There’s No Law Lesson Like A Telenovela Law Lesson!

Are you watching “Falsa Identidad” on Telemundo?

Because it’s a lot of fun, plus you could learn a lot about the law! Which is basically the opposite of law school.

So Circe and her friend wanted to scare the Battle-Axe on the right, I guess because she’s about to expose Camila and Diego for stealing her identity.

Part of her identity is being mean and unpleasant, but remember that Diego and Camila were on the run from the even more mean and unpleasant Gavino when Diego’s Brother The Mayor and his Guy El Salas gave Camila her identity. (If Diego has The Mean Woman’s Husband’s Identity, he will want to get out of that relationship right away!)

So Circe and her friend dressed up like maids to pay a visit to the REAL Camila to “scare” her.

I’ll be honest- if Circe showed up in my hotel room I’d be terrified, and I’d double my tip.

Circe’s co-worker accidentally on purpose killed the woman by stabbing her in the neck.

They dragged her into the shower and left her to be found, thinking it would look like a suicide, because I guess in Circe’s world, people frequently stab themselves in the neck to avoid talking to her, her father and/or Joselito.

Well, The Real Camila was found by her friend on the left, and even though all he did was find her, he was promptly arrested for Murder!

As a former prosecutor, if the standard for proof is that low, I would love to be a Prosecutor in Novelaville! I might have won more often!

But I’ll tell you what: If the standard for proof is that low, remind me to never tell the police about any dead bodies I may come across in my travels.

This poor guy is now charged with Murder!

I want to be his lawyer and here is why: It’s SUPER easy apparently!

When this guy asked the detective for his lawyer, the detective stopped questioning him, which is very good behavior by the detective.

When he returned to the Interrogation Room a few minutes later, the prisoner asked “Where’s my lawyer??”

The detective took the lawyer’s card out of his pocket, with a message to the prisoner on the back of the card that told him to “Plead Guilty to Avoid The Death Penalty.”

That’s it!!

If lawyers here see this bit, they will be ordering new business cards by the truckload! 😂😂😂😂

Join me on my journey learning Spanish from telenovelas on Telemundo!! I’m about to move to Mexico City!!

S

WATCHING “SENORA ACERO” COME TO AN END IS LIKE LEAVING A FUN PARTY FILLED WITH GREAT-LOOKING GUESTS WITH TERRIBLE JUDGEMENT, WHO NEVER CALL 911!

It’s very tough to say goodbye to the great SuperCrazyNarcoNovela “Senora Acero,” on Telemundo, but sadly, this is the last season!!

Que LASTIMA!!

Please join me for a trip down Bad Memory Lane in my latest article for Latin Connection Magazine, a tribute to five seasons of madness in Señora Acero!!

Saying goodbye to the crew is like being at a super fun party with your best friends, who are the perfect combination of good looks and terrible judgement!!

The magazine is available on line, and here’s the article!

@LatinConnection is all about living the Latino lifestyle in the USA, and in addition to my Telenovela news, there is a lot more news you can use!!

In The NarcoNovela “El Senor De Los Cielos,” The Casillas Family Are The Worst Houseguests EVER!

Que tal!

I hope you have been watching “El Senor de Los Cielos” because right now it is the only show crazier than “Sin Senor Si Hay Paraíso” , and believe me, that’s saying something.

First of all, El Senor himself is in a coma, with his head wrapped up in bandages, with only one eye poking out.

Imagine The Invisible Man in the middle of a contract dispute, with a lot of men wearing big cowboy hats and bigger belt buckles in charge of his medical care.

After he was shot by El Cabo and his ever-dwindling group of Not-So-Merry Men, he had sought refuge with El Rayo (his childhood boxing coach), where he was rescued by his half-brother Amado, who is known as El Aguila Azul, but to be honest I think he should be called “El Principe Azul,” and Aurelio’s triple-crossing girlfriend Corina, and some luchadors.

