Episode 20: Difícil elección
Lucho summons Leticia to his office to tell her he found her a padrino…and also, it’s time for her to sink Isaac.
Manara gets home from JCR and finds out Nico’s already passed on the gossip about Itzel to Julia. She says it’s none of Julia and Nico’s business. Eh, Julia wouldn’t let Itzel “take” Mateo away if she were Manara. She should do something–today! Amado’s still in Monterrey, so only Julia’s guards are here and they’re taking her to dance class later. Manara can have the whole night to be alone with Mateo, *wink*. (Ay, Julia!)
Agustina heard the conversation. She and Manara have some tequila from one of Amado’s fancy crystal decanters. Manara wants to know how she’s supposed to stop feeling what she’s feeling about Mateo.
Agustina reminds her again that she has an opportunity and she can’t lose it because of her “instincts.” Yeah, well Manara’s instincts are eating her up inside.
Then here’s another reminder–Amado won’t hesitate to kill Mateo and his whole family. Manara just wanted to die when she saw him with that “vieja.” Doesn’t Agus get jealous when she sees him with Selva?
Agustina tries to pretend that doesn’t make sense, but Manara knows she’s in love with Amado. Oh. Agustina didn’t realize it was that obvious.
Anyway, Manara tried talking to Itzel and not letting Itzel get to her, but…you feel what you feel. She decides she’s going to go have a bath. Agustina suggests she use cold water!
Mateo’s supposed to be recording with Dylan, but Chalino wants to know why he thinks Amado is controlling Manara. Mateo doesn’t have much of an answer–it’s just a feeling. He knows Amado’s a criminal and he knows Manara likes him.
They get down to business and Dylan records Todo. Chalino’s digging it.
In the lounge, Isaac, Valentín, and Básico have tequilas. Isaac heads out to get them some “girls” for later.
That leaves Valentín and Básico to hassle Diego, saying he’s like a “dog” waiting for his master. You know it’s bad when Básico’s the one going toe to toe with Diego and Valentín’s the one who gets between them before the fight breaks out. He suggests he and Básico go check in on Dylan.
Isaac’s all set to go out with the guys and he wants Mateo to come along. Mateo’s too busy working on Dylan’s song…and Isaac’s for that matter. Isaac complains that they’re always “reversed.” When Mateo was partying, Isaac had a girlfriend.
Speaking of Elena, Mateo tells him she’s working for the Treviños. He forgot to tell him earlier.
Moisés shows up to talk to Mateo and Isaac tells the guys it’s time to go. Mateo calls out to them to remember they have to work tomorrow. “And don’t kill anyone!” I don’t know who shouted that, but I thought it was Mateo, only now he’s making this face to his dad like “Don’t kill anyone? What? Who says that?”
Moisés makes a crack about where Mateo’s “gangsters from New York” are, but Mateo doesn’t know. Is that what he wanted to talk about? Um…no. He came to tell Mateo to get rid of Itzel. Well, to order him, actually.
Mateo thinks it would be better to get rid of Rafa. They’d have fewer problems. But Moisés says they can’t just yet–they still have money problems, they’re barely starting to pay back their debts. Mateo says with Rafa it starts bad and it ends bad. Moisés reiterates his “order.” Mateo needs to get Itzel out of the business.
Mateo says he’s gotta go. He’s gotta get to the studio to work on the song Moisés and Rafa are trying to ruin.
In the driveway, he calls Dylan and says he’s heading for the studio. Dylan says he has something else to deal with. (It turns out to be fighting with Diego in Diego’s hotel room. Diego ends up pulling a gun on him and saying they’re on opposite sides now and he doesn’t just mean musically.)
While Mateo makes the phone call he’s watched. By Manara. I don’t know if we’re supposed to know that, but it seemed pretty obvious.
Itzel and the boys get home to find all her stuff packed and some guy I think is Rafa’s or Neto’s assistant practically gloating about her getting kicked out of the house. Neto comes in to wave that picture of Fernando in everybody’s face, saying he found it in her stuff.
Itzel, seeing Santi’s panicked face, says it’s her business. Santiago starts to argue with her and she cuts him off and tells him to help her with her bags. “But it’s not fair!” Izel says she has somewhere to go and in case they’ve forgotten she did just get out of prison. She can handle herself. She bustles past them all with her luggage and I’m struck by how short she looks. (Is she really that short? IMDB says 5′ 3 3/4″. *sigh* It ain’t easy.)
