When Jane was 15, she had the perfect quinceanera, until her mother danced to Milkshake and embarrassed her in front of her “superfly” date. But Jane is determined to not let things affect her plan, and this baby won’t either. I’m sorry, I meant “milkshake.”
Jane doesn’t initially want to file a lawsuit, but by the end she accepts that things are really going to change in her life and that she should charge back at the things she can control. Jane didn’t think to look up Rafael and Petra before committing to her decision, so she Googles Raf and learns about his party boy past. She can see that he’s changed now, but as I said in my last review, he’s going to continue to deal with the consequences of his former lifestyle. But he and Jane begin to spark their chemistry, unknowingly in front of the watching eyes of Detective fiancé Michael. She and Raf share a moment in the OB-GYN examination room as well as at the hotel, being open and honest with each other in ways that their actual significant others don’t seem to get.
Like I said in my Chapter One post, I think Raf is falling in love with Jane’s honesty and earnestness. He’s also one of the few characters to show interest in Jane’s inner dreams for herself. Her family wants her to be successful and support her, but none of them ask about what she really wants; what Brave!Jane wants. But Raf does. She’s falling in love with his wish to see Brave!Jane successful. When the nurse hears the baby’s heartbeat (early), I thought it was actually Jane’s pounding heart as she connects with Raf again after all these years.
The scene with Jane and her mother and Abuela was so beautiful. Gina Rodriguez has just taught me that when she cries on screen, I am also going to get emotional… There’s something about the way her voice cracks that totally gets to me. Jane wanted to badly to keep her life the same, but realizes that that’s not going to happen. Things have to change and she’s going to get attached to the milkshake and then have to give it up. Even when that’s still something she wants to do, she recognizes that it’s going to be difficult. This goes back to reasons to love Jane: she loves things so deeply, but sometimes she distances herself because she knows how she is. She gets attached and that leads to getting hurt. She can’t distance herself here. She’s going to get hurt. So Xo tells her that she’s allowed to be selfish. Screw what Michael wants and what she wants and what anyone else wants, this time is about Jane. Jane gets to make her own choices and she chooses to keep working for Rafael, even when Michael doesn’t want her to. She’s choosing herself over the men in her life–which already seems like a Jane trait, as she chose to not be with Michael when at some point, he’s probably asked it of her.
Michael is continuously doing stakeouts, looking for information on Sin Rostro = “The man without a face” (a really bad guy!) who hasn’t been heard of in 4 years (that’s how long Petra and Raf have been married…just noting that just in case it’s important). Michael’s partner thinks he’s dead, but that frustrates him. Who could Sin Rostro be? Have we already met him?
Michael also meets Raf for the first time and it’s as awkward as you’d think it would go, especially since Jane tells Michael right before the meeting that she kissed him once. After that, it becomes a constant pissing contest between the two men, mostly on Michael’s side. Michael also seeks control over Petra. Instead of telling Jane that the Solanos are dysfunctional, he confronts Petra over the affair, demanding she end it. But Petra is quick on her feet, she threatens right back that she may use this against him in the future.
Remember when I said Xiomara meant “ready for battle” and that it definitely applied to Xo? Well, here is another example of that fierceness when it comes to her daughter. Both when Jane was 16 and now, Xo will do whatever it takes to protect Jane from getting hurt. She will tell Rogelio he can’t see his daughter right now, no matter what he thinks, and she will dance to Milkshake at her daughter’s quinceanera to keep her from heartbreak on her big day. She sacrifices whatever it takes to keep Jane happy.
