This was the first Spanish soap (telenovela) that I’ve ever watched. When this aired in 2002, I was nine. I liked it so much that watched it every day. At that age, I didn’t understand about sexuality or love between men and women. I just thought that they were beautiful people and the fights were funny to watch.
During these seventeen years since it aired, I have watched it every few years again. I do this with every series I had watched for the first time. For example, I also always watch Stairway to Heaven (I will do a review in the future on it) every few years because it was my first Korean drama and I liked it very much. I will also watch Sailor Moon every few years for being my first anime. Strangely, I don’t remember the first Chinese/ Hong Kong serie I ever watched. Maybe I was too young when I started watching Chinese dramas.
Back to topic. So, recently I watched Gata Salvaje (Wild Cat) again. Naturally, I got another feeling from it than those from when I watched it at nine. Now I understand what the characters are doing and how babies are made. At nine, I found it weird and dirty when people lock lips with so many people. It still is dirty but quite enjoyable.
Gata Salvaje tells a story of a kind and humble woman named Rosaura Ríos. She lived with her alcoholic father, stepmother, a stepbrother and two stepsisters in a humble house. She worked as a seller of food in a truck for the workers on the ranch of the Arismendí in Miami. There, she met Luis Mario Arismendí, one of the owners of the ranch. Lius Mario had lost his wife in an accident and had been suffering ever since. His sister Eduarda Arismendí wanted to force him to marry her friend, the wealthy heiress Eva Granados. To spite Eduarda, Lius Mario married Rosaura, a poor girl. Because of this Eduarda and Eva hates Rosaura and made her life a living hell. One of the things they did was make Rosaura jealous by kissing Lius Mario in front of her. Rosaura then would fight and scratch the women, earning her the name Gata Salvaje.
Lius Mario married Rosaura without loving her. In order to save the ranch and also to avoid Rosaura, Lius Mario went to New York. There, he realized that he misses Rosaura and had fallen in love with her. However, he found out that his deceased wife was in fact alive and had lost her memory. His marriage to Rosaura was thus nullified. He went back to Miami with his wife. There, he tried to find Rosaura, but she had disappeared.
While he was in New York, Rosaura discovered that she was pregnant. Eva and Eduarda also discovered that. They plan to separate Lius Mario and her. They killed her father, made her have a miscarriage and they also framed her for being a thief. After she got out of jail and discovered the death of father, she vowed revenge against the Arismendí. She moved out with her siblings in order to avoid the Arismendí and went to search for work.
Unbeknownst to her, she went to work at the house of her very rich and powerful grandmother. After she went through ups and downs, she got recognized as her granddaughter. Now, she has the power and money to take down the Arismendí. The best way was to take away the ranch and their house that they were so proud of. When she had them at her feet, she gave up her revenge against the Arismendí. Although, she didn’t admit to Lius Mario that it was because of love, he knew that she loves him as much as he loves her.
While she was plotting her revenge against the Arismendí, it was discovered that the supposed amnesiac wife of Lius Mario, Camellia, in fact didn’t lose her memories. She had spent the last two years vacationing with her lover Patricio Rivera. Patricio Rivera is now married to Eduarda Arismendí. They kept on having their affair without Eduarda knowing.
Patricio worked at the SPA of the grandmother of Rosaura. He had been reporting losses to the grandmother while in fact the business was blooming. After Rosaura became the accountant of the SPA and discovered that, they kicked him out. He then plotted to have himself married to Rosaura after he divorced Eduarda. He framed Rosaura’s stepsister for being a thief. He was called in as witness. His testimony will decide whether the stepsister will not go to prison. So, Rosaura sacrificed herself and married him. He went to live at the grandmother’s house with his lover Camellia.
At the same time, Lius Mario was now married to Eva, because she made him believe that he got her pregnant while drunk. In fact, it was the child of his best friend. Not long after the birth of the child, Rosaura also discovered that she is pregnant with his child. She kept that hidden from everyone. When she was about to give birth, she got kidnapped by Patricio, who has now fallen in love with her. Patricio wanted to kill the baby, but the maid who helped him got second thoughts and helped Rosaura escape. However, Rosaura lost her mind after having suffered so much. She thought the baby wasn’t hers and gave her away to a granny. When she recovered her mind, she didn’t know who she gave the baby to.
Later Lius Mario found out about Eva’s child and divorced her, but then a new man, Silvano appeared in Rosaura’s life. He comforted her while she was searching for her daughter. Lius Mario got jealous and got involved with Maribella, the ex-wife of Silvano. However, he couldn’t get over Rosaura. Then, Maribella had an accident because of Lius Mario and got temporary blind. When she recovered her sight, she kept lying that she was blind. Like that, she could bound Lius Mario to her because she knows he loves Rosaura. When she was discovered, she moved out of Lius Mario’s life. She got a visit from Eva. When she refused to form an alliance with Eva to destroy Rosaura and Eva told her that she and Eduarda killed Rosaura’s father, Maribella wanted to denounce them to the police, so, Eva killed her.
Lius Mario realized that the only one who had never lied to be with him was Rosaura, He wished that they could get back together. By this time, Rosaura had found her daughter, but she was engaged to Silvano. The moment she divorces Patricio, she will have to marry him. However, Silvano realized that he may not truly love her and that he was in love with Jacqueline, the sister of Maribella.
Patricio found out that he is Lius Mario’s brother. He hated that fact because the both of them love the same woman and hated each other very much. Rosaura wanted to divorce him no matter at what price. When he realized that he would never get loved by Rosaura, he jumped from a building. He didn’t die but was paralyzed.
