Saturday, November 20, 2010
El Mundo de Telemundo: Week of November 15
But there’s only so much we can say in one post. Thanks so much to everyone who comments during the week and keeps the discussion alive!
Aurora: ¿Peor que en tus novelas, eh Ma?
Last week my local Telemundo reception kept getting scrambled. (All I could think of was some little guy on a rooftop in southwest Milwaukee trying desperately to jiggle the dish and clear up the signal.) So I started watching Aurora on the Telemundo website the day after each broadcast. I find that I like watching it like this, although it means I’m always a day behind. So this discussion doesn’t include anything that happened on Friday. Sorry!
Okay. This is all getting deliciously complicated:
(So complicated, in fact, that it cries out for daily recaps. Are there four crazy people out there who might be interested? I’m deliberately giving lots of detail today in the hopes of enticing people who have been sitting on the fence and may not have seen every episode. You know who you are!!!)
The focus has shifted to vengeance.
All of Aurora’s targets for revenge have, indeed, acted badly, some worse than others. But Vanesa has twisted the events of the past in such a way that they are unrecognizable. She convinces Aurora that Natalia and Lorenzo were a couple long before Aurora arrived on the scene. They planned to have Lorenzo seduce Aurora so they could control her money. He never loved her. Natalia backs up Vanesa’s story, making it seem credible.
Lorenzo, in reality, is nearly blameless. He never betrayed Aurora. His only sin was refusing to listen to her explanation after the fateful birthday party. Now Vanesa has cast him as the principal villain.
Twenty years ago Natalia was guilty of cowardice. She knew what Vanesa was up to but, because of some hold Vanesa had on her, she kept silent. It was, of course, Vanesa, not Natalia, who invited Lorenzo to that birthday party. (The contemporary Natalia has become much more Machiavellian, and much easier to dislike.)
Now Vanesa pretends that Natalia’s sin of cobardía was hers. Meanwhile she commits far worse offenses against her nemesis, Aurora.
Dr. Gustavo congratulates himself for saving Aurora’s life but she despises him for destroying her love.
Even though Inés is now repentant, Aurora still blames her for not standing up to Gustavo in the past.
As we learn more about the Lobos family’s adoptive son, César, we realize he is a very dangerous character. He may be protective of Natalia and Nina, but he is a menace to just about everyone else. He and two of his thug buddies are planning Blanca’s abduction. (His biological parents will undoubtedly turn out to be involved in the story. Whose love child is César?)
Blanca loses her enthusiasm for César when she catches him in bed with his ‘lawyer’.
Aurora announces to los Ponce de León that she and Blanca will be living together in their own apartment.
It looks like Dra Elizabeth has committed a murder, (and not her first one, most likely) on behalf of cryonics: When Jane Doe didn’t die according to plan, Elizabeth helped her along.
With a little pulling of strings on Natalia’s part, Lorenzo is invited to work on a theatrical piece in Madrid. Natalia is desperate to get him to accept the job. She’ll do almost anything at this point to keep him away from Aurora.
Nina is willing to take her obsession for Martín further than anyone imagined.
What follows is more or less a recap of Thursday’s episode with some expanded references to previous events:
As part of her new plan to avenge all the harm she has suffered, Aurora seduces Lorenzo in her new apartment. As they are engaging in something that looks more like love than war, Aurora begins to slip back into the cold. Her lips turn blue. She can’t speak but she can move her eyes which are open wide with fear. She is aware of everything that is happening. A terrified Lorenzo bundles her up and races her to the cryonics clinic. Elizabeth takes charge and
works frantically to bring her around while Lorenzo prays for Aurora’s life.
At the graduation party turned family tragedy:
The guys at this stag party in honor of Martín’s med school graduation bring in a big beribboned box from which two bimbos emerge. [We can see clearly that one of them, wearing a blond wig, mask, and bunny ears, is Nina. How is it that her brothers can’t recognize her? Tighten the beanie y listo!] Blondie throws herself at Martín; he does what’s expected. When he tries to pay Blonde Bimbo for her services, she peels off wig and mask and reveals her identity. When he sees it’s his own sister, Martín is overcome with horror. (It will take years of therapy to get past this one. As I said before, we need the guy from El Clon!)
Outside the bedroom, César is putting the moves on Bimbo 2. But he backs off quickly when he realizes it’s Nina’s friend Vicki. Then César rushes into the bedroom, takes in the scene and punches Martín in the nose. Fortunately he mistakes the postcoital scene for a precoital one or he would probably kill his brother on the spot.
Martín wipes his bloody nose and proclaims his innocence. He had no idea who the girls in the box were and neither did César. Martin: You think I did it on purpose? You think I’m capable of doing such a thing? Well, no, acknowledges César, I don’t, no. He puts a reassuring hand on his brother’s shoulder. It was just a few kisses, he thinks.
Apparently that’s what Vicki thinks too. But Nina corrects her: Sí pasó, pasó todo! (Yes, it happened! Everything!)
César wants to take Nina and Martín home, but Martín refuses to
go with them.
At the Lobos apartment, Dr. Gustavo pays Natalia a surprise visit. [There is a hint here that these two have a past. Could Gustavo be Nina’s father?] They talk about keeping Lorenzo and Aurora apart – Natalia still thinks they are talking about Beta Aurora. The conversation is cut short by Dra Elizabeth’s phone summons: Aurora has suffered a relapse! (recaída). Gustavo is on his way. (Salgo por allá ahora mismo!) But he leaves a message with Natalia: Tell Lorenzo we need to talk.