Back inside for another load of stuff, Nicolas won’t let it go. He wants to know who the guy is. He thinks he recognizes him. Itzel doesn’t want to talk about it. She’s tired, she’s been feeling alone for a long time and now she actually IS alone. This is between her and Rafa and she can handle herself. “Now help me carry my stuff.”
Fierro and Alexis check out the hotel room, which Fernando is no longer in. He asks Alexis if these were the ropes he used to tie him up. Alexis whines that he’s a radio DJ, not a killer!
Fierro’s plan is to go find him while Alexis stays here. Alexis reminds him that Amado basically put him in charge of this. Fierro scoffs, it’s still Alexis’ screwup, not his. Right, but Amado’s cleaning up right now and this would give him an excuse to kill Fierro.
Fernando’s out on the street somewhere, hailing a taxi. He asks the driver to take him to the hospital.
The driver’s curious about what happened, but he doesn’t believe Fernando’s story about getting hurt by a piece of equipment on a job site. He knows a place where Fernando can get help and they won’t ask questions…because at the hospital? Whoever did this will just come finish him off. Fernando agrees, and he says he’ll pay the driver extra, but he needs him to hurry.
Fierro defends Amado’s previous killing decision, but Alexis reminds him that Amado killed them because they messed up AND they knew too much. So if Fierro doesn’t find Fernando, Amado will kill him too. Fierro’s not letting Alexis out of here–he’ll find Fernando and Alexis just needs to tell him where to look.
Alexis convinces Fierro to let him go. Fierro gives him 24 hours and if Alexis and Fernando aren’t here in this room when he comes back, Fierro will kill Alexis himself.
Amado calls to brag to Rafa that everything’s going great, he’s got his campaign team working and hey, they even want to publish his biography! So when’s he going to get that union support from Rafa’s dad? (Such a broken record, this guy.)
Rafa, sitting in someone’s office having a drink, says he hasn’t had time to talk to his dad because he’s been busy dealing with that mugroso (aka, Mateo). Can Amado believe he hired Itzel?!
Amado laughs. Mateo’s playing dirty. Yeah, well, Rafa can do that too. He’ll explain later.
He ends the call as Lucho brings Leticia in to meet him. Not that Rafa needs an introduction because she totally knows who he is and she’s such a fan and gosh, he’s, like, one of her “impossible loves.” (Oh yeah…just feed that ego.)
While Leticia keeps flirting, Lucho plants a camera in his office. Lucho explains that Leticia used to date Isaac, so she knows all about his double life. And his double morality and double face, she adds. She can tell it all in front of the camera, or she could tell Rafa right here.
Lucho leaves them alone to talk and says he’ll go get some champagne. Rafa offers Leticia some of whatever booze he was drinking earlier.
They drink champagne later and Rafa says it’s so good to talk to someone.
Oh, right, because of his divorce and stuff? And she heard he’s producing that girl, the one he did the duet with. He’s got that whole “new genre, new Rafa” thing going on. “Hey, I told you I’m a fan.” Maybe she could fit into his new concept. She sings, and she’s not bad.
Rafa says he’s got his band all set up, thanks. But maybe his dad…he’s always looking for backup singers. Leticia says singing with Neto would be a dream! She’d much rather do that than set off a scandal. Rafa’s going to keep his source private, right?
Sure, but what does she have to tell him? Because her “opportunity” will match the size of her chisme.
Leticia starts out with the news that she pirated the single…well, on Isaac’s orders. And she knows way more than that. She can prove she deserves an opportunity…but they have a long night to talk.
Leticia sings Que Pase la Siguiente for Rafa. He compliments her on her singing.
I don’t know how many glasses of champagne they’ve had at this point, but she kinda starts whining to him that Isaac came to the casino a lot and he said he’d made her famous. He was a big gambler and took advantage of her. You know, he’s the one who sold Belinda’s ultrasound to the press. Did it behind his mom’s back, too. She’s hypertensive. And Leticia can prove he did it because she has the copies.
So…does she deserve a chance with his dad? Rafa says his dad’s like a gavilán pollero (chicken hawk) and Leticia asks what the son of the gavilán is like. They start getting horizontal on Lucho’s desk, in full view of the camera.
(I’m not sure what’s the most horrifying part of this…that it’s Rafa and Leticia? That they’re in Lucho’s office? That he’s recording this? That his desk is made of glass and it wobbles?)
Mateo gets to the studio and it looks like he dumps something by the door to block it.
