Previously on Jane the Virgin, “Chapter Forty-Five”
While this wasn’t the most entertaining episode of Jane, it was refreshing with its storylines. What a nice change after last week’s canned season opening.
Tropes they nicely subverted:
The “Miraculous and Instantaneous Recovery” Trope
Four months after being shot and Michael is still recovering. He moves from hospital to bed rest and on to rehab. We’re saved every agonizing moment with a peppy Healing Montage – including Rogelio’s commentary on montages –as we advance two more months before he’s properly walking.
Jane is also recovering. Finding your new husband shot in a hallway on your wedding night can be a wee traumatic. Most shows would gloss over this bit, but it’s nice to see her dealing with the emotional ramifications. Jane’s stress shows up in her dreams and her relating to others. As it would. I don’t eat lunch and I get snappy and sleepless. Jane actually talks to her family and Michael about what she’s feeling. Instead of stuffing it down, negating her emotions, only to have them come back up later in dramatic and boring ways. Her family is understanding and supportive. While this is typical of Jane its not typical of TV and always nice to see.
Michael’s latent PTSD is also realistic. He recovers physically, helps Jane through her unease before realizing he has feelings about what he went through. It isn’t a collapse or a breakdown, just a well-played moment.
The “It’s All About You” Trope
Michael was shot. But after dealing with the immediate impact and sensitive recovery time, life goes on. Babies bite. Wives get to be too motherly. Mothers have abortions. Grandmothers get wallpaper. Michael’s convalescence gets incorporated into all of this. Even more so since he’s got nothing better to do than heal and work with Rogelio on his accent issues.
Jane does such a good job of looking after Michael, he calls her mom. It’s so easy for people to fall into the caretaking role after almost losing a loved one. I loved the subsequent conversation between Michael and Jane. He reminds Jane that she isn’t his mother, she is his wife. The support goes both ways. Nice piece of writing.
The “Close-Call Abortion” Trope
Xiomara had the abortion. We were saved the hand-wringing guilt followed by the last-minute save in a cold, lonely hospital. And no, she’s not wracked with guilt and misery. She did what was right for her and it was exactly in keeping with the character. We do see the consequences and conversation when she admits her decision to her mother, which was exactly in keeping with Alma’s character.
The Pining Away. Forever. Trope
Rafael gets over Jane (at least, for now). It’s such a relief to see Rafael’s face express something other than puppy dog longing when looking at Jane. She isn’t the only woman in the world. She chose another man. There is a point when you have to move on. Regardless of what Team you are on, I think we should all applaud Rafael for putting on his Big Boy pants. There is great chemistry between these two characters, but it doesn’t need to be romantic. The scene between Rafael and Jane discussing Jane’s prevailing and disturbing (non-)sexual status was charming.
Aneska may have moved on from Rafael. Big sigh of relief we are no longer continuing with that nonsense. Her newfound relationship with Scott may save the character for me. She’s no Petra (literally), but she might have some interesting developments. Let’s hope Magda stays in her toilet stall.
The “Perfect Baby” Trope
Mateo isn’t a perfect baby, he just looks like one. Instead of going on with some racial baby profiling blah blah blah, the show applies Occam’s razor. Mateo bites. Deal.
Now, if they can just move away from The “Adhering Strictly to the Show Title” Trope. Let’s Get it On
Jane The Virgin S3E2
I was here for this episode. It didn’t make me laugh particularly hard. It didn’t make me well up with emotion. But I needed it to cleanse my palette and impress me with its choices. Especially, Xiomara’s choice. Good job, show.