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Series / Diary of a Future President

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Elena Cañero-Reed has just been elected the first female and Latina President of the United States, and on her first day receives a special delivery from her mother Gabi: her childhood diary, with a message to never forget how she got there. And so she's sent on a journey down memory lane, chronicling her childhood as a Cuban-American girl struggling to navigate the "jungle" of middle school, while also dealing with her mother starting to date for the first time since her father's death.

The series is a high-concept dramedy on Disney+ created by Ilana Peña and executive produced by Gina Rodriguez, who also plays the adult Elena. It's produced by CBS, and is the service's first project to be licensed from an outside developer.

The first season of 10 episodes premiered on January 17, 2020 with a new episode available to stream every Friday.

The series received a second season order of an additional 10 episodes in May 2020. Season 2 made its debut on August 18, 2021, with all 10 episodes available to stream. On December 13, 2021, Peña shared that the show was not renewed for a third season.

Contains examples of:

  • A Taste of Their Own Medicine: Jessica ditched her childhood BFFs, Elena and Sasha for the more mature and glamorous Melissa right before middle school. However, after Melissa finds out Jessica lied to her about having her period, she ditches her for a snobby new clique called “The Brits”, whose Establishing Character Moment was Sasha saying that their whole purpose was “being too cool for everything.”
  • Aborted Arc: The second season largely abandons the fact that adult Elena is the future President and shifts her role to be Elena’s inner voice.
  • Alpha Bitch: Melissa, who Elena's elementary school best friend Jessica ditched her for.
  • Ascended Extra: Adult Elena will have a more prominent role in the second season, though mainly as a figment of Elena's imagination.
  • Aw, Look! They Really Do Love Each Other: As much as Elena and Bobby argue like typical siblings, they really are close to each other. Elena is the first family member that Bobby comes out to and she immediately reacts by hugging him.
  • Book Ends: The first episode starts in the future as President-elect Elena Cañero-Reed prepares to address the nation. The final episode of the season ends with the President delivering her speech.
  • Cliffhanger: The second season ends with Elena receiving a phone call with the results of the election. Said results are not revealed, but Elena is shocked by what she hears.
  • Closet Key: Liam is this for Bobby. Time will tell if Liam reciprocates or not.
  • Catchphrase: "Chill" for Bobby and to a lesser extent “Wait what” for Elena
  • Disappeared Dad: Elena's father died three years before the series opens, and her mother has just started dating again.
  • Downer Ending: Episode 8 Matters of Diplomacy doesn’t end well for any of the Cañero-Reeds Sasha lies to Elena about having an orthodontist appointment when she was really getting ready with Jessica and rips into her for her selfishness. Bobby is heartbroken when Liam ditches their prank to dance with a girl and gets into a fight with him. Sam breaks up with Gabi when it looks like she’s still uncomfortable with getting serious with him.
  • From Bad to Worse: Elena finds she has some subtle hairs in her upper lip the night of her first school dance, and every attempt to fix it just makes it look more like a mustache. She eventually decides to just own it, Frida Kahlo-style.
  • Heroic BSoD: Elena suffers one when she realizes that the presentation that she thought was due in a week was actually due that day.
  • How We Got Here: The entire central premise, with an adult Elena being reminded of each step to becoming President starting at age 12.
  • I Just Want to Be Special: In the season one finale, Jessica confesses that she’s obsessed with being popular because she was afraid of being invisible and unimportant.
  • It's All About Me: Elena recognizes that her campaign for Student Rep had become all about her, and not the students that she would represent.
  • Mellow Fellow: Bobby fits this to a tee. His favorite response to describe how he’s feeling is, “Chill.”
  • Prank Date: After being humiliated on the court, Bobby invites newcomer Liam to a “kickoff party” that night in the gym with the intent of pelting him with water balloons. Fortunately, a heart-to-heart with Sam makes Bobby realize the error in his ways and he meets up with Liam to apologize.
  • Pronouncing My Name for You: Elena is insistent on her last name being pronounced properly, with the tilde indicating a “nya” sound.
  • Previously on…: Each episode starts with a montage from previous episodes and a voice-over by Elena.
  • Second Love: Sam is this for Gabbi, after her husband Robert’s death. At one point in the series, she’s worried that she’s dishonoring Robert’s memory by moving on with another man, until she has a heart-to-heart with Bobby, with him explaining a video-game method that somehow perfectly explains why she won’t dishonor Robert by moving on with Sam.
  • Sickly Neurotic Geek: Claude, Sasha's nerdy boyfriend, is practically allergic to everything.
  • Wham Shot: The first episode ends with Elena walking into the living room and catching Gabi and Sam, the boyfriend Gabi was hiding from Elena, kissing.