In the lounge, he pours himself a drink. But maybe he was just bringing packages inside because Manara makes it past the door. She followed him from his house. He did see her, but he was in kind of a hurry to get away from his dad because he wanted…well, anyway.
Manara’s just here to clear some things up. When she mentioned everything ending badly earlier, he said she was talking about her brother, but she meant Mateo. She doesn’t want to hurt him. The pictures he saw weren’t a lie. She knows she and Mateo had a thing, but she needs Rafa’s support. And today, with Itzel, she had to choose and she chooses Rafa. They both need to move on. She’ll even give him her blessing to date Itzel.
Riiiiight…Mateo saw her reaction. She admits it, she was jealous, but she shouldn’t have been. She’s working on her career and he needs to quit wasting energy on something that’s never going to work.
Mateo thinks Rafa has nothing to give her. Manara disagrees–he has a lot to offer and Mateo needs to understand it already.
Oh, wait, he gets it–she wants him to distract Itzel so she can go for Rafa.
No, she’s the one giving HIM a clear path.
Mateo wants to stop fighting. He knows he can be…intense. Manara suggests “terco” (stubborn). OK, he admits it. But he’s not going to mess with Manara’s decisions. Maybe they should sit down…just to talk.
See, he thinks he’s the one who should be angry here, but he’s not. She broke his heart and he can’t even be angry with her.
OK, that’s enough talk. Manara sees no reason to stay. But Mateo doesn’t see a reason to go. There’s no one here–not Rafa and not Amado. Manara tells him Amado doesn’t care what she does. She thinks he just doesn’t like women telling him “no.”
Actually, it’s just her. (Like that’s so much better.)
So this isn’t about Rafa, then? Nope, he says it’s all about her. He’s about to kiss her, but they get startled by a noise at the door and Mateo goes to check, over her protests.
It’s just Chalino. And his gun. He decided to sleep here because some workers are coming in to work early.
Manara decides that’s her cue to leave. Chalino makes an “oops” face.
Back in the lounge, Mateo hassles her about how jumpy that made her. Who was she expecting? Her brother’s people? She tells him to cut it out. The important thing is it was only Chalino.
Mateo is never going to understand her ending their relationship, but he proposes that she can still get to Rafa with her talent and intelligence…and the two of them can still be together. Wow, that sounds almost like begging to Manara. Why doesn’t he use all this energy for work? Or doesn’t he want to win the competition?
Mateo sneers at her use of “competition.” She sounds like Rafa. He must be really motivating her.
No, actually, Mateo is. Going up against him is inspiring her.
And when she wins? Who’s producing her records?
“Oh, you’re sure you’re going to lose, huh?” If she wins, she’s staying with Rafa…but if she loses, she’d be justified in finding a new producer. So, “gánale a Rafa” (beat Rafa) “y gánale a mi” (and you win me).
Manara gets home and tells Agustina the minute she saw Mateo she started shaking and she ended up behaving “like an idiot.” They have more tequila (that bottle’s running low).
She’s upset that she had to lie to the person she wants to give her best to. Agustina reminds her that staying away from him is a way of taking care of him. Yeah, but she lied…she had to say she was with Rafa and be cold to him. “You’re putting your career first.” Only because she has no other choice.
She needs to beat Isaac, make her record, and get away from that label and she knows how to do it now. But it’s going to mean staying away from everyone, including Julia and Amado. Agustina thinks she can do it.
More late-night visitors
This time it’s Isaac and the guys and the girls startling Chalino. He lets them in as Isaac explains they’re just here to party–it’s his place too, right?
Chalino tells him he’ll be down in the dressing room and turns down Isaac’s offer to come hang out with them.
In the lounge, Isaac chatters with the girls, who he keeps calling his “primas.” He tells them Valentín composed the song he’s going to sing. And hey, have they heard of some guy named Davis? Valentín thinks he heard about him in prison. Básico thinks he’s a producer or a manager.
Well, he’s been emailing Isaac asking about a concert in Sinaloa…but naw, he’s not doing it! What if he gets dragged off to sing for el Señor de los Cielos or El Chema or something?
He takes a selfie with two of the primas before Básico takes them all to show them the studio. Valentín says he thought Isaac was different. Like…gacho (a jerk). Seriously? Valentín thinks he looks like a jerk?
Kidding! They celebrate that they’re going to kick Rafa’s ass.
