When I first heard the concept behind Jane the Virgin I thought, “A good little Catholic girl ends up accidently pregnant via insemination with a baby meant for another couple and now… What? You’re going to show me how that impacts her love life? That has to be the silliest, most ridiculous thing I’ve ever heard! Oh, it’s on CW? Yeah, that tracks. No way is this NOT going to be super lame.” I thought that so much that I refused to even look at it during its first season. CW has burned me too many times before. I still haven’t forgiven them for Hart of Dixie.
Then somewhere around the middle of season 2, I got stuck in a show hole.
I had just finished binging the most recent season of Orange is the New Black (which always leaves me with a general sense of hopelessness and ennui that I may be a little addicted to), and I wanted to go with a show that was more lighthearted and fluffy. I Netflixed, I Googled, I Hulu-ed, I… Primed? Amazoned? I don’t know. Insert your favorite proper noun being turned into an adjective here. The point is, I researched a bit to find something interesting but light… and ended up reluctantly settling on Jane the Virgin.
From episode 1, I was hooked. I didn’t realize that the story would be told as a telenovela, which is an interesting and unique set up for an American show. Strike 1 (but in it’s favor, I don’t know what the positive counterword would be for strike, so just roll with it and stop thinking so hard). It also has a narrator, which I love (And Anthony Mendez is the whipped cream AND the cherries on this already tasty ice cream sundae of a show).
I’m often drawn to shows like Arrested Development or A Series of Unfortunate Events because I love having an outsiders opinion on characters and goings on within the world of the show. It also mirrors my own tendency to separate myself from people and situations and cast myself as the wisdom-filled outsider. Enough about that, I’ll go blog somewhere else about by mental health issues. Anyway. Strike 2. Add in the genuine feel of every single central character (no matter how crazy their back story may be) and the fact that I was introduced to possibly the single most enjoyable name to pronounce (Rogelio DeLaVega), and it was a clear home run for me!
What? That’s not the way baseball works? Sorry, I don’t really sports. I can caveman, though if it helps. Me likey show. Funny, make laugh. Like fancy name.
All of this to say, if you haven’t watched it yet, do it. Some other highlights for me include the emphasis on family love and loyalty, the different novels Jane is always attempting to write and how she interacts with her own characters and the overall brightness and beautiful scenery of the show. It is light and funny much of the time, but when this show sets out to pull at your heart strings, it accomplishes that goal plus some. It ended up being pretty well rounded and even keeled for a show I didn’t have a lot of expectations for. The characters are consistent, the acting is up to snuff and the storylines are huge and ridiculous. Jane the Virgin has easily become one of my top 10 favorite current TV shows, and that’s saying something for me. Go. Watch. Enjoy. You’re welcome.