When the moon hits your eye
We meet Valentina on a sunny day in LA, wearing a giant pizza suit and handing out flyers for a taco bar. No, not really, they’re for a pizza place, obvs.
Suddenly, she sees Lucas Duarte at a crosswalk, running after a woman named Ana Cristina, begging her not to leave him. No one has ever loved her like he loves her. Ana Cristina’s not buying it. Halfway down the block, an orange sports car starts revving its engine.
Valentina springs into action! Nobody’s getting her Lucas! She sails through the air and lands on him just before Justin The Flamboyant Director yells “CUT!” and runs over to see if Lucas is ok. Because a pizza just landed on him.
Lucas, Lucas, Lucas!
In another part of town, Gabriel gets a massage. The masseuse seems to detect some…anger…in his back muscles. Dude, Gabe’s thrilled to find someone to validate him! He used to be a child star, you know. Until he took Lucas Duarte to a casting with him and HE got the role! Now he’s the star and Gabriel is his manager.
Yeah, the masseuse doesn’t speak Spanish. She didn’t understand a word. But what she DOES understand is the name Lucas Duarte. She asks for an autograph.
Best take evah!
Vale completely missed the camera crew in her rush to save her idol. Justin is anonanado, which I thought was a made up word, but it’s astonished. Or gobsmacked. I like gobsmacked. Val totally ruined his take. She starts to apologize to Lucas and Salma, aka “Ana Cristina,” and her crust knocks Salma onto her apparently fragile tailbone.
Vale goes running for some ice for Salma’s ass. Tailbone. Whatever. The owner of the pizza place comes over and Salma demands she fire that pizza! She won’t even give the woman her autograph, but still Vale’s boss fires her. Salma whines about her butt and lets Damian (sports car guy) hug her. He looks like he enjoys that.
Salma finally gets her whiny self led off by a couple of PA’s. Now Damian moves on to comforting Vale. He suggests she talk to Lucas and see if he can get her job back for her. Awww, he’s not all evil like his character, huh? She asks him to level with her–are they trying to bump off Lucas’ character for the inheritance? She suddenly realizes she’s asking him about the novela when she’s unemployed, broke and doesn’t have an inheritance! He points her toward Lucas’ trailer.
Lucas is on the phone complaining to Gabriel that the pizza ruined the best take of his career. (THAT was your best? Just saying.) Gabriel doesn’t get it. He ate some pizza and le cayó mal (it didn’t go down well; it upset his stomach)? Lucas says the pizza me cayó encima (it fell on me)! OK, so…get an assistant to clean him up. Lucas whines that Salma was hurt. He needs Gabriel to come over NOW because he refuses to film anymore.
Somehow Lucas completely forgot that Gabriel is supposed to be taking a flight out to Cancún to finalize some details for Lucas’ next commercial. Lucas wants him to come over anyway. He blabs about how it’s a good thing he only hurt a rib and not his face. Yeah, yeah, Gabe’s glad to hear it.
Places to go, things to do
Adriana is running late to a meeting with her father and she HATES being late. Her car is held up by a junior fútbol team in the middle of the crosswalk, led by Diego. (Jonathan Islas…and he’s not evil this time…squee!) Diego stops to tie one kid’s shoelaces, because safety. He takes advantage of the teachable moment to tell the kids this is why you become a pro fútbol player–to be able to afford a car like that one day. At Adriana’s continued urging, he clears the kids out of the street. He totally thought she was hot.
Adriana gets to her big meeting and breaks her heel on the way into the building. She pulls an “I meant to do that,” and keeps walking on one heel and her toes. Two people watch her walk inside and the guy in the suit says she’s going to regret it.
Wobbly Adriana gets up to the executive floor and meets her dad. He announces that he’s worked enough in his life and he’s ready to leave the presidency (of the company). As an aside, he mentions that Lucas Duarte is his brother and will NOT be taking over. Lucas owns fewer and fewer shares every day. Papi is passing the presidency of Astilleros (shipyards) Zubizarreta on to Adriana.
Benicio, the guy from out front, gets introduced to Adriana, AKA, the new president of the company. I don’t think he saw that coming.
