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The most recent episode of Jane the Virgin ended with a twist straight out of a telenovela. In the final moments of the episode, the narrator announced: “ One of these characters will die! ” as images of Rafael, Petra, Anezka, Magda, Luisa, and Alba came across the screen. The narrator’s cheeky ending is a throwback to earlier in the episode when Rogelio’s producers decide to kill off a character due to feuding between Rogelio and Fabian. Rogelio dodges the (metaphorical) bullet and Fabian is written off the show… but Jane the Virgin makes it clear that one character won’t be so lucky this season!
For all of its telenovela tricks, teasing an upcoming death is a surprising choice for Jane the Virgin, since the show is in many ways still reeling from the death of Michael, Jane’s boyfriend-turned-fiancé-turned-husband who was killed by the crime lord Sin Rostro (aka Luisa’s girlfriend and ex-stepmother Rose). The show, which originally centered on a love triangle between Jane, Michael, and Rafael, has had to restructure and explore what Jane’s life – and the life of the show – looks like after Michael. The second half of the third season and the first few episodes of the fourth season have centered on Jane navigating parenting and dating as a widow. While a new love triangle has seemed to form between Jane, Rafael, and Petra, the show seems to be figuring out what it wants to be just as Jane is figuring out who she wants to be.
In spite of the sensationalized telenovela drama, it’s likely that Jane the Virgin fans don’t have to worry about a beloved character dying. Killing off Rafael, Petra, or Alba would limit the show’s options and upset fans, and the showrunners already know that Michael’s death was difficult for many fans on its own. From least likely to most likely, here are the six possible scenarios:
Killing off Rafael would leave Jane the Virgin dead in the water. Not only is he a major part of Jane’s life, but he ties the show together; without Rafael, Petra, Luisa, Anezka, Magda, and many other characters wouldn’t have any relation to Jane at all. Jane’s new beau Adam is cute, but he wouldn’t fill the role that Rafael does on the show. Plus, Jane can’t take any more heartbreak right now, and neither can Jane the Virgin fans. The foundation of Jane the Virgin is love and family – and Rafael is both. There’s no way the showrunners would or could kill him without completely and devastatingly ripping apart that foundation.
More than any other Jane the Virgin character, Petra has truly transformed over the course of the show. She is constantly reimagining herself, and the once-villain is now one of the most sympathetic and complex characters on the show. Unlike Rafael, who often teeters arbitrarily between antagonist and ally between episodes, Petra doesn’t seem unbalanced – whether she’s Jane’s friend or foe is grounded in a cohesive and complicated character who has her own particular way of viewing the world. In many ways, Petra’s story feels like it’s just getting started, and it would be a shame to cut that short.
Killing off Alba would be a mistake, because actress Ivonne Coll is always a treat. It wouldn’t make sense to sacrifice someone who is a highlight in every episode for a cheap punch to the gut. It’s hard to imagine that the Jane the Virgin writers would do this, especially after Michael’s death, so outside of Ivonne Coll wanting to leave the show, it seems very unlikely that Alba would be killed.
Additionally, Jane the Virgin already had a plot line where Alba’s life was in jeopardy and fans were forced to wait to find out if she survived. Magda, Petra’s mother, pushed Alba down the stairs, and her fate hung in the balance during season one. At this point, putting Alba in peril is old.
Anezka, the twin sister of Petra, is a classic telenovela trope who has been used to varying levels of effectiveness over the course of the show. The true is, Anezka isn’t so much a character as she is a plot device. She’s a way to create scenarios of mixed up identity, deception, or soap opera levels of drama. While the showrunners don’t always know what to do with Anezka, killing her off would seemingly close a door on a number of plot possibilities. It seems more likely that they would send her away, so that they could reintroduce her at a later time when they needed her.
Luisa is another character that often times ends up being more of a plot device than a person. As the distraught doctor, she’s responsible for Jane the Virgin as a show – she artificially inseminated Jane with Rafael’s sperm after a bad breakup. Luisa is Rafael’s sister, and Rafael’s married to Petra, and… it all spirals from there.
But recently, Luisa is a disgraced doctor who faithfully remains with her girlfriend Rose, a crime lord and serial killer who was married to Luisa’s father and also murdered him. Luisa’s character does seem to be growing or changing, and more often than not she’s used as a plot to tie Rose into the story or to have conversations with Rose so that they audience can know what’s going on. Luisa hasn’t had the opportunity to be on her own, and the show doesn’t seem sure what to do with her.
Even though it’s more likely that Jane the Virgin would kill Luisa over Alba, Petra, or Rafael, it would be disastrous if she was killed. Queer characters, especially queer women, are killed at such an alarming rate on television shows that fans took to social media with the campaign #KillYourGays. Jane the Virgin specifically got flake after Rose was “killed”, and the showrunners should be mindful of this.
…which brings us to Magda. It was easy to tell, as faces flashed across the screen, that one of these people was not like the others.
Of all of the characters, Magda seems like the most obvious to kill. She’s a villain, and not like Petra or Anezka or Luisa. Magda is a caricature of a baddie with no redeeming qualities. She has been absent from the plot for some time, and has been in prison for even longer – and it was just revealed that she’s back and presumably hellbent on destroying Petra.
While Magda will be a fun story arch and create some excellent telenovela-level drama, the show wouldn’t lose much if she died. Fans of Jane the Virgin aren’t emotionally invested in Magda, and it’s likely that killing her wouldn’t upset anyone.