Aurora languishes in intensive care, a breathing tube in place and monitors flashing in the background. Even though she can’t speak, her mind is active. She believes she is dying and these are her last thoughts:
Mi hija no sabe que soy su madre.
(My daughter doesn’t know I’m her mother.)
Mi padre no recibió lo merecido por lo que me hizo.
(My father didn’t get his just deserts for what he did to me.)
Mi madre no pagó por su silencio.
(My mother didn’t pay for her silence.)
Natalia no se arrepentió de su traición.
(Natalia didn’t repent her betrayal.)
Lorenzo, mi venganza estaba comenzando y no pude terminar.
(Lorenzo, my vengeance was starting and I couldn’t finish.)
Martín, de verdad me querías; tú no merecías un amor tan imposible.
(Martín, you really loved me; you deserved better than an impossible love.)
The monitor flatlines and Elizabeth hurries to Aurora’s bedside and begins chest compressions. Se nos va! (She’s leaving us!) Gustavo tries defibrillation but Aurora doesn’t respond. She is gone! Lorenzo and Martín rush in and implore the doctors to freeze her. You don’t get it, says Gustavo. There’s nothing we can do! Ella es Aurora, mi hija! (She’s my daughter, Aurora!) She came back from the dead once. She doesn’t have a second chance!
All the principals are in black. Inés finally tells Blanca that Aurora was her mother and Lorenzo is her father…
Not to worry…
The death scene and funeral are in Aurora’s mind! She continues to be very much alive and hooked up to ventilators and cardiac monitors in the clinic:
Así habría sido mi muerte, una triste despedida sin palabras.
(Is that how my death would have been, a sad, wordless farewell?)
How fortunate that my time hasn’t come yet because I still have a lot to do in this world.
Aurora comes to. Dra Elizabeth removes the breathing tube.
And after the worst party of Martín’s life:
César takes Vicki home and warns her against pulling any stunts like that with Nina in the future – imagine what could have happened! Vanesa flounces in wearing a revealing garment, maybe a nightgown? César politely offers his hand when Vicki introduces him and Vanesa arrogantly ignores it. [It almost makes you understand why he is looking to make his living preying on rich girls.]
Martín shows up at the clinic looking for his father and he learns that Aurora has suffered a crisis; and that it was Lorenzo who brought her in for treatment.
Gustavo scolds Aurora for her behavior and thanks Elizabeth for saving his daughter. He knows she was with Lorenzo and wants to know what precisely she was doing that caused her temperature to dip so low.
Vanesa berates Vicki for telling her she was going out with her girlfriends and then coming home late at night with César. Vanesa finds the bimbo disguise in Vicki’s bag and Vicki spills the beans: it was Nina’s idea. And she’s the one who ended up making love with her brother, Martín. Well not her brother by blood, but almost. ¿Peor que en tus novelas, eh Ma?
(Worse than in your novelas, eh Ma?)
Vanesa allows herself a small, mean smile. Peor, she repeats.
Lorenzo continues to cool his heels in the clinic (no pun intended), trying to get the arrogant Crionica folks to tell him what is happening with Aurora. He is joined by Martín, equally frantic to find out about Aurora.
Gustavo and Aurora are alone in the hospital room with the door closed. He demands details! Without them, he can’t prevent it from happening again. All right then.
She tells him: We were just about to make love. And then I felt cold and I couldn’t move and I couldn’t speak, but I could think. We were nude in bed and I felt alive, me sentí más viva que nunca… (I felt more alive than ever…)
We don’t understand why Aurora supplies the color commentary to her creepy father.
And said creepy father, seemingly a serial adulterer, doesn’t understand why Aurora would involve herself with Lorenzo, knowing he is married to Natalia. Her answer:
Porque me quiero vengar!
(Because I want vengeance!)
At the Lobos apartment:
César and Nina are greeted by an anxious, suspicious Natalia when they arrive home together. Are they hiding something? What about Martín and Lorenzo? They were at Martín’s graduation party but they don’t know where Lorenzo is.
Natalia tells César that Lorenzo lied – he was supposed to be with his friend Ernesto tonight. Listen, César, says Natalia, a lot of stuff happened while you were in jail. There’s this woman named Aurora…
And back in CryoLand, Aurora asks Gustavo:
Me vas a volver a secuestrar?
(Are you going to kidnap me again?)
Gustavo takes offense. Everything I did was for your own good, then and now, he says. Aurora grants that he was right about some things, wrong about others.
But let’s talk about this vengeance of yours, he says. She asks if he’ll help her get even with the people who have harmed her. If it involves punishing that Lorenzo guy, he’s on board. You betcha!
Here’s what Dr. Gustavo has to do: He must deliver a message to Lorenzo.
And so he does, with great enthusiasm:
Gustavo asks Lorenzo: What are you doing with my granddaughter?
And Lorenzo replies: I don’t owe you any explanations. You’re the one who owes me the truth: What happened to my Aurora?
And Gustavo gets to twist the knife that Aurora placed in his hand:
You still call her yours? Did you know that after her last birthday party, she went abroad, the happiest young woman in the world? That she had a child by Federico? And that for my daughter, you meant nothing?
