Friday, January 31, 2014

Lo Que La Vida Me Robo - Capitulo 58—Aftermath of a Funeral

“What we have got here is failure to communicate.”
                                    Cool Hand Luke - 1967

Editorial By Elna june
There has been much discussion in the last few days about the nature and character of certain of our players in ‘Lo Que La Vida Me Robo’. I say that what we have got here is a failure to communicate. And I stand by my statement—Let me explain.

The writers in this telenovela have, by and large, done a great job. The acting, production values and dialogue are first rate, and the pace sometimes makes me feel like I am watching a telenovela directed by Paul Greengrass.

What we, as faithful watchers of “Robo’ need to have communicated to us now is character development, especially of the protagonist, Alejandro Almonte. In the last few days, culminating with the terrible death of Lauro Mendoza, I find that I have completely ceased to care about the anti-galan Alejandro. I am no longer angry with him, as I was at times earlier in our story, I am, quite simply, BORED with his character.

And a bored viewer cannot be a good thing, my friends. If the writers have taken a darker direction with this telenovela protagonist, such as we have seen in recent American primetime dramas with Tony Soprano in “The Sopranos” and Walter White in “Breaking Bad”, or, in more classical theatre with Shakespeare in “Macbeth”, then we viewers can know that we are watching, fascinated, as the proverbial train wrecks. Let Ale go to the devil and serve us up some new options for Montserrat. She can practice being a single mother—that storyline has many interesting possibilities.

The tension created by Alejandro Almonte’s cruel actions has left us viewers in a state of cognitive dissonance that is downright uncomfortable. Why is he behaving like such a jerk? We choose up tables, we look for hidden clues in his dialogue and personal history, we try to cling to Alejandro’s ‘right to be angry’ as a reason for his cruel actions and words. But so far his story rings hollow and  his personality unlikeable.

The fact is, the lead character of Alejandro, whom we have assumed to be the protagonist, is, sadly, a man with a pretty face and a nasty disposition. He is dour, haughty (yes, haughty, think of his recent behaviors with Victor and Macario) he rarely smiles, has a terrible temper and very little impulse control.  Right now, he is acting like a first class misogynist, the most recent evidence for this being his treatment of Maria.

It is high time for the writers to catch our attention and create some sympathy and likeability for this character before we yawn, get snacks or fast-forward through all his scenes. Rulli is a fine actor and I appreciate his physical attributes as much as the next person.  But give me something to like in Alejandro Almonte. Show him writing a check to save baby seals, have him adopt a puppy, let him romp with orphans as did St. Damian Fabre in La Tempestad.

Show-runners, I realize you may take this character to the depths in order to effect his necessary and dramatic turn-around. But give me some reason to care about him on his way down to rock bottom. Then I will happily root for his rehabilitation in the last 30 episodes.

Here, in simple bullet points, is what happened in tonight’s episode:

·      Graciela passed on to Montserrat the news she was told by Pedro Medina. Capitan Robledo helped Jose Luis Alvarez clear his name and he has been reinstated to his position in the Navy. Montserrat tells her mother that she is happy that at least Jose Luis can live his life in peace. Graciela cannot believe that her daughter still defends the man.  Graciela also takes some pleasure in telling Montserrat that Jose Luis and Angelica are getting married.
·      Victor and Alejandro are at Ale’s town house on the beach. Victor reminds Ale that is probably too early to get a DNA test done on Montserrat’s baby, but if he waits until the kid is born it may be too late to get his family back.
·      At the naval base, Capitan Robledo tells a thrilled JL that he will be returning to the Navy with a promotion—he will no longer be Corporal Alvarez, but Lt. Alvarez. Jose Luis smiles a beautiful smile and says that he will never let Robledo down. Capitan Robledo says that the Navy owed Alvarez and he also gives him the sad news of the death of Don Lauro Mendoza. Montserrat is devastated.
·      Jose Luis asks if Alejandro Almonte is in Aguazul and reminds the Captain that he (Jose Luis) agreed to speak to Alejandro and tell him the truth. Capitan Robledo tells him that he did not se Alejandro at the funeral and it found that most odd. JL looks concerned.
·      The Mendoza’s return from the funeral and everyone goes to their rooms. Rosario asks Montse if her husband attended the funeral. No, says Montse. It doesn’t matter. Doesn’t she still love her husband, asks a shocked Rosario? Montse replies that she hates Al for all her has done to her. If it weren’t not for him her dear father would still be here. Montserrat cries and Rosario also sheds a tear.
·      Joaquin Arechiga comes to Hacienda Almonte looking for Alejandro on an urgent matter. When pressed Dominga insists that she does not know where the Patron is or when he will be back. He has news for Alejandro about Jose Luis Alvarez.
·      Victor comes to Casa Mendoza to see Montserrat and offer his condolences. He is just sitting down in the sala to wait for Montserrat when Jose Luis himself comes to the door. Rosario answers and sends JL away immediately, telling him that it is his fault that Alejandro got angry at Montserrat. JL asks if Ale knows who he is but Rosario shoos him away without answering.
·      Montserrat is not happy to see Victor but they go out to the garden to talk.  Victor tells Montse that he feels between a rock and a hard place—he is Ale’s friend but Nadia asked him to help Montse. Victor tells her that he was NOT the one who told Alejandro who JL really was. By the time Victor got to the ranch, Ale already knew, and it was a nasty surprise for Victor as well.
·      The police, it seems, found a body buried near the ranch—the real Antonio Olivares. The police came to tell Alejandro and he drew his own conclusions.
·      Dominga and Macario gossip about Joaquin coming by the ranch. They are afraid that if Alejandro finds out where JL is, he will go and kill him. Plus, they have heard that Jose Luis Alvarez is a dangerous criminal and he could kill Alejandro first! Macario doesn’t know whom he would bet on in a fight between those two so they agree to stay quiet.
·      Victor explains that he believes that Montserrat is not guilty of adultery and explains that Alejandro has suffered a lot. Alejandro felt terrible when he realized that he was the bastard son of the Bastard Benjamin Almonte, and that he was the product of rape. Then the poor peasant woman died. ¡Que lastima!
·      He grew up wanting a family of his own and he was very much in love with Montserrat when he found out that JL had been living at the ranch under another identity.
·      Victor thinks that Ale still loves Montse. Montse thinks that Alejandro should have trusted her but Victor reminds her of how badly Alejandro must have felt when he found out that his enemy—his wife’s former lover—was living in his own house, and that Montse had told him NOTHING of it.
·      Montse says that Victor knows Ale! She was afraid there would have been a fight and either Alejandro or Jose Luis would have ended up dead. She admits that when she married Ale she was in love with JL, and when she discovered that she and JL had been separated by lies she did, many. many foolish things. But she never cheated on her husband.
·      Victor asks her if she still loves her husband. She says she loves him more than anything. Victor tells her that the two must talk!
·      In town, Esme admires Refugio kitted out once again in his Navy duds. He starts to ask her about marriage, but she says that she cannot discuss it if he wants to set terms and ask her to quit her job. He must accept her as she is. Period.
·      JL shows up at Esme’s and tells them that Admiral Mendoza is dead, that Ale did not show at the funeral, that Rosario told him that HE is the reason that Montse and Ale argued. He is worried that Montse is alone.
·      Refugio and Esme warn JL that if Alejandro knows the truth, he is probably looking for Jose Luis in order to kill him.
·      At Casa Mendoza, Capitan Robles calls for Montse and says that, despite the differences he has with her mom and brother, SHE can count on him for anything. Jose Luis has been restored to his position in the Navy, has been promoted to Lt. and he is going to marry Angelica.
·      Robledo says that Angelica has only a short time to live and that Alvarez, knowing how much Angelica loves him, decided to marry her in order to give her happiness in the short time she has left.
·      Alejandro and Maria appear at an outdoor café in town. Maria hangs all over Ale, as usual. They take a table and Ale tells her it is too painful for him to be at the ranch right now—he doesn’t know when he will return. The trip they discussed is also postponed.
·      Alejandro’s priority is to find Jose Luis Alvarez.
·      Graciela tells Dimitrio the scoop on the will—the house is hers. The Hacienda goes to Montserrat and Carlota (that might come in handy!) and he was left nothing.
·      They argue—Dim still does not want to marry Josefina. Gracie tells him he WILL marry the rich Josefina and she will support all of them. Dim suggest selling the Hacienda, taking his share and going to Brasil, but his loving mommy does not want to be abandoned like that.
·      At the same outdoor café where Ale and Maria are having a snack, Josefina and Nadia gossip about how tacky it is that Ale goes around town with Maria and doesn’t care what people say about him. Jose knows from personal experience how cruel the people in Aguazul can be.
·      Josefina says “Hi” to Ale and invites him to her upcoming wedding. Ale warns Josef not to ally her self with the Mendoza family—they are vultures. The only good member of the family is dead and the rest, including Montserrat, are opportunists, phonies, hypocrites and traitors. This venom fairly spews out of his mouth.  It is very hard to watch and to listen to.
·      Angelica is not feeling well. She is missing Jose Luis and afraid that with him back in Aguazul, he will reunite with Montserrat. Her sister Virginia tells her not to worry but Angelica is sad and worried.
·      Montse is in the Admiral’s office when the mail is brought in for Lauro. Montse glances at the mail and finds a message for herself.
·      Montse and Jose Luis meet at their old spot on the beach. They both look very grave. The last time he waited for her on the pier she was in white. Now it is very hard to see her like this, in black. Jose Luis says he is very sorry that she lost her father.
·      He tells her of his promotion, and he tells her that he is very worried about her. He figures Ale already knows about his masquerade as Antonio.
·      At Casa Mendoza, a fuss is raised when everyone discovers she has left the house and no one knows where she is. Graciela sends Dim to talk to Alejandro. Everyone is told to keep Montse away from Jose Luis.
·      Montse and Jose Luis continue their conversation. Montse lies that although Alejandro was very angry and they had a terrible fight, he forgave her. Ale loves Montse as much as she loves Ale.
·      Josefina and Nadia are barely home when Victor comes by to talk to Nadia. He explains that he spoke with Montserrat, she explained things to him and he believes her.
·      Victor tells Nadia that he thinks this is a good time to try and reconcile the pair, but Nadia asks about Maria. Victor shakes his head.
·      On the beach, Jose Luis tells Montserrat he is getting married to Angelica. Montserrat asks him to give Angelica a kiss for her and congratulate her. She leaves the beach.
·      My TV cut off the avances. Lo siento.




