Monday, November 18, 2013

 

Lo Que La Vida Me Robó -- Gran Estreno


Lunes 11/18/13  

Capitulo 1:  Paradise Lost


Once upon a time in the seaside kingdom of Agua Azul there lived Lady Monserrat de Mendoza, a beautiful young woman of 19, who grew up in a palacio.

Mendoza Palacio: As Lady Monserrat walked down to the sea her father, el Conde Lauro, received a guest. Sir Sebastián had been away studying for the preceding three years. Sir Sebastián informed the count that his parents were arranging a grand ball so that his engagement to Lady Monserrat could be announced to the nobles of their acquaintance.  El conde did not appear pleased with this prospect.

Almonte Estate, Master Bedchamber: At the same moment, the ailing Conde Benjamín Almonte sent for his estate manager, Alejandro, the only person he was willing to trust. When Alejandro reported to the master bedchamber, he was told to admit Padre Anselmo. The female servants were not to be involved; he feared that news of his impending death would bring out their greed [Clearly, he once saw Zorba the Greek]. The bemused Alejandro opined that any such greed would certainly have shown long before this. El Conde did not react to this, but told him to inform Padre Anselmo that he had successfully completed his studies and further, that were his parents alive they would take great pride in him. 

The good padre arrived and Alejandro left them alone that they may speak. Padre Anselmo arrived prepared to administer the Last Rites and he asked if the conde wished to confess himself. “Oh, but you already know all my sins!” said the impatient conde. “There is still time for repentance” said the padre. It was not matters of the spirit of which el conde wished to speak, but of more worldly matters. “I am changing my last will and testament,” said he, “and I am trusting you to see that it is carried out properly.” Padre Anselmo pledged his compliance.


Almonte Estate, Outside: To the sound of flamenco-influenced music, La Condesa Graciela de Mendoza arrived, clad in merry widow black, in her black carriage. In a manner unbecoming a lady of her station she enquired regarding Conde Benjamín's death. Alejandro informed her that he was still among them, and in private audience with Padre Anselmo receiving Extreme Unction. He would therefore not be able to see her. Is it blasphemy to roll one's eyes at this statement? La Condesa did not care, stating that she would wait.

Mendoza Palacio: Carlota, sister to el Conde Lauro, arrived in hope of seeing her niece. El conde told her that she was about by the sea and that Sir Sebastián had come to inform him of his intentions. He was not at ease with this, believing that his daughter was not yet of an age to require the bonds of marriage. His dear – and much younger – sister was certain that this was not to be feared, as she believed Lady Monserrat to be in love with her wealthy suitor.


Seaside: Lady Monserrat, clad in floral-patterned gown of mixed modesty and a straw hat to protect her long blonde tresses, walked out to the sea, fanning herself. She removed her shoes and walked onto the sand, to discover that she had been followed by Coast Guard Corporal José Luis Alvarez, the man who had won her heart. They kissed in the sunshine, before the eyes of God and a few sea birds.

Almonte Estate, Inside: While Condesa Graciela waited in the drawing room, Alejandro entered the kitchen with an armful of green cuttings. Maid Maria served refreshment to the unwelcome guest, then answered the front door. A steward entered, telling her he was responding to a summons from the padre, who came out to greet him. Condesa Graciela, in the full belief that her claim on the dying man's time was more important, slipped past them into the bedchamber. The padre escorted the steward into the study so he may begin his work. When Alejandro entered, Maria made her unflattering opinion of the condesa quite clear to him. He sensibly advised caution in her expression, as they were mere servants. Undaunted, Maria then made her feelings for Alejandro very clear with a kiss.

Seaside: The same could be said for Lady Monserrat and José Luis, who apparently have loved for some time. She cares not for the opinions of others and endeavored to assure him that her father would be understanding, for he only desired her happiness. As they kissed, Sir Sebastián arrived. Lady Monserrat immediately approached him to say that she would have explained had she located him sooner. He is surprised that she loves another man. Ah, but he had been away so long! And her mother had pushed her to declare herself three years previously when she had been a girl of sixteen; she now knows she had never truly loved him. She appeared sincere in her regret for his embarrassment. He reached for the ring he had given her which she was not wearing but promised to return. He told her not to bother, to throw it away or sell it if she chose, as he now sees that her family was merely in pursuit of his family's wealth. “You are not worth the trouble.” He walked away, leaving Lady Monserrat in a mildly anxious state.

Almonte Estate, Master Bedchamber: Condesa Graciela tried to speak of feelings for the dying Conde Benjamín, but he was not fooled. “Hypocrite!  A woman like you, Graciela, has no feelings” he told her. Shocked, she attempted to change the subject, commenting on the presence of the steward. “Yes, I am changing my will.” This provoked the condesa's gratitude(?) and satisfaction at the prospect of being named his heiress... and his reminder that she would receive nothing. His gifts during their past dalliance should have served. “I would rather leave it all to those accursed dogs and die satisfied that you didn't get your claws on it.” Indeed, the tears we saw in her eyes could only be shed over the loss of wealth to which she was not entitled. There was no choke in her voice, no hesitation in her tone, when she cursed him to die with all his wealth but with no one who had ever sincerely loved him. “Die alone, Benjamín, without family, without children, with nobody to cry for you!”  She then withdrew, saying “May you never rest in peace!”   [Methinks she – like Pharaoh Ramses – here predicted her own fate].