Totes worth it
Vale finds the trailer. Lucas is too busy being groomed and massaged to talk to her. From outside, she explains Salma got her fired. She starts going on and on about how Salma’s so sweet in the novela and she never misses an episode. He opens the door to the trailer and the angels start to sing. He asks her to shut up and graciously forgives her for talking. Vale explains she’s “tu fan” (your fan, informal), “su fan” (your fan, formal), “la fan” (the fan).
Vale’s ex-boss starts harassing her about stealing the pizza suit. Vale is more than happy to hand the stupid suit back, but first she needs to say a few words to the press about her place–the pepperoni isn’t Italian, the tomatoes are full of food coloring, and the cheese is made from old milk! Vale strips off the pizza and throws it…right at Gabriel.
At a café, three of the Lucas fan club rush to get a look at the promo for Lucas’ latest show Amor, Amor, Amor. Miriam’s the one with the glasses; Jessica’s the one with the green hair; and Eloisa is the one with the updo. Eloisa also happens to be Diego’s (fútbol coach) mom and Miguel’s mom. Miguel’s the guy who just dropped dessert off at the table.
Diego and Tomás, one of the fútbol players, walk into the café. Tomás is talking about getting rich and buying one of those fancy cars for Vale. Eloisa, getting her nails done by Jessica, tells him he’d better study and get a good job. “Fútbol‘s a job.”
Speaking of jobs, Jessica found Diego some job options. He’s kind of lousy at dealing with the public, or so he says. Hey…they know Lucas Duarte’s bod, right? He lifts up his shirt to ask how his compares. Jessica finds his abs swoonworthy, but his mom tells him he needs to eat. (Moms, amirite?)
Earning his 20%
Gabriel can’t get Lucas to continue filming. He mentions he saw the pizza. She got fired. Lucas whines about being an artist, not a machine. (*glare*) Gabriel snarks that he’s such an artist he spent a few years in Bogota and now he always talks like a Colombiano.
Gabe’s off to negotiate the contract for Lucas’ commercial. He’ll have a model to hang on his arm, a suite at the best hotel. Would he like anything else? A Cézanne? A Picasso? A Miró? “I don’t like classical music.”
Salma comes in whining about her tailbone hurting. Salma needs babying. Salma speaks in the third person. Lucas likes that Salma speaks in the third person. Kat finds it annoying. Salma invites Lucas over for dinner tonight, but he’s got that meeting later with Gabriel and the Chinese (company doing the commercial). Riiiiight.
A woman in a bikini gets out of a pool. Her name is apparently Roxie. She snogs a flashy guy in a hat. He’s abandoning her tonight, so she’s ordering sushi and watching an old black and white movie…because without him there’s no color.
But wait…it sounds like foxy Roxie is making plans to meet up with Lucas. (I’m starting to acquire Gabriel’s dislike of him–he is not all that and a bag of chips!)
Fan Club Meeting
Vale tells the other fans she saw Lucas! She had him under her! Agustín was going to kill him…oh, in the novela. She had hands on him. SQUEE! And she got fired. They want every single detail.
Oh yeah, Vale totally told him all about their fan club, mhm. She just, uh, couldn’t get him to sign an autograph because he didn’t have any paper. Jessica can’t believe she didn’t just whip out a…er, something. Anyway, did Vale bring back anything of his?
Yep. A tiny little sprig of hair!
Lucas tells the pizza story to his brother and niece. Carlos is all “Actors! Can’t you talk about anything but yourselves?” (Guilty.) Lucas can’t possibly think of anything more interesting than himself. Well, Carlos can–Adriana’s taking over the company. Wow, could Lucas be less enthusiastic? He wants to know why Carlos didn’t pick Benito and then offers his condolences to Adriana. He sends his greetings to Carlos’ wife–he’s off to a meeting.
Carlos’ wife, Felicitas is busy painting while some guy poses for her. Natalia, the maid, comes in to fetch Felicitas to dinner, but gets distracted by the mostly naked guy in a towel. Yeah, Felicitas is skipping dinner. She has more…painting…to do.
Vale and Tomás cook dinner. She’s trying for “the best burritos in the history of México.”
Salma. Butt. Whining. It hurts too much to cook! Her son, Rodrigo, points out she doesn’t cook when she’s not hurting, either. They have the same dinner every night. And he hates sushi!
Tomás agrees, they did indeed make the best burritos in the history of México, but he’s sure it’s all down to Vale. How was her day? Erm, she’d rather not talk about it. Did he score any goals today? Yep, because he’s the best goal-scorer in the entire world!