This is a brilliant recap, simply brilliant and loved the format.

Ay, yi, yi, I agree with you about Ale, there is nothing much left to like about him is there? He really hasn't hit rock bottom. And if he thinks killing JL is going to solve his problems he's got a long think coming. He needs to deal with his inner demons and that might fix the problem.

I loved that little back scene of Nadia and Josie showing their contempt for Ale watching him with BM. That was a great scene.

I also like the talk that JL and Monse had on the beach. It was time for them to see each other and talk. I too didn't like the fact she lied to him about Ale. She would have been better off telling him the truth, but I think she is still trying to protect him from the Big Bad Wolf known as Alejandro Almonte. I am glad they had this talk, but it was very, very emotional and sad. It was like a long sad goodbye.

I like any scene with Refugio and Esme and I'm glad he is back in uniform. I too like that Esme stands up for herself.

Loved JL in his LT uniform. He is a very handsome man and who knew he could clean up so well. I hope he escapes the Big Bad Wolf's clutches. I want to see a very happy boda with JL and Angie.


I was wrong in my comment. JL was a Petty Officer, but got this promotion because of all the harm that had been done to him. There isn't an Academy on the base, but it's a regular Navy Base, lo siento : )


Thanks again for this brilliant insightful recap!

On the AVANCES Monse and Tia go to see Ale and BM tells them to get lost cause Ale thinks that bebe is JL's.

Elna June,

Thanks so much for the always excellent and well written recap. I really appreciate it now since my TV is out until we get a new lamp for it. Watching it online just isn't the same for me.

"I say that what we have got here is a failure to communicate." Amen to that. We are at a standstill right now with some of our characters. The one thing that I wish would happen already is the confrontation between JL and Ale. I feel like an anxious 5 year old waiting for Santa Claus on Christmas Eve. I want it to happen soon (and apparently so does Joaquin Arechiga) but I think the writers are going to make us wait.

It was somewhat of an awkward scene to me between Montse and JL on the beach. I got the feeling that if Montse had told JL the truth about what happened with Ale, JL would have wanted to run away with her again, perhaps to protect her. But Montse lied again so now we have to wait even longer for that confrontation. I thought that by now Montse would have learned her lesson about lying. The truth will eventually come out, and the sooner the better. It seemed that for a split second, as JL looked at Montse, he forgot about Angie. But even though he is still in love with Montse, I know he will not make Angie suffer and will marry her.

I agree with Ale that Fina should not marry Dimi. He was back to his old ways today. If Fina only knew that he was trying to weasel his way out of marrying her. Even though Fina has a way of bringing out the good in Dimi, he does not love her (at least not yet) and I don't want her to suffer.

You had me laughing like a crazy lady in the middle of my kitchen when I read, "Show him writing a check to save baby seals, have him adopt a puppy, let him romp with orphans as did St. Damian Fabre in La Tempestad." Man do I miss those white pants....ahhh.

I liked the talk that Victor and Montse had. I don't know if it will do any good. But after watching TN's for over 20 years, one thing's for sure, it happened for a reason. I'm not sure why, but we might be referring back to it in the future. Same goes for the chat Victor had with Ale on the beach in yesterday's epi. Of course there is the chance that I am totally wrong.

Going to sleep...hasta pronto!

EJ, thank you for a very well written recap. I loved your commentary on Ale, I couldn't agree more.
Mind you, I'm still keeping my seat at his table (the admission process alone has been so complicated, I'm afraid that I could never get it back when he becomes a saint again, in the last week of shows). His behaviour right now is not even close to the worst I've seen in telenovela galans.
But he sure is annoying with his rants and "poor me" constant yapping.

Also enjoyed your bullet points retelling of the episode, those are hard to pull off because we always want to cover as much information as we can.
You handled it perfectly!

I have been absent from the talks for a couple of days, so maybe this has already been covered, but I kind of felt bad for Dim when he was saying that his father never loved him. I don't think the Admiral ever suspected that he was not his son, so what is his excuse then? I'm sure that baby Dim was not the bastard that grown up Dim has become.

I'm all for Esme being independent and all, but if her bf is an officer and their relationship is serious, does she absolutely have to continue with this messy job of hers? She IS the only woman who actually has a job in this tn (aside from Rosario and Dominga), but she should want to aim higher; being married to a naval officer comes with certain expectation - it's not fair, but that's how the world works. It's not like her job is all that marvelous, she dances for strangers who contantly grope her and expect her to put out. What is so great about that?

Also, I hope JL doesn't start to chase Montse all over again. Angie is an actual Saint and she deserves nothing but complete loyalty. One nasty galan is enough, I don't want to see JL revert to his old Montse obsessed habits. It took Viewerville long enough to like him, if he does something that could possibly hurt Angie, he's almost dead to me (in a comatose state, let's say.)

Wonderful recap,i felt sorry for JL in the final scene it was a very sad and deppresing. Anyway im going to try to expose myself to Corona de Lagrimas torture wish me luck i will probably only last for one episode! ( Krystie Eleyson plays in the background)

EJ, I fear you are addictive, because when I woke up I thought "I could meditate and try to go back to sleep, or I could see if EJ's recap is up." Hee, can you guess which one I chose?

First, love the Cool Hand Luke quote. It's one of my all-time favorites and completely appropriate. Second, I couldn't agree more with your editorial on Alejandro. I am weary of his insensitive denseness, hence was SO ready for a bullet point recap. Just the facts, ma'am.

I could have smacked Carlotta. In one breath she warns Rosario to tell NOBODY that JL showed up, and in the next breath she is blabbing the fact to Graciela, the absolutely worst person to tell! Ah well, we must advance the plot and needlessly torture Montserrat, n'est-ce pas?

And sigh, our little Montse continues to be a serial liar. Why oh why did she lie to JL? When he asked about Ale she should have just told him Thank you, but her private life does not concern him. YES, the entire patio was hissing and throwing nerfazos!

Moment of suspended belief: JL and Refu are not only reinstated but promoted? I am shaking my head on that one. I guess if JL is about to become "one of the richest and most important men in Aguazul" by way of marriage to Angie, (according to Gracie), he needs the rank to go with it.

So the big mystery, what the heck was in that letter to Montserrat? Was it a threat of some sort? Something to do with the horrible town gossips that Fina mentioned? Gah, I couldn't read it and I NEED to know what's in it.

OK, back to bed!

-Sylvia...also missing the white pants

Ah Elna June, I always treasure the thoughtfulness of your analysis and the grace of your writing. And then you throw in Cool Hand Luke and I'm lost in a reveries about Paul Newman, que Dios le tenga en su gloria, and it's a great way to start the morning. Haven't seen this yet, so I'll reserve any further comment for later.

Great work, Elna June. You covered all the main points.

I will endure Alejandro's long dark teatime of the soul because I think I've seen worse than this. Someone pointed out last week that Manuel of AR was worse in this situation because he was a doctor and should have known better. He also drank for a long time after. That didn't make me stop watching AR and I honestly think that SR is a better actor than FC.

I will soon be watching the original because I dropped the 10PM comedy. I just don't do well with those.

Onward, the minor stuff first:

The note wouldn't have been clear enough on camera for us to read it but it was short enough just to be a request to meet on the beach and just enough for Monse to recognize JL's handwriting. I believe that this scene was meant to be the long goodbye.

Carlota should have kept her mouth shut. She clearly is either too impulsive or has no real life experience to have been so ignorant of the possible consequences. Telling Graceless is going to have very bad consequences.

Totally agree that Josefina should not marry Dimwit, who has some bloody nerve thinking that the hacienda and ranch be sold to give him anything. We don't know when Lauro made out his will (and probably won't be told) but I'm betting he changed it shortly before the curtain went up on the story. He was already aware that his son was a lazy wastrel and would have run through any inheritance quickly.

