Mishel Prada on Saying Goodbye to ‘Vida,’ Its Lasting Impact, and What That Final Scene Meant

Margeaux Sippell

The first TV show ever to have an all-Latinx writer’s room may have come to an end Sunday night, but star Mishel Prada is confident that “Vida” has created opportunities for future shows to follow in its footsteps and explore more queer, intersectional communities of color.

“I love that now there are archetypes that people can point to,” said Prada, who played Emma on all three seasons of the drama series. “When you’re pitching a show, you can say, ‘Oh, like a Mari from Vida.’ It creates an image for someone to latch onto.”

But Prada hopes that the conversations that “Vida” started will get pushed “even further.”

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“I want to see a show like ‘Vida,’ but centered on Afro-Latinx characters. Because that’s another realm that we haven’t really gotten to see as much in Hollywood and what that looks like,” she continued. “I know for so long, people thought, ‘Oh, you can be black and Latinx?” That’s very much a part of the Latinx community.”

It’s hope for the future that makes Prada feel better about having to say goodbye to “Vida.” Not only was the show a game-changer in terms of promoting visibility for the LGBTQ and Latinx communities, but it was also Prada’s first series regular television role.

“I felt when we knew that it was gonna be the last season, that it was gonna feel a lot scarier in a way,” she said. “It felt like a transition. I came in with a job and left with a family. And what was interesting was that all of us looked at each other and said, ‘We’re gonna keep doing stuff together, we’re gonna keep creating stuff together and we’re gonna be in each other’s lives forever,'” she said. “There is a mourning, obviously, of an end, but there’s a hope for a beginning. My hope is that it isn’t just about ‘Vida’ — it’s about the shows that are going to come after that. What are we going to then bring into the world from what we learned on that show?”

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Prada also reflected on that emotional final scene between Emma and Lyn, and what it means for the future of the bar.

“What I love about that last moment is that you realize it’s not about the bar,” she said. “She looks at Lyn and says, ‘Are you coming?’ It’s wherever they’re going. It isn’t about the bar anymore. It’s the way you can have a big argument with someone you love and then say, ‘So what are we having for dinner tonight?'”

“The love and the success wasn’t ever about the bar, it was about them connecting together,” she continued. “[Growth] comes when everything’s falling apart,t and there’s nothing left, and there you are. [It’s about] the acceptance of that. I think that’s really beautiful.”

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