This crew got him to The Ahumada Ranch, which is usually a pretty quiet place even with Don Ahumada running for El Presidente, until their long-lost (for a good reason) cousins The Casillas Family (all shot up) showed up at the Ahumada Ranch. Dona Alba and Mrs. Ahumada are cousins, but there’s a reason why Mr. Ahumada doesn’t want them around and it’s this: THE CASILLAS FAMILY ARE NARCOS AND HE IS RUNNING FOR PRESIDENT AND HIS PLATFORM IS “I AM NOT A NARCO!”

With the Casillas Clan, you get a lot of gangsters, bullys, big guns, yelling, a Command Center, more yelling, plotting, full-metal makeouts in unexpected places, shoot-outs, worry, drama, a mini-hospital, a full medical staff, torture, kidnappings, and even more yelling. This is not what a Presidential Candidate needs, except maybe for the plotting. And the make-outs. And the medical staff is OK but only if they have brought Ambien.

In fact, the Casillas Clan should probably just stay home the next time they are attacked.

Meanwhile, to add to the Candidate’s worry, his daughter Diana was kidnapped by the neighbors, the Ramos Brothers, who I hope are better ranchers than they are kidnappers and neighbors. Don Ahumada and the police were on their way to rescue Diana, but she tried to stall them because with the Casillas Cousins taking up all of the air in the room with their problems, neither Diana nor her mother had had a chance to tell Papi that Diana is a Narca, and that is why she is still single.

Diana is like a teenager who gets caught with marijuana in her backpack, except in her case it’s like 18 tons of marijuana.

She was so afraid her father and the police were going to find out she was a Narca that she actually called her archenemy and Texas dinner date El Cabo to ransom her. Cabo agreed to do it, because he thinks everything is funny, even though he thought there was a slight risk that it could be a set up. And even though it was not a set-up, because he did not find Diana tied to the railroad tracks (which I guess The Ramos Brothers said they were going to do) he believed that it was. If you ask me, the best part about that scene on the tracks was that one of his henchman held an umbrella over Cabo, to keep the strong sun off his head. Cabo is like Queen Elizabeth without the handbag, in that someone else holds his umbrella.

If I worked for Cabo, I would tell him he needs a summer weight Run-DMC track suit, in seersucker, because black velour is just too warm. I think if El Cabo could be anything he wanted to be (besides El Cabo), he would be a Russian Oligarch, because no one would love to prance around in an ostrich jacket more than El Cabo.

Luckily for Diana, she is rescued by her half-cousin Amado Leal, known as El Chicle or El Aguila Azul. But in Diana’s case, it’s more like “El Principe Azul” because when he rescues her as they booth shoot it out with the Nitwit Ramos Brothers, it’s Love At First Shot. It’s a good thing her hair and makeup still looked good even though she had to wear the burlap head bag for several days.

See, my mother was right: You never know where you are going to meet your Future Husband, and having your head stuck in a burlap bag is no excuse not to wear lipstick.

Once Diana was rescued from the Ramos Brothers, she had to explain to her father that she was kidnapped because she is a Narca, which is also why she was still single.

Of course she was kidnapped because she’s a Narca!

What does she look like? The Lindbergh Baby?

Meanwhile, an angry El Cabo incorrectly felt he had been betrayed by Diana, so he tried to kill her father at a campaign rally. If he dies I think there is a chance he can still win the election since everyone likes a nice quiet candidate.

And El Cabo’s girlfriend Evelina went to the morgue to identify her dead father but he wasn’t there, and that’s probably because he’s not dead.

If I understood things correctly, and the odds are pretty good that I did not, Evelina’s father is El Rayo, which makes her practically family to the Casillas Family, which is going to make Thanksgiving particularly awkward.

Don’t miss a minute of this fast, funny and fantastic show!

Want To Be A Prosecutor?Skip Law School And Watch Telenovelas!

TELENOVELA PROSECUTORS THROUGH THE AGES:

What’s Law Got To Do With It??

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Que tal!

When I started learning Spanish from telenovelas, I was usually very wrong about everything. In fact, I was so dazed and confused during the first month of La Patrona on Telemundo that I thought Antonia and Alejandro were a rich, unhappily married couple with no children, and that Antonia hated Alejandro SO MUCH that the gigantic family portrait over the fireplace only included her. “Thank goodness they didn’t bring any children into this unhappy marriage,” I thought.