And at los Lobos:
Natalia finishes telling César about Lorenzo and Aurora’s love, a passion from the past that has flared up with the return of the daughter. César promises Natalia that he won’t allow Lorenzo to make her suffer because of Aurora.
Back at the clinic:
Martín enters Aurora’s room at the clinic, strokes her hair, and promises to watch over her through the night.
Blanca, happily innocent of all the nasty stag party business and still unaware of Aurora’s crisis, arrives early at Lorenzo’s studio. She asks for help preparing for her exams at the School of the Arts. He is reluctant, but then agrees. She is out of sight, maybe in the changing room, when Natalia bursts in and fills the air with shrill reproaches for Lorenzo’s absence last night. Blanca hears her accuse him of spending the night with Aurora.
It is, in fact, Martín, who has spent the night with Aurora, keeping vigil at her bedside. She awakens to the sound of his voice singing to her. She reminds him: he shouldn’t waste his time on her.
Martín knows it was Lorenzo who brought her to the clinic. Why were they together so late at night? We were kissing, she says. Your father is my impossible love.
Martín is devastated. His father is a married man with a family! She tells him her only concern is avoiding hurting Martín himself. Well it’s too late for that, he says, and walks out.
Back at Lorenzo’s studio, Blanca hears Lorenzo say he was with Aurora at the clinic all night because she fell ill -- although she is now much better. Blanca leaves to go to Aurora. Natalia keeps hammering away at Lorenzo. She tells him Gustavo came to the house looking for him. Everyone, says Natalia, knows about you and Aurora.
Lorenzo retorts angrily:
Entre nosotros no hay nada!
(There’s nothing between us)
He went to see her because she wanted him to know something about her mother, nothing more. But you know what? I’ve decided! We’re going to Spain! Natalia’s face lights up. (Anyone else finding Natalia even more insufferable than Vanesa?)
César assures Nina he didn’t tell their parents about her horny conejito act. Little sister turns a deaf ear to César’s insistence that her feelings for Martín are wrong. (Ay, Nina, if even César, who has the moral compass of Tony Soprano, thinks it’s wrong, believe me, it’s wrong!)
Martín tries to get Dra Elizabeth to explain Aurora’s illness to him but she refuses. Just then, a tv report comes on about a missing person: Julia Castillo, a young woman who was spending a few days in Manhattan disappeared two weeks ago. The police have found no trace of her. Elizabeth recognizes that Julia is the dying Jane Doe she bought from the hospital to fill the empty capsule in the clinic; and the Jane Doe she murdered when it looked like she wasn’t going to die after all. Elizabeth’s interest is evident to Martín: Do you know her? he asks. Elizabeth just walks away without answering.
In Aurora’s clinic room:
Inés reproaches Gustavo for not telling her sooner about Aurora’s crisis. He makes a snide remark about her ignoring her messages because of her little pills, but she sets him straight: Blanca woke her up in the night with a pesadilla and she had to attend to her: she dreamed she was with her mother and it wasn’t Inés. Aurora hears this and reads it as a sign of Blanca’s increasing affection for her. And at that moment, Blanca enters and throws her arms around Aurora.
In a scary warehouse somewhere:
Apparently César hasn’t given up on his plan to kidnap Blanca. He shows his accomplices a nasty looking space where he plans to hold her captive. César wants to be the one to take charge of her. His accomplices discourage that: after all, she already knows him. She won’t recognize him, he says. They will do it tonight. During the recital.
Nina thanks Vicki for helping her and keeping her confidence. When Vanesa appears, it’s clear she is in on the secret. But Vanesa assures Nina that she wants to help!
At the Cryonics Lab:
Martín sees the Ponce de Leon family – Inés, Aurora, Blanca and Gustavo – walking Aurora out of the clinic. Soft tinkling music plays. Martín music. Aurora assures Martín she’s fine. Then Lorenzo, enters the scene. We hear ominous angst-producing drum beats. Lorenzo music.
Says Gustavo brusquely:
Y usted – ¿qué hace aquí?
(And you – what are you doing here?
And Lorenzo answers, addressing Aurora:
Necesitaba saber como estabas.
(I needed to know how you were.)
Alguien Te Mira
Things continue along their grim course…
Eva wakes up in a disgusting basement amid jars filled with the victims’ hearts. She manages to climb on a barrel and get to a window. She figures out how to remove the bars on the window and crawls out into a space surrounded by a tall, chain-link fence. She hears footsteps behind her. It’s her captor who, once again, overpowers her and brings her back to his hide-out.
Tatiana tells Rodrigo to keep away from Benjamin. He’s so angry he almost tells her about Benja’s extracurricular activities. But he holds his tongue.
Piedad is overcome with pains in her belly and fears she’s losing her baby. Tatiana takes her home. Even when she’s doing a good deed, she can’t keep her mouth shut. She upsets Piedad by trashing Rodrigo. Piedad nearly tells her about Benja, but she too manages to hold her tongue. Later, Piedad starts bleeding. She tries to reach Rodrigo, but he doesn’t answer. He shows up at her place hours later. The crisis has passed, but he wants to stay with her. He is still there the next day when Julian shows up carrying a white rose and looking none too pleased.
Benja goes to Camila’s apartment building seeking solace. He calls her from downstairs but she is already entertaining a gentleman caller, Renato. She meets Benja in his car, and starts getting very friendly until they are interrupted by her boyfriend. Benja and Renato fight. Benja leaves in his SUV. Renato rides off on his bike. And skanky Camila is left alone in the parking lot.
