May 3 saw the premiere of Telemundo.com’s first ever bilingual, branded entertainment series. The webnovela, called Mia Mundo, targets young, Hispanic women who, like the title character, are Modern Independent Achievers. In fact, the title character’s name, Mia, is an acronym for just that.
Each 13-minute, online episode features a 60/40 English/Spanish script with prominent product placement from Verizon Wireless and Chevy and Chevrolet. The plot centers on Mia Ramirez, played by actress Jacquelin Marquez, who is career driven to the point that she’s ignoring her handsome and devoted boyfriend Ryan played by José Guillermo Cortines. Ryan meanwhile has marriage on his mind and at least two blondes on his heels.
Mia has a high-powered job in media that, for some reason, requires her to create proposals. Though it’s not 100% clear what Mia does, we have had plenty of opportunity to see her doing it on Verizon Wireless gizmos while getting there in a Chevy. Ryan gets in on the act by calling her a lot on his Verizon Wireless phone and driving clients to lunch in a Chevrolet Camaro.
In a strange casting twist, English-speaking reality stars from sister network Bravo, (both networks are owned by NBC Universal), have been placed alongside their Latino cast mates. Gretchen Rossi of Real Housewives of Orange County plays Ryan’s sexpot client Debralee Anderson while Flipping Out and Interior Therapy with Jeff Lewis’ Jenni Pulos plays Amy Cloud, a co-worker of Mia’s with a mysterious past.
The network will show trailers for the web show on-air to drive traffic to the website. We can’t wait to see if this show does as well as Old Navy’s Spanish-language online novela, Estilos Robados, which was co-sponsored by Telemundo and ran on TelemundoMovil, Telemundo’s mobile phone app.