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Jane the Virgin - Chapter Seventy-Four - Review

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Jane the Virgin “Chapter Seventy-Four” was written by the team of Micah Schraft and Paul Sciarrotta and was directed by none other than Jane herself – Gina Rodriguez! This is Roedriguez’s first time behind the camera, and she does a great job here – I’m sure to nobody’s surprise. There is nothing super flashy about the direction – a rookie mistake by many. It’s clear that all the actors on the show brought their A-game for her – also not a surprise! I’ll comment as we go along on moments of her direction that I particularly liked.

The episode’s flashback follows Jane’s sexual evolution through fear to denial to temptation to satiation to acceptance to liberation, and finally? Car sex! Except Rafael (Justin Baldoni) doesn’t want to have sex for the first time in a car – leaving Jane, Jane the Rafael Virgin! Rafael insists on taking her on a date first.

Jane tries to help Alba (Ivonne Coll) with her own sexual evolution by helping her with her online dating profile – which is awful – and will likely only attract Monks! Alba tells Jane she’s not comfortable with the impersonal nature of online dating and would rather do it naturally. Jane challenges her to look around and make a move!

Alba thinks that Jane’s agreeing to ghost write Petra’s (Yael Grobglas) book is a huge mistake – and I think she could be right! Jane takes a pile of lifestyle books to Petra, and Petra doesn’t like any of them. Personally, I don’t like Petra’s new hairdo! Regardless, Petra wants to develop her brand – she’s not a celebrity who’s had their name slapped on a business. I loved the Narrator (Anthony Mendez) coming to the defense of Chrissy Teigen when Petra disses her!

I liked the little detail of Petra have the stairmasters put in her office – it is rather cool that she tests everything before putting it in the hotel. Jane insists that she needs to know what kind of book she’s writing, so she has a basic idea of the template of what to include… but Petra insists that she think outside the box! And really, they are both kind of right. Jane wants to know if it’s a biography or a lifestyle book or a series of stories. Petra wants all three! But Jane is fixated on the proposal and having a specific genre – and publishers do like that sort of thing for marketing purposes – which Petra should get, right?

Petra insists that she wants it to be a happy collaboration – and so does Jane. Jane tells Petra that she loves her new haircut – and that she worked for a publisher. They shouldn’t get hung up on the hypotheticals – Jane can knock the proposal out no problem – and Petra is happy to send her off to do it.

Meanwhile, Rogelio (Jaime Camil) is still really bored being home alone with Baby. Xo (Andrea Navedo) is thrilled with her decision to go back to teaching – she’s having fun again. Rogelio admits that he is miserable – and thinks that he’s a monster. Xo tells him that he’s not – it’s normal. Rogelio is ready to quit, but Xo insists he hasn’t given it a real shot and sends him off to a baby and me class to get some interaction with other adults.

Jane and Rafael continue their cute, flirty texting – until Jane has to go back to work. I loved how Jane comes up with a few answers to who Petra Selano is – and then spins them to be positive! Even more though, I loved that we get to see Michael’s cat on the bed with her – she still has him! Petra, however, is utterly insulted by Jane’s work.

Petra is worried their collaboration will hurt their familial relationship and suggests she find another ghost writer. Jane says to take a breath – after all they worked at the hotel together for years. Petra suggests that Jane shadow her, so she gets a better idea of who Petra is and what she does every day.

Mateo is doing a school project on family trees and wants help from Rafael to fill in his side of the tree. Rafael reminds Mateo that he was adopted and that both of his parents passed away (and one was a thief and the other a serial killer). Rafael tells Mateo that he doesn’t know who is biological parents are and insists that he doesn’t care. I’m betting that his “real” parents are going to show up… Am I being paranoid? After all, this is a telenovela!

