Oh my. Sin Rosetro.
In a swift act of permanence, the main suspects for the identity of Jane the Virgin’s mysterious drug lord, Sin Rostro, have been replaced. Yes, Magda is a lying mother who convinced her daughter that she was unable to walk; Rafael has enough smug tendencies to make him an appealing suspect and his father even more so, being aloof enough to be the prime suspect in Nadine’s eyes; but now, at least to us, the real Sin Rostra has been revealed.
And surprise surprise, it’s Rose.
I didn’t want to think overly on the identity of Sin Rostro before this episode, partially because the crimes aren’t what make this show so great, but also because of what does make this show so great: its quality of surprise.
The strongest pieces of Jane the Virgin, undoubtedly, are the scenes showing tender moments between Jane and her family. But second to those come the shocking twists that the writers — just like the very ones that we saw writing Passions of Santos– like to throw at us as the viewers.
It’s this mix of far-out schemes and small, heartfelt moments that makes this show run the way that it does- a way that no other show on television can match — and in “Chapter Twelve,” Jane the Virgin continues this act.
Never a show to let plots fester, Rogelio finds out that his character Santos is being killed off at the beginning of the episode, and that Jane has been given the orders to write his final script. Eventually, he comes to a sort of peace regarding the decision- now he can be a movie star!- but funnily enough, it’s his death scene that proves to be least ostentatious and most meaningful moment of any that are featured in “Chapter Twelve.”
Death is teased heavily this episode — Milos really does turn up, but not with any intentions of hurting Petra, only ones of revealing the truth about her mother — and after a moment in front of Magda where he pretends to slit Petra’s neck, she finally sees what he’s been trying to tell her.
The scene flashes between her and Santos’ death, and while it’s not clear at first that hers is fake, as the minutes ticked by, it became increasingly clear- and a little unsettling — which one started to feel more meaningful and real. Both Petra and Rogelio are comic characters, outlandish and cartoon-y in their evil-doing and with their egos respectively, but although neither of their death scenes were real, Rogelio’s was truly heartbreaking because of how Jane wrote it. Santos’ death, despite the melodrama that it’s born from, brings forward true grief. Petra’s, meanwhile, was just a trick, and feels cheap for the very same reason. Rogelio’s scene was scripted, but you could tell that Rogelio treated each word — each of Jane’s words- with true reverence. And that’s the thing about Jane the Virgin. It creates meaning out of everything. Each of its characters, despite the ridiculous things that they do, all have incredibly real feelings. So Santos, when he dies, doesn’t go out with just a meaningless bang, but with some powerful sentiments, too.
It’s a fitting goodbye for Jane to write the end of Santos’ story (the end at least for now that is, because hello, this is a telenovela), but what means more is the moment that the two share afterwards. Rogelio thanks everyone, tears in his eyes, before sharing a hug with his daughter. He says, in the script, that he forgives his long-lost son for killing him, because they are flesh and blood. Nothing cannot be forgiven between them. It’s a line lifted from Jane’s own life, and as he says it the words reverberate for her, too. She hasn’t known her father long, but she has forgiven him and accepts him because of the truth that she wrote on that script: there is nothing that she — and now Santos — cannot forgive their flesh and blood for. She then calls him ‘dad,’ and finally, at episode twelve, Jane the Virgin brought me to tears. (But only a few. Honestly, I’m just surprised that it wasn’t sooner.)
Family, meanwhile, is a sore spot for Rafael this week, as he and Jane visit Luisa for a therapy session, and Jane finds out that Luisa’s mother killed herself after symptoms similar to Luisa’s, along with some of Petra’s secrets after she finds her crying on a staircase. Rafael thinks that Jane is too trusting, but he likes that about her, even if he can’t bring himself to feel the same way. It’s this very trust that made her embark on her relationship with Rafael in the first place, and it’s this trust that makes him open a letter Luisa gives Jane to forward to Rose, where she writes her suspicions about their father having killed the hotel’s bell-boy.
And it’s then, when the evidence against Rafael’s father begins to mount (Michael also found more links between him and the plastic surgeon working secretly at the hotel), that Emilio makes his move. He pushes up the date of his and Rose’s private getaway, and when she can’t think of a better way out of it, she makes her move, pushing the switch and burying him alive in a vat of concrete.
Michael’s on the hunt for a dead man, and Rafael really is helping out Sin Rostro. But it’s not his father.
It’s his stepmother.
- “I made a vision board, but I didn’t think that it would manifest so quickly!” (‘I love my hair’! My heart is slowly becoming more and more Rogelio-sized.)
- “Is that meant to make me feel better? That you meant to throw acid at my mother?” “…Yes, a little.” Milos suffers from anger management, but only against Magda, apparently. Either way, Magda’s creepy and murderous, but Sin Rostro she ain’t.
- The typed up narration was on point this episode, from backspacing on Jane’s typos to deleting this: “Therapy session at the nut house.” Jane the Virgin has so much fun with its form.
- “I come from the world’s most screwed up family.” Sorry Raf, but I’m going to have to give that one to Petra.
- Jane called Rogelio dad. Goddamnit, I’m still teary.