Children with local TV reporter Miranda Veracruz de la Hoya Cardenal.
  • Alana and Bianca from That's So Raven. Alana has the habit of speaking gratuitous Spanish in her sentences. She's the Alpha Bitch but shows Hidden Depths.
  • Vida: Lyn is perceived this way by a lot of white guys due to her gorgeous looks and also being promiscuous. However, otherwise she's not really an example, being mild-mannered, very far from an action girl and laidback generally (though with some exceptions).
  • Another Life (2019): Michelle. She's a very beautiful Latina who has a fiery temper (but with a soft side), wears sexy clothing and is quite tough.
  • A few of the Latina inmates on Orange Is the New Black fall under this, most notably, Aleida Diaz and Maria Ruiz, who both have the fiery attitudes as well as the looks. Mildly subverted with Flaca and Maritza, as they have the looks, but rarely the attitudes, and with Blanca, Ouija, and Zirconia, who have the attitudes, but not so much the looks. Also, a flashback episode reveals that Miss Rosa was definitely this in her youth, when she was a beautiful, fiery, bank robber.

    Music 
  • Just about any song by Shakira (Colombian) or Jennifer Lopez (Brooklyn descendant of Puerto Ricans).
  • Romanian singer Inna planned on calling an album LatINNA, and the lead single "Cola Song" even exploits the trope with the chorus "Soy Latina baby" (Romania isn't even if the country isn't Latino per se, though their language also comes from Latin).
  • The White Stripes gives us (from "Icky Thump"):
    Redhead senorita, lookin' dead, came and said, "need a bed?" in Espanol...

     Professional Wrestling 
  • WWE Diva Lita (who had a Mexican grandparent) was originally this as Essa Rios's valet. Instead of just being a valet, if someone tried to interfere in Rios' matches she'd block their interference with moonsaults and flying huracanranas. After her falling out with Rios, she dropped the Latin shtick to become Matt Hardy's high-spirited girlfriend.
  • Shelly Martinez may be best known for playing Ariel, a Gypsy fortune-teller-turned-vampire, in WWECW. Elsewhere, both under her own name and the name Salinas, she plays the trope relatively straight, although interestingly she plays the seductress aspect up more when using her own name and the spicy aspect more as Salinas.
  • Former TNA Knockout Tag Team Champion Sarita has embraced this since her Face–Heel Turn. May be a case of Fake Nationality as Sarah Stock is Canadian though her pre-TNA fame came from wrestling frequently in Mexico. Her kayfabe cousin Rosita plays this straight as well, purposely removing her earrings while talking trash as a signal that she is ready to fight.
  • The famed WWC (World Wrestling Council in Puerto Rico) Women's Champion Debbie Ross, known for beating people down back stage for slights like smeared makeup.
  • Another famed WWC champion, La Rosa Negra. Black Rose is usually friendly enough as a tecnica anyway but is still known for outbursts of rage that can get pretty explosive.
  • Ivelisse Vélez played this up a lot more after her release from WWE, dying her blonde hair brown to make herself look more Hispanic and adopting a tough Spicy Latina attitude. She wasn't in NXT long enough to get a handle on her character, but she was given a reggaeton theme and was energetic in her face appearances and aggressive as a heel.
  • By contrast, Valentina did not let her pale skin or blonde hair get in the way of dubbing herself "Latina Heat". Though she's more known as Alexis Laree's scorned sister, TNA's evil cheerleader or the tone deaf Kandi Kisses, she did feud with fellow spicy Latina Erica Porter in the California based Ultimate Pro Wrestling (herself better known as WOW's Jungle Grrl).
  • Bandita from Wrestlicious was outright referred to as a Spicy Latina on the show's website. She manages the bullfighter Maria Toro who is one as well.
  • Ring of Honor's Mandy Leon promotes the hashtag #Latina on her Twitter. One of her Finishing Moves, a neckbreaker hold, was called Havana Dreams.
  • Eve Torres briefly when she was in her 'hoeski' phase in early 2012 - a seductress who attempted to use Zack Ryder and John Cena for attention. But she eventually found her feet more as a Bitch in Sheep's Clothing.
  • Taynara Conti wouldn't usually be counted, being a blonde a Brazilian, but she and Venezuelan Dynamite Didi Cruz, who defintiely would be counted, share the Catchphrase "Latinas Do It Better". And Conti is more so the "spice", Didi is certainly animated and loud but has a comparitively subdued temper.

    Radio 
  • Bleak Expectations: Season 3 has Juanita Hotchile, one of Harry Biscuit's impulsively married replacement wives, who he correctly suspects is using him for citizenship purposes. She quickly dumps him for Mister Gently Benevolent, and begins playing this trope to the hilt... even after having her brain placed in the body of a dinosaur (or, as she puts it, dinophwoar). Both Biscuit and Benevolent are deeply troubled by her being such a sexy dinosaur.
    Mr. Benevolent: Get a grip, Gently, she's a dinosaur!

    Theatre 
  • Anita from West Side Story stands out from the other Shark girls (already a fairly spicy lot) by virtue of sheer spice. She has the most exuberant choreography and catchiest songs of the entire show. In the first film adaptation she was one of the few to be actually played by a Latino actor.
  • Mimi from RENT is the Spicy Latina meets The Woobie. Meets some heroin.
  • Taz from Starship is a parody, often using random Spanish words that make no sense in context.
  • In Damn Yankees, Lola takes on this persona ("Señorita Lolita Rodriguez Hernando... Miss West Indies of 1957") in an attempt to seduce Joe.
  • Carmen from Fame is a teenage example.
  • The title character in Bizet's Carmen is also an example. Fiery, spirited, and very passionate, Carmen is perhaps the most popular example in opera.

