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Why Anna Arvos From Chicago P.D. Looks So Familiar

It's been another strong season for the shows comprising NBC's expansive "One Chicago" universe, with the three inter-connected series — "Chicago Fire," "Chicago Med," and "Chicago P.D."—once again bringing in the highest number of viewers watching TV on November 4, 2021, according to Yahoo News. The night was particularly exciting over on "Chicago P.D.," which amped up an action-packed Season 9 by introducing a new character.

Of course, the Dick Wolf-produced series already has its share of audience favorite characters, so making an impression in the ensemble cast can be a challenge. But fans were instantly curious about the new character Anna Arvos, a DEA informant whose motivations and true loyalties remain shrouded in the shadows. After nearly running over Halstead (Jesse Lee Soffer) while fleeing a drug deal gone bad, Arvos agrees to relay some crucial information — at a price. Yet when her info turns out to be bad, that's only the beginning of the drama that ensues.

Viewers were intrigued with Arvos not only because of the way she impacted the story but also because she looked so familiar to so many. So who is the actor playing Anna Arvos, and where have we seen her before?

Carmela Zumbado started with small roles on TV, including the "NCIS" franchise

The role of Anna on "Chicago P.D" is played by Cuban-American actor Carmela Zumbado, who has steadily worked her way up over the last decade from small, one-off parts on TV to major roles. She started getting TV roles in 2012, beginning with small parts on two episodes of "America's Most Wanted: America Fights Back," and a quick role on the short-lived online series "Freestyle Love Supreme," which also featured a young Lin-Manuel Miranda and is celebrated in the recent Hulu documentary "We are Freestyle Love Supreme." Zumbado also scored a quick role in the 2013 Jason Bateman-Melissa McCarthy comedy feature "Identity Thief." More small TV parts followed, including episodes of the Netflix original "Bloodline," USA Network's "Graceland," Fox's "Rosewood," "Scream: The TV Series" on MTV, and the short-lived John Stamos vehicle "Necessary Roughness." 

But the actor reached a new level of visibility when she started popping up in the "NCIS" franchise. First came two episodes during the first season of "NCIS: New Orleans" in 2015, playing the recurring part of Windi Stewart. Windi was the girlfriend of NCIS Senior Special Agent Chris LaSalle's brother Cade. Although the character — much like the LaSalle brothers — was killed off (according to the NCIS Wiki), two years later Zumbado returned to the "NCIS" universe, this time on a Season 8 episode of "NCIS: Los Angeles" in 2017. On "NCIS: LA," Zumbado played Susan on an exciting episode set largely aboard an airplane on which Callen (Chris O'Donnell) and Sam (LL Cool J) are tracking a suspect on his way to sell classified intel in Tokyo. 

Carmela Zumbado's next recurring role was on "Crazy Ex-Girlfriend"

Soon after her "NCIS" debut, Zumbado scored an even flashier recurring role on the CW's acclaimed musical-comedy hit "Crazy Ex-Girlfriend." Zumbado was cast as Denise Martinez, the frenemy of Valencia Perez (Gabrielle Ruiz). The character first appeared during Season 1 in 2016, popping up in a musical number called "Women Gotta Stick Together," which takes place in Valencia's imagination. In that song, Valencia labels her high school rival Denise as "that b**** I cannot stand" just before Denise approaches. That brief but hilarious interaction proved memorable enough for the show to bring Zumbado back in Season 4, for an episode in which Valencia runs into Denise, who was celebrating her bachelorette party in Las Vegas, making Valencia jealous by flaunting her engagement ring. Appropriately, the episode was titled "I Need to Find My Frenemy."

After "Crazy Ex-Girlfriend," Zumbado went on to garner acclaim for her meaty role in the 2019 independent feature "The Wall of Mexico," playing a role that Zumbado told Film Festival Today "breaks the mold of this stereotype of how Mexican women are really portrayed and seen in films," explaining, "She doesn't lead with her sexuality, she doesn't use that as what defines her necessarily and, yes, she is weird. She is bizarre. She is emotionless, but is also a huge break from stereotyping what Latin women can be. She kind of reminds me of a cyborg or some type of artificial intelligence that deviates from being driven by pure emotion."

Carmela Zumbado's starred in Season 2 of "You"

All of these smaller appearances led up to the breakthrough role for which Zumbado is probably the most familiar: Delilah Alves in the second season of "You," the popular series that started on Lifetime before moving to Netflix. Delilah is both an investigative reporter and an apartment manager, managing the Los Angeles building where series lead Joe (Penn Badgley) moves into at the start of Season 2. Despite her initial suspicions about him, Delilah still ends up romantically involved with Joe, before finally realizing his danger and investigating him. This leads to a shocking series of events that leaves Delilah dead — but not at the hands of serial killer Joe. Of her performance, People en Español raved, "Carmela Zumbado shines ... You can't help but fall in love with her character — a strong, self-made Latinx woman — and wish her the best as she faces dangerous situations."

After "You," Zumbado has continued to play prominent guest roles in episodes of popular shows like "The Rookie," "The Magicians," the new "iCarly" reboot, and now "Chicago P.D." So how long will Carmela Zumbado remain on "Chicago P.D.," facing those "dangerous situations," and what's next for her character, Anna Arvos? No one knows for sure, but one thing is certain: a legion of new fans will be watching.