Episode 35

 

It should be noted:

In this episode of Jane the Virgin, what’s old is new again, plus a baby. Jane’s back to picking up some shifts at the Marbella…
waitressing

…ahem, Jane and Michael are back together, Xiomara and Rogelio are not together, Luisa relapses, and Rafael has gone way back to his old playboy ways. That’s not to cheapen the journey all these characters have been on. Everything might seem the same, but it’s really only on a superficial level. People have grown, and they’re all trying to figure out what they want. The problem is, idealism gets in the way of realism. Last episode, Jane saw so many situations through a rosy tint, this episode, it’s bubble handily wrapping them up in good feelings bound to burst.

So yes, Rogelio and Xo have broken up (for good)(?), but they’re attempting “conscious uncoupling” a la Rogelio’s “good friend” Chris (Martin) and Gwyneth (Paltrow). Those two got a lot of negative attention from the media for that decision and wording, but it is a good goal. Rogelio and Xo decide they’re going to be “respectful” and “mature.” Who ever thought we’d associate those words with Rogelio? And though maybe it’s still a little ridiculous to call Rogelio mature, he really has come a long way from basically reenacting telenovela drama in his own life. Did you see him holding back his exuberance when he discovers Jane and Michael are back together? He kept all that chair jumping in his head.

via GIPHY

However, as Rogelio and Xiomara find out, reality takes an easy split and adds emotional attachments and feelings to make it quite messy. As much as they want to just decide to be good friends, it’s going to take time between these two. They’re both clearly still in love with each other for the time being (complete with a post-breakup hookup). Hopefully their early idealism hasn’t hurt their relationship too much long term because they still care very much for each other and are united through their daughter, Jane.

As for Jane, she gets caught in the middle of their uncoupling when she arrives late to Rogelio’s premiere because she was comforting her mom. Meanwhile, Rogelio, who has been speaking with his crazy assistant who he does not yet realize is his lunatic stalker, feels that he will always be the second choice. Rogelio’s reaction is very harsh, and more in line with the Rogelio we first met. He has become very emotionally invested in both of these women, but that doesn’t change that he still feels cheated of a relationship with Jane as she grew up. He has (amazingly enough) pulled back his ego quite a bit, but it looks like he may be going right back in. Odds are, he’ll have a bit of a change of heart when he’s trapped in his house with his stalker. Times of stress tend to bring people together, after all. Just not in the way his stalker hopes.

Unfortunately for Jane, she’s not only caught in this quarrel, but also in her own with the important men in her life. Even though Jane and Rafael have been broken up for a while, Michael’s reappearance as her boyfriend shuts down what little hope Rafael may have had left. There’s also that bit where Michael punched Rafael. Going out on a limb here, it doesn’t appear that former womanizer Rafael is too used to rejection, and that is the actual issue. Jane has chosen Michael, and Petra’s not satisfied being his second choice. For all his talk of Michael’s job being too dangerous for Matteo, Rafael isn’t keeping in mind Jane’s initial concerns about his playboy past when he chats up that woman at the bar.

reformed playboy

He’s going to have to be careful about his choices, or he may find that Jane and Michael will be swimming farther and farther away.

swimming

And finally, poor Luisa’s had a rough time of it. Her father was murdered, her brother hates her, she found her former lover/stepmother’s dead body, and with it all has been rejected by Susana. Despite all her efforts of maintaining sobriety, she’s fallen back again. However, this time, she willingly and readily admits that she has a problem. She has Jane to support her. Luisa and Susana both appear to be enthusiastic and hopeful about a relationship after her release from rehab, and of any of them, Luisa could really use a break and some real happiness.

The only character who really hasn’t slipped back at all is Petra. She’s no longer the gold digger wife, but rather co-owner of the Marbella. Really, she’s running the show this episode. In an interesting gender stereotype reversal, Rafael is too lovesick to pay attention to the marketing presentation, and Petra’s leading it with the help of her all-female marketing team. She has that list to complete before the babies arrive, and she’s getting through it with or without Rafael. She’s respecting herself, she’s not going to be Raf’s second choice, and she’s not putting up with Rafael #mansplaining her. So while Jane, Michael, and Rafael worry about their little love triangle, Petra’s pulling the Marbella back into the right direction, pregnant with twins and all.

This is one of my favorite episodes in recent past. There was outrageous drama and witty humor, but all very much based in realistic situations. The script is tight and bounces between many interconnecting story lines seamlessly (and I’ll say, part of it is the break from that Mutter case. I know it’s some people’s thing, but crime dramas really aren’t mine). The episode tackled some very serious topics, but it stayed engaging and true to itself the entire time. Plus as always, there were some hilarious narrator and Rogelio one-liners.

Moments

 

  • It’s understandable that Petra and Rafael are aghast at the new top Google result for the Marbella, but this is gold.

marbella commercial

  • Rogelio judging Downton Abbey as British telenovela that’s not that original.
  • Rogelio has really distanced himself from Xiomara and Jane, so there’s no telling when someone will figure out he’s been trapped by his stalker. How and when will they figure it out? His tweets? Will it be Michael to the rescue to save their bromance? Or will he feel to rejected by Rogelio and too loyal to Jane? Fascinating.
  • I love Petra and Jane together, and I cannot wait to see them interact more in the next episode (Rafael should have known he should have never compared Petra to Jane!).