Though it’s been a few months since Jane was on the air, Gina Rodriguez has busy keeping a pretty high profile — presenting at the Emmys, recruiting Stephen Colbert for her so-called cult, slaying internet trolls and being all-around awesome — which has helped stoke some serious excitement for her show. But as we all know, sometimes hype can take a toll on shows heading into their second season (here’s looking at you, True Detective), a possibility that definitely made me a bit anxious heading into the premiere. However, I’m happy to say, “Chapter 23” was a crazy roller coaster slick with romance, plenty of drama, funny one-liners, and shocking moments, all of which made me fall in love with Jane all over again.
The ride began with a quick flashback (love those!) to little Jane getting schooled in a little Telenovela 101: Sometimes a girl has to be fearless in order to get her happy ending. With that lesson in mind, we’re taken to the present, just nine minutes after baby Mateo was kidnapped. Jane is glowing after giving birth and has absolutely no idea that her baby’s been taken until a nurse informs her and Rafael that Mateo needs a hearing test. This is when Jane realizes that the rogue nurse who took Mateo was part of some hellish plan, prompting her to go into protective mommy mode with a remarkable amount of calm. (Honestly, would you keep your cool like she did if you were in her situation?! Um, no.)
Returning fans, you should know what comes next: Jane calls Michael. Her ex-fiancé is the male equivalent of Old Faithful, predictable and loyal, almost to a fault. Jane’s trying her best to stay calm but then she starts crying (which means I almost started crying because Gina’s acting is just that good), and then we learn why Rose staged the kidnapping. She wants to trade Mateo for a dragonfly pin, which she lost during a makeout session with Luisa last season. For the record, Rose isn’t at a lack for stylish accessories: She wants the pin back because it’s embedded with a microchip that contains the files on her face-changing clients.
This is news that Jane’s not gonna take sitting down, so she runs out with baby daddy Rafael and Michael to make the swap. Well, for the record, Jane doesn’t really run — it’s more like a slow-paced waddle, since girlfriend just gave birth. There’s some twists and turns that stall the swap a bit (Luisa’s girlfriend, Juicy, throws out the pin in a jealous rage which creates a frenzied search for the pin poolside; Michael’s ex-partner Nadine is at the scene where the baby trade takes place and she delivers a spiel about how Sin Rostro is really, really dangerous), but luckily, Mateo ends up in his mommy’s arms and right back on his feeding schedule. Thank goodness for happily ever after, right?
This is where Jane’s post-pregnancy story line gets infused with a dose of the absurdist humor that worked so well last season. A huge crowd of TV reporters and groupies have gathered at la casa Villanueva, and it turns out Rogelio’s love of social media is to blame for the chaos. He was tweeting a play-by-play account of Mateo’s saga, and it seems like all the nuns in Miami-Dade have shown up to praise Jane as some sort of Immaculata. The whole situation — with returning characters like Slutty Crystal and Rogelio’s ex-stepdaughters — makes Jane stress out like whoa, which affects her milk supply. Rafael isn’t helping the situation at all, since he’s absolutely clueless about the actual purpose of breasts beyond their ornamental appeal. Could it be anymore obvious that he flaked out on those parenting classes last season? Methinks not. The matter of proving himself as a parent causes Rafael some stress, which is why when Jane is at lactation class, he takes the opportunity to ask Michael for some advice.
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