Julian continues in his role of ‘protector’ to Piedad and Matilde.
Benja goes back to the clinic where he sees Julian. The two make peace and Benja agrees to see not only Piedad’s but also Julian’s patients for the day. (Must not be a very busy practice!)
Mauricio is rotting in jail next to the crazy guy. Mauricio’s lawyer tells him he’ll have to hand over the sex tapes if he wants to be able to negotiate his release.
Carvajal also tells Mauricio he has to hand over the tapes. She notices Mauricio’s conversation with the policeman, Amador (who has been Mauricio’s deep throat in the department even though everyone was blaming Eva) and confronts him. He denies any involvement with Mauricio.
The crazy guy’s confession seems more and more motivated by a desire for ‘three hots and a cot’ than by actual guilt.
Tatiana is driving Matilde crazy by talking about Mauricio. At last, Matilde loses her temper, asks her never to mention his name in her presence: he is dead to her. Unfortunately, she can’t escape him after all. The DA’s office calls Matilde to give a statement in Mauricio’s presence. He finally admits that the sex tapes exist but continues to deny involvement in Eva’s disappearance. In the end, he agrees to tell the authorities where the tapes are.
Pedro Pablo has filed charges against Lucía La Loca. He’s also investigated her references and discovered that they were all falsified. None of the ‘employers’ listed had even heard of her. She herself is busy with target practice and cutting up the pages of her books into heart shapes.
And now Pedro Pablo’s and Lola’s baby girl is missing!
Lucía gets little María Jesus’s attention when Lola is in the mall with the two younger girls and somehow manages to get her away from her mother.
Lucía has also been busy in the family’s neighborhood. She has placed flyers in all the mailboxes accusing Pedro Pablo of being a sexual predator.
Part Two by Jean: Aquí está!
Los Exitoso$ Gomez-
Franco, Amanda and Ricardo are still trying to kill Marcela. Ricardo hires a kidnapper. Franco pays the ransom but the packets of money only have real bills on the top. I assume that he hoped that the kidnapper would kill Marcela in retaliation for not receiving the ransom. But Ricardo has not hired a very good kidnapper and Marcela convinces him to let her go. She pays him and he identifies Ricardo as the man who hired him. Marcela tells Franco that she knows that he is trying to kill her.
Sol faints and is ordered to bed. Apparently she isn't pregnant, though. At Marcela's suggestion, Alex of the weird hair, comes back to do the news with Gonzalo. She puts the moves on him big time and unfortunately he succumbs. Tomas and Charly go to Las Vegas, which gives Gonzalo a place to get it on with Alex.
Sergio convinces Dani to help him find out where Martín is being kept. They trick Dr. Carlos and find the apartment but only Sergio sees the comatose Martín. It all comes to nothing because Carlos moves Martín so that the apartment is empty when Gonzalo takes Sol there. Sol won't believe Dani because she didn't see Martín herself. Dani finally convinces Sol that Gonzalo isn't lying and she goes to see him only to find him with Alex.
La Fantasma de Elena-
Lots happened this week as usual.
Elena Lafe – After a good night’s sleep, she went from catatonic to amnesiac. While she was asleep, Dulce tried to kill her by injecting a poison in to her IV. Elena didn’t have an IV line in at any other time during her stay in the clinic but whatever. Dulce gets interrupted by Martín and Ruth. She kills a nurse in the bathroom of the clinic for no apparent reason. Maybe she just didn’t want to waste the syringe of poison. She may have also killed another nurse earlier to steal her uniform.
The now amnesiac Elena doesn’t want to stay at the clinic. The only thing she remembers is the ocean so Eduardo lets her go to her father’s hotel in the Keys with Laura. Montecristo follows them. He is going to tell Dulce where Elena is so that she can finish the job but when she finds out that Elena is so far away, she insists on Montecristo killing Elena.
The week ended with Monecristo befriending Elena on the beach and inviting her to go swimming where he presumably was going to try and drown her. Laura finds them before he can can do this.
Andrea’s wedding- Rebeca pushes the wedding date forward but Andrea is showing more symptoms and collapses during the ceremony. Katie Barbieri really gets to chew up the scenery as the anguished mother. Dr. Tibia may have some kind of a cure that involves a bone marrow transplant. Darío wants to be the donor even though he has a dicky heart but Eduardo is willing, too. No one will tell Andrea what is the matter with her.
Milady- We get to meet Milady’s father. At first, he isn’t sure he wants to meet his daughter. He shows up at the wedding and is supportive of Clara. Clara identifies Milady to him as his daughter and he decides that he wants to meet her. Clara asks Jesusa to tell Milady about this. She decides that she doesn’t want to meet her father but we know that won’t last.
Meanwhile, Michel realizes that since he is older than Milady, there are some holes in Clara’s story about him and Milady being half-siblings. Clara denies everything. Go for the DNA test, kid.
Nena, Anacleto, Latoña and the Twin-
Nena et al are about to go the police station with Latoña’s statement but La Gemela (LG) is watching the house. She follows them and in trying to escape from her, Nena’s car is hit by a train. Amazingly, they all survive and seek refuge in Padre Aguas’ place. They convince the Padre of the truth of their accusations and he calls Eduardo and asks him to come over to talk about something to do with his son. Of course, LG is listening and she gets to Padre Agua’s place first. The good guys have realized that LG is on the way and try to escape by car but LG ambushes them and apparently has locked them up somewhere.