Considering also that Dimwit and Adolfo have scammed each other, going to Brazil with him would be his final undoing.

More after I make some tea.

Yeah and Dimwit has nothing to get from the marriage,the job offer went to drain with Ale being pissed at Monse and if he doesnt pay the debt to Tomas he will obviosly go to jail.

Im watching Amores Verdaderos now to see Sebastian Rullis performance as a 2nd galan/best friend,he is a force to be reckoned with with his main galan role .

Oh so fabulous EJ!! Sort of a downer episode after all the emotion and intrigue last couple days, but interesting in some places.

I agree with your intro in that we need to start seeing a better conflicted Ale to be able to not want to throw him under the bus for most of this TN. There were those moments telling Monse about her father and as he left the funeral, but now we have simply the jerkwad with a running mouth back. This propensity to have to tell everyone his problems and what he thinks of the family is childish. Frankly, it's like watching a male version of Maria---and that is not pretty!

The plot point that bugs the daylights out of me is this "they are going to kill each other" threat. That might have worked when the original story was set in the 1800's. Heck, it was almost fashionable to have duals, etc. so there was an acceptability there and possible little or few consequences. But this is the 21st century, and going after someone with intent to kill is plain sick. Showing Ale doing that speaks to a very disturbed mind/behavior that needs to be dealt is NOT macho and should have been rewritten somehow. Not cool coming from the lead galan.

I still wonder about the Admiral and his son. Leaving him nothing. I know he felt Dim to be rather worthless, but wouldn't you leave your son something, even small. Or leave an explanation as to why? Could Gracie be lying or manipulating things since she so badly wants Dim to marry Fina? I find it hard to believe the Admiral would have been THAT cruel to his son, and I do believe he thought Dim was his son.

I think Monse purposefully lied so JL would still marry Angie. She remembers that talk she and Angie had, and I think this is her way to make sure Angie is not heartbroken like herself, JL finds happiness away from her crazy family, and to take responsibility for her own life and baby and move on. I think her lightbulb went on that some of the chain of events were her fault, her mother ruined his life, and maybe feeling she should make this sacrifice as her means of making it up to JL. That's my take.

Can we love Victor anymore?


Props to Graceless for not wasting anger on Dimwit's being disinherited and for letting him know that selling the property would ultimately not be a good thing. She gets the mansion she's in but something else needs to fund it.

To have Dimwit approach Alejandro, however, is a stupid decision. Now is not the time for such a thing and Dimwit is the wrong person. The one person who can be effective is Victor and he's on the job with a good, logical approach.

Monserrat needs to turn her attention toward making that property work. Not to mention avoiding her mother, who adds nothing positive to her life.

Josefina needs an etiquette lesson; she is clueless despite her age. She should not have issued a wedding invitation to Alejandro in the first place but to do so in front of Maria is very rude. No matter what Maria said to her there I'm sure she'd love to show up on Alejandro's arm and flaunt that in front of Monserrat.

Graceless now knows that Dimwit marrying Josefina would be the next logical thing... until she finds out that Tomas will tie up Josefina's inheritance. Quite frankly, her greed being stopped there before made no logical sense at all.

Now on to Alejandro...

True, duels can't happen in the 21st century; they actually were outlawed in most European countries by the beginning of the 19th although they continued among military officers and in the American West. The gun culture that still permeates the Americas doesn't help this situation now. Having said that, Alejandro needs isolation to assimilate this. He needs to understand that ending up dead or going to prison for killing JL is not the answer, but these are the only two results he can expect. He isn't thinking far enough ahead.

His desire to kill JL at this point is very consistent with the one impulse he didn't give into, which was the murder/suicide that didn't happen. What these two scenarios have in common is that Alejandro isn't caring about what happens to himself. It's emotionally immature and he needs to grow up almost as much as Monserrat does.

EJ- Great recap, and excellent analysis of why Ale is only appealing to those at the die hard Ale Table right now. Man up, dude.

Daisynjay- ITA with everything you said. There's a reason why they showed the conversation between Monse and Robledo before she spoke to JL. More than trying to avoid a conflict between JL and Ale, Monse was trying to facilitate JL moving on with his life, free of her drama, and to a happy life with Angie. I think it's good that she didn't look for a man's shoulder to cry on.

And yes, there is something very disturbing about a 21st century man running around threatening to murder someone. Even Pedro and Joaquin do their death threats in private. Cause, guess what Ale- murder is against the law! Even if the intended victim was having an affair with your wife.

A separate item about wills and inheritances is merited here.

Some time ago I read a book about estate planning that was written by a father and son legal team who specialized in this area. It is not illegal anywhere in the US to disinherit one's offspring although they do not advise it. What they advise instead is to have a talk with the irresponsible son/daughter during the estate planning process to effect positive change.

If this is ineffective they can leave an inheritance that would be managed by a designated trustee with milestone conditions established for the heir's progress... or regress. An allowance can be designated that would be increased if the heir's level of responsibility improves or decreased if it lessens. They further advise that said trustee be an unrelated third party such as a lawyer or bank executive because appointing a relative can lead to escalating conflict.

I don't know what Mexican law allows, but I can't imagine it being substantially different from what happens in the US. Imagine a lawyer laying the above out in front of Lauro who might have had years of frustration built up at Dimwit's failure -- or refusal -- to establish a career. He may just have been too fed up.

Elna June what an eloquent and spot on recap. Wish it could have some impact on this TN but, alas, I fear we are stuck with what's been written already.

DaisynJay I too think Montse lied because she is still trying to create obstacles between her and JL. Although I also think that boat has done sailed and that she genuinely loves Ale (go figure) now.

Re Dim and Josefina-- didn't I hear Dim tell his mother that Tomas had managed to keep Dim from any of the $?

One last thought, while I too am totally over Ale's pathetic tantrum, I think they've created a character with zero self-esteem. Is it really impossible that Montse loved him? She was pretty convincing to us-- why has it not even entered his mind as a possibility? And WHY has no one mentioned to Ale that JL had three opportunities to allow Ale to be eliminated but chose to save him instead? Super annoying. The writers have done a great job of giving JL a growth curve-- from an avocodo-less wuss to a real man. I think we're ready to see the same from Ale-- or bring us a new galan!

Many thanks again for the recap,

EJ, honey, I feel your pain and I totally agree with you about the unlikeability of our galan. Where we're supposed to be now as an audience and probably for the next several months is: "Oh, what a horrible, terrible, awful, no-good, low-down, dirty, shameful thing this tainted bride has done to this poor, unfortunate, unjustly disinherited, forced-to-grow-up-with-the-lower-classes ADONIS!" So any rage, anger, contempt and abuse he dishes out is justified.

The whole novella is suffering for our deflowered bride whom Ale never misses a chance to verbally gut every time her name is mentioned. This is bad enough, but when we can even acknowledge that he treats Maria like something he scraped from the bottom of his shoe, then it's really gotten bad.

Funny but true rant: Show him writing a check to save baby seals, have him adopt a puppy, let him romp with orphans as did St. Damian Fabre in La Tempestad.

And after all this, we're supposed to believe that she loves him more than her own life!! Que? Que? WTF? WHY?

I totally feel the frustration and wish the writers could hear your scream: I AM TIRED OF THE IDEA THAT SHE OR ANYONE CAN PROTECT THESE TOW GROWN MEN FROM ONE ANOTHER. ARGhhhhhhh!”

Thank you EJ. You surely hit all the points of action with the efficient and thorough bullet style and I enjoyed and agree with your opening editorial. We want more than pretty galans! We want to believe the leading protagonists should be together! Show us some real love and passion, not this implication that his fiery hot anger represents the depth of his love and ardor for the leading lady! Basta, ya! I know this recap is going to generate our usual 100+ comments. Can't wait!



EJ: Great recap.

Anyway, I got the feeling that JL was not buying into Montse's story completely. I picked up a tone of incredulity in his voice. But, I did find their dancing around each other without touching very painful to watch. Yes, why didn't she tell the truth for once? Probably because she is still trying to protect both JL and Ale.

Speaking of Ale, I'm on the patio with the rest of the crowd. He has turned out to be so not interesting. I think JL will pursue him in an attempt to tell his side of the story, and, of course, Ale will not listen to him.

As to Fina and Dim, I do remember Tomas telling Fina that he would retain control of her money if and when she married Dim. So, it looks like Graciela will be desperate to do something awful to get her hands on some cash, without which she cannot maintain her present lifestyle. Oh, the problems of the rich and famous!

I'll bet that the Televisa message boards are also very active about this series.

It does disturb me that Alejandro is entering a massive state of depression. However, it is almost logical from the writers' perspective to have us equally impatient with him as we were with JL during his period of obsession. It took almost 50 episodes to get JL out of that.

Let's hope it won't take more than that for Alejandro to come to his senses. That is my one fear for this series.

Urban, thank you for the info on US inheritance.
I don't know how the law works in Mexico, but I DO know how it works in telenovelas everywhere - whatever the scrips requires, that is what will happen. Every single time!