Rodrigo is trying to tell Salma about his day. He says today at the club extraterrestrials landed and stole their ball. Of course she’s paying attention! She wants to do a Facebook Live video.
Tomás insists, he wants to know about Vale’s day. She says it was normal and turns on the TV. The credits for Lucas’ show are rolling and she says she met him. Yep, Lucas Duarte. Tomás’ mom was a fan. She used to come home every day and watch Venganza Eterna–nothing could keep her away from the TV. He asks if his mom loved Lucas. “No. She only loved your dad.” Tomás wonders if he’s ever going to meet him.
Down in Cancún, Gabe is shirtless and hanging out at the outdoor bar. He gets to talking to the bartender about this girl he met there once…Lucía. Yeah, the bartender remembers her. She moved to LA ten years ago, but she died right after she gave birth.
Gabe remembers meeting her at the pool….
He can’t believe she’s dead.
Tomás gazes at a picture of his mother. Yep, Lucía, the woman Gabe met in Cancún ten years ago. He’s kind of bummed his mom didn’t get to meet Lucas. She was such a fan.
Vale says she did meet him once! She worked at a hotel in Cancún where he was filming Enamorándote Otra Vez. She asked for his autograph! Vale still has it, scribbled on a napkin. “You keep everything of hers, don’t you?” Vale admits she does. She still loves Lucía, even though she’s gone, because she left Vale the thing she loves most in life–Tomás.
Gabe tried to get some more info out of the bartender, but he really doesn’t remember anything else.
Gabe does…he remembers smooching on the beach.
OK, the bartender does remember she worked at a café. But that’s about it.
Vale talks to Lucía. She can’t stop thinking about Lucas! She had him so close! She knows Lucía gets where she’s coming from. If this isn’t love, it sure seems like it!
Roxie and Lucas are in the car. He ignores a call from Salma and says he’s totally not dating her. It’s just a publicity thing. Roxie’s obsessed with not being seen by her jealous husband, so Lucas is taking her to a friend’s apartment.
Roxie and Lucas get to the alleged friend’s apartment and an enterprising photographer is waiting to snap a picture of them kissing. I’m not convinced it wasn’t a set up–I just don’t know who set it up. The photographer dances around trying to keep the camera out of reach instead of just running off and Lucas smashes it. No worries, a neighbor across the street caught the whole thing on his phone camera and it’s all on the gossip show by the next morning.
Salma throws a fit and Damian’s on hand to console her…or try to. He holds her back when Lucas barges into her dressing room to claim his innocence.
At the café, they’re also debating his innocence. Miriam relays the opinions of the internet: #lucasunfaithful is trending; people are refusing to watch telenovelas; all actors are unfaithful…. Vale thinks it was faked. Eloisa says ALL actors are the same, plus she raised two boys, so she’d know. Miguel: “Thanks, mom!” #notallpastrychefs. Jessica believes Lucas’ story–it was a friend’s girlfriend (How is that better, exactly…?) Miriam gets to work tweeting “No to the boycott!”
Lucas is worried about Salma not believing him. Gabriel is worried about nobody tuning in tonight and the show getting cancelled. Lucas has to rehab his image, like, now! Gabe proposes a fan contest. No, Lucas, not to win a toaster (though right now a toaster has more redeeming qualities). Gabe’s offering Lucas up as the prize.
News of the contest spreads. All they have to do to win Lunch with Lucas is fill out a form online and answer some questions about the novela. Jessica doesn’t have a lot of faith she’ll win–these things are always rigged. In a week they’ll know.
For now, Vale’s gotta go, because it looks like she’s got a job! Completely genuinely, Eloisa, Miriam, and Jessica rally around her, talking about how she always gets what she wants, ever since she left the orphanage, because she’s so hardworking and so hopeful. A round of hugs and the secret Lucaslocas handshake and she’s off.
Work, work, work
No, Benito is not at all happy that Adriana has the job he thinks should be his. As far as he’s concerned, she’s just a daddy’s girl who’s been off flouncing around Europe. Benito’s daddy suggests he angle for a different position: husband of the president.
Adriana and Felicitas can’t stand each other. Felicitas thinks her daughter is a stick-in-the-mud and Adriana thinks mommy needs to grow up.
