Just a sweet story about a girl and her accidental artificial inseminator.
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Chapter Seventy-One
Credit: Michael Desmond/The CW

Hi friends. “Chapter 71” is a jam-packed episode of Jane the Virgin: a proposal! Murder! The hilarious prospect of Rogelio going to couples counseling! I know, right? So let’s get the minor storylines out of the way because there are some things we need to discuss. Big things. Kiss-y things. Ah! You guys! Rafael kisses Jane and even this #TeamMichael gal is fully on board. Apologies for getting ahead of things but the lead up to that big kiss is so well done — we know something is coming, but it is still surprising to see Raf actually go for it. Swoon.

More on the kissing (ah!) later, but first, to the Marbella!

Petra is busy mustering up strength to act like she’s mourning the death of her twin sister. Anezka’s suicide is so public that not looking distraught will be bad PR for the hotel. Thankfully, Petra gets an assist when Anna and Elsa accidentally spray some perfume in her eyes. Perfect! She looks like she’s been crying for days. It’s an especially fortuitous turn of events because…Anezka is very much alive.

Our Narrator did tell us that Anezka “didn’t kill herself,” remember?

Anezka faked her own death, with the help of some actors standing in as EMTs, so that she could finally figure out who to trust: Petra or Magda. Once she sees how upset Petra looks and how ambivalent Magda is to her own daughter’s death, Anezka wants Petra to help her rule the hotel. (She’s been watching a lot of Game of Thrones.) The reunion is short-lived.

Anezka-disguised-as-Petra (it’s all very confusing, but thankfully our trusty Narrator puts name tags on the ladies) has an illuminating conversation with Anna and Elsa and learns that Petra couldn’t care less about Anezka. Inspired by Sansa Stark, Anezka confronts her sister. She won’t be needing her help after all—this is her hotel now. In the hotel room, Anezka gets closer and closer to Petra, pushing her out onto the balcony, when suddenly, from the ground below, we see a body fall. It is…Anezka, who is now very much dead. For real this time. Sorry, Anezka, but you were no Sansa Stark.

On to happier times: The Villanueva women are going on a road trip for Jane’s (two-stop) book tour! Okay, well, it’s mostly happier times for us because it means we get to bask in the glow of Jane, Xiomara, and Alba’s relationship, the true heart of the show. As for the women actually on said road trip, each comes with her own set of issues. What’s a road trip without some (drunken) dramatics, anyway?

Alba joins the ladies last minute, literally running and hopping into the car with very little warning. As one can imagine, Alba isn’t the greatest person to go on a road trip with in Rogelio’s classic convertible. Lady requests the top up and frequent bathroom breaks. Eventually, Alba confesses the reason she needed a quick getaway: Jorge proposed!

Jorge popped the question in the Marbella gift shop and instead of answering, Alba just ran. Alba doesn’t love Jorge the way she loved her late husband. When Xo suggests that he makes her happy and maybe that’s all Alba needs at this point in her life, Alba goes off. It’s a lovely rant about not being dead yet and deserving romance and passion. Sure, it’s a tequila-fueled rant, but lovely nonetheless. By the end of the trip, Alba has an epiphany. She needs to be willing to say yes to love! She tells the girls she is going to accept the proposal. Yay! Only, when she shows up at the Marbella gift shop (in a very hot bodycon dress, might I add), and has Jorge get down on one knee and ask her again…she says no. Again. Alas, it seems like saying “yes” to love means saying “no” to Jorge.

Like mother, like daughter: Xo is also using this road trip as an excuse to run from a problem. She’s still upset with Rogelio after he admitted that he always had an inkling Xo kept their baby but never called to find out, yet since they reconnected, he let Xo feel guilty for not reaching out to him. Instead of having a conversation with her husband about how she’s feeling, she bolts. Rogelio tries to apologize. She’ll have none of it. Thanks to a conversation with Rafael—the boys are attempting to bond while the ladies are away and both Mateo and Rogelio end up sick in bed—Rogelio decides that he doesn’t need to apologize. Ro and Xo are married now. They’re a team and they need to stick together, especially when things are tough. Instead, she just ran away. Ro will have none of that, thank you very much.

Xo is up in arms for like five minutes, until Alba reminds her that Rogelio is right. Plus, she can be angry at Ro for making her feel guilty about Jane, but Xiomara also could’ve reached out to him. Both are in the wrong. Once Xo returns from the road trip, she apologizes for avoiding their problems and tells Rogelio that she wants them to go to couples counseling to work on their issues. Rogelio laughs and laughs, until he realizes she’s serious. Rogelio in counseling is going to be delightful.

Whew. Now that the housekeeping is out of the way, let’s chat about Jane. (Recap continues on next page)

Jane is excited about her big (two-stop) tour for Snow Falling, but sometimes that excitement gets overshadowed by the intense rage she’s feeling about Adam leaving after she asked him THREE TIMES if he was all in. Seriously, all towel swans should seek safe lodging for a few weeks because Jane Villanueva will choke you out. She is an emotional mess.

