Eatonville woman in new reality show explains importance of representing historic town

Raquel Daniels was recently featured on one of Netflix’s newest reality shows, ‘Twentysomethings’

EATONVILLE, Fla. – On the latest episode of Florida’s Fourth Estate podcast, anchors Matt Austin and Ginger Gadsden talk to Raquel Daniels about her experience being on Netflix’s “Twentysomethings.”

The first season of this reality show is based in Austin, Texas, and follows the lives of eight strangers living together. The group lives in two houses right next door to each other. They each have their own rooms and share a backyard, which includes a pool.

The show is about the period of time in your life when you’re in your mid-20s and trying to figure out your next steps.

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In the very first episode, you meet 26-year-old Raquel Daniels. She quickly introduces herself as being from Eatonville. While some may say they’re from the closest big city others may be more familiar with, like Orlando, Daniels tells us she’s proud of where she’s from and to represent the nation’s oldest self-governing, all-Black town.

“When I went, I knew for a fact because I never say I’m from Orlando because I was born and raised in Eatonville, Florida, and I want to keep that pride alive because when people take pride in something, they take care of it,” Daniels said.

She went on to explain, “I want little Black girls and boys who are raised in Eatonville, Florida, to take pride in where they come from. I want them to take care of the town and I want them to be able to pour back into it the same way that the town pours into them. And I just felt like it was my duty to make sure that I was honest when I did this journey and that starts with telling people where I’m from.”

The Florida A&M University alumna said her life has changed drastically since the show was first released on Netflix on Dec. 10. She said it has been especially interesting in how her family has now seen a different side of her.

“Just having my family and people who don’t know me as Raquel the friend, Raquel the bestie, the party-goer. They don’t know me like that. It was so interesting to see them digest this side of me.”

She said her social media has blown up since the release.

“Even with the mask on, some people recognize me and I’m like, ‘This is insane,’” Daniels said.

While some reality shows have a lot of drama, “Twentysomethings” focuses on a group supporting each other as they learn to “adult” and navigate their 20s. Daniels said she didn’t want to be in a show that had drama, because she considers herself an empath and wants to spread positivity.

“I was like, I don’t know, I think I’m going to be in a house with super big influencers and people that I can’t relate to and it was the exact opposite. Just like the amount of care and caution that they put into making sure that I felt comfortable enough to be my authentic self was the main reason why I said yes.”

Daniels is currently working in IT remotely and is still deciding on if she wants to move back to Austin where the show is based or if she wants to live somewhere else.

She had a lot more to say about her experience with her roommates, her love life, and how her life has changed in our Florida’s Fourth Estate podcast. You can listen below or wherever you listen to your podcasts.

Florida’s Fourth Estate looks at everything from swampy politics to a fragile environment and even the crazy headlines that make Florida the craziest state in the Union. You can listen to the full episode of Florida’s Fourth Estate here:

About the Author:

Brooke is a news producer and has been with News 6 since January 2018. She grew up in Coral Springs and graduated from the University of Central Florida in 2015 with a bachelor's degree in broadcast journalism. Before she came back to Central Florida, she worked in Fort Myers.