First Take on MTV Tr3s

I’m into my second hour of the primera noche MTV Tr3s’ (Tres?), the new spanglish, “let’s hear it for mi gente” channel. Mi verdicto: no estoy impresionado, pero les voy a dar un chance.

So far, I’ve seen:

· Gwen Stefani recall how much she enjoyed having a chola classmate.

· Tween crooner Frankie J declare how he strives to serve “both worlds.”

· Tres host Carlos claim that the station will serve as una “mezcla de cultura into a burrito”

· English subtitles when Shakira and Mana spoke in Spanish.

· The Kumbia Kings proudly declare that “Latinos know how to party.”

· A bunch of acts aimed at the bicultural tweener set. (Exceptions include Calle 13, atercelapelados, Tego Calderon, Wilsin y Angel, and well, Mana—tweener crap, but good tweener crap. And you can’t go wrong with Sean Paul.)

· The big TRL news: Nelly Furtado cut her finger while filming a video.

· The big interview question: tostones o maduros?

The ads loos like what you’d see at 4 am, only I’m watching in prime time:

  • When was the last time you saw an ad for dial-up? Well, check out MTV Tres!
  • “Forever freestyle,” a compliation cd of 80s dance music (It has aired so often that my wife is memorizing the order of the songs.)
  • The Airforce, one in Spanish.
  • Lots of credit counseling.
  • A commercial for sports posters, featuring famous motociclista Ben Roethlisberger.


  • A shout-out from Snoop, who closed with an “Horale.”
  • Cute “we speak your language” interstitials, including a mom critiquing her daughter’s choice in fashion and Julietta Venegas exploring the difference between being Mexican in Mexico and Latino in the U.S.
  • The teaser for the Quincenera reality show with a red-suited banda that looked and sounded suspiciously like East Los’ ska band Uptown. One can hope.

The wife was a big cynic up until Alejandro Sanz closed TRL—she’s in love, even if he is a Spaniard. And here comes Calle 13. [UPDSTE: Calle 13 was fun to watch– Residente earns even more points for sporting a Mike Bibby jersey.] The fact that Lucia Ballas-Traynor is leading this project is heartening—she did impressive work at Galavision a few years ago. So, tendre paciencia.


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