Good Trouble: Exploring Mariana’s Work Struggle

Good Trouble’s Mariana Adams Foster (Cierra Ramirez) appears to get the job of her dreams when she first arrives in Los Angeles alongside her sister Callie (Maia Mitchell). The tech startup called Speckulate provides a high paycheck and includes everything from yoga classes to massages. The whole thing seems like a dream to Mariana, until reality hits.

Mariana’s position is a software engineer. And Mariana gets placed on a team with all guys, who do not take her seriously. It’s something all too real in the actual career field. Her coworkers, especially her team leader Alex, mess with her and give her menial tasks. She keeps a level head and uses her talents to give it back to them.

Her degree from MIT is considered average. This is because most everyone at Speckulate graduated from the same college or a similar one.

This is a struggle we’ve seen countless times in the real world. Plus it makes the show that much more relatable. A female trying to prove themselves in an industry made up of mostly men. If anyone can do it, it would be Mariana.

She meets Casey (Chloe Wepper), who is a team leader for another group of software engineers. Casey is one of the only other women in their male-dominated branch. When asked for advice, Casey tells Mariana to dress less feminine like she herself does. Because it calls attention to the fact that she’s not ‘one of the guys.’ That’s how she got to be team leader.

Mariana isn’t used to having to rein in her personality and become a new person at work. Mariana was raised in a loving and diverse family, as fans of “The Fosters” know. In her mind, her outfit has nothing to do with her ability to perform her job, which is completely true.

Deciding to take Casey’s words of wisdom after a few more failed attempts to fit in, Mariana starts dressing down and things still don’t start looking up. Her team hangs out without her outside of work and don’t include her in much, if anything at all. This obviously upsets the girl, who uses it as motivation to work harder.

As if things couldn’t possibly get any worse, Mariana gets chosen to be photographed and interviewed for Speckulate’s brochure which she’s initially thrilled about. But soon she realizes why she was picked.

All the other participants are minorities in some way. Mariana fits the bill as a female latina software engineer in a male-dominated career. If any of the others notice, they don’t say anything, but it’s all clicking into place for our girl.

Mariana’s heart visibly sinks as she makes the connection that she might have been hired just because of her gender. And what she looks like so that the company could proclaim their so-called diverse employees.

The questions is, how long will it take for Mariana to speak up instead of shutting up? How far will she let things go before she can’t take it anymore?

Tune into Freeform every Tuesday to see how her story unfolds!