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Series / Verano Azul

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"Verano Azul" (Blue Summer) was a Spanish TV series that was filmed from 1979 to 1980, then aired from late 1981 to early 1982. It had 19 one-hour long episodes and was aired in TVE (Televisión Española), becoming a massive hit almost immediately. It's still very well-loved in Spain and fondly recalled in Latin America.

The series starts when seven Spanish kids (Beatriz/Bea and her brother Tito, Javi, Desi, Manolito/Piraña and Quique) go spend their summer vacations with their families in the Costa del Sol ("Coast of the Sun/Sun Coast''). The specific location is never fully disclosed), but the series itself was shot in Nerja (Málaga province) plus some shoots in Motril and Almuñecar (Granada province). As they arrive there they befriend a local boy named Pancho, an old sailor nicknamed Chanquete, and a lonely painter named Julia who has just arrived to the place as well. Together, the group starts living life at its fullest...


Verano Azul has many tropes, including these:

  • Beach Tropes: The series is basically a Coming-of-Age Story that happens in a beach city...
  • Big Eater: Manolito aka Piraña (Piranha), who is even seen eating in the opening!
  • Big Fancy House: Both Desi and Javi's families rent quite the beach houses in the village, specially compared with the middle-class flats rented by Bea/Tito's and Piraña's.
  • Bittersweet Ending: Not only Chanquete dies and this depresses the kids a lot, but the summer ends and everyone save for Pancho has to go back home.
  • Broken Bird: Julia has more than one trace of this, since she lost her husband and son in terrible circumstances.
  • Cool Old Guy: Chanquete, and how.
  • Coming-of-Age Story: For the teens and children in the cast, who learn many things about themselves and others.
  • Death by Newbery Medal: Chanquete fits through and through, as he's a Cool Old Guy who suddenly falls victim to a heart illness right as the summer ends.
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  • Due to the Dead: Chanquete's funeral, attended by everyone.
  • Fangirl: Desi and Bea are fans of the Idol Singer Bruno, who once drops by the village for a video shooting and is swarmed by fangirls. He turns out to be a Stepford Smiler Lonely Rich Kid and tells this to Chanquete.
  • Foreshadowing: Chanquete's health fails him at some point. Five episodes later, he dies.
  • From the Mouths of Babes: Tito and Piraña, as the youngest kids, often made too many questions
  • The Generic Guy: Quique is rather plain, compared with the more colorful other kids
  • Grey Rain of Depression: Julia's A Day in the Limelight starts with her getting VERY depressed as it rains because her husband and daughter died in a rainy day two years ago.
  • Head-Turning Beauty: Bea, and how. Many guys are entranced by her looks.
  • Inter Generational Friendship: Chanquete (50/60's), Julia (probably late 30's/early 40's), and the kids (more or less in the 7 to 16 age range)
  • Local Hangout: Chanquete's home, which is actually an old boat remade into a house.
  • Love Triangle: The pretty Bea is courted by Pancho and Javi, and that's a point of friction between the two more than once.
  • Mouthy Kid: Piraña tended to have no brain-to-mouth filter, probably because he's a little kid and doesn't really know better.
  • Meganekko: Bea's best friend Desi is very cute and uses glasses
  • No Periods, Period: Averted, since a whole episode is dedicated to Beatriz getting hers
  • Parental Marriage Veto: Happens to Bea, when she falls for an older boy named Rafael.
  • Parental Substitute: Pancho lives with his uncle and aunt and works in their dairy products store. It's never explained why his parents ain't around.
  • Parents as People: The kids have lots of problems with their parents, specially Javi with his workaholic and very authoritatian dad and Desi with her divorced parents. There's a whole episode with the moms and dads asking Chanquete for help to bond with their children, even.
  • Platonic Life-Partners: Chanquete and Julia aren't romantically interested in each other (plus Julia is a Widow Woman who's still grieving).
  • Scenery Porn: Since the series is set in an area known for its breath-taking beaches...
  • Slice of Life: With kids, their families and others living their lives in a Spanish summer
  • Team Dad - Team Mom: Chanquete and Julia, respectively, who take turns at counseling the children
  • Teen Pregnancy: Javi meets a girl named Eva, who has just been abandoned by her boyfriend because she's pregnant and doesn't want to abort the kid. Chanquete, Julia and the gang decide to help her.
  • Those Two Guys: Piraña and Tito
  • Very Special Episode: The series was shot/aired in the Spain of The '80s, which was just out of Franco's decades-long dictatorship. As such it was particularly anvilicious in it's introduction of themes like Teen Pregnancy, divorce, gangs, etc.
  • Visit by Divorced Dad: Happens to Desi, when her dad drops by in the village.

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