Diego stops by the salon where Jessica works so she can tell him they’re hiring at Zubizarreta…which is Lucas’ family’s company, so really she wants him to spy for her. She heard his brother doesn’t like him being an actor, so there’s gotta be some dirt there.
Vale’s falling asleep waiting for her job interview. That sweater does not go with that skirt. And no, “keeping my mouth shut” is not one of her job skills, I don’t care how hard she spins it!
Vale goes through a serious of gigs…superhero, dog walker, hot dog vendor, perfume sales….
Diego’s applied twice for a job a Zubizarreta, but the receptionist informs him it’s a long process. While he’s filling out another application and trying to schmooze, Adriana walks by. At least he turns completely around so he doesn’t get whiplash. He could swear he’s seen her before…. Anyway, he hands his (second) completed application over and makes sure to tell the receptionist he has magic hands. Uh, he can fix things.
And the winner is….
Lucas thinks he’s going to pick out his lunch date. Ha, no. “You never get the concept,” Gabe sighs. The point is to pick out a “normal” woman, someone the public can identify with.
Lucas whines about Salma being angry at him like somehow it was Gabe’s fault he got busted. Salma herself shows up and checks the whole apartment for the woman she’s sure is hiding in there somewhere. Gabe sticks to Lucas’ story that it was a girlfriend of his and then ignores their arguing and goes back to the laptop. Vale’s contest entry pops up…“¿La pizza?”
Vale’s out doing the soccer mom thing, cheering for Tomás in a t-shirt with his picture on the front, yelling at the ref, when she gets a phone call saying she won the contest. Uh huh, sure, whatever. WAIT! She has to tell herself to calm down before asking the person on the phone to make sure it’s her…and then she has to stop and cheer for Tomás’ scoring a goal. (Mr. 5ft insists it was off sides. Whatever are we going to do with him?)
Lucas does a quick Facebook Live post bragging about having just finished his workout and now he’s going to hydrate. Because hydration is important. He puts the phone down and puts the bottle of water back in the fridge. (OK, yes, people can be very fake online, but that’s about the person not the technology. And also, I would never lie about hydration. I live in the desert. I don’t even joke about hydration.)
Gabe isn’t telling him who the contest winner is, but he’d better be there on time. Lucas has suddenly decided he’s ready to move on from telenovelas. He’s destined for greater things, like Hollywoos or something. (Yeah. Or something.) He wants Gabe to get him a series or a movie. Oh, yeah, Gabe’s on it, but first Mr. Short Attention span needs to have this lunch to save the show he’s actually on.
Abruptly, Gabe asks if Lucas remembers Lucía. “Obviously.” Gabe says she died. Was that…an actual emotion on Lucas’ face? And more importantly–what does it mean?!
Work: Day 1
Diego’s first job is washing windows. In a harness hanging from the roof. Adriana’s in her office watching fútbol on her tablet and drinking something loaded with red food coloring. Her team scores and she ends up crushing the wimpy takeout cup and splashing it all over the desk and her dark blue wrap dress.
Which is why it makes no sense for her to whip it off so frantically…before realizing ALL the blinds on ALL the windows in her office are up. She steps, slides, crawls, and wiggles around her office like a thief avoiding laser sensors to get all the blinds down, but just when she thinks she’s safe she turns around and there’s Diego. The good news is, it appears he’s strapped in and so his squeegee.
The infamous Lunch
Vale gets ready for her lunch date. It’s both “real” and I wish it wasn’t that Vale hasn’t eaten since yesterday and she’s convinced she looks thinner. Jessica gets a call from Diego–he just got hired at Zubizarreta and he’s starting his week of probation. The gang are all convinced it’s a sign! But right now, it’s time for Vale to get dressed.
She shuffles her way out of the Café Aquel Diner and Restaurant (I’d translate the name as something like “That Café” with sort of a “you know the one” connotation). Gabriel is waiting out front in a convertible. He makes an “oh dear” face, but he’s polite enough to Vale, reminding her where they’ve met before.
Roxie’s boyfriend is back in town and his secretary told him the gossip about Lucas Duarte getting caught with someone wearing Roxie’s hat. Roxie’s one-of-a-kind hat that he bought for her. Dude waves a gun in her face and says he’s going to kill Lucas.
Vale arrives at her lunch with Lucas and he has the feeling they’ve met before. Well, right, because she’s Vale. The Pizza. Lucas’ collar gets a little tight, but at least Gabe is having fun.