Previously on Jane the Virgin
Jane the Virgin is a romance novel, and each episode, a chapter in Jane’s life. This season’s premiere played with this motif by flipping backwards (and sometimes forward) to show us some pages we’ve skipped over, thus far. A clever way to establish premise and emotional resonance for new watchers and extend a warm welcome to those of us returning to find out what happened to Michael.
Most of these pages were enjoyable. At first, the introduction of a love triangle with proto-Rafael was a little jarring, but it paid off. We can trust this show not to take itself too seriously. Jane and Michael’s dating antics and banter were well done. Just enough to make us smile but cutting the sweetness with humor before our teeth can rot. I could watch this show on mute just for the facial expressions. Jane angrily eating Michael’s soup and commenting on his cat pictures. Michael pulling over Sam’s car. Michael telling Jane his cat died (out of context, this sounds terrible). Brett Dier has some great comedic chemistry with Gina Rodriguez and a less serious Michael is a good look.
A still breathing Michael is rushed to the hospital, leaving Jane and her family to wait to hear whether he’d make it out alive. The nurse hands Jane Michael’s ring. Flashback to Michael saying he’s a fighter and will not walk away. This tying into Jane’s decision to go for the surgery. We’ve seen this before. The pale faces, the tense conversations, the bedside, tear-jerker conversations. The ending was sweet, but not because of these scenes.
As mentioned, this is show a romance novel. And we are told over and over again, romance novels are supposed to have Happily Ever After endings. This is something Jane believes and we believe, as viewers. This episode confirmed the writers believe this, too. Michael may or may not survive the duration of the show, and Jane and Michael may or may not end up together, but Jane will have a happy ending. I’m glad we’re all on the….
- Jane likes to flip forward to the end of books to read the ending. A quarter way through it occurred to me there are benefits of not watching this show live. But I kept my hand off the fast-forward.
- The newly be-brided Jane is still, as ever, the titular virgin.
- I still expect Michael to die at any point now. He’s too good.
- Except Michael is a Cat Man, so maybe he’ll survive.
- At some point they get a cat.
- Yael Grobglas is one of the best things about this show, but more Petra and less Anezka (or even Anezka-playing-Petra), please.
- I didn’t expect Rogelio’s pee to be how he finds out about Xiomara’s pregnancy. I also didn’t expect him to be so cool about it being Esteban’s baby or his pro-choice stance. I’m very relieved.
- Sin Rostro kidnaps…yawn.
Jane the Virgin S3E1
I mostly liked this episode. I love having these characters back. I admired how this show was put together. I smirked at the meta commentary. I enjoyed the humor. However, no matter how adept the writers are at adding nuance, I’m just tired of hospital scenes and having my heart strings plucked so obviously. I’m also tired of a couple of extraneous storylines, but I’ll see if they can get me to care.