“On My Block”: Netflix’s newest coming-of-age story

Cynthia Garduno, Staff Writer

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The Netflix comedy On My Block follows a diverse group of friends who are navigating high school and growing up in inner-city Los Angeles. Not only do these group of teens face the pressure of starting high school, but they also deal with race and class oppression, gangs and family struggles. On My Block is completely different compared to other teen comedies because of its realness.The show doesn’t sugarcoat the struggles of growing up as a person of color or in an inner-city environment, but it also shows that it isn’t all bad either. It tells it like it is and does so in a way that’s both intense and humorous.

The series follows four close-knit friends: Monse,Ruby, Jamal, and Cesar who has recently been initiated into a gang that he has family ties to. A couple of episodes in, Olivia is introduced and becomes apart of the friend group. Throughout the series there is a fair share of teen struggles, but what I thoroughly enjoyed about this series is that they focus on struggles that aren’t always talked about, such as deportation,violence, and gangs. Gang life specifically is really brought into the spotlight as Cesar struggles with being a new member of his family gang. These topics may appear in a special episode on your average show, but On My Block incorporates them into every episode to really show how normal these issues are for the characters and teens of color living in inner-cities. Not only does the show focus on the struggles of the teens, but it does so in an interesting and engaging way. 

Overall, the series does an excellent job of bringing people of color into the spotlight. Not only is the cast very diverse, but they are also remarkable actors. They all have such a strong connection with one another that it seems like they were all the best of friends prior to the show. If you are looking for a new show to watch that doesn’t sugarcoat real life struggles, then I definitely recommend watching On My Block.


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