Mendoza Palacio: From the conversation between el conde and his sister, we learn that their financial affairs have gone poorly and that Condesa Graciela takes refuge in her faith. Or perhaps Conde Lauro only has been led to believe that.

Almonte Estate, Outside: At the door, la condesa had some less than gracious things to say to el padre before departing. She was angry that she is not to receive what she feels entitled to. “May he be dead, buried, and forgotten,” said she before sashaying to her carriage.

Mendoza Palacio: Lady Monserrat returned, distressed. Her father spoke of Sir Sebastn's return and the hope that she would study before marrying. He did not agree with his wife that she should marry Sir Sebastián. He asked if she were truly in love. Her aunt entered just as she was about to answer, ebulliently expressing her approval at the prospect of such a fine suitor as Sir Sebastián.

At nightfall, Lady Monserrat's brother, Dimitrio returned to enquire of his father why his letters of credit were not honored. Conde Lauro told his son that he would no longer pay his debts. That he was now of an age where he need be responsible for them himself by working. “At your age I was a man of worth; look at yourself. You are nobody.” Dimitrio departed from his father's presence.

Lest we forget, the servants in the palacio also have their drama. Juventino entered the kitchen to surprise the cook, Dominga, with a most unwelcome embrace. She wielded a skillet at him, informing him that nothing would pass between them and his next actions will be reported to his brother [whom we must assume is Dominga's husband]. As he feigned fear, Gaspar entered and cracked his verbal whip at him to return to work or lose his position. Juventino departed as Gaspar sat down to the dinner Dominga served. Alejandro arrived to join them as Gaspar complained of his brother's sloth. After speculating on what will happen later and before he could partake of the food, the steward arrived to tell him that Conde Benjamín wished to see him immediately. As he exited, Gaspar invited the steward to share their repast.


Mendoza Palacio, Upstairs: In the master bedchamber Condesa Graciela contemplated the end of their financial difficulties only to have her husband accuse her of forcing a marriage por interes. Before this would become as ugly as we know it could, they were interrupted by a call from Lady Violeta, Sir Sebastián's mother. We do not hear her voice but know that she is the bearer of bad tidings because Condesa Graciela entered Lady Monserrat's room and without a word slapped her with great force. In a manner suitable only to a fishwife she revealed that Sir Sebastn had returned to London, then demanded her daughter tell her how she could do something so stupid. [We also enquire of ourselves how she could regard herself as a lady when clad in clothing so tight as to resemble sausage casing and in a colour suitable only to the oldest profession.]

Almonte Estate, Master Bedchamber: Alejandro entered, asking if there were instructions. Conde Benjamín asked him to sit, then told him that he has changed his will because.... “You are my son.” Alejandro rose in disbelief, only to have Conde Benjamín repeat himself, then die. In shock, Alejandro shook the body, saying “No, this is not true, you can't be dead, no...” finally releasing him, a tear in his eye.

Mendoza Palacio, Lady Monserrat's Bedchamber: As we will repeatedly see, Condesa Graciela viciously screamed about how her daughter has destroyed plans she made for her years ago. “Do you know what this marriage means to this family?” she asked. She seems to think the entire kingdom has been anticipating the wedding. She cares not that her daughter does not love Sir Sebastián, referring to love as idiocy. She told her that they will go to London tomorrow to resolve the matter. "Like it or not, you will marry him."  Lady Monserrat refused, telling her mother that she is no longer a little girl and that she will not comply. She will seek her father's help. She exited the room with her harpy mother following.

Almonte Estate, Master Bedchamber: Padre Anselmo administered the last rite and asked Alejandro whether he was told anything. Alejandro told him and further that he did not believe it. However, Padre Anselmo told him it be the truth. Alejandro sat down at the bedside and took a deep breath as if that would make the thought enter his mind.

Mendoza Palacio: Lady Monserrat rushed to her father for support, saying she did not love Sir Sebastián and therefore will not wed him. She would sooner leave her parents' home. Conde Lauro carefully dismissed his wife, who protested his wish to speak privately with their daughter. With controlled fury, she stage-whispered that he was insulting Jesus. She departed as Conde Lauro calmed his daughter.

In the dining hall, Condesa Graciela fumed while Dimitrio (who is certainly no lord) attempted to make light of the situation. Lady Carlota said that this was no lovers' quarrel and the betrothal is ended. Condesa Graciela declared that they could persuade Conde Lauro to force Lady Monserrat's obedience, but Lady Carlota has confidence in her brother's ability to arrive at an appropriate solution. This did not satisfy Condesa Graciela, who appeared clearly mad as she rose from her seat. 

Conde Lauro and Lady Monserrat entered and he told her to retire to her chamber until the evening repast was served. She exited and before her mother could spit more venom, Conde Lauro announced that he was relieved that their daughter knew in time that she did not love Sir Sebastián. He is satisfied with this and told his wife that he was happy that his daughter is a woman whom she can no longer manipulate.

