There’s an emoji for everything, right? There’s one for booty-call texts, another that symbolizes your obsession with burritos, an awesome one to use to describe the high you get when you actually hit the gym, and one for when you’re feeling like a flirty salsa queen. (I mean, how awesome is that last one?) But what’s the emoji for gut punch? That’s the question Jane’s all-knowing narrator posed during “Chapter 26,” an episode that saw Rafael ask Jane for joint custody, while she was simultaneously trying to figure out how to juggle her love life and responsibilities as a mother and best friend to Lina.
The night kicked off with an adorable flashback revealing a peek at Jane and her BFF Lina during their middle school days, when they were young, wore really cheesy-looking outfits, and had synchronized a routine to that revered Nelly classic, “Hot in Herre.” More than 10 years later, their friendship hasn’t really changed — or at least that’s what Jane would like to think. Although Jane may have good intentions, girlfriend’s got a case of mommy brain, which is precisely why she’s totes behind on planning Lina’s 25th birthday party. Oops.
Matters aren’t helped much in the next scene, when Rafael — who’s still kind of on the high from their kiss in last week’s episode — sits Jane down with a request. “I think we should talk about custody.”
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Now, I’ve promised myself to say a few nice things about Rafael this episode — you know, in the interest of writing recaps that aren’t entirely Team Michael — and I think it’s fair to say that Rafael has a point here. He has the legal right to ask for custody, and he seems really earnest about wanting to be a good dad. So why not ask for custody? It’s worth noting that Jane isn’t entirely opposed to the idea, but she doesn’t want lawyers involved — for now anyway. How about Rafael take care of Mateo while she’s in school? Done and done.
Meanwhile, Michael is busy doing the cop thing and has made some progress when it comes to figuring out who this Heidi Von Ocher person really is. She’s a yodeler (so random!), and when Michael proposes bringing her to the hotel for a show so that he can question her, Rafael surprises everyone by being 100 percent into the idea. (See, that’s the second nice thing I’ve written about him in as many paragraphs.)
NEXT PAGE: An R. Kelly reference really does make everything better[pagebreak]
While Michael is questioning Heidi and her two milkmaids/backup yodelers, Jane is busy drafting a list of feeding and nap-related instructions for Rafael. A “baby-sitting list,” says Rafael, or as Jane puts it, “a list of instructions for the baby.” It’s pretty clear from this scene that, though Jane believes that Rafael really does love Mateo, she doesn’t necessarily trust him when it comes to his care. It’s pretty common for new moms to be skeptical when it comes to anyone but themselves being in charge of their baby, so Jane’s reaction when she sees her list crumpled next to Rafael’s trash isn’t entirely without precedent. In a word, she gets P-I-S-S-E-D. But no episode of Jane the Virgin is without a generous dose of irony, and when Jane tries to hide from Rafael the fact that she found the list when she was supposed to be at class, one thing leads to another and she ends up being locked in a supply closet. (A a subtle reference to another early ‘00s hit, R. Kelly’s “Trapped in the Closet,” perhaps?)
But don’t worry: Jane doesn’t end up in there too long. Within seconds, Michael calls inform Jane that Petra’s told him about her and Rafael’s kiss, and upon learning she’s locked in a closet, he swings by to release her. He’s saved her, you guys!
Before Team Michael fans could really revel in this sweet scene, Rafael ruins — I mean, swings by — and within seconds, Luisa makes a dramatic entrance, having been released by her kidnappers. It’s like a big family reunion, but not really, ‘cause Luisa’s suffering from a little of PTSD and Rafael refuses to believe she’s actually been kidnapped. However, Michael does, and he brings Luisa into headquarters — where he’s been assigned a pretty blond partner — for questioning.
With emotions running high, Jane makes a big decision. She tells Rafael that she’s changed her mind about hiring attorneys to help the two of them arrive at a custody agreement. As the two of them talk about figuring out a partnership, Michael and his new partner, Susanna, are questioning Luisa. Michael is asking pretty straight-forward questions, but the new girl is curious about the blue silk ties that the kidnappers used on Luisa. It turns out that an old gangster who ran Miami in the ‘80s was notorious for using blue silk ties, a random fact that Susanna learned while doing some job-related research. Could it be a clue?
While Michael is learning about Susanna’s amazing, photographic memory and her penchant for meticulous research, Rafael and Petra have one of those all-too-rare scenes where they’re not arguing and/or blackmailing each other. “If we’re not together then I worried I made a huge mistake,” Petra shares. Rather than rub it in, Rafael shows his soft, emotional side by assuring her that the pregnancy is an unexpected blessing. “After all the miscarriages and doctors telling you couldn’t have kids…this is a good thing with or without me,” he says. It truly is, as the narrator says, “a gentle dressing down.”