And then one day I realized that they had no children because they weren’t married: they were mother and son. Why Alejandro did not get his own apartment is a question for another day, but clearly, there no room in my fevered brain to figure out the subtleties of the show.

But as time went on and I understood more and more every day, I came to really love the courtroom scenes in La Patrona, and in all of the telenovelas I watch to this day. The courtroom hijinx in a telenovela would make the whole world want to go to law school, if only court could actually be as crazy and as much fun. And as a prosecutor in in the criminal courts of Chicago, I love watching what my fellow Novela prosecutors get up to.

For example, in “La Patrona,” the prosecutor (Ricardo) was a pretty decent guy with a gigantic Crucifix in his office, which is kind of unusual for government work. He was only able to have sex with women he wasn’t married to, which is usually something we see in celebrities and professional athletes, but in Ricardo’s case it was because his father had convinced him that his mother had abandoned him to run away with the Tennis Pro, when in reality Ricardo’s father had had The Mrs. imprisoned in the local Asylum for the Criminally Insane, so he could spend all of her money on hookers, Tequila, and his Senate campaign. Ricardo retired from the Prosecutor’s Office to defend his mother of trying to kill his father after she escaped from the Asylum.

Of course he did.

In “Eva La Trailera,” Sofia Lama played “Betty,” a prosecutor so in love with Eva’s boyfriend Pablo that Betty prosecuted Eva for a murder which Betty knew Eva didn’t commit, scared all of Eva’s witnesses, conspired with the Real Killer to see that Eva was convicted, lost her job when her bosses found out about it, and then pregnant and broke, moved in with Pablo’s family even though no one invited her.

In “El Senor de los Cielos,” Erika de la Rosa played “Elsa,” the Very Special Prosecutor assigned to prosecute Don El Chema, who was supposed to be El Chapo. Elsa is one of my favorite prosecutors for a couple of reasons: Number 1, I don’t even think Elsa was a lawyer. I think that her parents were big campaign contributors to El Presidente, and basically paid him to take her off of their hands. Elsa gave me hope: She showed us that having no working knowledge of the law was not an impediment to a successful prosecution. Number 2, Elsa was dating Chema at the same time she was prosecuting him. When I met Erika at a Telemundo event, and gushed about how much I learned from Elsa about being a prosecutor, Erika quickly excused herself and called for “Security.”

And then, in the next season of “El Senor de Los Cielos,” Alejandro de la Madrid played Ignacio, a serious and honest prosecutor who became so frustrated by his inability to convict any drug kingpins that he assembled a team of the prettiest women in the office and they formed a Hit Squad, assassinating everyone who was acquitted, which is another way to go. Usually, in law enforcement, when a team of the prettiest women are recruited, it is because someone is assembling a softball team.

ESDLC is an embarrassment of riches of fantastic prosecutors. Now, in Season 6 of the series, we are treated to another great prosecutor from whom we can learn a lot – Nora Requena, played by Maria Conchita Alonso.

Nora has come from New York to extradite El Senor himself – Aurelio Casillas. I love that Nora gets to go to the country from which she is extraditing the criminal. If this happened in real life, we would all be looking to Italy for our defendants. Usually, a successful extradition requires that the prosecutor complete hundreds of documents exactly right, and then hope the host country agrees with us. But in ESDLC6, Nora has the right idea – Go right to the country harboring the criminal to make your case in person, and take a private plane to get there. Nora acts like she is on vacation, and the DEA agents in Mexico are the hotel valets.

Right before she left for Mexico, Nora had just pulled the plug on her husband, literally. Once her husband drew his last breath, Nora left the hospital for Mexico City, and left the hospital staff with her husband’s jewelry driver’s license and his body, telling them she was finally “free.” Well, she is certainly free from all medical and burial expenses.

