Chavira guest stars on the Feb. 8 episode of the NBC comedy

By Patrick Gomez
Updated February 08, 2016 07:45 PM
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Credit: Bello/Splash News

They often sparred as a married couple on Desperate Housewives, but in real life Eva Longoria and Ricardo Chavira could not be closer.

“I look at her like a sister,” Chavira tells PEOPLE of Longoria. “She’s friends with my wife. She knows my kids. We’re family.”

So when his newly engaged pal asked him to guest star on her new NBC comedy Telenovela, it was an instant yes from Chavira.

“When Eva calls me and asks me to do something for her, I don’t hesitate,” says the actor, who had similarly had Longoria guest star on his 2013 NBC comedy Welcome to the Family.

On the Feb. 8 episode of Telenovela, Chavira will play an ex-convict who is trying to win back Mimi (Diana Maria Riva), the best friend of Longoria’s character, Ana Sofia.

“It’s a return to the I Love Lucy dynamic Eva and I had on Housewives,” Chavira says of playing the “straight man” to Longoria and Riva’s Lucy and Ethel. “You need a character like mine to ground the humor of their crazy and manic characters. It’s a lot of fun to get to do that.”

Telenovela airs Mondays (8:30 p.m. ET) on NBC.