Almonte Estate, Master Bedchamber: Juventino entered in tears, kneeling by Conde Benjamín's bedside and placing coins on his eyes. He asked Padre Anselmo if he would leave him alone to pay his respects. The padre departed and as soon as the door closed, Juventino spat upon the corpse and verbalized his hatred, hoping that his former master would burn in hell. Over the sound of a strange harp and a siren song, he finally slapped the corpse's face, saying that someday the estate will be his. He stole the ring off the corpse's finger, then exited.

Mendoza Palacio: Outside in the garden, Condesa Graciela fumed over her husband's pronouncements while her son whined that his sister was always his father's favorite. He told her of being stripped of his funds and asked her for some. She did not have any at the moment, but told him she would help him. She finally did the blessing gesture which meant nothing to him and then returned inside.

In the study, Lady Monserrat called José Luis to explain the events of the day. She did not wish to go into all the details until she saw him. We see that his abode is humble, without even ceiling illumination, and that Dimitrio was eavesdropping at the door.

Almonte Estate, Kitchen: Padre Anselmo explained the happenings to Dominga, who became concerned for Alejandro. The good padre told her that this inheritance was deserved, as Alejandro is the only blood relative of the dead Benjamín. Gaspar and Juventino arrived on these words and the latter expressed his own selfishness at getting nothing. The padre explained that the late conde legally recognized Alejandro as his son in the last moments of his life. Juventino then changed his manner, saying to his brother that “If your daughter is smart enough she will get Alejandro to marry her and as her family we will be the masters of this place.” Gaspar was irritated with his brother's audacity.

Alejandro, meanwhile, had taken a horse to ride through his thoughts.

Mendoza Palacio: In the dining room, Lady Monserrat told her family she was tired. She kissed her father before leaving. Immediately after her Dimitrio departed for his chamber, lamenting not having gold with which to enjoy amusements and the company of his friends. Condesa Graciela became angry with her husband over canceling Dimitrio's letters of credit, but her husband was firm in his decision. Dimitrio had been gambling and losing. He was angry with Dimitio being a wastral, doing nothing productive or useful. Condesa Graciela ignored this, determined to assign the responsibility of their financial salvation to their daughter. However, Conde Lauro let her know that the courtship was all in her own imagination. “Monserrat is not in love with him and to me that is the only important thing. Good night.”

After he departed for his bedchamber, his (fish)wife was finally speechless, but we know this will not last.

Woods: Maria rode up behind Alejandro, who dismounted, shouting “Why? Why?” He was not able to accept that he is the son of a man who treated his serfs so poorly and now he is his heir. He knew not what to do. Why did he wait to recognize him? Maria told him that since they were children she was always at his side. However, he now wants to be alone and told her not to follow him this time. He mounted his horse and rode quickly away.


Mendoza Palacio: Condesa Golfa sought out her daughter, only to find her room unoccupied. Dimitrio told her that his sister left the house in search of a man.


Seaside: Lady Monserrat walked out to the shore and embraced a manly fellow from behind, seeing a dark tunic she believesd to be that of José Luis. However, he turned around and it is Alejandro. We see from her expression that his countenance pleases her.


Labels:


Comments:
For a woman who claims to guard her position in society Graciela certainly has no class. I didn't comment on her footwear, but if this episode is a predictive measure it will continue to be ridiculous.

My next recap for this series will be in two weeks, as I have alternating Mondays. I don't know if I will stick with this style or not.
  

Urban:

I liked the take on the fairy tale, it certainly started as one, that's for sure. You always have a knack for this storytelling and it is fabulous. Thanks so much.


There's a lot of greed already. I wonder why Graciela felt she was entitled to Benny's money, same with Juvie. I wonder where they got that idea.

I like Monse so far. She's crying already but with good reason from being slapped like that.

I am liking Lauro. He is a good Papa and firm. I like that too, not being led around by the nose by Graciela.

I don't like Graciela. Bossy, no feelings for anyone but herself and maybe Dimi. He seems to be her favorite and Monse seems to be the ends to the means to make a moneyed marriage.

Dimi is dim that is for sure. I see trouble ahead with him.

Loving Alejandro! Strong, angry man! Sigh! I want to see him run that hacienda and make Juvie work his butt off. Maria seems very nice and Alejandro must be the love of her life.

I like Jose Luis he seems like a decent guy, but I liked the last scene the best where Monse thinks she is hugging Jose Luis but it's really Alejandro and the look exchanged between them, sigh!

Can't wait for tomorrow to see what happens.
  

Oh Urban:

Thanks for the pic of the fan. I have missed them!
  

Beautiful recap, Urban, so glad to you are on this one!
Loved the way you began the recap, very apt, the story is like a fairy tale (Disney version, even!).
Stunning and well-selected screen shots.

Has anyone noticed lately that the moment that the leading man and lady meet each other is more dramatic with swelling music and fans blowing their hair in the wind as they look at each other for the first time? As if the audience will not realize what is happening? Is it just me?
  

The "amor a primera vista" look has been around since before I've been watching these. Considering that AB and SR had such great chemistry before this shot was destined to be perfect. I also think that most viewers wait for those shots.

I remember when Eduardo Palomo's last novela, Ramona aired, we all impatiently waited for the first kiss (which was in episode 19).