Daisy, the fact that Montse chose to lie yet again, is mind boggling.
- She lied to Ale when JL showed up at the ranch - as a result, she was banished and her unborn child was called a bastard
- She lied to her father about the true reason of the breakup - now Lauro is dead, because he heard it all from jerk Ale, when he could have gotten Montse's softer version of the facts
- And now she lies again, to "protect" the guys from one another - what will the result be this time? My guess: one of them in jail for attempted murder (most likely Ale, because, as Vivi pointed out, going around town, screaming "Murder" is not OK) and the other in the hospital, fighting for his life (most likely JL, which I don't see dead, because he's one of the leads)

Random thought - if JL becomes a proeminent figure in Agua Azul, Angie dies and Montse gets a divorce, how long do you think it will be until Graceless changes her tune about JL and starts pushing "la princesa" into his arms?
If Dim cuts her off when and if he marries Josie, what is she to do to get money? She's no longer a young vixen, it won't be easy for her to find another Benjamin Almonte or Lauro Mendoza.

Also, Pedro is starting to manipulate things in a rather interesting way: so far Graceless, Dim and Joaquin all owe him favour. I wonder what will happen when he starts collecting...


Pasofino, I feel no pity for Graceless. She has made her own problems and has no right expecting her daughter to solve them for her.

If I were Nadia I would advise Monserrat to go to the hacienda, get the property into a state of profit, put her mother on an allowance through a lawyer, and then refuse to see her. She should not be allowed to poison her life anymore or that of her child.

I might even suggest that the allowance be temporary. That might force Graceless to either work or sell the mansion and take the consequences.

Despite her inexperience at this role, the best maternal figure available to Monserrat is Rosario.

Dimwit doesn't have the spine to cut off Graceless at this point. However, I can't see that he would be able to get her any money anyway with Tomas assuming control. He is smart enough to ultimately see what we see, that Graceless has enabled Dimwit all this time.

Unless he would pay her bills directly she would give Dimwit money just as she had done before. There is no reason for Tomas to expect different behavior from her. I'm not sure we should, either; we know her better than he does.

Josefina is too foolish to refuse a money request from a suegra, even one as poisonous as Graceless. Tomas is doing the right thing by tying up her money.

Speaking of which, Monse's first request to Capitan Robledo is to get back that briefcase of money seized when JL was arrested.

Thanks EJ, so well said. ITA!

The serial liar, Monse doesn't accomplish anything by telling more lies. JL didn't believe her. She could take a stand, say they're having problems, and it's none of JL business to get involved. I suppose she learned from her mother that you lie to get what you want, but that doesn't work. The truth will surface in the end.
Marea Primavera

Dear Elna June,
A fantastic recap, as always, and I really appreciated your thoughtful and interesting preface about the problems created because of the lack of character development for Alejandro. Thanks so much for bringing it up and offering your insights.

As much as I really enjoy this TN, I have always been annoyed by the lack of sufficient backstory in Alejandro.

I know I've said like a thousand times in this forum but it really bugs me that I STILL don't know what Ale's degree at university was in or why in the heck was he even back at the hacienda working like a peasant when he had his degree. Why wasn't he working in AA or someplace else in a job in his field, whatever it was?

Such a small thing, and it would have taken no time for the writers to address it, but that they felt the didn't need to seems a big oversight.

As noted before in Amor Real, Manuel was a doctor. Also very moving for his character was a flashback scene in which we saw that he had actually been BEATEN by his father (the equivalent of Benjamin Almonte in this one) as a child because he had dared to learn to READ.

This same thing wouldn't work is this modern version, but we needed something--as Elna June so wonderfully noted even seeing him write a check to save baby seals would accomplish a lot.

We did see Alejandro playing soccer with some kids once but that was ages ago.

It says a lot about Rulli's acting that he has STILL made me continue to like Alejandro, even though the character is unlikeable now. He (Rulli) manages to convey a lot of complexity of emotion with his eyes and facial expressions. This is mostly what's making me sympathize with him now--oh, and also the fact that he is incredibly sexy and handsome!

Thanks so much, Elna June.

I will agree Monse has exacerbated problems with not just telling the truth, but in this instance with JL, I think she meant well. No different than most people would do to not worry someone they love with a problem, or not tell someone a truth that could be hurtful and it would serve no purpose.
If she spilled to JL the whole mess and started weeping, she KNOWS he would act on that. So hello, she gets the two men she cares about going after each other, one probably killed and the other in jail. Great, now lives ruined and she gained nothing either by her actions. Now we can say she's wasting her time protecting THEM, but honestly, would any of us be able to deal with the fact that our words caused someone to be killed perhaps and for what? What does spilling the beans prove in this case at that instance? I see her perspective of just let it be, let JL move on, she'll move on and that's that.

Sure this is a TN and we know since everyone knows everyone else or is related to them, it all comes out in the end, but we wouldn't have a TN without that. Right in that moment, I see her thinking in that she has prevented an ugliness that isn't worth occurring. Whether it happens later...I still think she means well in this instance and her trying to prevent the ugly doesn't work because of the two idiots she fell for. Her history hurts in everyone's eyes because she blew it in the past with hiding facts.


If he even had a degree,Benjamin probably took him in to prevent a scandal or Fully (Rosarios father) would tell the entire world that Benjamin raped Rosario and the bunga bunga with Gracie if the affair was occuring yet

For once I was happy with Graciela . I loved her telling Dimitri that he was going to marry Josefina because they needed the money and that they were not going to sell the hacienda. On a more negative note, why does she think that she or Dimitri would have any influence over the sale of the hacienda because it now belongs to Montse and Carlota? So,
Dimitri wants to run away to Brazil? Can we get him a ticket?

I wonder if her newly acquired property (along with auntie Carlota who now has a place assured in the family ) will lead to more independence for Montse.

Thanks for your great recap, Elna June, with the introductory editorial. Very interesting.



Urban A: "Monse's first request to Capitan Robledo is to get back that briefcase of money seized when JL was arrested." Yes!! That was so bugging me last night that Montse never once mentioned her case of money.

Also, thank you for pointing out that the note was probably from JL to Montse asking her to meet him at the beach. However, if that's the case it was very clumsily done. How would he know that Montse, in a house full of people, would open the mail and get the note?

Pasofino, I also think that JL knew Montse was fibbing to him.


EJ! A masterpiece!

I loved your editorial. "It is high time for the writers to catch our attention and create some sympathy and likeability for this character before we yawn, get snacks or fast-forward through all his scenes." Wow. Bullseye.

DaisynJay I agree with everything you said. And Lila, I found that a big continuity problem. Monsy tells Rosario she hates Alejandro and he killed her father. The next day with Victor she says she loves Ale with all her soul. Que? That's a quick recovery.

Did anyone else think it was hilarious when Monsy was going through the mail and all of it was BLANK UNADDRESSED ENVELOPES! My goodness, it's a miracle those "letters" made their way to Casa Mendoza.

I didn't like JL last night in his condo. with Monsy. I felt he was still testing the waters with Monsy and I thought it was wrong wrong wrong to tell her he will never love anyone like he loves her (maybe it lost something in the translations quiero/amo--potato/potato). Angie would NOT have liked to hear that and I didn't either.

Elna June there are no words to describe your insight.

Elna June, your analysis of why some of us find it so difficult to about the character known as Alejandro Almonte was excellent and to the point. Your recommendations to the writers was even better. The format for your recap today was also first rate and I thank you again for your excellent writing!!

Interesting how both of our lead characters seem to be so lacking in character. Urban has said this many times and I agree; Montserrat needs to get away from her toxic mother. She has been influenced by Graciela for far too long. The serial lying will never stop until she can get away from the toxic environment.

What in the world is up with Carlotta?! Could someone really be SO clueless?!

I found it incredible, but not surprising that Dimwit somehow thought he should receive a portion of the sale of the properties. The jerk has just been totally excluded from the will, but still feels he deserves something. I don't care if he is redeemable or not, but Fina's pursuit of this worthless slug bothers me. I still am missing the point of this (Fina's "love" for Dimwit) and I find it insulting to Fina.

I get sick and tired of seeing women being insulted by stupid, worthless men like Dimwit. Man, I hate this story line.

Question: Graciela gets the mansion, but Montserrat and Carlotta get the Hacienda. Is the Mansion on the Hacienda? Are there two separate houses? Is Hacienda here referring to the lands upon which the income for managing the Mansion will be made?

Sorry, I've never been quite clear about the housing situation for the Mendozas.

Victor and Auntie Pru seem to be the only voices of reason and logic so far. May they continue to influence things in a positive direction.


Katy, I was also laughing at the stack of BLANK UNADDRESSED ENVELOPES! Montse had some good radar to find the one intended for her. I guess the blue color intrigued her or something.

Oops! "Convo." with Monsy! "Condo." takes us in a whole different direction! :)

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Remember these lands that Ale wanted to buy from Monse,i think that is the Hacienda

Right, Sylvia!? I know these TNs are on a tight schedule but you think they could have had a production assistant write: "Lauro", "Dimitri", "Graceless" and some random numbers. Hey, how about a magazine and some junk mail thrown in?!

