And we’re back! It genuinely feels like it’s been three years, which makes me think the time jump should’ve been coordinated with this brief hiatus. But then we would’ve been left with the death of Michael for well over a month. Anyways, Jane the Hot Mess Mama is back, and this week’s episode focuses on insecurities.
At least until the final 15 minutes or so, this was a weak episode that demonstrated the flaws in the time jump. The Petra versus Jane thing has been done so many times in so many different ways, and while I love seeing a story line about moms on television, this feels a little forced. We’ve seen so many scenes with Jane and Petra being there for each other. We already know they’ll always compete with each other, so it feels a bit redundant and kind of boring. Also, hitting us with an election story line? Too soon, guys. Too. Soon. I needed the Narrator’s happy place just as much as he did.
It was also kind of disappointing that this episode centers on an election only to end with neither Jane or Petra winning it. It was huge accomplishment for Petra, who confronted her insecurities about being a mom (and a dragon) by opting out, and a huge accomplishment for Jane for quitting something, but still didn’t bring anything very new to the table.
But, as always, the writers of this show won me over in the last act. It’s almost as if they intentionally bore me as a distraction for what’s to come. There were some great character moments in the end, especially for the Villanueva ladies.
It feels like it’s been a while (three years!) since Abuela has had some story line of her own. Go Abuela! Abuela’s insecurities are about her looks and her personality: She doesn’t think Jorge would ever think of her in any other way than a co-worker. So she listens to Xo and Jane’s kind of terrible advice and gives in to their makeover. And turns out, she didn’t really need it. Despite her awkward fall on her trip to pick up her check, he still asks her out. It’s almost as if she didn’t need the makeover all along! I wish I had seen this episode years ago, because I totally dressed up to go pick up a check when I knew my crush was going to be there. I didn’t fall, but I think it was obvious so just as embarrassing.
Rogelio is insecure about his looks and the way people perceive him, as always. But he’s also insecure about his relationship with Xo. Bruce’s purposeful sent him so over the edge that he asks Mateo, a 4 year-old, if he thinks his abuela is happy. Which is adorable but awful, though Rogelio meant well. He just cares for Xo so much that he was genuinely asking his thoughts. The good thing is that Rogelio’s chat with Mateo is working in his favor: It is what drove Xo to confront the insecurities she had about her relationship with Bruce in front of Bruce.
I really hope this isn’t the last of Bruce. He started growing on me, and I think the dynamic of him still being Rogelio’s lawyer in the trial will make for some great moments in the episodes to come.
This is the part where I try to remember what I forgot to talk about. Oh, Jane. Jane! Jane becomes edgy for a few minutes! Jane wears a pantsuit! Jane doesn’t cry when she tells Alex (and his 2004 haircut) about Michael’s death. And Mateo doesn’t have any trauma! Jane is ready to date again — and this will be entertaining, because #TeamRafael. Oh, and Zen Rafael’s insecurity? He doesn’t want to go back to prison. But who does?
Also, just remembered that this episode ended with Petra and Rafael hooking up, season 1 style. This is weird, and I feel kind of bad for Chuck. First Petra moved human remains onto his hotel property, and now she’s going back to her ex, who is very, very, very attractive — especially with that stubble.
Additional note: I think Alex is great despite the 2005 haircut, but it bothered me intensely that he talks to Jane for at least two minutes without telling her about the lice alert. Lead with that, Alex!
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