Santos has always been one of the more intriguing characters from Ugly Betty, even though he only appeared on the show for a little over a season.
Ugly Betty’s supporting cast was just as much part of the success and popularity of the series as its protagonist.
And this includes characters like Justin’s father and Hilda’s ex-boyfriend-turned-fiancé, Santos, who was introduced in the first season of the show, but never quite got his happy ending.
Ugly Betty’s supporting characters
Although Ugly Betty remained a sweet story about a quirky girl from Queens trying to navigate the world of fashion and glamour at the Mode offices, there is no denying that the series simply would not have been the same without its supporting cast.
Between Daniel’s various professional and personal crises, Wilhelmina’s underhanded schemes and plots, Marc and Amanda’s constant witty remarks, Hilda’s loving older sister energy, Ignacio’s sage advice or even just Christina’s charming Scottish accent, there is a lot to love about the supporting characters who were not always the center of the attention on the series.
Everything you need to know about Santos from Ugly Betty
One of the Ugly Betty supporting characters that managed to make a big splash during his short run on the series is Santos Reynoso.
The first mention of Santos came shortly before the character actually appeared on screen in a brief and ominous conversation between Betty’s sister Hilda and their father, Ignacio.
In this scene, fans learned that he was Justin’s father, but also that he had walked out on Hilda and his child many years prior.
The first time that Santos (who was played by actor, Kevin Alejandro) appeared on screen was in the “After Hours” episode from season 1, in which he agrees to give Hilda the money for Ignacio’s lawyer if she would allow him to see Justin.
As the narrative progresses, Santos does systematically start spending more time around the Suarez’s house, partly because he wants to spend more time getting to know his son, and partly because he and Hilda had secretly rekindled their romance.
In a surprising twist, Santos even starts accepting Justin for who he is, by the end of the “Derailed” episode.
At the end of “Petra-Gate”, the first season’s twentieth episode, Santos even steps up and proposes to Hilda, and she accepts after confirming with Justin that he would be comfortable with the family getting back together again.
Unfortunately though, Santos never got the chance to live out his happily-ever-after, as he was fatally shot during a convenience store robbery in the season one finale episode.
The season one finale was not Santos’s last appearance on the show
When the second season of Ugly Betty premiered with the “How Betty Got Her Grieve Back” episode, many fans were shocked to see Santos safe and sound, and seemingly recovering from his gunshot wound.
But, although Santos would not be the first Ugly Betty character that the series brought back from the dead, the end of this episode did reveal that Santos had not really returned after all.
Instead, this version of the character was really just a figment of Hilda’s imagination and it had been a scenario that she had dreamed up to help her cope with the grief of losing her fiancé.
Who did Hilda end up with?
It was evident that Hilda had intended to build a life with Santos after their wedding, and seeing her go through the grief of losing him so unexpectedly touched everyone around her.
But, Hilda did eventually process all of her emotions and face Santos’s death head-on.
By the end of the show, Hilda had even reconnected with Bobby, who she had also known in high school. She eventually ended up getting her dream wedding in the “The Past Presents the Future” episode from season four.
What has Kevin Alejandro been up to since leaving Ugly Betty?
Alejandro may have only had a small recurring role in Ugly Betty, but the actor has had quite the successful career after leaving the show in 2007.
Right after Ugly Betty, Alejandro went on to secure roles in films like Creature of Darkness (2008) and Wake (2009) as well as shows like Drive (2007), Shark (2007), Sons of Anarchy (2008) and Burn Notice (2008).
But he is perhaps most well-known these days for the role of ‘Jesus Velazquez’ in HBO’s True Blood or ‘Detective Daniel Espinoza’ in Fox’s Lucifer.
Alejandro is still working as an actor today and fans can even find him in currently-airing shows like the animated series, Arcane, Fire Country on CBS, or his new film, “Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe”.