Jane has been pretending to get ready for work, but really, she and Rafael are sneaking off for their date! Rafael tries some sexy role playing, but Jane is too focused on the conversation with Mateo. He insists that he’s happy with his decision not to find them – and then orders a scotch and tells Jane not to judge. She says she’s not judging – but she is concerned about him just shutting down and refusing to engage – classic male response! And thus ends their date…

Jane shadowing Petra ends up as a disaster – especially when Jane gets in the middle of Petra’s reprimanding Bob (Michael Hagiwara) – the fish guy. Jane suggests that as she’s Petra’s moral compass, there are kinder ways to motivate her employees rather than scaring them. Petra asks Jane how many successful companies she’s run – SNAP! However, Petra’s reaction to Jane’s “judgi-ness” is pretty similar to Rafael’s… Petra and Jane switch to voice memos.

Rogelio is very excited about his parenting group. He tells Xo it was really helpful – and he’s self-diagnosed himself with post-partum depression! Xo tries to point out that he can’t have it because he never did the partum part! Rogelio refuses to see that he’s really depressed because he went from being a celebrity to being a “regular” person! But Rogelio has googled it – it is a thing, and he’s not going to suffer in silence!

Meanwhile, JR (Rosario Dawson) has bad news for Petra. There were screws missing from Anezka’s balcony, which suggests pre-meditation. Petra insists that her mother or sister must have been trying to kill her! JR reassures her and tells her to just tell the police that in the interview.

Later, Rafael apologizes for shutting down, but before they can really get into it, Alba arrives with news that she’s spoken to Renaldo (Jack Landron)! He’s asked her out on a date – and Alba has volunteered Jane as a double date with his grandson – Chris (Drew Fonteiro)!

Petra does her own investigation into the missing screws – and I adore how clever this show is!!!!! They are special screws, needing a special – MUELLER screwdriver – and the night Anezka died, Magda signed one out. And the show uses the hashtag #MuellerInvestigation! LOL! Vinnie (Jeff Holman) remembers Magda because she had the twins with her – and that sends Petra into a tailspin.

JR follows Petra into the stairwell where she’s crying at the realization that her mother wanted her dead. She’s so tired of being vigilant, but she has to be – she has to protect her daughters. And that changes JR’s mind. JR texts the person giving her orders and tells whoever it is that Petra is clearly not guilty and she’s out!

Meanwhile, Rogelio starts a twitter campaign for Male Post-Partum syndrome. He attracts the ire of River Fields (Brooke Shields) – a staunch activist for Post-Partum Depression in women. Rogelio is invited on The Talk to discuss the issue – and everyone thinks it’s a bad idea. But when River Fields disses him on ET, he’s determined to go on the show…

Rafael becomes increasingly uncomfortable as Jane prepared for her blind date. Jane also notices… Chris went to Harvard Medical School and is a pediatrician. Rafael shows up behind the bar – even though he’s not supposed to be working. He and Jane start texting back and forth – and things start to get steamy… I LOVED that her head blocked the X-rated one!!! Jane stops it when it becomes obvious she’s being rude at the table.

JR coaches Petra through her police interview. JR tells her she did great and they would soon be done. Petra seems a bit sad to be contemplating not seeing JR anymore. And then there’s a new burner phone in JR’s car!

Rafael gets increasingly upset as Jane ignores his texts and then whispers in Chris’s ear! Jane finally gets up and confronts Rafael in the back room. Rafael is clearly jealous and tells Jane that he’ll never be a “Chris” – light and uncomplicated. Jane tells him she doesn’t want him to be. She just wants them to be able to communicate. He doesn’t want her to judge him every time he gets down or wants to have a drink or he doesn’t want to talk. When he tells her that he’s been walking on eggshells around her, Jane tells him that she’s been doing the same thing – trying not to be too judgey. Once again, their talk is broken up by Alba.

Alba is having a good time – until she sees Jorge (Alfonso DiLuca) in the background. Jane realizes something is very wrong when Alba goes to pieces over a broken teacup. She admits that she’s not over Jorge. Jane gets Alba to open up about why she really turned Jorge down. Alba tells her that she hasn’t been intimate with anyone in 30 years. Alba feels broken, but Jane assures her she isn’t.