Graciela is starting to feel like Rosario of Mi Pecado. Thinks she's pious when she isn't, doesn't believe in love, and prefers her son over her daughter. Also married to a man who prefers the daughter over the son.
  

Urban, I am SO glad you are recapping for this TN! I like your style of writing no matter what, so I will be happy with what ever style you choose.

Now...to read your recap!

Fatima
P.S. We are missing you over on MPV. I hope you are watching it as it is excellent.
  

Great first recap, Urban. You started us off well by bringing the fairytale quality to the forefront.

It was a good first episode. Monse is certainly not lacking for suitors. I bet Sebas has a girlfriend (or boyfriend) in England and couldn't wait to get back. I certainly don't believe he was faithful to his child bride fiance all three of these years when he couldn't even be bothered to call or send an e-mail.

Monse seems to like the older men. Hmmmm...I enjoyed that final scene when she wraps her arms around Alejandro. What a pleasant surprise for them both!
  

Almost forgot...so happy to see the fan!

Fatima
  

Thanks Urban, great recap!


I was abroad for several weeks without chance to watch the TN-s that I was keeping up with so I'm completely lost all my chances to catch up. I won't even try.

I think I stick with this new one, lets see how it goes.

I can watch any thing with SR even though AB is not my favourite they have good chemistry.

Now somebody plz explain why is the mustached farmhand thinks he ought to have the old man's wealth?
  

irisz79, I would like that answer myself. I was wondering if I had really missed something there. Maybe we will find out tomorrow?

Fatima
  

Fatima and Irisz79:

You didn't miss anything with Juventude (the mustache guy). They didn't say why he felt entitled to the money. I am wondering that myself, but the thing to me is why did Graciela feel entitled to Benjamin's fortune? Is she related? An old amante perhaps? Hmmmm...points to ponder.
  

The idea that the three years in England would lead to lack of communications does not bode well. It makes sense if travel is a months long ordeal and letters likewise slow, but not at all in the days of long distance and skype.

This seems to be a remake of a period piece, and if they can't be troubled to address modern communications in creating a plausible separation for the couple, make me wonder what the point of modernizing the story was. It so little effort was made to adapt the plot to modernity, why not just do another period version? Costume and set costs? Very bad sign.

Also, the idea of the daughter's marriage as financial salvation for the family... what century are we really in here?

Frankly, at first I found the titles of nobility and such of the recap off putting, but it serves well to highlight the poorly digested "period" source material.

So far the evidence suggests a cheaply produced and poorly (re)written effort. Here's hoping the cast can overcome the handicaps.
  

If I understand correctly Graciela and the old man had an affair, and she was promised the inheritance, thats why she was so pi**ed of of him, for changing the will and naming Alejandro the heir.
  

Anon 1:58:

I can see your point about the period pieces, but a lot of us didn't see said period pieces before this "remake". Sometimes the writers of the "remakes" don't follow the original ones at all but add and detract for the new version. We shouldn't compare the older versions of this TN until this one is ending because it could involve spoilers for those of us that didn't see the originals.
  

Nicely done, Urban. The first episode is always especially challenging when everything is new and we are struggling (some of us more than others) to keep names, faces and relationships straight.

Thank you for getting us off to such an excellent start.
  

Urban Anthropologist:

Great first recap. Along with some of the others, I too loved the fairy tale theme.

I had not seen a TN with DC since "Canaveral de Pasiones", when she played the protagonist. For me this will be a total change in character, but so far she has not disappointed. I always knew she could play a villain with that raspy voice of hers.

So far I like Monse, Lauro, Alejandro & Jose Luis. Juventude (mustached guy)seems like he could be a problem, along with Dimi too.

Loved the last scene, where Monse mistakes Alejandro for Jose Luis. Now that's 'amor a primera vista.'

BTW, did anyone think AB looked extremely thin? I thought I saw her ribcage with that backless dress she was wearing.

p.s. Condolences go out to family and friends of Karla Alvarez; TN actress that passed away Friday.
  

Uff, I had written a long comment that got lost somehow...

Thank you, Urba, love the style of the first recap, works very well with the original story that this is inspired from.

AB and SR have a pretty good chemistry, I'll be watching for them and to see how they make the old fashioned story work in this day and age.

The first meeting on the beach had all the requisite tn tricks: the mistaken identity, the sudden closeness, the gazing (Monse sure looked smitten for someone who is so in love with another man), the wind ...
  

I don't know where Juventino's original sense of entitlement comes from. The later scene after he finds out that Alejandro is inheriting is all about him wanting Maria to marry Alejandro. He is Maria's uncle.

Graciela is a former mistress or fiance of Benjamin. Obviously it didn't end well; I hope we find out the details.

What I'd love to know is what would happen legally to Benjamin's estate if he had no blood relatives at all?

Anon at 1:58AM this is a remake of a period piece. There are two earlier versions:

Bodas de Odio, made in 1985. That is the title of the original book; set during the 1910's. 75 episodes.

Amor Real, made in 2003. Title comes from the pop song used as the theme; set in the 1860's. 95 episodes

Never saw the original (and I don't think there is a DVD). The DVD of AR is so cut down I can't imagine it being any good. The series was excellent.

