“Jane the Virgin’s” fourth season will be the shortest yet (17 episodes), and the take on a telenovela is wasting no time picking up where the last season left off.
The show will continue in the immediate moments after the third season finale event that saw Jane (Gina Rodriguez) reunited with her first love Adam (Tyler Posey) shortly after her parents Rogelio (Jaime Camil) and Xiomara (Andrea Navedo) got married. Meanwhile, Rafael (Justin Baldoni) found himself homeless and broke after losing ownership of the Marbella to his sister Luisa (Yara Martinez). Despite all the messy drama that inevitably will ensue, series creator and showrunner Jennie Snyder Urman promises the show is recapturing positive themes.
“It’s really a lot about bringing back the joy and the romance and the heart-expanding telenovela love stories that we’re yearning for now after a very emotional third season with the loss of Michael [Brett Dier],” Urman shares. “We’re returning to themes of joy and how to recapture the joy after pain.”
Urman spoke with Variety ahead of the Season 4 premiere to discuss Jane’s love life, Rafael’s unfamiliar territory, and how Michael will still fit into the new season.
What went into the decision to bring on Adam as a love interest, who is so far from Jane’s past?
Jane was on her way to tell Rafael she had feelings for him and then we brought back not only someone from her past but someone from her past who is carrying the letter from Michael, who was her first love. So obviously he comes automatically with a lot of weight and will be a complication to Jane figuring out where her heart is at. It’s always nice when you’re introducing a new character to have some history with the main character. It’s a nice shorthand for being able to jump in to their relationship, fill in some gaps on what went wrong, what went right, and have an immediate sense of history and familiarity and stakes with them.
How is Adam different from other men in her past?
He brings a totally different energy to the men we’ve had on ‘Jane.’ He has a more youthful energy, he’s a less planned person. He’s at a different point in his career. He has roommates, he’s living a much more 20-something life, whereas Jane, after she was accidentally inseminated, had to grow up quickly and make real life decisions very quickly. Part of his energy is reminding Jane she’s only 28 years old and she still has a lot of youth let in her.
In the finale, we saw a lot of animosity between Luisa and Rafael. Have we seen the last of the “family man” persona he was developing in Season 3?
That will be explored in the first episode and even more in the first seven episodes. What happens to Rafael when all of his money and power is taken away? Does he revert back to the old Rafael or have the changes he made last? He’s somebody who has never struggled for money and has defined himself largely by it and by the power that comes with it. He’s really on unfamiliar grounds when we see him and has to make a lot of difficult and compelling choices.
What can we expect to follow from Rogelio and Xiomara’s new marriage?
They expected to come into the marriage as newlyweds, and they’re coming in expecting another woman’s baby. The utopian beginning of a marriage is not in the cards for them, and they have to immediately try to figure out their relationship with Darci [Justina Machado], the baby’s mom, their relationship with each other, and with the new baby.
Will we continue to see Michael through flashbacks?
I can’t really say too specifically, but definitely there will be moments of flashback. He’s the most central piece to Jane’s heart still. Her book is coming out this year, which is all about her relationship with Michael, so certainly he’s going to be evoked then, and going into a little bit of the aftermath after he died, things that you haven’t seen, we’ll be flashing back to that.
“Jane the Virgin” Season 4 premieres Oct. 13 at 9 p.m. on the CW.