Nora then flew into CDMX on a private jet. One thing I have learned from telenovelas of any type is that if there is a prosecutor hanging around, that prosecutor leads a pretty glamorous life. They have a driver, they boss the judge around, and they usually have an office filled with antiques, Oriental rugs, and religious objects. Although we haven’t seen her office yet, I am sure Nora is no exception to this rule. My proof? She carries a fan. A fan.

It never occurred to me to use a fan before, but now I don’t know how I practiced law for so long without one.

A fan is something I could use very effectively in closing arguments, as long as no one ever bursts into the song “Lady of Spain.” And when I say “no one,” I mean me. Or as long as I don’t develop a southern accent and call in sick because I have “the vapors.” At least I need to find out what “the vapors” are, exactly. Now that I think about it, I could do a lot of damage with a fan, and most of it would be self-inflicted.

In ESDLC, once Nora and her entourage landed, DEA chief Joe Navarro picked her up at the airport and took Nora right to a meeting at the Mexico City offices of the DEA. With her piercing glare, fan and gigantic glasses, Nora made everyone in the meeting nervous, maybe because they never saw a prosecutor use a fan before.

The DEA wants Nora to ask Mexico to please extradite Aurelio, and Carla The Journalist was there to impress upon Nora the importance of shipping Aurelio to the USA, except Carla had just hooked up with Aurelio the night before and was clearly conflicted about sending Aurelio to the USA when she needed a date for a family wedding coming up.

Their strategy was to show Nora the video shot the day that Aurelio took over the news station, where he broadcast that even though he was the world’s biggest cartel boss, he was still better than the crooked bosses of Mexico.

Nora is really one cool customer.

After watching the tape, she announced that the tape was not evidence of anything.

Nora’s statement, and her rejection of charges, rocked my world.

I have always thought that a confession is pretty important evidence.

But Nora disagrees and I think she called it “television gossip,” as if Aurelio’s broadcast was a bad episode of “The Bachelor.”

I’ll be honest.

If I was trying this case, I would have charged him, queued up that tape, hit “Play” on the DVD player, lit a cigarette, and when the tape was over I would have announced “State Rests.”

But no, not according to Nora.

Even with a confession made to the entire country of Mexico which no one could ever complain was coerced because it was Aurelio himself who took over the whole television station at gunpoint just so he could make this statement, the work is just beginning, according to Nora. This could be true, or it could also be that Nora wants to extend her trip to Mexico.

The DEA was disappointed, but perked up when Nora tried to get everyone to go out drinking, which shows that the DEA in Mexico City is like every other prosecutor’s office around the USA.

Only Joe agreed to go, even though Nora appeared to be buying.

Nora came well-equipped to take care of prosecutor business. She is armed with an evening gown, gigantic glasses, and fans to match every outfit. Is this a homage to Novelaville’s Greatest Villainess Catalina Creel, who had an eye patch to match every one of her dresses, even though most of her dresses were made out of the same fabric as the curtains? Time will tell.

All I know right now is that I wish Telemundo could offer credit for Continuing Legal Education for teaching us how to be better prosecutors from telenovelas!

For more of my sideways views of telenovelas, please follow me here, and @gringanovelera on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, and on “Latin Connection” magazine!

Gringa Novelera

Latin Connection Magazine

Building A Better Prosecutor By Watching “El Senor De Los Cielos”

Follow me here as I learn how to be a better prosecutor from Maria Conchita Alonso’s character, New York prosecutor Nora Requena, in the NarcoNovela “El Senor de los Cielos!”

It’s only been three nights of Continuing Legal Education From Prosecutor Nora Requena in the Telemundo NarcoNovela “El Senor de Los Cielos,” and already I have learned more than I learned in three years of law school!

I am closely following her character to learn how to be a better prosecutor. If this works, I may have invented a better way to get Continuing Legal Education credit!

Nora (Maria Conchita Alonso) is in Mexico because she just pulled the plug on her husband, literally, and also at the request of theDEA Mexico City Chief, the always angry and impatient, 3-piece-suit wearing, vest-loving Joe Lazaro, played by Guy Ecker. (When Guy played the police chief in the old t.v. show “Las Vegas,” which was a Very Guilty Pleasure, he wore more open-collared shirts and was much more relaxed. But in #ESDLC he is angry all of the time, which might have something to do with wearing a collar and tie all of the time. Who wouldn’t be cranky?)