That's it for me for a couple of weeks. I am going to Argentina. NovelaMaven will keep posting and I'll jump back in when I get back
Tuesday, November 09, 2010
Life after El Clon: El Mundo de Telemundo
What has happened so far in Aurora?
We’ve been invited into the murky world of cryonics where people deny the finality of death by paying hundreds of thousands of dollars to have their corpses preserved at very low temperatures in the hopes of eventual resuscitation when the cure for their death is readily at hand.
As a cursory Google search will show, this world really does exist. Since the 1960’s, actual versions of Dr. Ponce de León have been selling space in their freezers; and if you can’t afford the deluxe full-body version, they’ll happily welcome you into their heads-only (or even brain-only) bargain basement.
Could it work?
Is it possible to raise the dead, unharmed? From what I’ve read, it’s a very tricky proposition. For one thing, it depends on what you mean by dead. If the holy grail of cryonics is bringing back an intact personality, well, it’s hard to imagine any definition of death that would allow that. If we assume that higher brain function is the first thing lost – the ‘brain death’ that justifies removing organs for donation from a still biologically living donor – how can we expect a ‘brain-dead’ popsicle to be neurologically intact years later? Would you have to anticipate death but not wait for it? That is, would you have to freeze people who were still neurologically intact?
All told, this business of cryopreservation and resuscitation is not totally impossible, theoretically speaking, but the science just isn’t there yet. And when the science eventually catches up with the desire, all those expensive popsicles will likely be out of luck since their antiquated preservation has almost certainly destroyed them.
And yet… and yet… we are in TelenovelaLand where the laws of nature and logic do not apply. Dr. Creepy has raised his lovely daughter from the near dead. It would be the scientific coup of the day and our old friend Augusto Albieri would not have hesitated to take credit for it. But surprisingly, Aurora’s father worries that her life would be blighted if the press were to get wind of her undead status. This leads to three major plot developments:
The latest Big Lie:
Inés and Gustavo (Aurora’s actual parents) tell Blanca (Aurora and Lorenzo’s actual daughter who has been raised to believe she is the daughter of Inés and Gustavo and sister of Aurora) that Aurora had a daughter who was abducted many years ago. Got that? Okay, now she has been found and she will be living at the Ponce de León home. That would make this Beta-Aurora the grandchild of los Ponce de León and Blanca’s niece. Everyone is supposed to believe that Alpha-Aurora is still languishing in the freezer.
One of the doctors in the Cryonics facility secretly films the Great Thaw and then sells it to the highest bidder, Eduardo Hutton, wealthy magazine publisher and member of the Ponce de León social circle.
Now Eduardo is a nasty piece of work:
He is married to Vanesa, Alpha-Aurora’s old frenemy and now successful telenovela villain who likes to boast that in real-life, she is worse than the characters she plays on the screen. (And just a glance at her surgically-enhanced enormous ass and lips would be a giveaway to her profession: she looks like a mandrill in estrus decked out in a mini-falda and tacones. She is in the sisterhood of Ivana in STUD and now, Victoria in Eva Luna).
Eduardo can’t understand why the Creepy One values his daughter’s well-being over his own scientific glorification. (Nor can we, really. Could Ponce de León be that rarest of telenovela beasts, a Multidimensional Character?)
A spiteful ex-lover has dragged Vanesa and Eduardo through the tabloids, an unforgivable humiliation in Vanesa’s view.
The First Murder:
I didn’t think this was a murdering kind of story, but apparently I was wrong. A woman – all we can see are her black gloves and black stocking clad legs -- poisons Eduardo. Why? For cheating on the mandrill? For spurning his girlfriend? For revealing the secret of Alpha-Aurora?
Since he’s not just a friend, he’s also a client, he manages to drag himself to Dr. Creepy’s lab for freezing. (Martín is excited about getting himself some cryo-action. Maybe he gets to empty some of the baggies of ice cubes into Eduardo’s capsule/coffin.) While Eduardo’s wife and lover both hated him enough to wish him dead, the killer turns out to be a dark horse: Dra Elizabeth.
Elizabeth is Dr. Creepy’s office wife. She has been in love with him for years but, alas, it has been un amor no correspondido (unrequited). Even now that Dr. Creepy and Inés live apart, their marriage a casualty of Aurora’s tragic fate, he is uninterested in her. When she confesses what she has done, Dr. Creepy threatens to call the police. But she threatens right back: She knows his secrets and where all the bodies are not buried.
Another plot thread yet to be embroidered in the tapestry:
Cesar is the son of Lorenzo and Natalia and half-brother of Nina and Martín, and currently in prison. He is about to be released, if his prison enemies don’t off him first.
Both Martín and Lorenzo open their hearts to loving Beta-Aurora now that she has assured them she is not sister to one nor daughter to the other. [My money is on Lorenzo. Alpha-Beta Aurora seems like an old soul in a young body; once she realized who Martín actually was, she no longer saw him as a lover. She, apparently, has boundaries.]
Last night, perhaps softened by Martín’s words, Blanca realized that neither Alpha- nor Beta-Aurora is her enemy. She and Beta-Aurora strike up an alliance.