After having murdered Maribella, Eva went into hiding. While in hiding she plotted on how to destroy Rosaura and Lius Mario. She decided to do this by killing their daughter and while she was at it also kill Rosaura. Like this, Lius Mario will suffer. She kidnapped their daughter and set a trap to lure Rosaura to a secluded place. However, Rosaura’s family called the police and Lius Mario, Silvano and Jacqueline followed Rosaura. Even Eva’s own sister went to help Rosaura. They were able to rescue the child, but Eva took Rosaura hostage. During the struggle, she was shot by a policeman and fell into the lake full of crocodiles.
When they returned, Silvano set Rosaura free because he loves Jacqueline and he knows that Rosaura will only love Lius Mario. Lius Mario had decided to travel for a year because he was tired of all that had happened. Rosaura dressed again in the way she used to dress when she was selling food. She went to the ranch to stop him when Lius Mario was saying goodbyes to his workers. Lius Mario stayed, they got married and lived happily ever after.
This was a very long tv-series even for a telenovela. It had a total of 252 episodes. The story was cheesy and not very realistic. The acting was…bad. This telenovela was known for having casted the actors only based on their looks. Literally, every main character and even the characters that had a bit of a significant role were gorgeous. Even as a kid, I was mesmerized by Mario Cimarro (Lius Mario) not to mention the teenagers and housewives.
Marlene Favela as Rosaura Ríos
This was her first time as a lead in a telenovela. She didn’t do bad, but her acting was still mediocre. She had the most beautiful body. A body any woman will be jealous of. What I disliked the most was that she cried for more than 80% of the telenovela. Only when she transformed and plotted her revenge was her acting the best. However, that only lasted for a short while. After having lost her child, she cried every episode. I wished the writers could’ve done the title Wild Cat more justice.
This was the telenovela that shot her to stardom. Ever since then, she got casted as the main lead. Gata Salvaje was the only telenovela that I watched from beginning to end with her in it. I’ve watched some scenes of her other telenovelas. From what I saw, her acting seemed to have gotten better with age and experience.
For Gata Salvaje, I will rate her acting a 2.5/5
Mario Cimarro as Lius Mario Arismendí
Mario is my first Latin crush. Even at 47, when I see his Instagram, I will still get butterflies. He’s really so handsome. His acting in Gata Salvaje was mediocre. I liked his character in the beginning and middle of the telenovela, but after he realized that he loves her, his character got over the top jealous. What bothered me the most was that his character was able to kiss every girl, but when Rosaura was only at a close proximity with a guy, he will get so jealous. I really hate the double-standard here. Another thing that bothered me was that he was so gullible in the beginning. He believed everything his sister told him without investigating. I wanted to beat some sense into him then.
This is also the only telenovela I watched fully with him in it. Another one that I watched was a few scenes of Los Herederos del Monte, where he also acted with Marlene. I only watched it because, although their acting lacked in Gata Salvaje, they have great chemistry. Even to this day, I still wish that they could be together in real life. This wish of mine got broken when Marlene got married in 2017.
Rating of acting 2.5/5
Ariel López Padilla as Patricio Rivera
The only one who could act was Ariel López Padilla who played Patricio. He was so good that when he turned good, the telenovela seemed to have lost something. Patricio was a character that one would hate very much but would love in the later episodes. Hell, sometimes, I even wished for him to end up with Rosaura instead of that male chauvinist Lius Mario. However, he and Rosaura were enemies since the beginning. After he realized his love for her, he used many unscrupulous ways to bind her at his side. If I was Rosaura, I will also hate him. Later, he turned good, but was paralyzed and then went into a coma.
Rating of acting 5/5
Marjorie De Sousa as Camelia Valente
She is Lius Mario’s ex-wife, the one who pretended to have amnesia. She’s like an insect that you can’t kill no matter how much you tried. Her sixth sense always told her when something bad was about to happen. When the ranch of Lius Mario was almost bankrupt, she faked her death. When her lover didn’t have much money anymore, she went back to Lius Mario. When she sensed that the secret about her and Patricio kidnapping Rosaura when she was about to go into labor, was about to be revealed, she packed up her bags and went to Madrid. There she tried to take advantages of millionaires and get them to marry her. She failed at her first attempt because Rosaura saw her in the paper and called her soon-to-be-husband. At the end, she was seen eyeing another target.
I don’t know if this telenovela was a blessing or a curse to her. After this one, she was casted as a villain in every other telenovela until recently when she was casted as the main character. I think she has the most beautiful face of the whole cast. Her acting was quite over the top sometimes. She was more of the cat than Rosaura. The way she fought for what she thought belonged to her was really like a cat. Her face was also more feline than Marlene’s.
Rating of acting 2.5/5
Carolina Tejera as Eva Granados
Another villain that acted better than the protagonists, although sometimes she overacted. Her character was in love or better said obsessed with Lius Mario from the beginning to the end. She preferred to see him die than in the arms of another woman, especially if that woman is Rosaura. She would do everything to bind Lius Mario to her, like passing her child with someone else as his. To get what she wants, she isn’t afraid to kill and eliminate everyone that is in her way. I think the only one she ever loved was herself.
Rating of acting 3/5
There are still many characters, but too many to describe. They come and go. This telenovela isn’t perfect, but it was very popular when it aired. I think the main reasons were the cat-fights and all the gorgeous girls in bikini and handsome men without a top.