Which explains why she has a complete breakdown over the good-for-nothing artist who designed her book cover and broke her heart right up there on stage during the first tour stop. Next to Iyanla Vanzant. Even Iyanla cannot fix Jane’s life. The incident trends on Twitter (#SnotFalling) and is a complete disaster. To add to the pile on, Jane’s novel finally gets its first review and it is, well, not great. A lot of heartbreaking things happen on this show, but watching Jane question her dream is toward the top. At least the Narrator offers some hope: “Her best is yet to come,” he tells us.

Our Narrator also reminds us that this is not the first bump in the road toward Jane achieving her writing dreams. In fact, there have been three times in her life when Jane needed an extra push to keep going. AND all three times, it’s been Rafael who pushed her. The first time, we’ve already seen. It’s 10 years ago, when Jane and Rafael first met at the yacht club. She makes him an excellent grilled cheese sandwich, and he wants to know more about her. The practical answer is that she’s a teacher. The brave answer is that she’s a writer. It’s the first time she says it out loud and it pushes her to pursue her dream.

The second time Rafael has pushed Jane along her writing path was three years ago. You know, the Very Bad Time when Michael’s death was still very new. Rafael, just two weeks out of prison, watches Mateo so that Jane can go get Michael’s mother’s blessing to write a novel about Jane and Michael’s love story. Mateo gets sick, so Rafael shows up at the hotel where Jane is staying only to learn that Jane’s conversation with Patricia did not go well. She does not want Jane to write about Michael, and furthermore, Patricia thinks that if Jane had taken Michael to see a doctor the moment he started feeling a little sick, Michael would still be alive. I know. Harsh. Jane has tossed her manuscript in the trash. She will find something else to write about.

That’s not good enough for Rafael. Later, there’s a knock on the hotel door and Patricia is there. She’s read the pages, and she understands this is Jane’s way of grieving and thinks Michael would be so proud. But she doesn’t want to be involved with the book or Jane at all. Cool about the book, but yeah, still harsh. Jane thanks Rafael for giving Patricia the pages. He wants Jane to write this book, he wants to see how it ends. “How did I get so lucky to have you as my accidental artificial inseminator,” Jane asks. “I’m the lucky one,” Raf replies. YOU GUYS. What is happening here, and can it never stop?

Back in the present day, the Villanueva women are shaking off the bad day by tossing back tequila shots and dancing on bars (Alba’s hips don’t lie, apparently). Unfortunately, when Jane goes to take a photo of the ladies with Xo’s phone, she discovers that Xo and Rafael have been texting back and forth about Mateo being sick and not wanting to tell Jane. That’s one way to kill a buzz. When confronted, Xo and Alba get real with Jane: Understandably, because of what happened to Michael, Jane tends to overreact every time Mateo gets sick. He’s fine now and they didn’t want to ruin her book tour. When Jane calls Rafael to ream him out, he says the same thing. But he wasn’t keeping Mateo’s fever a secret from Jane to protect her, he did it to protect Mateo.

We flash back to three years ago in that hotel room. Mateo tells Rafael that he thinks he feels better, but wants his mom to confirm it—he doesn’t want to get sick like Michael and die. In the present, Rafael explains that he doesn’t want Mateo to be scared of dying every time he’s sick. Jane is beside herself that she pushed her anxieties onto Mateo. Raf reminds her that she’s a good mom. Then they text each other that sweet “accidental artificial inseminator” exchange and I’ll say it again: YOU GUYS.

Jane’s second tour stop goes much better than the first—there’s much less crying—which is a great thing, because it’s being live-streamed. And because it’s being live-streamed that means Rafael watches as Jane answers a question about opening the door to love again. Jane doesn’t think she’ll open that door again—but maybe a window. Jane’s answer, in addition to Rogelio’s off-hand comment about Jane and Rafael being “just a matter of time,” give Raf a lot to think about.

Just because Jane doesn’t have an Adam-induced breakdown in front of a crowd, doesn’t mean her second stop included zero crying. Surprise! Michael’s mom shows up. Jane and Patricia have a weepy reunion in which Patricia thanks Jane for this book; she could feel Michael again. Well, thanks, Patricia. Now we’re all crying.

Finally, Jane arrives back home and we see the third time Rafael pushes her to continue writing. Mateo’s parents are doing the dishes and Jane, though so happy Patricia loved the book, thinks, considering her reviews, maybe writing isn’t for her. Again, that’s not good enough for Rafael. Jane is a writer. So he reminds her, once again (and again and again) to be brave. And just like that, the window opens, Rafael’s heart begins to glow, and he realizes he needs to be brave, too. Rafael kisses Jane. A big, ol’ sweep-you-off-your-feet kiss.

And now we wait.

Episode Recaps

Jane the Virgin
A telenovela adaptation, Jane the Virgin tells the story of Jane Villanueva, a virgin who is accidentally inseminated during a routine checkup.
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