Talia in the Kitchen
By Emily Ashby,
Common Sense Media Reviewer
Common Sense Media Reviewers
Likable female role model outshines soap opera-style series.
A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.
The show intends to entertain rather than to educate, but it does incorporate some aspects of Latin American culture, including language, foods, and manners of dress.
Talia won't let other people's negativity keep her from making her dreams come true. The story centers on a nontraditional family structure (orphaned sisters being raised by their grandmother) that's loving and supportive, as well as a racially diverse cast. Siblings often bicker, and there's some sabotage at play between rival restaurateurs. Talia and Julie sometimes reflect on their feelings about their parents' deaths.
Positive Role Models
Talia is self-reliant, independent, and determined, and she draws on her family's heritage as a source of strength. Her business and social rivals are less principled and will stoop to just about any level to interfere with her success, which sometimes inspires her to retaliate. Dolores is kindly and loving with her granddaughters.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Talia in the Kitchen is a soap opera/comedy that's geared toward kids and centers on a teen who's trying to reopen her family's restaurant with the help of her friends and younger sister. The show's content gives parents no reason to worry, and the fact that the titular character's family is Latin American yields many opportunities for exposing viewers to some basics of that heritage. An ongoing feud between Talia and her neighboring rival restaurateurs causes some sabotage on both sides. Kids will like Talia's gumption and determination to make her dreams come true, even if the results are glaringly unrealistic.
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Talia in the Kitchen
Based on 3 parent reviews
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Good concept, but poorly executed
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What's the Story?
TALIA IN THE KITCHEN centers on 14-year-old Talia (Maria Quezada), an aspiring cook who was orphaned by her parents' deaths a few years back, as she and her younger sister, Julie (Galilea La Salvia), move to Miami to live with their grandmother for the summer. Talia's excitement about spending time with Dolores (Jeannette Lehr), whom they call "Abuela," is eclipsed only by her anticipation of working at their family restaurant, Lola's. But when they arrive to find that Lola's is closed, she sets out to reopen the eatery with the help of her new friends, Valerie (Ellis Ann Jackson) and Rudy (Joshua Hoffman), and a little magical inspiration from the spices her father used to use. Only time will tell whether that will be enough to outsmart her local rivals, the Fuccinellis, who are plotting her restaurant's demise.
Is It Any Good?
Inspired by a Latin American telenovela, Talia in the Kitchen will be a change of pace for kids accustomed to Nickelodeon's typical animated shows and sitcoms set to laugh tracks. On the upside, Talia is a decent role model, thanks to her can-do attitude and her willingness to work hard for what she wants. She also enjoys close ties to her family and continues to be inspired by her Latin American heritage. She makes friends easily and has good values, even if she does retaliate against the Fuccinellis' attempts to thwart her dreams.
That said, the show may have a tough time finding its niche among young viewers because its soap-opera style is so foreign to them. It's not all fun and games; the characters share plenty of serious moments, and some kids won't understand what's behind them. At the same time, the show greatly oversimplifies some complex circumstances, as when underage Talia and her friends set out to open and staff Lola's without any adult supervision. Ultimately the show is an acquired taste, but rest assured that if your kids do tune in, there's little content that should cause concern.
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about setting goals and working toward them. Kids: What are some of the things you hope to accomplish in school? In your hobbies? Why is it important to set goals for yourself?
Is this show meant to be funny or serious? Is the characters' rivalry mean-spirited? What is it based on? Is it possible to be friendly and competitive at the same time?
How is Talia inspired by the loss of her parents? Kids: Have you ever succeeded at turning a sad experience into something positive?
In what ways is Talia a good role model? Do TV shows and movies usually present teen girls in a positive light?
- Premiere date: July 6, 2015
- Cast: Maria Quezada, Jeannette Lehr, Ellis Ann Jackson
- Network: Nickelodeon
- Genre: Drama
- Topics: Brothers and Sisters, Friendship
- TV rating: TV-G
- Last updated: October 23, 2022
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.
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