Rogelio plays a suave character in the telenovela, but in real life he’s a bit of a coward. Clearly, this is what made him tell Xiomara not to have the baby and then not contact her for 25 years, but it’s still a part of his character. His fear when the leopard gets out was small compared to how he looked at Xiomara appear on his set. But there’s also a bit of an innocence to him too, like he doesn’t think too deeply about things. He’s a bit… Joey from Friends. (Wow, almost literally–had Joey become the huge soap star he wanted to become, and had a kid at 16, which–had Joey succeeded, would have totally been a plot). Well meaning, but not always the sharpest tool in the shed. I think this mostly comes from his wide-eyed expression, which seems to be an acting choice to connect Rogelio to Jane, who has a similar expression. “Her eyes are so bright and curious. Much like my own.”
Raf wants a divorce and knows Petra wants the prenup money, but he also wants his baby. He also wants to look out for his sister, but could lose everything in doing so. He explains that during his dark period, before the cancer, during the “Bora Bora series,” he felt lost. “Fear of Failure. That’s what it is. Which can be a pretty crippling thing.” This could explain his staying with Petra for so long–even pre-Bora Bora Raf probably didn’t want to be with her, but he’d committed to the marriage and divorcing her would be seen as failure. So he stayed with her and then she stayed with him during the cancer and that’s led them both to where they are now.
Petra breaks it off with Zaz (after her confrontation with Michael) and he attacks her. She initially pretends to have enjoyed his aggression, but then resolves that it is indeed over. He should have never put his hands on her…
Petra isn’t a crier–her name means rock (remember when I told you character names are going to be meaningful on this show)–but, when she pleads her case to Rafael, she manages to make the tears fall. “Turns out, it’s easy to give a good performance, when what you are saying is actually true.” He acknowledges that maybe he did have a part in the destruction of their marriage and they decide to give it another try. We’ll see if Petra and Raf stay together for the year left in the prenup contract…
Zaz falls out the window on to Chekov’s marlin ice sculpture! (He really should have never touched Petra). A telenovela is incomplete without a good murder mystery to solve. Can’t wait to see who the suspects are!
Luisa’s license is suspended and the only person who put up collateral for her is Raf, meaning that if (and when) Jane sues her, Raf could lose the hotel. Rose arrives to help her out, but Luisa keeps snarking at her because she’s now a trophy wife–to Luisa’s own father! You’d think their kiss would be a bit more awkward, knowing that Rose has kissed Papa Solano…
After being hesitant to the idea, Jane decides to sue Luisa, not knowing that Raf’s hotel is on the line–which is not only bad for Raf, but bad for Jane as she herself works there. Dun dun DUNNN!
- “Luisa: Accidental inseminater (sp?)”
- “It’s important to know that Michael Cordero Jr. is not a virgin. Well, it’s important to him. I don’t really care about it too much.” — the narration is PERFECTION.
- “I said MAR-lin, not Merlin! My father in law loves to fish!” “Does he also like magic?”
- “I’m going to have to ask some of you to leave. Who are the parents?” Jane: “I’m carrying the baby, so I should probably stay.”
- “Didn’t you get my text?” “No, I didn’t. I have too many phones. If it’s important, the best way to reach me is through Twitter.”
- Rogelio plays the President of North Ecuadoras. Abuela didn’t see the telenovela or real life appearance of “El presidente?” coming…
- I like how Jane rides the bus. It’s a great way to have alone time for her, while still having visual movement on screen, as well as passing the time of day and transitioning between scenes. Few shows use public transportation this often (even characters who live in big public transportation cities like New York, are often seen in cars or getting out of cabs). It brings reality and groundedness to the characters and their world.
- Hmm. Michael says, “how much I love you, that is not changing.” I guess his lack of saying it at all in Chapter One was just an oversight on his part? But he doesn’t quite say it directly… so I’m still suspicious.
- “On the bright side, Jane’s quinceanera is no longer the worst party she’d ever been to.”
Who do you think pushed Zaz on the marlin? Petra’s the most obvious choice, but who was Zaz doing shady business with? Could Michael be involved somehow? Actually, I think Petra’s mother did it. She seems the type to do whatever it takes for her daughter and she’s got the scars that could be the result of a shady past.
To be continued…