In this undated image, comedian-actress Lucille Ball and her husband, musician-actor Desi Arnaz from the comedy series, "I Love Lucy," are shown. Ball, who died on April 26, 1989, would have celebrated her 100th birthday on Saturday, Aug. 6, 2011. (AP Photo/file) ORG XMIT: NYET584
Too often television represents Latinos as sadistic gang members or saucy sexpots, but occasionally there’s a breakthrough.
“I Love Lucy” (1951-57)
Desi Arnaz practically invented the exasperated TV husband, not to mention the structure of the modern-day sitcom.
Officer Frank Poncherello
Erik Estrada’s sparkling-white teeth probably did more for toothpaste than Colgate.
“Chico and the Man” (1974-77)
What would Freddie Prinze have accomplished if he hadn’t died so young? One of TV’s great mysteries.
Lt. Martin Castillo
“Miami Vice” (1984-90)
The series was struggling in both ratings and tone until Edward James Olmos marched in and whipped everyone into shape.
“My So-Called Life” (1994-95)
The show was quickly canceled, but Wilson Cruz’s portrayal of an abused gay teenager will last forever.
Det. Bobby Simone