The previews show Beta-Aurora arriving at Lorenzo’s dance studio. Anyone want to bet that Nina’s reign as top student is about to come to an end?
Comments about Aurora or any other Telemundo novelas? I'd love to hear what you think about Alguien te Mira. I still don't know where the plot is going although I was glad to see Lola and Pedro Pablo reconciled last night. Looks like their happiness isn't going to last very long though...
Thursday, November 04, 2010
Life after El Clon or: Dawn comes to Telemundo
Take one pair of star-crossed lovers, one set of snooty-patooty parents and one mad scientist with a God complex, season with envy, stir gently, and marinate in the refrigerator for twenty years.
The princess here is a lovely twenty-something dance student, Aurora, who falls in love with Lorenzo, a talented and beautiful dancer. They are kept apart by false friends, social class, their own stubborn pride and finally, by Aurora’s illness, an infection certain to be fatal. Her father, Dr Gustavo Ponce de Leon [hah!], won’t allow her to die. He keeps her frozen in his very own cryonics laboratory while he waits for medicine to find a cure for her illness. She is La Bella Durmiente (Sleeping Beauty) for our time. La Princesa de Hielo (The Ice Princess). And just to show us what a sentimental guy he really is, the doc has also turned Aurora’s dog, Lucero, (not so inside joke?) -- who was dying of sadness after losing her mistress – into a pooch on ice, complete with her own cryocapsule.
Gustavo spends a lot of time contemplating his daughter turned popsicle, wrapped in her cryo-undies and suspended in her capsule. It feels a bit creepy and vaguely incestuous.
And then -- a twenty year leap forward. Aurora still looks like Aurora (Sara Maldonado), except she’s um… well, not exactly alive. But all the other twenty-somethings have morphed into different actors.
Eugenio Siller’s winsome young Lorenzo, for example, has matured into a hunky forty-something Jorge Luis Pila. [Now I understand why all the twenty-somethings looked exactly the same twenty years later on El Clon: they were kept on ice!]
And their offspring, the new generation of twenty-somethings are the spitting image of their like-sexed parent. [If we didn’t know better, we’d be tempted to say they were clones! Perhaps after the Bedouins rescued Albieri in the desert, he found refuge in the more permissive environment of the New York medical community and was responsible for cloning this new generation.] Lorenzo’s young son, Martín, has grown up to be Eugenio Siller. You can see how confusing it will be for Aurora.
The only non-clonish member of this new generation is Aurora’s own daughter, Blanca. Blanca never knew her mother. She thinks Dr. and Sra Ponce de Leon are her parents and Aurora is her sister. Lorenzo, her actual father, doesn’t know of her existence.
Blanca resents Aurora – she refers to her contemptuously as ‘La congelada’ (the frozen one). She perceives (accurately) that Dr. Ponce de Leon has spent all his emotional capital on Sleeping Beauty and has nothing left for Bitter Blanca.
[The over-forty actors get to play themselves twenty years later. I mean really, between forty and death, well, who the hell cares?]
The world hasn’t stopped spinning while Beauty has been asleep. It should be easy enough for her to get used to cell phones and computers and the death of Celia Cruz. But it will be harder to assimilate the changes in her Prince’s life: for the past fifteen years, he has been married to Aurora’s best friend, Natalia. They have raised 3 children: his Martín (identical to young Lorenzo); her Nina (identical to young Natalia; we don’t know who Nina’s biological father is); and their César.
There are lots of close-ups of lovely faces, touristy images of Manhattan, pretty dance studio shots. The actors are engaging and know their job. The Mexican Spanish is easy to follow and the Spanish captions, thus far, have been working well. All told, the ice may be a little thin, but it should be fun to skate on for a while.
And on bleak nights, we can always count on the occasional howler to keep us amused. Check out the writing over Martín’s bed: STRENGHT & HONOR! Indeed.
Anyone else watching? ¿Alguien más lo mira?
Friday, October 29, 2010
El Clon - Gran Final, Fri, Oct. 29
One daughter found:
The family watches nervously as Mohamed paces and mutters terrible threats against Samira. Then the door opens: Tío Alí has brought Samira home. All – Latifa, the Naz, Zoraida, Amin and especially Mohamed – rush to kiss her and welcome her back.
And one daughter lost:
A servant brings Said the shocking news: Jadiya is missing! Even though she was driven right to the door of the school, she never went in. Said’s nostrils flare and he breathes heavily.
Rania and Amina exchange mean little smiles.
And one son still in limbo:
Enrique is in court presenting Lucas’s argument to the judge. You can’t equate genetic identity with parentage, he says. Daniel was cloned from a cell taken from Lucas. No parental link exists between Daniel and Leo. And if Leo is not Daniel’s father, then Lucas isn’t his brother.
In fact, Daniel does have a family, continues Enrique: his mother is Dora; and his father, en el sentido socio-afectivo del término, is Dr. Albieri. Albieri created him and has always been a father figure for him.
Daniel turns accusingly to Albieri: You said they weren’t going to mention that I was a clone!
A servant brings a bouquet of flowers to Said along with a note from Jade asking his forgiveness. But it isn’t fair, she writes, to keep her from seeing her own daughter.
So Jade took his daughter! Said is beside himself with rage. I’ll kill her, he roars. This time I’ll give the lashes myself and no one will be able to save her!
