!Caliente! !Caliente! !Caliente!

Ranking the new Latino glossies

For the 38th time in this young century, the Latino market is caliente!This year alone, three different glossy mags have debuted, joining such tried-and-boring standbys as Latina,PeopleenEspañoland the PennySaverin the quest for those Spanish eyes and the consumer dollars behind them. A look at lastres:

TU CIUDAD LOS ANGELES
Slogan: Your City, Your Culture
From the editor:"This magazine will look at Los Angeles through a Latino prism, exploring the duality of bicultural life in a city that morphs into something different on a daily basis."
Which means . . .Look, gabachos—Latinos can morph and dualistically biculturalize too!
Corporate sugar papi:Emmis Communications, the folks behind radio station KPWR-FM 105.9 "Power 106" and LosAngelesmagazine.
Editorial focus:Los Angeles Latino life, from Olvera Street to Hollywood with a smattering of Whittier rockabillies included.
Best feature:Back in the Day, which will run historical pictures of Latinos doing extraordinary things—like sunning at the beach!
Worst feature:Sunset at Chavez, a column TuCiudadeditor Oscar Garza promises will be a "metaphor for being Latino in L.A." First entry—staff writer Daniel J. Vargas feels pochoguilt for hiring a maid. We always did prefer similes . . .
Orange County shout-out:For a magazine that's supposed to be the authority of Latino L.A., TuCiudadsure loves its neighbors in lanaranja.The three Iraq veterans Dennis Romero profiled in his excellent feature on Latino soldiers all live or lived in Orange County. There are plugs for the coming Evita Perón exhibit at the Bowers and the Pageant of the Masters. According to their food editor, some of the "best Latin restaurants in LA" are Costa Mesa's Super Pollo and El Matador, and that beloved Los Angeles taquería institution, Taco Mesa.
Horrendous use de Spangish:Miracle of Diós, none.
Its gabacho equivalent:Los Angeles.
Overall scale of mexcellency (on a scale of one to five Mexicans):3. Promising debut issue features sharp writing, good layouts and biting humor (try their "Latino Quotient" quiz). Just leave Orange County out of your pages—contrary to what Arte Moreno says, Orange County is notLos Angeles.



FUEGO
Slogan: The World's Hottest Latino Men's Magazine!
From the editor:"Welcome to Fuego, the sexiest, craziest party for Latinos and their militant lovers."
Which means . . .We're going to fulfill every Latin-lover stereotype gabachospeg on Latinos andadd in a couple of cholo and day-laborer clichés as the worm in our tequila bottle.
Corporate sugar papi:Harris Publications, which also publishes GuitarWorld, Revolver, XXLand many other bad music rags.
Editorial focus:Poof pieces on hot girls—all in the name of getting them in tight clothes. And J-Lo!
Best feature:Gloria, a surprisingly insightful section on Latinos in sports—did you know, for instance, that Boston Red Sox slugger Ted Williams was half-Mexican?
Worst feature:Shine on You, editor Vee Bravo's letter to readers. Bravo is now the most inarticulate editor since OrangeCountyRegisterowner R.C. Hoiles.
Orange County shout-out:Mercedes Terrell, a 21-year-old Fullerton hottie whose lovely flat stomach is part of Fuego's"LA's Sexiest Punk Mamis"photo shoot.
Horrendous use de Spangish:"Problema was, it only reached the sala.Loscuartoswere malditobaking ovens."
Its gabacho equivalent:A less verbose Maxim.
Overall scale of mexcellency:2. Veers too much between cheesecake shots of chicaswith pert nipples and defiant shout-outs against Latino exploitation. Make up your mind—are you down with larazaor up for mexploitation?



BELLO
Slogan: Redefining the American Paradigm
From the editor:"bello Magazine is a reflection of each and every one of us and our need to follow the fire within."
Which means . . .¡Caliente! ¡Caliente! ¡Caliente!
Corporate sugar papi:An independent publication, but the LosAngelesTimesdistributed bello's first issue to Sunday subscribers last November.
Editorial focus:The Latino world. Profiles in the second issue include Brazilian photographers, Nobel Peace Prize laureate Rigoberta Menchú and cover boy George López.
Best feature:Anything by Mexico editor Guillermo Gómez-Peña, the wickedly insightful and hilarious Chicano cultural critic and MacArthur Genius.
Worst feature:Millionaire's Club. Not that there aren't any ricoLatinos out there, but if I want to read about ISOs and Non-Quals, I'm reading Fortune.
Orange County shout-out:Besides the fact it's based in Santa Ana? Profile of MacArthur Genius/secular saint Reuben Martinez of Librería Martínez fame.
Horrendous use de Spangish:"Pinche suit, man, estava más apretados que la chingada,man."
Its gabacho equivalent:VanityFair.
Overall scale of mexcellency (on a scale of one to five Mexicans):4. The talent and vision are there—and they're from Orange County.

 
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