Jane the Virgin Season Two Faux Telenovela Fun

Jane, Mateo and Rafael

Having missed all the fun of Jane the Virgin season one, there was no clear clue what season two would bring. This CW comedy offering, a faux telenovela that has been adapted from a real Venezuelan telenovela Juana la Virgen, was a question mark, but not for long. After watching for eight minutes, which takes the viewer up to Jane (Gina Rodriguez) climbing out of a hospital bed after just having the baby, barking orders and then waddling out of the room after her kidnapped child. This scene alone made it obvious that Jane the Virgin is comedy with a capital C.

Anyone who has not lived in either Mexico or America for the last 32 years may not be overly familiar with telenovelas. Unless, of course, the viewer has watched the  Warehouse 13 episode Savage Seduction which was a satirical homage of sorts to the genre.  That telenovelas are popular on both sides of the border is apparent, in 2014 when  a popular telenovela actress passed away, she was mourned by  millions of fans.

Which brings us back to Jane the Virgin and the fact that one does not need to watch the first season to enjoy the beginning of season two. There is a more than adequate opening montage and voice over to bring the new viewer  “up to snuff” on events.

*Sidenote*Narrator Anthony Mendez is a crucial part of the show, his pronouncements and attitude make the series even funnier. Lines, like:  “Even though she should not have been able to, Jane ran too…Well we’ll call it running that thing she is doing.” If that does not strike you as funny, wait for the narrative over the Cher lookalike wedding scene…

The recap, at the beginning of the first episode of season two reveals why the show is called Jane the Virgin, the lead character “protected her flower” and was accidentally artificially inseminated in season one.  Rodriquez is hysterical as Jane and her comic timing is exquisite.

There is at least one familiar face in the cast, Priscilla Barnes plays Magda, mother of Petra (Yael Grobglas) and even though Barnes is only on for a moment, she rocks it. 

In season two, Jane has had the baby, Mateo, and the boy is kidnapped. The episode follows his retrieval and Jane’s determination to breast feed. This series is a fast paced and very funny offering from CW. The jokes are well-timed and each performer executes their parts with precision and comedic timing that impresses.

Narrator Mendez holds it all together and the plot, like the characters, is delightfully humorous and multifaceted. One does not have to be familiar with telenovelas to enjoy this show and if the viewer is curious, Jane the Virgin features a telenovela called The Miracles of Mariana (A show within a show…sort of.) that the young Jane watched with her grandmother and we see scenes from this telenovela in flashback. This may, or may not help the novice become familiar with the premise of telenovelas.

CW may specialize in all things paranormal, The Vampire Diaries,  Supernatural, as well as DC;  Arrow, The Flash,  but it seems that they have mastered comedy as well with Jane the Virgin. Watching the second season of this hysterically funny series one expects a third season will be certainly be approved, if not more…

Jane the Virgin airs Mondays on CW, tune in and prepare to laugh till it hurts.

The Devils Rejects (2005): Zombie Western Horror

Rob Zombie wrote and directed this sequel to House of a 1000 Corpses. After the financial success of Corpses Lions Gate Entertainment were eager for Zombie to make another film.

Rob had an idea for a sequel while filming Corpses about the sheriff’s brother coming after the Firefly clan in an act of deadly revenge. With the idea in place Zombie began to craft The Devil’s Rejects  with the aim of making the film less comedic and more horrific.

Rob stated that he wanted it to feel a bit likeThe Wild Bunch , Bonnie and Clyde and Badlands. The influence of all three films can be seen in the final cut of Rejects.

The Devil’s Rejects opens with the Sheriff’s brother, Sheriff Wydell (William Forsythe) surrounding the Firefly house with a posse of lawmen. After telling the besieged family to surrender or die a prolonged shoot-out ensues with every one in the house being shot to rag-doll ribbons.

Otis (Bill Mosely) and Baby (Sherri Moon Zombie) manage to escape, but Mother Firefly is captured by Wydell. Otis and Baby after murdering a nurse to steal her car hide out at a motel.

At the motel Baby starts flirting with Roy (Geoffrey Lewis) who part of a country music band and when they head back to Roy’s room, Otis shows up and they take the entire band hostage. What follows is the hardest part of the film to watch.

Gone are the comedic undertones that make Corpses so amusing. Otis and Baby have grown p as it were and they set upon the band member with vicious and horrific acts of violence. Otis rapes Roy’s wife Gloria (Priscilla Barnes) and later kills the two remaining men. He cuts one of their faces off and returns to the motel room with his victims face over his own.

The two contact their father Captain Spaulding (Sid Haig) and they meet at the motel. After their reunion they all go to the Chicken Ranch, a brothel run by family friend Charlie Altamont (Ken Foree) and his lackey Clevon (Michael Berryman).

Sheriff Wydell has hired two bounty hunters to help track down the remaining Firefly family members, one of the bounty hunters is Danny Trejo, they catch up with them at the chicken ranch.

The cast list of The Devil’s Rejects reads like a horror-thon reunion. P.J. Soles, Michael Berryman,  and Kane Hodder all make appearances in the film.

With his second feature Rob Zombie has fine tuned his cinematic and horror skills. Focusing more on the evil side of the Firefly brood, he has toned down the hilarity that was present in his first film. He also gives the characters a chance to show who and what they really are.

The interaction between Baby, Otis and dad, Captain Spaulding is touching, funny and revealing. That this family unit is dysfunctional is obvious and just as apparent is their love (however strange) for one another.

Yet despite the more horrific nature of the film and it’s lead characters, we are fond of the backwater Dionysian family and when the film ends to the music of Lynyrd  Skynyrd’s Free Bird we are sad and a little touched.

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