Plain Jane! On the Monday, October 31, episode of Jane the Virgin, the main character (played by Gina Rodriguez) ditched half of the title that made her famous. That’s right, people: Jane Gloriana Villanueva Cordero lost her virginity! No, we are not kidding! This isn’t like that time with her sexy college advisor or, you know, her disastrous wedding night when her new husband was shot. No. She and Michael (Brett Dier) really and truly did the deed, and fans were thrilled.
Still, look: There’s very little about the loss of virginity that is glamorous or entirely fun, which the showrunners actually reflected.
Here are three things we loved and one thing we hope to see in the future now that Jane is just Jane!
Swipe a V-Card, Lose Your I.D.?
We loved that the writers — and last night’s director, Eva Longoria — showed how hard it was for Jane to give up that part of her identity. She got superanxious when the time came to Do It, which is relatable for a lot of kids who grew up religious or relied on their virginity as a unique part of who they were/are. To title a show Jane the Virgin and let it go on for two and a half seasons, only to have her jump into sex without a thought, would have been a huge disservice to the fans, both those who relate to the character and those who don’t.
In the end, we appreciated that Jane was able to accept that she wasn’t losing herself or all of who she was at all. Which leads Us to …
A Cast of Characters
As with the entire show, the writers didn’t make Jane’s virginity — or her loss of it — a character evaluation. From the series' first episode in 2014, her virginity was never something that made her superior or more morally sound. It was just one of the many, many characteristics that made her Jane, just as her mother’s more lenient view on casual sex was just one of the many, many characteristics that makes her Xiomara (Andrea Navedo).
Virginity was never a signifier that someone was or wasn’t a “bad person,” which is why the show has worked. Viewers have never felt alienated by value judgments, and last night’s episode was no different. Jane didn’t become a better or worse person; she just became a person who got some!
When Michael and Jane finally got around to getting it on, he told her, “I want it to be perfect for you.”
The thing is, of course, that it’s never perfect. For people who’ve been together for years, it’s not always perfect! That’s why the exploits — Jane’s faked orgasm, family members not leaving them alone long enough, the creation of an accidental sex tape, the use of lube that made it feel “like wasabi down there” — were so welcome.
Yeah, viewers wanted to see Jane get a payoff for her years of chaste patience (and she did in the end!), but the great thing about this show has always been how relatable it is, even with the zany plot lines about evil twins, accidental artificial insemination and kidnapping cartel lords.
So…One More Thing
By now, you get it: Jane the Virgin is relatable.
But what about when it isn't?
Without getting too preachy, we can all probably agree that the idea of “virginity” is a cultural thing, a societal norm that varies from place to place and belief system to belief system. For Jane, a straight woman who comes from a religious home and Hispanic background, it’s all about the moment when two people of the opposite sex finally have regular-degular intercourse of the potentially baby-making variety. Viewers spent two and a half seasons watching Jane get ready for that, so the showrunners would do well to now take on what it looks like for same-sex and queer couples to tackle the “virginity” issue.
There have been LGBT characters, yes, but poor Luisa (Yara Martinez) has been in an emotionally abusive relationship with her stepmom for a long time. Their relationship isn’t exactly on that Jane-and-Michael level, so it isn’t as easy for LGBT viewers to relate or look to them as an example of a solid romantic relationship.
Virginity means a lot of different things to a lot of different people. Jane may no longer be a virgin, but that’s no reason for the show to stop talking about what it looks like for people who are different from Jane, especially knowing how adeptly the writers have handled nuanced and controversial topics like racism, abortion, adultery, murder and young motherhood in the past.
Tell Us: What did you think of Jane's pivotal moment?
Jane the Virgin airs on The CW Mondays at 9 p.m. ET.
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