Adrianna Noel, I like Esme,too and I admire her self-determination but agree when you said she dances for strangers who contantly grope her and expect her to put out. What is so great about that? I guess we're supposed to be impressed with how she herself knows her motivations for what she does, had her head on straight and is not afraid of her customers or what others think of her. Y'all who have watched a lot of these please let me know but I think she's going to be punished for being a nasty girl that swings on poles for men. I'm afraid for her.


Daisynjay, I see your point re Montserrat's convo with JL, but this particular instance aside, I think that Montserrat has a fear of wanting to meet problems head on which results in the never ending little lies. In any event, just wanted you to know I definitely see your point and agree.



No, the land that Monse sold to Ale was a small parcel of land, not the hacienda. It was adjacent to his factory in Aguazul. He wanted to expand production by adding on to the factory.

It's interesting that Monse and the Tia got the family hacienda. I like that, but it was running in the red when the Admiral died. Graceless had been running it and lied to Lauro about how well it was doing so as not to provoke another heart attack. I too wish Monse had gotten that money back. At least she would have had some capital to work with. As it is now she will have a long road to hoe with the hacienda and getting it back into the black.

Katy, isn't that maddening! And Fatima ITA I don't care if he is redeemable or not, but Fina's pursuit of this worthless slug bothers me. I still am missing the point of this (Fina's "love" for Dimwit) and I find it insulting to Fina.

I do believe Fina is intelligent and I keep trying to believe that Fina has some kind of x-ray vision to the soul that tells her Dimwit is more than the lazy, shiftless, self-centered jerky hedonist he appears to be but they're making it difficult, man!

Yah, Fina's love for Dimwit and Montse's love (more than her own life--go back and listen) is just breathtakingly unbelievable! Sheesh!


Madelaine, so, is the mansion on the hacienda or are they two separate locations?

I am hoping they are two separate locations so that Montserrat, Carlota, and Rosario can get away from Graciela.


And now is when we see the spunky Montserrat come out? Ditch the cute dresses, put on the pants and pregnant and all start working to get things back to productivity. And Momma and Dimwit will come begging for hand spoiler, but see enough of these TN's, whether it's an apple orchard, a cattle farm, a business...the heroine will save the day.
Too bad it isn't some sort of fun business, Would have loved to see Monse, Nadia and Fina all working together in some office becoming smart business women. Victor could have been the token good guy who comes to help and says adios to Ale.

A girl can dream right?


Dream on Daisynjay! I like it! And let Esme work with them so she can get off the pole!


Daisynjay, I like your scenario and I will dream right along with you!

Nothing like good hard work to remove the cobwebs from the brain.


Dear Elna June:

Thank you for such a great title -- Cool Hand Luke" and Paul Newman remind us what a brilliant storyteller can do with 126 minutes.

You'd think, given 6,765 minutes (give or take a few hundred -- assuming 165 episodes, each about 41 minutes long, roughly equal to 54 Lukes), our storytellers would have time to round out a character, huh? Or not. Maybe the creative challenge of the telenovela is precisely this -- it is so damn long. It is built for distance, not for speed.

Your preface is such a perfect exposition of "What's wrong with Alejandro" and why it is so hard to care about him right now. (Sometimes, dear Elna June, I can't believe how lucky we are to have you writing here for us.) If the character captures any sympathy, it is for the beauty of the actor and the aura of bruised hero he brings here from other roles.

And thank you so much for the excellent executive summary that follows. As always, I am impressed by your ability to separate the wheat from the chaff.

The entire recap, from beginning to end, is a pleasure to read and will give us a lot to think about and talk about here.

Thanks for this excellent recap with your detailed and well thought out editorial eloquently outlining our rather unanimous disapproval and annoyance with Alejandro at this point. While I know you are not especially fond of María thanks for noting:

"Right now, he is acting like a first class misogynist, the most recent evidence for this being his treatment of Maria."

Not only is he treating her shabbily and disrespectfully, he is encouraging her delusional thinking and false hopes about her prospects in his life.

UA and Sylvia, I was able to freeze and examine that note more closely and although JL could use some penmanship lessons, I could make out enough of it to determine that it is definitely the request for her to meet him. Also when she walked up she told him she read his note and chided him that it was a foolish thing to do since anyone could have read it.

Wow, just when I'm all set to jump on the Dimitrio band wagon he opens his mouth and spoils it all. However, he did defend hisIt looks like the Dim/Fina story is going to drag out for quite some time. Even so, I predict a satisfactory ending for them.


It's still a briefcase full of money and Monserrat should get it back.

I also like the idea of getting Esmeralda involved so she doesn't have to pole-dance anymore. If Refugio has any chance of becoming an officer she needs to not do that kind of work if she wants to be his lady wife.

To answer Lila's question, there have been previous novelas with good-hearted hookers who faced no consequences for their "sinful" work. Some women historically have done this because they had no other choices available. As long as they are honest about who they are -- with themselves as well as others -- they are certainly redeemable.

A prime and classic example is at the link. It's mostly in English.


The Mendoza Mansion and the Mendoza Hacienda are two separate locations. I too hope Monse, Tia Lottie and Rosy leave Graceless and Dimwit in mansion and go to the Hacienda. They all do need to get away from the Graceless one.


The Mendoza family owns a big house in Aguazul. This is where all the family scenes have taken place. This is the property that Graciela inherits. It is completely separate from the hacienda.

Their hacienda is a large complex like Alejandro's -- a ranch, multiple houses, fields, animals, etc. It is located some vague distance from town. We've never seen it (or at least I don't remember seeing it.) It has the potential to produce a good income, if intelligently managed.

(Are you listening Montse and Carlota?)

The Mendoza Hacienda is also the place that generates the lana for the mansion in Aguazul. I don't want Graceless giving any advice to Monse on how to run it. I hope Monse took notes on how Ale managed his hacienda and runs hers the same with a good capataz in charge.

Madelaine and our dear NovelaMaven, THANK YOU! I was so hoping for a reply to my question and I appreciate it very much.

I truly believe in the power of hard work in clearing out the cobwebs of the brain. Cleaning out closets is a good place to start!

I hope these women hear our advice and get themselves to The Hacienda very, very soon!!


"Alejandro's long dark teatime of the soul"

Katy, I'm glad you pointed out the blank envelopes. Way to cut the dramatic tension!

I agree with those who argue that Montserrat lied to José Luis for Angélica's sake. He had just told her that he cared about Angie (la quiero) but that Montse herself was still the one he loved (te amo) and would always love.

About Josefina and her money:
Tomás doesn't control her fortune. She would have to sign a paper giving him some sort of power of attorney. I have a hunch she is not going to be willing to do this. I guess we'll see.

About Dim (who is arguably the only interestingly conflicted character at the moment) and Graciela:
Did you notice that when mama asked him if he thought Montse was telling the truth about being faithful to Alejandro, he said YES. His sister was impulsive, rebellious, but LOYAL. Interesting.

Fashion note: I do adore those funeral bows on Graciela's ankles as well as Montserrat's tight black trousers. It kind of reminds me of Grease when Sandy decided to start looking like one of the bad girls. [not to be confused with the Back row Bad Girls.]

No, we have never seen this property. It will be interesting when they get there.

I hope this was only a pre-pro shot, but I've seen photos tagged with this title with AB's hair dark. I hope she didn't do that.

Wow Urban, thanks! I'll have to take a look at that after work. I remember Melina Mercouri in a movie years ago called "Never on Sunday." I was a little girl and didn't get what it was about and nobody would explain it to me. Hee Hee! Good to hear that all ladies in the "pleasure industry" don't have to get the axe.



It's a great movie and you will enjoy it. Melina was a little off politically in most ways but she was a feminist and there is something of a feminist message in this film.

I only saw bits and pieces last night, but I had this thought when I saw Nadia and Fina together. Wouldn't it be groovy if they're all waiting for Fina to arrive at the civil ceremony place and she comes in all transformed into the beauty we know she is by Nadia and Dim's mouth drops open? Close your mouth Dim, we are not a codfish.

And after they're married, she innocently flirts with all the handsome guys, especially Alpo and drives Dim mad.

That's cool, Nanette! That would be a perfect time for the transformation! Make him all gah gah at the altar, p-whip him and turn him into a man worthy of redemption.


Oh my...forgot about Esme. Absolutely, she could head up the Public Relations and Marketing Department. Her survival skills, her fun nature and way to talk to people would be epic in that role.


Buenos Dias:

Thanks Mads, I am glad you enjoyed the recap and liked the format. It was a much simpler episode than other recent caps and I thought it was a good time tighten things up a bit.

I like the idea of a burgeoning friendship between Nadia and Josefina and Montse. Josefina has been practically the only one to speak in a truly straightforward manner to Montserrat.

Aunty Ann: So glad you enjoyed the recap. I am delighted that you, a stalwart fan of Alejandro, were amused by my suggestions for helping the rest of us Ale-doubters to come around to your point of view. I cannot help but think that laughing like a crazy lady in the middle of the night is a very sensible and correct way to act. Big Grin.

Adriana Noel: Glad you enjoyed my thoughts on a little character development for Ale. I am quite willing to like him if he just gives us a little more to work with. I think Rosario could help with that, as many have said before me, if he can let her into his life. I suppose he-ll be mad when he finds out about THAT too.