Jane takes Alba to a sex shop – and it’s hilarious! It’s also hilarious that the CW – or their censors – won’t let the show actually “show” anything! We can have plenty of heads exploding and blood spatters on all the other CW shows, but show a dildo? OMG. I did like the clever way they avoided showing it though.

I also loved the fact that Jane heard Petra’s voice in her head when she goes up to pay for the “vibrator” and the clerk wants to deny the sale price. Jane is forceful and assertive! She gets the sale price and Alba’s lube comped! Which leads her to be forceful with Petra…

Jane tells her that the voice memos aren’t working and that Petra needs to let Jane take the lead on writing because that’s what she’s good at. She demands focused two hour meetings twice weekly in which Petra answers Jane’s questions. Petra agrees – and the two meet in the Penthouse after Jane’s shift at the Mirabella. And Jane gets to try out the stairmasters too! Petra tells Jane that it comes naturally to her to be in charge, but the one place she lets go is during sex.

Rogelio goes on The Talk – and how fun is it that we have the whole cast! Julie Chen, Sharon Osbourne, Sheryl Underwood, and Sara Gilbert! Fields denies that Male Post-Partum depression does not exist. Rogelio gains ground by dissolving into tears. Rogelio is ready to accept it as a draw, but Fields and Rogelio are also in the next segment… on wild animals.

Dr Evan Antin brings in a wild wolf – and he tells them that they all have to remain calm because he might look like a dog, but he’s a wild animal. Fields tries to keep the focus on herself and Rogelio calls her on it – the two escalate insults until the wolf finally loses it and attacks Fields! But she only loses one toe… She has nine more!

Alba is mortified when a little girl (Audrey Lynn) bumps into her and Jane’s surprise falls out. Jane tries to comfort her, telling her that she gets that Alba is embarrassed but she shouldn’t be afraid to at least try it. Alba thinks it would be a sin. But Jane insists that sex should be about pleasure – and Alba deserves to be happy. She can’t deny a whole part of who she is – and that helps Jane with Rafael.

Jane and Rafael finally have their heart to heart. They have to be themselves – and see if it can work. He can go as dark as he can and she’ll be as judge-y as she can. She tells him that she still thinks he should look for his birth parents – it’s obviously still bothering him, and Jane does know a thing or two about a missing parent…

Rogelio’s agent calls – and he and Xo think it’s going to be bad news. BUT the studio just greenlit the American version of Santos! If he can get Fields to co-star with him because their chemistry on The Talk was electric! LOL! Have I gushed recently about how good Camil is? I love how he plays Rogelio so over the top, yet there’s that child-like vulnerability about him that makes the character loveable despite is narcissism. And really, he does have a heart of gold in there too!

After Petra sings Rafael’s praises as a beast under the covers, Jane goes directly to his apartment and wants to have sex! And of course, the cable guy is there! It is hilarious, especially her “full package” remark! So Jane heads to the shower.

Jane and Rafael aren’t the only ones having a sexual awakening – Petra has a dream about JR and Alba tries out her new toy! I adore that the show doesn’t hold back from showing Alba as a sexual being.

Rafael ultimately joins Jane in the shower – and this is beautifully shot. Rodriguez does a very good job of capturing the emotional highpoints of the episode. And I loved the narrator telling us that he can’t show us everything because we’re not on HBO!

The final scene playfully tells us that Petra is about to be screwed – but in the other two senses as someone breaks in and plants two of the balcony screws in her desk, presumably framing her for the balcony malfunction.

I liked the threads that ran through this episode and once again how they intertwined with each other. Rogelio would do well to actually be more honest with himself about who he really is – not a stay at home dad – and then there’s the thread of sexuality. Is Petra really falling for JR? And who is pulling JR’s strings anyway? What do they have over her? What did you think of the episode? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below!

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