Moisés is still at the house when Mateo gets home. And Itzel’s there too, asking if she can stay here. Mateo says she can, but he looks at Moisés anyway. Moisés says it’s his house….
Mateo starts to help Itzel with her stuff.
Mateo’s on his laptop with headphones in when Itzel comes downstairs and startles him. Is he really going to be able to change Isaac’s single in time? Mateo doesn’t know, but right now he can’t even think and he needs to sleep.
Itzel starts running down all the stuff on the schedule for tomorrow–designing Isaac’s outfits, working on a photo concept, the logo, recording in the afternoon. Mateo’s amused that she knows the schedule. Itzel thanks him for everything and gives him a kiss on the cheek before he goes upstairs.
Moisés wanders in to get a glass of water. Itzel confronts him–he doesn’t really want her at the record label, does he? Moisés tells her it’s late and she should rest.
OK. And excuse her for saying so, but as president of the label, he really needs to put Rafa in his place. Make him see that Moisés is the one in charge.
Well, excuse Moisés, but he doesn’t get into her business so he’d rather she not get in his.
Itzel says she’s sorry. She’s only telling him this for the sake of his family.
Rafa joins Neto on the lawn for breakfast. He mentions he found this “girl” who sings and maybe Neto could give her an audition. She’s just his type.
Neto asks where he was last night.
Out. Avoiding Itzel.
Neto says he found a picture of some guy the boys’ age in her stuff and she said he was her lover. (Shut up, Neto, that is NOT what she said!) He laughs that all that time she was “suffering” she was actually cheating on Rafa too.
Nicolas is pissed off. He called Itzel and she’s at Mateo’s. Santiago doesn’t see what the problem is–their dad’s no saint. Besides, that wasn’t her picture.
Nicolas keeps on complaining. He knows their mom has needs, but can’t she be discreet?
Santiago repeats that it wasn’t her picture.
Nicolas goes on griping that they were always seeing their mom as the victim and now look at this–
Santiago interrupts him and says it’s HIS picture.
Santi hesitantly explains it’s a guy he knows. Someone…he has feelings for.
“Don’t tell me you…?”
Yes. That’s the guy Santiago has been messaging.
Nico gulps. He insists Santiago’s just trying to defend their mom.
No, he’s saying that’s his friend…who he likes. He hid the picture in their mom’s stuff.
But then why did she say it was hers?
Because she knew it was Santi’s and she knows he doesn’t want their grandpa to know that the gran macho mexicano has a grandson who likes…los rancheros. And he’s been telling everyone that Santiago’s his successor.
He asks about Nicolas. “What about me?” Well…how does he feel about having a brother like Santi?
Nicolas says having Santiago as a brother is one of the best things that has ever happened. But he needs to process.
Chalino comes into Mateo’s room to apologize for interrupting things with Manara. Mateo says it’s not his fault. He needs to focus on work and quit chasing after her.
Chalino praises him for being sensible and advises him to do what he did with Julio César–have fun, but keep his heart in the music. Mateo says Manara definitely gets that, but he forgot. Well…Chalino has always believed in him.
Downstairs, Valentín’s complaining about how long it’s been since he’s had a good birria de chivo (goat stew). They whine about everything here being “ham and eggs.” Dylan plays Todo for them as Mateo walks in and says they need to record that today.
And whew, it reeks in here! Who took a bath in mezcal?! Isaac says it might be all of them. They were “bonding” yesterday. Dylan pouts that he only got to do “bonding” with Diego and he pulled a gun on him.
They’re distracted by the arrival of Itzel with a rack full of stuff for them to try on. As the guys try on their jackets, Mateo says he wants one. Moisés comes in and it looks like he likes them. Isaac makes a joke about them looking like the Reyes Magos (the three Wise Men, three Kings, because of the velvet?). Isaac was hoping for something…stronger. He mentions chicks and guns and Itzel says no way–that’s too obvious! This is more elegant.
Moisés looks at Mateo standing there with his arm draped over Itzel’s shoulder and asks to talk to him.
In Mateo’s room, Mateo asks if Moisés still wants to fire her, because look at her work!
No, Moisés has been thinking about their talk and Mateo’s right–he’s been too soft with Rafa. He needs to put a stop to him and put him in his place. So Itzel’s staying…among other things. She can help them with Isaac. And Moisés will deal with Rafa if Mateo jut does ONE thing for him–don’t get involved with Itzel. Can he promise that?
Mateo gives him a nervous laugh.