Demitrios: I too felt sad for JL in the last scene but I want him to move ON. Good luck with 'Lagrimas'. Smile.

Dearest Sylvia: Thanks for coming by so LATE, amiga. Like you, I need a beanie to understand Lt. Alvarez' rise in rank. Does this move him out of enlisted ranks into the officer corps? Maybe Mads knows. Color me one confused civilian.

I know you could hear my ALL CAPS SCREAMS of frustration at Montse for her what you so eloquently refer to as "serial lying". There are ways to set boundaries, Montserrat, that do not involve manipulation and deceit, even if your motives are 'kind'. Snort.

Daisynjay: M'dear you perfectly named the hand wringing, "They are going to kill one another", plotline. Angry and hate-filled people might think they WANT to kill someone, but acting on it is another thing. Anachronistic, as you say.


I do need to get back to work unfortunately, but reading Nan's fun take on Fina and the Codfish's wedding made me wonder. Did I miss anything on Fina and Tomas' upbringing concerning their mother. I get the feeling that Tomas has "taken care of" Fina and her finances for awhile, but did they ever reveal their parental background. I missed a few episodes back when she surfacing.

It seems she has had a sorry lack of female guidance. Either no mother, or a mother who didn't care about her, and no one else who was there as a surrogate. Strange, because usually in TN's whenever you have a rich girl, you have her older female caretaker or companion as a side character. Poor Fina seems to not have had anyone.

They play her as backward and rather niave, but some of her insights in talking to people now lead me to believe there is so much more to her than that. She may be a little slow, but slow does not mean stupid. I think her own brother under-appreciates her definitely.

I know it's important to want the character the way she is, but just wondered if I missed anything that explains it a little deeper.


UA: I agree, we have seen worse galans in TNs, I just WANT to learn to like this one since we are stuck with him for some 160 episodes. I truly enjoy Rulli as an actor, too.

I saw an interview with Rulli on this character and he described Alejandro Almonte as "a complicated man and very hard to play" (my trans). I bet!

'Dark teatime of the soul'—you made me smile. I also like the description of Dimitrio as a lazy wastrel. I think we have strong confirmation with the reveal of the will that Don Lauro meant what he said earlier in the TN after teh Josefina incident when he wrote Dimmy off.

JudyB: Thank you, friend. I always treasure your thoughtfulness and the grace of your writing. Smile of mutual appreciation. Thanks for stopping by so early.

Vivi: I am so glad you enjoyed my little off-the-cuff analysis of Ale. Plus, I find myself moved by your take—and Daisynjays—on Montse's motivation for her prevarication. it puts a different spin on things for sure.

BEcky: GREAT comment on one of the things the writers HAVE shown us about Ale—his total lack of self esteem. Nice catch! Thanks for commenting.

Lila: Thanks for the empathic response to my editorial. I feel like you just made me a nice cup of tea and listened while I ranted. You said this:
"We want more than pretty galans! "We want to believe the leading protagonists should be together! Show us some real love and passion, not this implication that his fiery hot anger represents the depth of his love and ardor for the leading lady!"

Wonderfully spoken from the mouth of a modern telenovela viewer! From your mouth to the show-writer's ears.


EJ--You have conveyed perfectly what a lot of us have been thinking (and commenting) about our anti-hero. What is it going to take to "rehabilitate" a protagonist. I like your suggestions for good works he should have been considering.

About the latest Montse lie. If anything, it puts JL in even more danger. Her statements about "situation normal, all f*ed up" between Ale and herself, if anything, will cause JL to let his guard down when in reality, Ale is still considering murder.

Brilliant recap, you covered all the bases and then some. Now, on to read the comments.

Cap'n Sylvia--I thought it was funny, too, when Tia told Rosario to keep the secret about JL coming to the house, and almost immediately tells anyone within hearing distance and the household erupts in disarray, going here and there and nowhere (was it looking for Montse?).

Also, the letter was just JL's request for her to meet him (that's as far as I've gotten, so someone else has probably answered this.)

Thanks Elna but i changed my mind on Lagrimas and decided to watch Amores Verdaderos instead.I cant believe Victor played that skank father in Lagrimas. On Amores i kind of dislike Juan Angel but i am already loving Rulli and his sexy voice in it! Nikki has an attractive voice too.

Jose Angel*

Adriana Noel:


"Random thought - if JL becomes a proeminent figure in Agua Azul, Angie dies and Montse gets a divorce, how long do you think it will be until Graceless changes her tune about JL and starts pushing "la princesa" into his arms?"

You could write novelas, amiga.

Marea Primavera:

Hear, hear! (EJ raises her cup of soothing tea). Montse will have to unlearn extremely manipulative behavior in the course of our story. I hope it doesn't cost her too dearly.

Pasofino: Thanks for coming by. "So not interesting..." Indeed!

Julia Rold: So glad you enjoyed the recap. I have exactly the same questions you do about Alejandro. Just HOW did he even get to University from a rural Hacienda? Why is he so well spoken, with none of the stereotypical sing-song tone and foot shifting of the other campesinos? Why did he come back to the Hacienda when he wasn't even the foreman? Was he living somewhere else when Don Benjamin, in his last illness, called him back 'home'?

And ITA—Rulli has become a very good actor.

Jarifa: I, too, enjoyed Gracie giving her 'bebe' teh home truth that he was still going to marry Josefina—although I wouldn't wish Dimmy on anyone. Still, I have a spark of sympathy for Dim now that I know his father did not love him. 'Never picked him up, never played with him..." That WAS sad. Thanks for your comments!


Demetrios--..." if he doesnt pay the debt to Tomas he will obviosly go to jail." As I recall, Ale already paid Tomas back and is expecting Dimwit to pay it off with working at the factory. We don't know for sure if that job went down the drain, but if he marries Fina, I have a feeling the money will miraculously appear to pay Ale back in full.


Well with Ale now being in rage mode i highly doubt he would want Dimwit in his company now,he doesnt trust anyone from the Mendozas at the moment much less trust Dimwit.

Hi, all. OT.... real life telenovela... He will not be getting the girls every other week. He gets to have dinner with them two nights a week , and he gets them every other weekend. Summers he gets them two days a week and every other weekend. The holidays have been equally divided. There are still matters to be settled , but at least we do not have to worry about the girls going back and forth every other week. It is what it is. He will never change, so we all just have to be on standby for damage control.

Thanks for all those positive vibrations that you sent out into the universe. The situation is not perfect, but it is not as bad as it might have been. Now, maybe we can all move forward .



So glad things are being resolved in a positive way. Your daughter and your granddaughters are so lucky to have you and Mr. Susanlynn with lots of love and support. Virtual hug to you and yours : )

EJ thanks for your great recap. I especially appreciated editorial on Ale. And while there have been worse galans, thankfully I don't I have encountered them, this does not improve my viewing experience. Thank goodness for Caray, Carary! or I would have run for the hills long ago.

Lila, thanks for summing up my other frustration w/the tn. "Yah, Fina's love for Dimwit and Montse's love (more than her own life--go back and listen) is just breathtakingly unbelievable!" Yes, in other areas of their lives their intelligent but in love they make choices that could do real harm to themselves and possibly others. And we are supposed to believe this is great love. Basta!

I feel like we are back at the beginning of the tn when Monse kept saying how much she loved JL and we were confused. Now w/Ale, aside from a few tender moments, he's just a rage monster.

I do feel that Monse lied to push JL to move on with his life. It would be interesting if his life turns around and Adriana's scenario were to become part of the narrative.

Becky's idea of a galan with no self-esteem is good. But regardless of the problems we have in our past, we are responsible for our actions.

Daisynjay, love your dreams. It reminded me of "9 to 5."

Yeah, Susanlynn!!! Thanks for sharing and I'm glad its good news.


What a great scenario you created for the Dim and Josefina wedding. I want to be in the audience for THAT event. I am really ready for Josefina to shine. I love the actress. I appreciate you coming by.

Thank you so much for your compliment. (EJ blushes and smiles). On the subject of 'Blank unaddressed envelopes'—hee hee hee.

Thank you for your kind words. I am glad you noticed my attempt to be even-handed with my complaints about Ale's behavior. He is treating Maria with such contempt. Bah1

Anita! OMG, I never thought about Montse's lie putting JL in more danger. Great insight. I just want him to get married and make Angie the 'Happiest Woman In The World'. Now.

Fatima and Daisynjay: I love the idea of Montse putting up the tacones in their respective name-brand shoe bags, pulling on some work boots and whipping the ranch into shape. I'll bet Victor might help! Nothing like a good project to give Montse and Tia some self-esteem and make them independent of Graciela for any money. I join in your excellent fantasy!

Finally, I must say how much I love the Mendoza house in which the filming takes place in the fictional Aguaul. Has anyone lese noticed the shell motif carved out over the windows in the main sala? The details in that beautiful house are exquisite.

I was once able to find the house in which some of the filming for "Abismo de Pasion' took place. It was for rent by the week (at an exorbitant price) or month. That, too, was a lovely house, but some of the architectural details of Casa Mendoza are just exquisite. In yesterday's capitulo, when Victor was talking to Montserrat in the garden, the distant sound of car horns could be heard. Of course, I am sure that most of the interiors are filmed on sets—but the sala and it's window details look real to me.