As to Graciela's attitude about Monserrat being the solution to their money issues, some women still actually believe this sort of thing. In this case it can also be motivated by Graciela's sense of entitlement to inherit the estate herself.
  

UrbanA: A terrificaly "enchanting" rundown of the first night's events. Enjoyed your lord and lady-isms again as well as that beautiful blue fan! My favorite line in this:

"[Graciela] clad in clothing so tight as to resemble sausage casing and in a colour suitable only to the oldest profession" That had me guffawing for the next few paragraphs. Other descriptors I thought drawing some terrific all-n-one imagery: "fishwife" and "Condesa Golfa". Thanks for another of your classy showpieces, amiga!

  

Thanks Urban for the great, really detailed recap. Not bad for a first episode, though loaded with the usual clichéd characters. After a lousy day at work, I was just put in a happy place seeing Sebastian. That image of him in that blue tee, muscles...yeah I'm good through tomorrow too. Shallow? You betcha.

Looking forward to tomorrow.

Daisynjay
  

Regarding Juventino's nasty attitude at not receiving a red centavo, I wondered also what brought this on. Something tells me that if the dead guy, Don Benjamin, was so hated by his employees and most everyone that knew him, Juventude was probably the guy who did all the dirty work for him and was his muscle when it came to screwing over people.


  

Jardinera- That was my thinking too. Jeventude was his henchman.
  

UA: A lovely recap. You always make us "feel" words and their impact: "We see that his abode is humble, without even ceiling illumination". What a spectacular summary.

"To the sound of flamenco-influenced music", "[Methinks she – like Pharaoh Ramses – here predicted her own fate]" and "We see from her expression that his countenance pleases her" were but a few of my favorites.

Interesting that DC received top billing. However, she is a masterful, commanding presence here, reeking of royalty and cruelty. An excellent actress.

Agree with Adriana Noel that Rulli and Boyer have amazing chemistry. Like them both and Rulli is muy guapo here. Sigh...

I was anxious to see the actor playing Jose Luis and was not disappointed. Intriguing.

Jardinera, liked your take on why Juventino is so angry and bitter. He might have been the Don's errand boy who fully (and wrongly) expected to be compensated.

It takes me longer than most to learn who all of the characters are and their relationships so I will simply say that I'm looking forward to what is to come.

UA, thank you again.

Diana
  

That is entirely possible,, Jardinera. Makes sense also that if he was always engaged in such activities his brother the foreman would see him as lazy for shirking the literal dirty work.

Thanks, Diana; I love wordplay and had a great time recapping LQNPA because of it. However, I disagree on Daniela Castro's presentation here. This character is trailer trash with a thin veneer of fashion. A diamond necklace doesn't add class to anyone who has none. In fact, since that was only a family meal I was wondering why she wore it unless it was a gift from Benjamin back in the day.

Since Lauro is a retired police chief I am wondering how he can afford that mansion.

BTW, although there have only been 25 episodes aired in Mexico, the Wikipedia page for this series already has spoilers. Do not go there if you don't want to know that information.
  

Hi UA! To be honest, I was referring to DC's acting not the character. Perhaps I said it badly, but the actress is regal, not the character! :)

Looking forward to taking this journey. A lot of my favorite actors have yet to appear...

Diana
  

Thanks so much Urban! It was a great recap of the opening. I'll be recapping every other Wednesday, and am relieved you started off. I feel really grounded now with all the characters and their various initial dramas. I appreciate everyone's thoughtful comments as I was a little confused about Juventude's motivations, too, and worried that I just missed something in the Spanish.
  

Thanks, Urban, for that detailed and clever recap.

Lots of familiar faces in this one. I like SR with the longer hair. I was not happy with his short haired look in AV. The guy playing Benjamin (the dying hacienda owner) had a major role in Amor Real. He played the friend and employee of Manuel (in this show Alejandro). the part of Alejandro (Manuel) was played by Fernando Colunga. He was excellent. I am sure that SR will also be very good in this role. He has really grown as an actor. he might even become one of my telenovios.

So far, this novela is following some of the plot lines of Amor Real. Monserrat was named Matilde in Amor Real..She was played by Adele Noriego, young, naive, and innocent. She was in love with Antonio Solis, a military man. Her brother was played by Ernesto Laguardia, and he was a gambler, drinker, opportunist, and n'er-do-well. As in this show, the father (an ex military man who was highly respected) had lost his fortune and was unwell. He was close to his daughter and wanted her to marry for love. The mother (Helena Royo) was interested in having her daughter marry for money to improve the family's economic condition. the son was her favorite , and she was cruel and unloving with her daughter. the mothers sister lived with the family and was very close to the daughter. However, the mother in Amor Real was not the amante of the dying guy. As in this novela, the housekeeper was madly in love with the galan. Her father was the overseer . However, she did not have an uncle. Instead, the bad guy was a hacienda worker. The guy playing the uncle was Captain Rick's best pirate pal in Pasion. He played a funloving good guy in that one, so it will be interesting to see him play a villain.

I liked AB's flowing, chiffon maxi dress. I would so wear that. I got a kick out of her mother's black outfit complete with a BIG hat, layers of black fabric, and those spike heels. Yikes.
  

