Tv Tuesday: Jane the Virgin

Hey Readers, long time no see. On this TV Tuesday I want to talk to you about my new obsession. About the show that has rocketed its way into being my summer favorite. About the show that is making me want to become obsessed with telenovelas (as if I have that much time to devote to more TV). Let's talk Jane the Virgin.

source IMDB

So I watched the pilot of this one years ago when it first came out and decided I liked the characters but wasn't really feeling the tone and it didn't fit my then obsession with all things gritty and post apocolyptic. So I gave it a pass and moved on. But now, I am older. I'm wiser. I've developed a gigantic crush on Gina Rodriguez and since most of my shows are on summer break it felt like time. Eight episodes later when I emerged from my place on the couch I knew there was no turning back. I still have my original issues with the pilot (which I should know better, because a pilot is almost never exactly the same tone as the rest of the show) but now that I had the ability to instantly follow it up with the second episode and then the third and so on, I was able to get hooked on the rest of the story. And the narration, which I didn't love in the first few episodes has become one of my favorite parts of watching. Next to Rogelio De La Vega.

source IMDB

The thing that strikes me the most is how well every character is rounded out. The media has a bad habit of presenting people who stay virgins into their 20s as uber conservative and hugely naive. But Jane is a smart, balanced woman who writes and reads romance novels and is shown to have full agency over her sexuality. The writers are consistant with this, showing the character of Petra who could so easily just be the cold, controlling ex-wife as a damaged abuse survivor who uses her fear as a tool to help her keep a tighter control over her life. Every character is given this treatment, which is so very rare. It's easy to let someone play into a stereotype because it moves the plot along but to take the time to carefully develop this many characters in a large ensemble is a huge task and shows a level of empathy that so few TV shows pull off. Jane is presented like a Telenovela (for those who may be unfamiliar, think soap opera but the plot moves a thousand times faster) so some characters are wacky or have exaggerated personalities but they are always allowed full identities.

source IMDB

For me the ideal summer show is something with a few seasons behind it that I can get obsessed with and spend a few months working my way through it. That may prove to be a challenge with Jane since I started it last week and I'm already well into season 2... But I'm enjoying it way too much to stop. There are evil twins! Mistaken identities! A drug Queen-Pin! People being pushed down stairs! RITA FREAKIN MORENO!!!! My love for this world is so strong.

source IMDB

Happy Watching,
Little C


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