Anyone know if they are really filming 'Robo' in Campeche? The exteriors of Hacienda Almonte look real enough but the interiors look like sets to me.

Like Judy B, I think I have seen that wonderful hacienda kitchen before.



As to the telenovela that we are watching...thanks! EJ, for another great retelling. The.viewers never got to see the hacienda owned by the leading lady's family in AR. In the beginning, the father was thinking about selling the townhouse and moving the family to live at the hacienda. It was not doing well , but it was the source of their money.. The mother was not happy at that thought, so they just struggled on until the galan came on the scene and rescued them. As to the terms of the inheritance after the father died , I do not remember what happened in AR. I think that the mother inherited everything, but their financial situation was bad. No one ever went to that hacienda in AR.

I have noticed that folks here at Caraycaray are excellent problem solvers. They take the situations presented in the novelas and try to think of ways the characters could repair matters. I am starting to think that watching these novelas is good for our brains . We have to do a lot of critical thinking to follow the plot lines and find solutions to all the troubles that the characters get themselves into. The novelas are helping us hone our logic and problem solving skills. Also, novelas allow us some hope and positivity as we say to ourselves , "Well ! I am dealing with this awful person/people in my life , but at least I do not have to deal with Gracie/Pedro/Malria/Dimwit.


Susanlynn, I'm glad that this is a resolution you can all live with. Not perfect, maybe, but…

As for our favorite escape from reality --

May I nominate my two favorite lines of the evening, both spoken by Dim?

1. Maldito viejo, hasta muerto encontró la manera de jorobarme!
(Damned old man, even when he's dead he figures out a way to screw me over!)
[p.s. "encontró" is literally the past tense, but I thought a present tense captured the meaning better.]

jorobar is a synonym of fastidiar, molestar (to bother, annoy, irritate) and it is related to/derived from joroba, meaning 'hump.'

Seriously. What's not to love?

[Dim says this after Graciela tells him he inherits nothing from his father.]

2. Mamá, ¿tú alguna vez has sentido odio?
(Mom, have you ever felt hatred?)

[Dim asks Graciela this question after she has informed him that José Luis has succeeded in sealing the deal where he failed -- he is going to marry the dying Angélica Arechiga and become one of the richest men in Aguazul.]


JL's rise in rank would never happen this way in real life. He got this rise as a bennie for being arrested for a crime he didn't commit and all the hell everyone put him through. I don't know if Refugio also got a promotion, he is still in his cabo position as far as his uniform goes.

In real life, you can transfer from enlisted into officer rank by going to college and going to what we in the Navy call "Fork and Knife" School. It is basically how to act like an officer instead of an enlisted person. Lots of etiquette lessons and ethical conduct lessons. It is not a very long school.

Susanlynn, so glad it sounds like a safe a workable plan for your family and not as bad as you feared. Once I include someone in my prayers, they are there forever. Bless you all!


Elna June - Muchísimas gracias. "have him adopt a puppy" -- Wow, I was thinking last night that I needed "something" to trigger Ale's soft side and only a puppy would do.

With a best friend like Victor and good people who admire him like Macario and Padre Anselmo, Ale must be a good guy. Apparently, Montse's deception is the first real setback in his adult life.

I got the feeling that JL was not buying into Montse's story completely.

Pasofino, ITA. I think JL realizes why she lied and let it go, but plans on trying to straighten out the mess with Ale.

Or leave an explanation as to why?

Daisynjay, agree. Surely Lauro loved Dim enough to at least leave his son some words of wisdom. Not mentioning Dim in the will at all would be cruel.

My favorite scene was JL and Montse at the end. I don't think JL was tempted to pursue Montse. But he did want Montse to know that his love for her was not a fluke and that he didn't just breezily forget her and move on to Angie. {Among the things I like about JL, he never did put Montse down for falling in love with Ale under captivity or question how she could have sex with him so quickly (though we know it was marital rape)}. The two standing there saying goodbye, without even a hug, was moving.

Wow...Lila...thank you. What a completely lovely thing to say. I am touched and grateful. I can use all the prayers I can get. I read a little book titled " Bless me" to the three-year-old before her nap everyday . My favorite line after several sentences blessing toys and things is " Bless me to from toes to head" at which point I always touch her toes and head . I feel as it you have just touched my toes and head.

Susanlynn, I've been thinking of you all day and keep checking in to see if there was resolution. So glad there was a positive outcome and now, as you say, you and your family can move on. We'll all keep that positive energy vibe headed your way.

I agree on the TN's and our "analytical" thinking. I read a study, must have been about 15 years ago now, that was done by Harvard University. They were looking at groups of people over a long-term period: their hobbies, viewing habits, exercise etc, and how that played into their overall ability to stay sharp and have the ability to problem solve and retain information as they grew older.

One of the most fascinating facts were that people who regularly followed soap operas or TV series with complicated plots and many characters (and they mentioned Spanish TN's which at that time I hadn't started viewing) had better retention ability and recognition abilities as they aged. If they kept up those habits of watching, it was as effective as doing difficult puzzles, serious reading or doing work where analytical thinking was required. It's the fact that one has to remember all these people, the complicated plots and sub plots, stay involved in the story and as you say even discuss or think thru possibilities and scenarios. Think how often those of you who have watched for many more years than some of us are able to pull out the facts of past versions or when we all remember characters to compare current ones to.
So we can honestly say as we raise our glasses on the patio, that we are doing ourselves good and that watching all this madness is brain food for us all. Plus it's so fun...little icing on the cake.


EJ: Bored with Ale? Thank you! I couldn’t put my finger on how I was feeling about him after my initial fury in the beginning of the week. It’s definitely boredom.

A couple of things about the ep before last. I really think that Dim is beginning to like Fina. I got that impression during their interchange before he goes in to talk with Mons. He’d never admit it, especially to himself (I’m aware from last nights ep, that he doesn’t want to marry her, but I still think he’s beginning to like her).

Someone may have already made this point, but Gracie turned cold toward Dim when he rejected her comforting and moved to the sofa. The look on her face said she wasn’t very happy about it, at all.

I hope the writers aren’t cruel enough to put obstacles in the way of JL marrying Angie.

I liked the “dance” around each other that JL and Mons did on the beach and that JL didn’t try to hug her when she was upset.

Now to read you all’s comments.


Novelamaven...Concerning Mony's black outfit in the beach scene, I love Grease and Olivia Newton-John's black outfit at the end of the movie. I read somewhere that she had to be sown into those pants. Well, now we are all wearing comfy stretch leggings instead. It looked like Mony was wearing what I have heard called cigarette leg pants. She looked great. ....grieving but still gorgeous...that's our Mony.

Susanlynn, I loved tv back when the word "god" was not always followed by "damn." Such sweet sentiments as expressed in that little book are woefully missing in mass media. We must hold them in our hearts and share with the little ones as you do. :D

Yah, Niecie! "Among the things I like about JL, he never did put Montse down for falling in love with Ale under captivity or question how she could have sex with him so quickly. ." You know what, damned decent of him, wasn't it? That and telling her he'd love and care for her child even if he wasn't the father. I think ale should have a long talk with JL and DamFab. Let DamFab kick his arse first though!

Daisynjay thank you for enumerating those wonderful benefits for watching novelas. As I approach a landmark birthday it feels good to find fun things to do that are good for the noggin as well!


Daisy, and here I was thinking that novelas have dumbed me down, because half the time I wonder why I watch such drivel(see Corazon Indomable) and the other half I'm on the edge of my seat, waiting for the leads' next smooch (see every single episode of Amor Bravio.
But if watching novelas makes us smarter and helps us improve our retention ability, we should keep watching them foreve. This way when they decide to remake Bodas de Odio one more time and set the action into the future, we will still be able to remember that Juvie turned fuit eating into an icky habit or that Maria's waist bands are 100% polyester.

Somehow I deleted part of my comment before posting it. NovelaMaven nicely stated the the observation that I was making that Dimitrio did defend his sister when his mother asked him about the paternity of her child. Good for him.

While reading the comments about Montserrat's propensity for lying I've been trying to think of one character that she hasn't lied to and as close as I can come is maybe Padre Anselmo and I'm not even certain that she hasn't lied to him.

Had it not been so tragic it would have been amusing when she asked Alejandro what he told her father and a look of horror came over her face as soon as he started off by saying, "The truth..."

So if Montserrat goes country and rolls up her sleeves to get the hacienda rolling again let's hope that she reverts to the outfits and cowgirl boots that she wore in AdP.


Thanks so much EJ! Yep - not much to like with Ale.

That was quite a meeting on the beach! Yes - I figured out Montse had been summoned by the note as she scolded JL for sending it as soon as she saw him.

On lying to JL. Yes, scaredy Montse does seem to lie instinctively, but in this case I agree with Daisynjay - she wants JL to move on and she didn't want to give him any excuse not to do so. It's over for her with him now. Poor Montse - she is a scaredy cat, but she's been a victim of physical and emotional abuse and bullying all her life.