     Video Games 
  • Judy Alvarez from Cyberpunk 2077, though she's a bit of a downplayed version. While she is very Hot-Blooded and prone to outbursts when angry, frustrated or sad, she has an introspective and quiet side. She's also a romance option for female V. Judy only really becomes flirty or sultry if the player decides to enter a relationship with her; with all other characters and a platonic V she remains professional/friendly.
  • Isabela from Dead Rising. Confrontational, Rough background, Good fighter and all the way around Hot.
  • Isabela from the Dragon Age series is a fiercely independent pirate captain from Antiva, a Fantasy Counterpart Culture of Spain in Thedas. True to this trope, she is shapely raven-haired, olive-skinned Action Girl with an exotic British accent, who radiates such sexy appeal that Even the Girls Want Her (and she's one of the few openly bisexual characters in the games).
  • Catalina from Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas. She's extremely violent, loud, aggressive, and generally batshit insane, but she also has a tender side to her when she's infatuated.
  • Kyanna Delrio of HuniePop. Dark skinned, dark-haired, loves Spexican flavored gifts, and very passionate and zesty.
    Kyanna (to Audrey): "You're fucking loco!"
  • Killer Instinct: Maya is turned into one in the 2013 reboot; in the original games, she was just an amazon Jungle Princess, while in the new game, she turned into Brazilian and has certainly a rough attitude to match.
  • Ashley Williams from Mass Effect is Hispanic and one of the strongest characters in the game. And she's definitely got more sass than any of the other characters.
  • Overwatch features Sombra, a Playful Hacker from Mexico who channels her sass and playful attitude into being the most dangerous cyberterrorist on the planet. Prone to Poirot Speak.
  • One of the selectable voices for the main character in Saints Row 2 is definitely this. Below are a few examples.
    I think I need a bigger gun.
    I dare Ultor to try and stop me.
    I got the biggest balls in this whole city. That's right I said it.
    I sure wish I was killing something about now.
    You can never have enough guns, that's what I always say.
    Sobriety tests are for pussies.
  • Street Fighter V: Laura is an Afro-Brazilian with Japanese descent, but she still counts due to being sassy and playful.
  • Sunset Overdrive has Las Catrinas, a gang of ninja cheerleader pseudo nurses. Among them is their leader Esperanza whose temperamental personality and Stripperific outfit lend to this trope even further.
  • Tekken: Christie Monteiro and Katarina Alves are Brazilians, prone to trash talking and have very lively personalities, the latter more so than the former.

    Webcomics 

    Web Video 
  • The Autobiography of Jane Eyre: Susanna-Maria Ramirez Gonzalez, a Hispanic maid at Mr Rochester's house. She's bothered that Jane cannot pick up her clothes for washing and loudly complains about it in Gratuitous Spanish, mocking Jane for her lack of social skills. She's later very pleased and looks excited when Jane's nice to her, but displeased when Jane doesn't understand her name in Spanish, and makes her Susan, albeit reluctantly. She first appeared in episode 7.
  • The Gumdrops Sadia, played by Venezuelan actress Kaireht Yovera, is wild and exciting. Her Establishing Character Moment is trolling someone in Spanish. It's worth noting that the character was just written as a prankster, and would have been the same had a non-Latina actress played her.
  • Discussed in the Stereotypology series where the trope is discussed as just a narrow view of individual Latina women, if they're found attractive or passionate or upset, they're dismissed as "spicy". That's the least of the problem.
  • An episode of The Kat Call discusses and complains about this stereotype.
  • Abuela of Abuela is a mouthy Cuban grandmother.

    Western Animation 
  • The Cleveland Show has Junior's wife's Cecilia's aunt, Choni who is played by Real Life spicy latina, Rosie Perez.
  • Paulina from Danny Phantom. Very stubborn and the most beautiful girl at Casper High.
  • Eduarado's creator Nina Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends who's a cop that's tough on crime.
  • Inverted with Carmen "Raya" Alonso from Jem. Raya is Mexican-American but is the complete opposite of this trope. She's the shyest, likely sweetest, character in her band.
  • Justice League:
    • An oddball example would be Hawkgirl. She's from the planet Thanagar, not Latin America, and speaks perfect English, but fits much of the trope. And (like all other Thanagarian characters on the show) she's played by a Hispanic actress, which was a conscious decision, to give them a slightly "alien" sound.
    • A more literal example would be Fire, who also shares the same voice actress as Hawkgirl.
  • Officer Renee Montoya in Batman: The Animated Series is a snarky Hardboiled Detective with a habit of Gratuitous Spanish.
  • Ronnie Anne Santiago from The Loud House can be considered a non-sexy variant of this, considering she's only eleven, but she most certainly displays all the other traits.
  • Ricochet's mom from ¡Mucha Lucha! since she too is a masked wrestler and a good one at that.
  • Lupe from My Gym Partner's a Monkey is a sassy toucon with a latina accent.
  • Done literally in South Park season 7 episode 5 "Fat Butt and Pancake Head" with a parody of a parody (you read that right) of Jennifer Lopez, "played" by Cartman's hand, performing the song "Taco Flavored Kisses".
  • Cheerleader Liz Allan on The Spectacular Spider-Man, particularly after she's been defrosted. Just check out her perky cheer pose when she appears on the opening credits.


 
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