Jardinera, your thoughts on the Juvie guy are good ones. Gotta admit that the character's actions really confused me which made me wonder if I had misunderstood the Spanish (I don't have cc).

I just realised that the maid in love with Alejandro is the very same Matilde of the head shrinking headband (I think that was her name) in "Cuando Me Enamoro". I guess the barely hanging on the shoulder blouse will be her signature look for this TN. I found myself thinking about the practicality of doing work in that huge hacienda with no bra (I assume) and the blouse one step from falling off! LOL!

Madelaine, thank you for reassuring me that I had reason to be confused about Juve's actions and that I had not missed anything. :)

Aunty Ann, I did notice the rib cage on AB. My thought was that she must be REALLY skinny if we can see rib cage on TV! I have not seen many TN and only briefly watched "Abismo de Pasion". I couldn't get past the actress' voice then. Don't know, but it was just distracting. We'll see.

Anywho...Urban what a fantastic job of setting up the whole story. So much seems to happen in the first episode and it's hard to keep the characters straight. What a wonderful job of starting things off for us.

Thank you!!

Fatima
  

Susanlynn: Of course! Our main main Mario from Pasion! Yes, it will be very interesting to see him playing a bad guy, but what an actor. Shame on me for not recognizing him...

Diana
  

main man Mario.

Diana
  

I actually like covering an opening episode. It forces me to watch at least twice to get the characters straight.

I'm predicting we will see Daniela and Angelique again as mother and daughter. They look as good a match as Helena Rojo and Adele Noriega did in the previous version.

I also noticed Angelique's ribs in that scene and I find that disturbing. I know there have been cases of anorexia among some young actresses for this network and I had hoped that this wouldn't happen. Most Televisa actresses look healthy with no bones showing and despite certain plastic surgeries this is a healthier trend than the "lollypop" look we see too frequently in US entertainment and fashion.

Am I being weird or does anyone else think that Monserrat will get seriously ribbed about what her married name will be?
  

Thanks for the recap Urban. I can't believe I did'nt recognize Juvie (Mario). I loved him in AR. It is one of my favorites and one that I own. I really am loving DC. I think she's a great actress and I just love, love her voice. SR and AB definately have chemistry. Did anyone notice that Benjamin's face was gray but his arms were tanned? I had a laugh at that last night. Can't wait for tonight!
  

Thanks for the recap Urban. I can't believe I did'nt recognize Juvie (Mario). I loved him in AR. It is one of my favorites and one that I own. I really am loving DC. I think she's a great actress and I just love, love her voice. SR and AB definately have chemistry. Did anyone notice that Benjamin's face was gray but his arms were tanned? I had a laugh at that last night. Can't wait for tonight!
  

Gloria...I think that the actor playing Julie was Mario in Pasion. I don't think that he was in Amor Real. he played a really fun pirate in Pasion! but it looks like he will make a very, scary villain. I got a kick out of his attack on the apple.

Dc has a lower voice than most of the men in this show.
  

no, Ipad! I wrote Juvie...not Julie.
  


Great kickoff, UA! I'll be back a little later with my favorite lines -- there were many.

I agree that AB looked weirdly thin while she was prancing around on the beach like the sugar plum fairy. With those ribs and that chest, all I could think was "Cornish game hen."

Fatima, I was laughing with you about Maria's outfit. Why, I myself always go strapless and braless when galloping around on a horse after a fleeing galan! Keeps me fresh!
  

The guy playing Juvie is Alberto Estrella. He played Marcial in "Entre Amor y El Odio" a guy with a serious Napoleonic complex and a character also named Marcial in "Para Volver A Amar" who was a grey character.
  

At least Maria isn't wearing that annoying headband.

I did like the beach dress, although I would prefer it in another color. The handkerchief hem is very cool.
  

Blue Lass, I dig that avatar of yours!! VERY cool! :))

Urban, I posted on MPV day before yesterday (or thereabouts) re Karla Alvarez who played Irasema in QBA. She passed away on Friday. The reports stated she struggled with anorexia and bulimia. So incredibly sad.

Fatima
  

Thanks for this entertaining and very informative recap, UA. I always have trouble keeping up with who's who for the first couple of weeks.

Several familiar faces, but I was most excited to see Matilde (even minus the headband) from CME. She is such a cutie.

Carlos
  

My favorite lines:

“In a manner unbecoming a lady of her station she enquired regarding Conde Benjamín's death.”

“He walked away, leaving Lady Monserrat in a mildly anxious state.”

“Alejandro sat down at the bedside and took a deep breath as if that would make the thought enter his mind.”

And phrases:

“floral-patterned gown of mixed modesty”

“before the eyes of God and a few sea birds”

:D

  

Susanlynn, your right. What was I thinking? I also have Passion and really enjoyed him in that. I wonder how well he would do as a baddie? Looking forward to it.
  

So beautifully written, UA. You, my dear, know how to present a recap with class. No wonder Monserrat's trashy mom is bothering you.

I will try and watch this episode on the computer later on today, and then will go back and savor your artful summary once more.

Happy to be watching something you're recapping again. But still wishing I could see the complete Amor Real once more rather than watching a modern refrito.
  

I'm not sure about this one. It seems awfully predictable but then again what novela isn't. I do think it is beautifully filmed, really gorgeous which always keeps me interested.

