I think in a lot of adventure fiction, or if you go even further back into mythology the tragic hero or even the tragic noble animal companion whose suffered a tremendous loss, but still sticks it out and rides on till the end, makes for some of the more compelling heroes, and yes that includes horses.
It can all be very cliched, or over romanticized you’re right, I guess it really depends how it’s handled.
The Telenovela pretty much threw every cliche imaginable in the book at you (non-stop.) That seems to be how they do them over there. The writers hold absolutely nothing back, but neither do the actors.
You have to give them that, they own there parts no matter how out-there it gets. Sometimes it’s to hysterical sidesplitting effect. Enough times they’ll hit that one note that surprisingly chokes you up and has you rooting for the hero, (or their horse.)
For all it’s over the top melodrama when Padre Tomas delivers the legend of Tornado, (for me anyway) it hit that note.