Music

EastWillyB: Web Comedy Set in a Gentrifying Latino Neighborhood

Apparently “where there’s a Willie, there is a way”. At least that is the premise behind a new series of mini-webisodes hitting a browser near you. 

EastWillyB is a comedy about a cast of colorful character from the Bushwick area of Brooklyn, N.Y. who are experiencing the not so humorous reality of gentrification.

The series follows struggling bar owner Wille Reyes Jr., who attempts to keep up with the rapidly changing area, cleverly renamed “East Williamsburg”. Like many urban areas of New York City, the predominately Puerto Rican neighborhood has seen an influx in residents from various Latin Americans cultures, money hungry landlords and of course....Hipsters.

Granted, gentrification comes with a whole host of serious implications for residents of any neighborhood (ask roughly the entire island of Manhattan) but the characters in East WillyB are not going down without a fight.

Creators Yamin Segal and Julia Ahumada envisioned a series that catered to the fast paced--or let’s be honest--limited attention span of the “140 character” generation. As a result, this pilot project chose the internet as a way of testing the waters and gaining momentum within their target audience.

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The cast includes Nuyorican poet, actor and vocalist Flaco Navaja (Fighting, Def Poetry Jam), poet, actress and advocate Caridad “La Bruja” De La Luz (Spike Lee’s Bamboozled) and award-winning playwright, actor and director Danny Hoch. East WillyB’s refreshing mix of emerging Latino actors and producers (with the help of the seasoned and honorary Latino, Hoch) strive to fill a void in the current spectrum of sitcoms series.

“We decided to create a series that spoke to our reality, our generation of Latinos. A bi-lingual, bi-cultural, English speaking, educated group that are not happy with many of the images that have already been put out there,” said Ahumada during a recent Q&A.
When asked about plans of expansion, the cast all agreed that with the proper support there was definitely room for the project to grow.

Currently the duration of each episode is just around 3 minutes. But as La Bruja was quick to point out,

“You do know that is how The Simpsons got started, right?

EastWillyB online

Erica Y. Lopez has written for ABCNews.com and is a freelance writer for Fox News Latino. She can be reached at Ericaylopez@gmail.com.

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