Not a fan of AB and she isn't convincing me she is an innocent 19 year old Like SR and some of the others in the cast as well.

However I think the director needs to rein in a few people because there was some seriously bad over acting last night. Daniela Castro is a much better actress than she showed last night and that women playing the sister in law gets on my nerves big time. She seemed to be channeling the character she played in Corazon Apasiondo.

I'll probably give it a few more days to grab me and hope that Sergio Sendal will be at his phone tossing best.

Nice to see some of the QBA gang again.
  

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Thanks for the great recap, UA! I loved your fashion comments especially "merry widow black" and "sausage casing".

This is my first Sebastian Rulli tn and methinks me likey.

I agree with Decie Girl that AB trying to play 19 is reminiscent of Beverly Hills 90210.

Speaking of Montserrat's hills... they looked smaller too. I do think she's lost a ton of weight, that she didn't have to lose. Too bad.

EJ -are you watching? If so, looks like you'll have to practice that toe pointing. This seems to be AB's signature move. I saw it today down by the water.

The actor who plays Dimitrio still reminds me of JFK, Jr. with none of the Prince Charming goin' on. Buy him some tweezers!

Rosemary la Otra
  

UA - Beautiful recap. Thanks for the detail as I didn't pick up on quite a few things last night.

I like the whole cast and I'm looking forward to Sergio Sendel's entrance. AB has good chemistry with SR, and with José Luis too.

I guess Conde Lauro is supposed to be a good guy, but I thought he was harsh with Dimitrio. He wants his son to stand up and be a man, but I get the impression they've been coddling him up till now. Neither kid seems to be up on the family income situation.
  

If Lauro is retired military or police, his attitude toward his son is not particularly unusual. I think Graciela coddled him and Lauro is not happy about this.
  

Both kids should have been encouraged long ago to stand on their own two feet. Lauro mentioned last night that he wished Monse had gone to school (university), instead of I guess waiting around for her prince charming to return from London to become a socialite wife. I'm sure this is exactly what Graciela wanted, but why didn't he put his foot down and make sure his kids became self-reliant? It's not too late for Monse to go to university and study for a career.

Why isn't Graciela eager to get Dimitrio married off to some rich girl (if one would have him), like she's trying to sell her daughter?
  

In Amor Real, the father and son had the same relationship, and the mother and son were very close. he played her like a harp, and she indulged and protected him and his bad habits.

I thought that it was funny last when Mons was on the phone on the office that the big bookcase behind her looked like the exact same bookcase that was behind Manuel's desk in his townhouse office. I wonder if it is the same and if it was used on purpose for those familiar with that earlier novela.

AB is quite a good dancer. I think that you can find clips of her dancing on Bailando por le boda de su suenos a few years ago.
  

OK, I'll jump in with the first of what I'm sure will be many telephone complaints -- Montse is 19 years old, a "woman," as her father says, old enough to be married off, but she's not old enough to have her own phone? She has to sneak into her father's study to call her boyfriend? Who incidentally DOES have a phone even though he has no overhead lighting.
  

UA: great recap. Love the fairy tale format. Also, thanks for the pics.

Was a little disappointed. I expected it to start out with more of a bang. Maybe I was just tired.

I think the actor who plays Carlotta is way too young to be Lauro’s sister.

Graciela thought she was going to be his heiress? And how would she explain that to her husband? Or would she care?

Graciela’s voice grates on my ears. Hope I get used to it.

I’m wondering if anyone attempted to make Dimitrio work before now? You reap what you sow.

Surely, that skeezy guy doesn’t think he can get by with stealing and WEARING the patron’s ring without someone saying something.

Loved the meet cute at the end.

Carlos: are you going to be watching this one? Can’t wait to see who your favorite bad girl is going to be when we get introduced to more characters.

Familiar faces: Maria was Mati in CME. And the priest was FC’s dad in STuD (I think). The steward was the smart cop in AB and the union guy in PEAM. Dimitrio was Ana Brenda’s brother in LQNPA (?). Dominga looks familiar.

Nanette
  

I don't think Don Benjamin ever promised Graciela any of his money, she simply thought that because she was his lover and he had no family the money would come to her, he corrected her and made it clear that he given her many gifts during their relationship and that he owed her nothing more. I wonder though, if he had left her his fortune how would she have explained that to her family? And Dimitrio, what a spoiled brat! "Daddy why did you cut off my credit cards?" the kid expects to live off of his dad's money and daddy said "no mas", good for him, he was a bit harsh but the kid deserved it.
  

I have seen the guy playing the steward in so many novelas. He always plays doctors, engineers, military guys, police chiefs. I guess that he has the look of someone with some type of power. I have noticed that other actors and actresses always seem to be cast in the roles of servants, ranch hands, etc. I wonder if these actors and actresses are ever able to break into other roles once they have been cast as servants.
  

Susanlynn- It's a good question. Gretel Valdez, who is playing Maria the maid here, and played Matilde the maid in CME, played a totally different character in her last tn, Amorcito Corazon. In that, she was a well put together interior decorator with a wealthy husband, who finds out her husband is gay, divorces him, gets pregnant by another guy and marries him in a drunken haze, and then falls in love with his best friend.

