Warning: there are plenty of spoilers about the Spanish drama Velvet ahead.
Fashion Insight: How much people relied on magazines for trends, the way they look at Instagram now.
Ross and Rachel of the Week: Pedro and Rita
Spanish Culture Clue: So much concern about social class!.
Language Point: Spanish vocabulary and grammar would never allow for a construction like “The will will be read in the morning.”
Ana and Alberto survive their accident, but Ana is in a coma. Of course she is! Don Emilio pledges his loyalty to the Marquez family. Doña Gloria reads her husband’s suicide note – but doesn’t show us what is in it. That’s a cheap dramatic cop out. We do see that he included a photo of a young woman with the note.
Rita gives Don Emilio a letter from Ana, and we get to see this one. Ana tells him that she ran off with Alberto. At that very moment, Pedro informs him that he has an urgent phone call. Cut to the hospital. Don Emilio arrives in time to hear Alberto pour his heart out to Ana just as Ana emerges from her coma.
Don Alberto returns to Marquez Manor and gets into a fight with Doña Gloria. She tells him that the store is broke and that his father needed Alberto to marry a rich woman in order to save it. A seamstress will not do. Don Alberto goes to the store and meets with the accountant, who proves to him that the store is, indeed, bankrupt. Don Rafael had hoped to pay off debts after a successful new collection, but the accountant recommends bringing on an investor.
Downstairs, Doña Blanca discovers Luisa’s side hustle and fires her. We also learn that Clara is far more ambitious in life than to have a boyfriend like Pedro.
Now we’re at the funeral, and everyone is sad. Ana and Rita show up, looking neither chic nor appropriate. Ana, of course, is supposed to be at the hospital, and so of course she faints and has to be rescued by Alberto. He takes her back to Marquez Manor, to the consternation of Gloria and the embarrassment of Emilio. They both want the relationship to end, as it is not proper. Alberto puts Ana to bed and gets on top of her, although both are fully clothed. Gloria walks in to inform them that the will will be read in the morning and to express her disapproval.
The next day at the store, Don Rafael’s secretary announces that she is resigning. Then we get to the will: Don Alberto and Doña Patricia split the house. Gloria gets the summer house. Alberto gets a 60% stake in the store, with Patricia and Gloria splitting the remaining 40%. Gloria storms out at this news, but Patricia gets her scheming face on. The two women return to Marquez Manor to see Ana admiring the furnishings. Ana tries to make small talk, but Patricia informs her that they are not friends.
Alberto calls Emilio and Doña Blanca in for a meeting. He tells them that the business is bankrupt but that he has a plan – he and his sidekick, Don Mateo, will fill orders, make new designs, and turn the whole thing around. Easy, peasy! Meanwhile, Doña Blanca’s daughter Carmen, one of Velvet’s sales clerks, is snooping in her mother’s room. She gets caught and demands to know: who is sending the telegrams. The Hogwarts Admissions Department? Blanca won’s say and asks Carmen to leave.
Alberto returns home and sees Cristina waiting for him in the front room as the lovely Ana is upstairs looking through fashion magazines. He sends Cristina on her way and gives Ana a dress to wear to dinner that evening. After dinner, he blindfolds her and walks her out to the garden. Kinky! He takes off the blindfold, and we see candles and rose petals all around the pool. Alberto tells Ana that he has realized how short life is. He gives her his mother’s engagement ring and asks Ana to marry him, move to Paris, and have five children. She accepts, and like good goofy rich kids, they do the kooky “jump into the pool fully clothed” think.
Oh, wait, Ana isn’t rich. But that;s okay.
In the morning, Alberto leaves for work and Doña Gloria greets Ana with the day’s newspaper, which discusses Velvet’s financial problems. Who told the press, she wonders. Well, we all know she did.
Alberto and Mateo have a meeting at the bank. They won’t get the loan they need. Back at the store, Don Emelio is fending off phone calls from suppliers as Ana walks in through the front door to give him the news of the engagement. She then goes to Alberto and tells him that she will be a partner in the business if they marry.
Downstairs, the staff members are reading the news and not taking it well. A 10 million peseta loss? Employees might not be paid? Carmen says that Ana should be looking out for them instead of showing off her ring – as Ana walks in, of course. Ana assures everyone that Don Alberto will solve the problem, so it is champagne all around.
Meanwhile, Alberto is putting amazing effort into turning the business around by watching home movies of his father showing off the 1951 collection. Do they teach that at Harvard Business School? Because they don’t teach at that at Booth. Gloria walks in with good news – Don Rafael’s sister wants to save Velvet. For valuable consideration. Alberto agrees to a meeting.
Don Emelio asks Alberto to talk to the store employees about the situation, so he crashes the party. We see Rita dancing alone and looking sad while Emelio looks worried. I’m worried about Rita, too, but somehow, I think it will work out for her by the series finale, if not sooner.
Next day, boardroom: Tia Pilar presents her offer. She’ll invest, but Alberto and Patricia will have equal votes. Alberto is about to sign, then asks if the workers will keep their jobs. Pilar says no, Alberto won’t sign, and Gloria is Not. Happy.
Alberto meets Don Gerardo at Pausa, the local bar that’s probably not this Pausa but maybe it is. Anyway, Gerardo commits to the 10 million pesetas, and he wants Alberto to marry Cristina. They like each other, so what’s the problem? On cue, Cristina arrives. What timing!
Back in the dorms, Pedro tells Rita that Alberto isn’t getting they money from Pilar. He also says that people must go for love because life is short. Rita kisses him, but he doesn’t kiss her back.
Back at Marquez Manor, Ana tells Alberto that he has to save the store because the workers are her family. That night, she writes him a letter telling him to marry Cristina and save the store. She leaves the ring and returns to the dorms.
And so, like all Other Women everywhere, she convinces herself that seeing Alberto on the side will be for the greater good.
Next up, Episode 3. Natch.