Luisa follows Albieri in her car. [She seems more adept at it than she was when she thought he was cheating on her with Dora.] She sees him join Amalia at an outdoor café. Albieri is still being cagy with Amalia, but she cajoles him with just the right amount of flattery mixed with honesty into acknowledging that he created a clone. She knows he is brilliant – and vain! And they both laugh. But Luisa’s not laughing: Ya verás, Albieri! she says. (You’ll see!)
The second courtroom of the evening:
The judge gives Fernando a choice of standing trial and most likely doing jail time or entering rehab. He chooses rehab, much to the relief of Clara and Escobar. And it is very nice to see the smirk finally wiped off Fernando’s face.
Enrique is nervously preparing himself for a more personal trial. He is going to see his children. Carolina offers to go with him but he prefers to do this on his own.
He takes a taxi to his family’s house. Unfortunately he loses his nerve when he gets there. He tells the man who comes to the window that he was just checking an address.
The story moves to Fez:
Jade reassures Jadiya that they are safe in the medina: discovering them there would be like finding a needle in a haystack (aguja en pajar). And then they spot Tío Abdul tormenting… I mean educating little Zumaya. They run back to their lodging.
Back in Miami, Said questions Zoraida and Alí but they don’t know anything. Besides, says Alí:
¡Yo nunca apoyaría una fechoría como eso, Said!
(I would never support villainy like that, Said!)
Said figures they must be in Fez because it’s the only place Jade really knows well. He’s going to track her down and when he does, he’ll show no her mercy. And Rania, now happier than a pig in potatoes, has to work extra hard to hide her smirk.
Enrique has taken refuge in a bar. Whiskey doble!
Carolina tells Clara how excited Enrique was about seeing his kids and how good he felt about his decision.
The man Enrique spoke to earlier (stepfather, employee?) now tells a young man and woman (his children?) about his brief visit. The girl asks him to call her if he comes back.
Caro is trying to call Enrique but he doesn’t pick up.
The mood is gloomy at the Del Valle home. The second DNA test came up positive and Lucía is left with the inescapable conclusion that her Roberto did indeed father a child with another woman.
But change is in the air at Casa Ferrer. Marisa gives Lucas permission to go on with his life and make the changes he needs to be happy. She tells him not to feel guilty about Natalia: they both tried, they gave her their best.
I’ve suffered so much in my life, she tells him. And to shield herself from pain, she invented a story, she says. But the truth is this: her mother didn’t die: she was lost to drugs and alcohol when Marisa was very young. And she never even knew her father. She blamed herself for her mother’s problem, the same problem Natalia has now…
This confession is cut short when Rosa rushes in: Natalia is having a crisis! Lucas finds his daughter distraught, restless and craving drugs. Take the baby, she pleads. She wants to be left alone. She doesn’t want anyone to see her like this. She is frighteningly out of control.
Roberto is unhappy to hear that Enrique is away. And when he sees that Lucía has packed up his belongings and sent them to his office, he looks like he could use a whiskey doble too.
Alí and Zoraida are greeted by Zumaya and Abdul upon their arrival in Fez. Zoraida tells Zumaya that Said is on the warpath and she’s afraid she’ll be blamed for Jade’s sins too.
Jade and Jadiya are in their room in Fez. Jadiya misses her father. Jade understands but says that if he finds them right now, she and Jadiya will never see each other again.
The glowering Said stalks the medina with Amina, Rania and Munir trailing behind. Jade’s not going to escape this time, he vows.
In Miami, news of The Kiss has gotten around. At the gym, Vicki asks Pablo if he is falling in love with the Naz. It was just a kiss, he says. But it was a kiss so… one more kiss like that and I’d be in love!
Then Vicki congratulates him. For what? he asks. He got the job in Morocco!
Rogelio hasn’t fired Malicia yet but as she stands before him, he looks as if he is smelling something very unpleasant. Diana comes in to say that a friend of Malicia’s is looking for her. And in walks Aurelio.
And back to Enrique – now so drunk that he is ill. Seeking help, he taps on the window of a patrol car and the officers drive him away. The two young people are watching him; they hail a cab and follow the police car.
Amalia shows up at Albieri’s house and teasingly warns him not to run away from her this time. Oh, no, he says, he’s ready to tell her everything – how he made a human clone. And he proudly shows her photos of Lucas and Daniel. ¡Dios mío! say Amalia softly, muy impactada.
The boy and girl – his children! -- have followed Enrique to a hospital. He lies on a narrow bed, barely conscious. The go up to him and say: Papa? Papito! Why did you abandon us. We missed you so much!
Monica, his daughter says: In spite of everything, he’s our father. But Ricardo, his son, is unyielding: Oh yeah, why didn’t he remember that fact all the time he was gone? Forget it. For me, my father is dead.
Alí and Zoraida are settling back into the house in Fez, but it feels oddly empty to Alí:
Me siento como un barco viejo abandonado en medio mar.
(I feel like an old boat abandoned in the middle of the sea.)
Zoraida reminds him of his three wives and his children but he tells her they are no comfort to him. Why did Allah ever permit him to marry those tres vendavales (three gale winds)?
Sólo tú me haces reír de mis tristezas, Zoraida.
(Only you make me laugh at my sorrows, Zoraida.)