As Petra and Rafael are sharing an unexpectedly tender moment, Jane and Michael are experiencing some feels of their own. He’s swung by the house (seriously, the miles on his car must be absolutely crazy) just in time to help Jane zip up a cute dress she’s selected in honor of Lina’s birthday. (Which will now be non-Gatsby-themed, since Jane couldn’t get the shindig together in time.)
They’re super close, then Michael’s touching her, there’s chemistry…and then Jane tells him that her kiss with Rafael “didn’t mean anything.” Since Jane is gushing over how amazing and honest Michael has been with her, Michael decides to actually tell the truth, sharing that he let Nadine go on the run during the baby Mateo rescue plan a few weeks back. Jane’s soul-baring session with Michael inspires her to offer a heart-warming apology to Lina while at the club. Theirs is a makeup unlike any we’ve seen between Jane and either of her guys, the sort that makes you realize how precious girlfriends are. Who else but a BFF would make jokes about “pumping and dumping” while slurping back tequila shots? To celebrate, Jane and Lina break out their adorable “Hot in Herre” dance and subsequently find themselves on the bathroom floor, where Jane writes an essay on The Great Gatsby on her phone for class. (What a goody goody — but I love it!)
NEXT PAGE: The proposal of every girl’s dreams [pagebreak]
The night could have ended there, and Jane would have considered it a success, but when she heads to the hotel to pick up baby Mateo — who’s actually back at her house with Rafael and the Villanueva clan — she runs into Michael. Within moments, she’s in his arms, and it’s perfection as they share a lingering kiss full of hope, promise, and lots of passion. It’s the “best kiss” Jane has ever had (Take that, Team Rafael!), she tells Xo. She’s about to go on into juicy detail when she spies the baby monitor on, which sends her into a full-on freakout since Rafael could have potentially heard her while in the other room. She checks on him, and the scene is calm: He appears to be asleep, and the monitor is off. Appearances can be deceiving, though, and in this case, Rafael has heard everything. Will this have any consequences on his attitude towards shared custody? Uh oh.
Back at headquarters, Michael’s on cloud nine as he packs up. Things are looking pretty good for him: He’s got the girl and is closer than ever to cracking the Sin Rostro case wide open. There’s just one thing — it turns out his new partner has a case she’s not telling him about, and that case just happens to be snooping on Michael on behalf of the police chief.
Meanwhile, Luisa seems to have given up her hankering for an Oxy in favor of the big O with Heidi. That girl’s got serious game, amirite? She’s also received an invite to a dating site, which just so happens to give her a chance to reconnect with Rose and learn about what she’s been up to. Will Luisa share this with Michael? Or will she keep the news of Rose’s whereabouts to herself?
Love is definitely in the air during the last few minutes of “Chapter 26,” which sees Petra receive an unexpected proposal from Milos. “I need to marry you, for tax purposes,” he says, bringing up the subject of his hotel shares. To sweeten the deal, he threatens to throw Petra in jail with her mom. Which would you choose: a prison cell or an impromptu wedding?
While all this has been going on, Rogelio has been dealing with Luciana, who has been blackmailing him with some audit tapes from his Scientology days. With those tapes, Luciana can demand everything from flattering camera shots to a luxurious trailer outfitted especially for her pet bunnies. It’s enough to make any guy go crazy — and enough to make the woman by his side spring to action, which is why Xo saves the day when she helps Rogelio engineer a master plan to kidnap Luciana’s pet bunnies in order to get the tapes back. Don’t let the miniskirt fool you: Xo is all about business.
Burning questions, stray observations, and memorable one-liners:
- Was this episode the first time we saw Jane drink alcohol since the baby’s birth? Note to self: Jane likes Don Julio.
- Of course Rogelio succumbed to Scientology as a young actor. After all, he’s just like Tom Cruise: cute, charismatic and really, really gullible.
- You have to love the humor behind some of Jane’s more subtle jokes. Case in point? When Luisa finds herself on a park bench after having been kidnapped. “Am I in a foreign country?” she asks a passerby. Nope — just South Beach.
- “Rogelio, everyone knows you’re an EP. But they don’t know all the things you admitted to become an OT III.” —Luciana
- Pregnant, hormonal, saltine-snacking Petra in a wedding dress? That sounds too good to be true!