The Five Juanas on Netflix, a Trashy Mexican Telenovela That May Tickle Your Guilty Pleasure Zones

Go forward, strive to not roll your eyes on the idea of Mexican Netflix telenovela The 5 Juanas: Destiny places 5 ladies named Juana in Cancun on the identical time, the place they understand all of them have the identical birthmark on their butts. WACKY. This 18-episode quest for paternity — titled La Venganza de las Juanas in Spanish, which interprets to the far-more-tantalizing Revenge of the Juanas — boasts greater than its share of ridiculous conditions simply within the opening episode, which is soapy, and, nicely, I can’t resist calling it “cheeky,” with apologies, though I’ll cease wanting saying it’s “tongue-in-cheeky,” as a result of I’m above such crass innuendo. It’s horny and foolish in equal measure, so perhaps it’ll be some responsible trashy enjoyable.

Opening Shot: An overhead shot of Simon Marroquin (Carlos Ponce) mendacity on a purple sofa, talking in voiceover about darkish secrets and techniques.

The Gist: That shot of Simon? It was intercut with glimpses of hyperstylized intercourse scenes drenched in blue mild. Then we soar to Cancun, the place we cycle by introductions to the Juanas through the next wunzas: Wunza stripper, Juana Manuela (Zuria Vega), the high-end sort who doesn’t do gigs that put something lower than a stack of C-notes in her palms. Wunza singer, Juana Matilde (Juanita Arias), stopped from returning to Colombia by federal authorities. Wunza psychic, Juana Bautista (Sofia Engberg), caught studying tarot playing cards at a crappy bachelorette get together. Wunza nun, Juana Caridad (Oka Giner), trapped in a dingy residence whereas the cops raid a close-by drug HQ. And wunza journalist, Juana Valentina (Renata Notni), who we meet spreading her mom’s ashes on the Cancun seashore.

Destiny, performed by the present’s writer-deities, is a major character right here, as a result of he/she/it/they makes positive a number of issues occur, most notably the next: Every introductory sequence contrives to indicate every Juana’s naked/largely naked ass in close-up so we get an excellent eyeful of birthmark and cheek. All Juanas find yourself on the identical resort on the identical time. An earthquake that prompts evacuation of all the constructing and places all of the Juanas out on the get together patio. One other sequence of contrivances permitting us to see a sequence of naked buttcheeks in close-up, so the Juanas can understand that one thing fishy is occurring with their lives, and never simply because the birthmark is formed like a fish.

In the meantime, we additionally get a shot of a TV-news interview with Simon Marroquin, who occurs to be some form of Vital Politician. It doesn’t take a mathematician to place two and two along with this plot, however who is aware of, telenovelas positive do like their ludicrous twists.

Photograph: Gerardo Maldonado R.

What Reveals Will It Remind You Of? Not being an skilled on telenovelas, I burned certainly one of my free article views on Oprah Each day so I may study that La Reina del Sur and Sin Senos Si Hay Paraiso are fashionable ones. Notably, The 5 Juanas is a reboot of Colombian sequence Las Juanas, which aired within the late Nineties, in addition to a Mexican model of the identical title, from 2004; neither had the birthmark plot system, nevertheless.

Our Take: Properly, no one’s asking us to take this shit severely. Anybody with fundamental mind operate can deduce how the sisterly dynamic is gonna work right here: The archetypal madonna/whore ethical distinction within the nun and the stripper, the logical journalist will conflict with the psychic’s supernatural instinct, and the singer will attempt to preserve all of them united for a similar trigger, discovering their father, who nearly actually is a cad and a corrupt public determine. After one episode, it positive looks as if the fundamental plot is the equal of a 10-piece toddler puzzle — though with lots extra to go, one has to hope the small print and problems supply some twists and surprises.

The 5 Juanas pulls out all method of corny telenovela storytelling methods, starting from hazy flashbacks to characters talking their innermost ideas in voiceover, though the manufacturing values are on par with a decent-budget cable drama. So at the least it doesn’t look low cost, though it makes no bones about being a regularly trashy show of nudey beef-and-cheesecake. The present has but to encourage any massive laughs — perhaps a smirky shake-of-the-head or two — however then once more, I used to be ingesting espresso and never one thing 100-proof straight out of the bottle.

Intercourse and Pores and skin: Loads of T&A, together with some male A, all of it indubitably wholly needed and by no means gratuitous.

Parting Shot: All 5 Juanas collect in the identical shot for the primary time ever. MONUMENTAL.

Sleeper Star: All 5 Juanas get just about equal time. The stripper Juana is featured in promo photographs pointing a pistol, as a result of that’s what assured strippers find yourself doing in telenovelas about 5 ladies who uncover that all of them have the identical butt birthmark. So my cash’s on the nun Juana doing one thing that’s very un-nunlike earlier than the season wraps, so we are able to all fake to be shocked by it.

Most Pilot-y Line: Stripper Juana: “Hey! Anybody else named Juana? With a f—ing fish-shaped birthmark on their butt?”

Our Name: STREAM IT. If this kind of contrived and tawdry escapism is your model, then by all means, indulge your guilty-pleasure needs. In any other case, your mileage could differ.

John Serba is a contract author and movie critic primarily based in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Learn extra of his work at or comply with him on Twitter: @johnserba.

Stream The Five Juanas on Netflix | Stream It or Skip It?


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