Zoraida goes into the kitchen to make sure that the lamb is being prepared the way Alí likes it. One of the servants, Karima, splashes drippings on Zoraida’s veil. She removes the veil so she can replace it with a clean one. At that moment, Alí opens the kitchen door and catches a glimpse of Zoraida with her lovely long dark hair free of the veil. And from his expression, it is clear Alí está flechado! (He’s in love, that is, struck by Cupid’s arrow).
Another kind of love story is playing out at Casa Ferrer:
Who packed my suitcase? asks Lucas. I did, Marisa tells him. It’s time for you to go to Jade. Don’t use Natalia as an excuse. Let’s give her a good example by the way we live our lives:
Te amé. Te amo. No te voy a culpar porque no me hayas amado. Ve por ella y se feliz.
(I loved you. I love you. I’m not going to blame you because you didn’t love me. Go to her and be happy.)
The final verdict in Leo’s paternity case is in: The judge finds in Leo’s favor. Based on the DNA evidence, Leo is Daniel’s father. The cloning will be investigated separately by the medical authorities. And the appropriate action will be taken against Albieri. He may go to jail.
Dora’s cries out at the injustice of the ruling – ¡El juez es un desalmado! (The judge is heartless, literally ‘soul-less’) -- and her lawyer has to escort her out of the courtroom. She promises Dora they will appeal the ruling.
Early on in this novela, Andrea seemed to be a Miami version of a Valley Girl. It turns out, she’s actually Nancy Drew, Girl Detective.
It’s funny that you know those two sKanks, I mean, women, she says to Consuelo. Oh no, they’re just conocidas del barrio (acquaintances from the neighborhood), answers Consuelo. Well then it’s really weird that you brought these ‘acquaintances’ here to meet my mother – as if my mother were some kind of celebrity!
While Rosario and Andrea are conferring about the situation – A mi esa historia no me encaja en la cabeza (this story doesn’t make sense, lit. it doesn’t fit in my head), says Rosario – Consuelo sneaks out with her suitcase. Rosario sounds the alarm and Andrea rushes out in pursuit. We have to catch that woman!
Fui donde el Sheik como me dijo el tío Alí, él me convirtió y me pidió que le dijera que me enseñara leer el Koran.
(That sentence has more verbs than any sentence should: I went to the Sheik just as tío Alí told me to; he converted me and asked me to tell you to teach me to read the Koran.)
Andrea has captured the sKank! Single-handedly! She returns in triumph dragging Consuelo by the arm. Talk or I’ll call the police, says Andrea. And Consuelo talks. Hilda forced her to take used condoms from the trash…
And now Planet Lucía is back in its orbit and harmony is restored to the Del Valle family.
Malicia’s blast from the past, Aurelio, turns out to be a very bitter, not quite ex-, husband. He shows up at the apartment with a list of everything she owns. Since they never legally separated, he has a right to half of it.
Alí announces to his family that he has decided to get married again. ¿Con quién? (with whom?) He answers enigmatically: Ya lo sabrán. (You’ll find out.) Zoraida’s eyes well up with tears.
One father found and one daughter find each other:
Enrique’s daughter, Monica, comes looking for him. He asks her forgiveness and they hug.
Natalia says what everyone has been waiting to hear: I need help! She wants to enter rehab. And when she gets there, she sees a familiar face: Fernando.
It’s time for Marisa to leave Casa Ferrer and start a new chapter in her life. As she is saying her goodbyes to Rosa and Cristina, Cristina excuses herself. She doesn’t feel well.
The family is gathered at Alí’s house in Fez. He tells them that he is getting married and this time, he’s marrying the right woman. Who? asks Zoraida. He answers:
Eres tú, Zoraida, me quiero casarme contigo. ¿Te gustaría?
(It’s you, Zoraida, I want to marry you. Would you like to?)
Zoraida’s response: She faints.
Things are getting complicated for Albieri. He tells Julio that he feels good about entrusting his story to Amalia. Her book will present his actions in the best possible light. But Albieri panics when he hears that Luisa will be spilling his story to reporters before Amalia’s book comes out.
And Luisa has, in fact, arranged a press conference (una rueda de prensa) with the clear intention of doing as much damage to Albieri as she can.
Now Albieri is scared. For all his bluster, he doesn’t want to go to jail. He decides he’ll escape to Morocco.
Daniel, in full clone identity crisis, shows up on Albieri’s doorstep. If Albieri is going on a trip, Daniel is going with him:
Yo no voy a separarme de ti hasta que tú construyas un mundo para mí.
(I’m not going to part from you until you build a world for me.)
Hilda sKank and Karla sKank are basking in the sun and dreaming about how they will spend Roberto’s money (Hilda wants a leopard-skin themed décor – so chic!) when Consuelo sKank bursts on the scene with tragic news: We’re done for! They know everything!
And unfortunately, Jade and Jadiya are done for as well. Said’s thugs close in on them and they have nowhere to run. Said glowers.
End Part I.
But Nati tells him that she doesn't want him to sacrifice his happiness for her anymore. Lucas replies that the fact that he isn't happy isn't her fault. Nati asks him to do her a favor, 'Sé feliz... y así yo tambien voy a ser feliz.. y me quitas ese peso de encima, ¿Sí?' Be happy, and then I will be happy and you will take that burden off me. Ok?
[Clearly, this is not happening at Alí's house in the medina.] He asks if she wants to go with him. She does, of course, and off they go while her family cheers or curses according to their opinions.
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