Nearly four years after Jenni Rivera’s untimely death, the premiere episode of a reality series starring the Mexican-American singer’s children drew Hispanic cable’s largest primetime audience Sunday, according to NBC Universo.
Speaking Thursday at the Hispanic TV Summit, part of NewBay Media’s NYC TV & Video Week, Rivera’s oldest daughter, known as Chiquis, said The Riveras’ early viewership shows the lasting impact of her mother—who had her own reality show before dying in a December 2012 plane crash.
“More than anything, what we wanted to do is represent our mother—she was a single mother—to show the world she did a good job with us,” said Chiquis, who is The Riveras executive producer as well as star.
Chiquis, who was estranged from her mother when she died, said the goal of The Riveras is to show Rivera’s five children in real-life and how they have pulled together since Jenni’s death. The family last appeared in I Love Jenni, the reality series that followed Jenni Rivera for three seasons from 2011-2013.
“We are not perfect,” said Chiquis. “At the end of the day, though, we are open, and I think that’s what people are going to like and relate to.”
Chiquis credited her mother with her siblings’ transformations since their reticent start on I Love Jenni.
“I have seen them grow and they are willing to speak about anything,” she said. “All because we had a strong mother who didn’t give up—and we are not going to give up either.”
Highlighting Rivera’s strength will also be a core component of Mariposa de Barrio, the musical biography the Rivera family is co-producing with Telemundo.
“We are all in about telling my mothers story and telling the strong woman she was,” Chiquis said. “We want people to get to know the woman behind her name.”