I feel like every actor I've seen playing a servant, I've seen playing a totally different kind of role somewhere else. But folks who play public servants (notaries, police officers or chiefs, judges, social workers) I often see playing the same kind of role, like the guy who played the notary/attorney last night.

  

Greta Valdez also played a society gal, friend of heroine,Jacqueline Bracamontes, in Heridas de Amor.

Karla Alvarez, who died too young, played the younger sister of Jacqueline in that one. And her character died young...a very sad foreshadowing of her actual life.
  

Great recap, UA! You called it right by going fairytale: beautiful princess, wicked queen, kindly king but possibly sick and dying, evil henchmen. Love it!

Thanks for all the time this must have taken. Truly appreciate you and all the recappers.
  

Vivi: remember the steward guy playing the cop in AB and we commented on how he was one of the only intelligent TN cops ever?

Now we can add Delia (PEAM)--except for that lapse of not believing Vero would hurt her own child, of course.
  

Judyb..Thanks for pointing out who Karla Alvarez was. I watched crazy Heridas , but I just cannot picture her in my mind. I suppose because that novela was pretty forgettable. It is especially sad when someone so young dies.

I guess that young actresses like models are pressured to be thin. I remember that Adele Noriega was painfully thin in Amor Real, but in FELS she had gained some weight and looked much healthier and stronger.
  

Thanks, UA. I wasn't planning to watch this, but it was very convenient to do so, and the pacing was just right, so I stuck it out for the whole hour.

I did like your fairytale narrative style, but that seems like it would be a lot of extra effort to sustain week after week...

I really want to give this show a chance, but I don't know if I'll be able to warm up to AB. OTOH, I'm always amazed at DC's scene-stealing prowess. Even if I did think she was way over the top last night.

Juventino's attitude confused me too, but maybe someone (that we haven't met yet) gave HIM reason to believe that HE was Benji's son? Otherwise I wouldn't think a henchman - even the #1 henchman - would expect to inherit the whole estate. (Unless Benji told him he would, of course.)

Oh gosh, Judy, I didn't realize that was Karla Alvarez in Heridas de Amor. Thanks for pointing that out.
  

Susanlynn - are you saying Noriega was LESS skinny in FELS? Yikes. I haven't seen Amor Real yet, but if she's even thinner in that one, then seriously, yikes.
  

Judyb...Yes, Amor Real was the second novela I ever watched (right after Alborada with the nicely curvy Lucero) , and I remember thinking that the leading lady was so thin and fragile looking . Her face was very thin. I heard an interview in which Adela said that she lost weight wearing all the heavy period costumes , but she was thin even at the beginning of the novela.
  

Toward the end of FELS, Adela was a little heavier and did look healthy and strong. Then the press, that had gone on and on about her supposed anorexia, started going on and on about her supposed being pregnant. I feel for the actresses when there's so much blather in the press about their weight.
  

Thanks, UA, for getting us off to a good start and letting us see another fan.
Some faves here, so I think I'll watch a while at least. I loved Mario in Pasion, so even if he's a bad guy here, I'll watch him.
  

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But so lovely, Susanlynn. And slender and fragile fit her age and personality. I felt her chemistry with Colunga was even more enchanting than Lucero's.
  



It has the same feel as Abismo de Pasión. i.e. Daniela Castro over acting same as Sabine Moussier; Montse's dad also old as in this one.


  

Judyb..Yes,I agree that Adela and Fernando had wonderful chemistry.
  

Ricardo Vera, who is the lawyer here, was Sherlock Juarez in Amor Bravio, which I think was his biggest role in the last couple of years. He always tends to play doctors, lawyers, judges, and other authority figures. Although these two aren't listed on his resume, he was a doctor in FELS and he was Pablo Montero's commanding officer in Duelo de Pasiones.

There are also several actors who are typecast as priests. More later; I have to go out to an opera group event.
  

UA thanks for your recap. I look forward to watching this tn.
  

Finally saw this. Wow. When Montserrat, with warm ocean breezes ruffling her hair, wraps her arms around Rulli (forget his character's name)my computer screen lit up like those old video arcade machines. YOWZA.

Reminds me of an incredible night years ago in Rio de Janeiro, warm ocean breezes, scent of oranges and sweet honeysuckle...hmmm...where was I?...well, anyway, looking forward to more of this show!
  

I thought it was a pretty tidy first episode. Looks promising!

Thanks UA
  

UA, excellent recap! The fairy tale motif (mingled with your clever editorial asides) is a perfect fit. Thank you for taking the time to explain things so thoroughly and to figure out all the characters' names.

Rulli looks fantastic, better than ever. So far the sweaty, disgusting Juventino is my favorite character.
  

"Fish wife" is a term I haven't heard for years, & I love it.

"Head in the air,
Tail in the sea;
Fish, fish; listen to me."

From the Dick & Jane series of readers (Scott Foresman, actually). This was a charming set of elementary school readers in which girls looked like girls! I wonder if anyone under 40 knows that term "fish wife"?

This poor fisherman caught a magic fish. The fisherman's wife kept demanding that the fisherman hit up the fish for another boon, until she overreached.

Enoch (my name under which I registered years ago here).

  

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