But - yech! - to tell Victor that she still "loves him more than my life" right after telling Rosario she'll hate Ale forever. Does she think both emotions are possible at the same time? I think at some level she does. In other words - she'll love Ale forever, but she'll never forgive him, ever. Of course - she was going to love JL forever too, and that didn't happen.

Fina - what can we say, but I'm really enjoying the character. And Osvaldo Benavides (Dimwit) - he sure is putting on quite a performance, especially last night. I am so enjoying this actor and have never seen him looking so good either!

Adriana: Priceless and I second all of that!! But I might better keep my brain nimble to remember when FC was a hunk when for the umpteempth time they try to make him the romantic lead when we're screaming "NOOOOOOO" instead of "yes, please" when he tries to take his shirt off.


Carlos...please , no. Those outfits were one of the reasons I just could not stick with ADP. Mony's wardrobe has been elegant so far . I hope that if she decides to live at the hacienda , she just buys some nice jeans and tees and some boots. Okay, maybe a cowboy hat. No high low skirts ala Mari in CI. I have seen more than enough of those.

I don't believe Ale will be happy (at first) to find out that Rosario is his mother. On the contrary, he will turn his hate and rage against her for, being his mother, she "sided with and abetted Montse in her cheating ways with JL" - "how could she do that to her own son?" It will take a number of episodes before he comes around. He will see it as a betrayal as big, if not bigger, than that of Montse. His own mother! There is no talking sense to this guy when something new is revealed to him that he considers a lie (even if by omission).

Sadly, anon, I think you're right. Ale, we've offered you ample bosoms, hugs, consultation with DamFab. . .umph umph umph. . .guess we just to wait it out.

;D Lila


Thank you for sharing the results of your difficulties. There is little that is more stressful than a custody battle. I am glad that the outcome is one you can live with, though it sounds far from ideal.

I wish for each of you; your daughter, granddaughters, your husband and yourself healing, happiness and peace as you move on from this point.


Elna June, there are rare occasions when words fail me. This is one of those times. This was the quintessential recap. It was perfect.

I loved your tone, your sentiments, all phrased to perfection. I agreed with everything you said, nodding silently in vigorous agreement.

"I find that I have completely ceased to care about the anti-galan Alejandro", "Let Ale go to the devil and serve us up some new options for Montserrat", "so far his story rings hollow and his personality unlikeable" and " let him romp with orphans as did St. Damian Fabre" were among my favorites.

You write so clearly from your heart yet you never fail to add insight and wit.

I have nothing to add except to apologize I was not able to comment sooner (at home now after a root canal this morning). I will read all the comments tomorrow.

Thank you so much Elna June!



I am a little slow today; could you please elaborate on the 'old days' FC situation?

Are we talking Fernando Colunga (FC) here?

I am drawing a completely blank on this. Perhaps I need to watch more telenovelas to get the old brain sharp. Hee hee hee.


Susanlynn, that's great news. I've been wondering about your family all day, so was glad to see your update.

EJ, I LOVE those carved out shell windows. The place must have thick walls, maybe to help keep it cool during the hot days.

Both kitchens, at the Almonte and Mendoza places, make me drool.


I always get Kitchen Envy when watching telenovelas. The decor, the beautiful unmolested produce, the aromas that must be coming from the stoves...

I also think that Alejandro will flip out when he hears the big reveal on his mother. I think we can all agree that this is something he should have known about from the outset. He would have been angry at the concealment but he would have appreciated her strength and endurance.

Susanlynn: so happy to hear that the girl’s father will not have them every other week like you feared.

I seem to be the only one who thinks maybe a small part of the reason Mons didn’t tell JL that she and Ale were not together was because she felt embarrassed. She falls out of love with “the love of her life” and falls in love with a man who later rejects her.

“This propensity to have to tell everyone his problems and what he thinks of the family is childish. Frankly, it's like watching a male version of Maria---and that is not pretty!”—spot on!

Minor point: Mons walking on the beach in heels. And she didn’t seem to sink in the sand while she walked toward JL. Miracle!

Ref doesn’t like Esme dancing, but he doesn’t tell her it would not be befitting for the wife of a naval officer (though that should be obvious). If Ref wasn’t so jealous and demanding of Esme and explained it to her that way, I think she’d be more receptive.

Like the idea of the story taking a big turn here and having Mons and Lottie living at the hacienda. Perhaps JL will be the capitaz ;)

EJ: I did notice the shell motive over a light switch.

Yes, Ale's going to have trust issues with his Mother for sure. Let us just hope she stands up for herself and says, "Listen, kid. I just spent the last 30 years in the shame and torment of incarceration. So maybe it took me awhile to get up my courage to get to know you and come forward to reintroduce myself. My self-esteem is a bit low, you understand. Serving 30 years in a Mexican prison for a crime you did not commit can do that to you. I'd like to try to build a relationship with you. Are you man enough to give that a shot?"

That's my script for Rosario and I am sticking to it.



Sylvia, Urban, Nanette:

I wonder where that mansion is? I agree, Sylvia, it is so hot there that super thick walls make great sense. I would just love to visit it on a trip to Mexico. There are some magnificent colonial period places on the right coast of Mexico. I think Campeche is a very old Mexican city and perhaps Mayan before that.

My husband just told me that part of the city is a UNESCO World Heritage site plus they have oil money. I'll have to look that up.


Daisy: for once something good for us is fun.

Susanlynn- So happy to hear your news.

How wonderful to hear that tn watching is good for our brains! I always feel like I'm putting together a big jigsaw puzzle as I sift through my brain to remember and keep track of plot points.

I just found out that our very quiet and shy interior painter is from Campeche. I told him I was watching a program filmed there and that I think it is "un lugar muy bonito". He asked what program and he got a big huge smile when I told him. Maybe I'll ask him more about Campeche on Monday if I can get him to talk. Small world, eh? b

Vivi...I bet that you are great at jigsaw puzzles, too.

I have also read that learning a new language is good for the brain. Win win.

Sorry for that crazy "b". My laptop has a very sensitive "b" and I have a heavy thumb.

I think Montse's lying to JL is very complicated. Her reasoning is probably a combination of her shame (good call UA), wanting JL to marry Angelica and move on, not wanting to complicate her life further, and the fact that she is basically non-confrontational. (Nice way of saying she lies easily.) That's why I like this show, the characters are complex. Even the jerks are interesting and some of them elicit some modicum of sympathy even though they are a$$hats.

Ooh, Sylvia...a source of insider information...sweet. You are right. It s a small world.

What color paint are you going with ? I always love the interesting , complicated, creative names they give paint. It is never yellow or grey. It is always a whole Baby Chick Feathers or Foggy London Morning. I always wanted to be an interior decorator. I subscribe to several decorating magazines.

Susanlynn, I know you don't know me from Adam, but this afternoon, I stopped and asked myself: "I wonder how Susanlynn is doing and how things turned out". Honest truth. That is what I asked myself.

While not ideal, it looks doable for now. Things are never set in stone. I hope that when appropriate time passes, the situation can be revisited with a resolution that you really would like to see. This is what I hope for you!

URBAN (I wish I knew how to do boldface type), have you done a weekend special on the kitchens and food of the TN? Boy, would I LOVE to see this!!!


Thanks, Fatima. It is what it is, and it is not as bad as it could be. That's life. Onward.

No, I've never done anything about novela kitchens, but that is a worthy subject. There have been many gorgeous kitchens in novelas in all my years of viewing, but we don't get many recipes (or none I can remember that aren't tied to product placement that annoys the merde out of all of us).

However, here is a Fun Fact: Super Bowl Sunday is the #2 Day of the Avocado (Cinco de Mayo is #1)!

Urban, so you WILL do this as a topic, then? I hope you can find some really great photos, too! I love kitchens!! Boy, wouldn't it be great if we had some recipes, too?!

Liked your "fun facts". :)



Glad to hear that things went ok for your daughter and granddaughters. Wishing them well for any future hearings.

Susanlynn, you are so right about the paint colors. I'm ashamed to admit I can't remember the name of the color we chose for the bathroom and I can't find the color card. But I do remember it was in a color palate with Lit'l Buoy Blew, Catch the Wave and Pool Party. Our paint has a boring name that makes no sense to me. One of the bedrooms is painted either Clam or Garlic Clove, which is just a light gray. Go figure.

Elna June, thanks for such a perceptive recap. I don't want to see our wounded bunny and our messed up galan degenerate into the model of CI (vengeance and eternal love swirled together). I hope they don't throw out both the baby and the bathwater.
Susanlynn, I'm very happy to hear of your semi-acceptable outcome on the custody situation.


Susanlynn: Add me to all those who have stated how happy and relieved we are for you and your family.

Will continue to keep all of you in my thoughts and prayers.


Susanlynn: Maybe "happy" wasn't the right word but I guess things can always be worse so at least it wasn't the outcome you feared most.

Love Diana

Thanks, everyone, for the good vibrations that helped secure a pretty good outcome. I am certain that the positive energy helped us.

Diana..this has been a rough winter for you...snow shoveling and root canal. I hope you are recovering from both. Sunny and clear here today, and I think the temp is up to 40. Well, back to chores.

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