So when we meet up with Nora in her third episode, she is right where we left her – making everyone in the meeting nervous.

The DEA (minus Corina, who was busy stirring it up at Aurelio’s house), and Aurelio’s latest conquest Carla the Crusading Journalist, were all there to convince Nora to extradite Aurelio to the USA, although it was clear that Carla was having second thoughts because she needed a date for a wedding that was coming up.

Their strategy was to show Nora the video taken the day that Aurelio took over the news station and announced that even though he was the world’s biggest cartel boss, he was still better than the crooked bosses of Mexico.

Nora, played by Maria Conchita Alonso, is really one cool customer.

After watching the tape where Aurelio admitted all of his crimes to the audience (and it was not even Sweeps week), Nora announced that the tape was not evidence of anything.

Nora’s statement, and her rejection of charges, rocked my world.

I have always thought that a confession is pretty important evidence.

But Nora disagrees and I think she called it “television gossip” as though Aurelio’s broadcast was a bad episode of “The Batchelor.”

I’ll be honest.

Until I heard Nora’s remarkable assessment, if I was trying this case, I would charges him, hit “Play,” on the DVD player, lit a cigarette, and when the tape was over I would have announced “State Rests.”

But no, not according to Nora.

Even with a confession made to the entire country of Mexico which no one could ever complain was coerced because it was Aurelio himself who took over the whole tv station at gunpoint just so he could make this statement, there is no resting, and the work is just beginning, according to Nora.

The DEA was disappointed, but perked up when Nora tried to get everyone to go out drinking, which shows that the DEA in Mexico City is like every other prosecutor’s office around the USA.

Only Guy agreed to go, even though Nora appeared to be buying.

As they were leaving, Corina showed up.

I thought Nora would see through Corina with what I am sure are x-ray specs, and that she and Corina would be natural enemies, like the Snake and the Nongoose.

But Nora was so unexpectedly kind and charming to Corina that Corina (channeling her inner Sally Field) actually said to Deputy Chief Colon, ”See, she likes me! She really likes me!”

This has clearly never happened to Corina before.

After Nora left the offices of the DEA, Deputy Chief Colon told Corina he is worried and thinks that Nora is there to investigate them.

But Corina does not care because she has a new friend in Nora.

Wait until her new BFF Nora meets Corina’s boyfriend Aurelio and her old BFF El Rojito.

So what lesson did we learn from Nora last night?

What decisions did Nora make that will help us to be better prosecutors?

Well, that a “confession is not evidence, apparently.

Her views of confessions as gossip is interesting, but the real lesson, if you ask me,

is that as prosecutors we should strive to

create a mood of so much confusion and craziness that half of the room thinks you’re investigating them,

and the other half wants to go out drinking with you.

And of course our Nora was taking a page right out of Don Corleone’s book with her approach to Corina – “Keep your friends close, but your enemies closer.

Don’t miss these valuable legal lessons from Prosecutor Nora Requena, tonight and every night in “El Senor de Los Cielos” on Telemundo!

DAY 2: LEARNING HOW TO BE A BETTER PROSECUTOR WITH “EL SENOR DE LOS CIELOS!”

I am following the Adventures of New York prosecutor “Nora Requena,” played by Maria Conchita Alonso in the SuperNarcoNovela “El Senor de Los Cielos,” to learn how to be a better prosecutor! And I’ll be telling you all about it here!

And I am working hard to get us Continuing Legal Education credit for watching the show!

One thing I have learned from telenovelas of any type is that if there is a prosecutor hanging around, that prosecutor leads a pretty glamorous life: They have a driver; they can boss the judge around, and they usually have an office filled with antiques, Renaissance paintings and shrines to La Virgincita, something you don’t normally see in government work.

Since this is only the prosecutor La Fiscal Nora Requena’s second day on “El Senor de Los Cielos,” plus she is from NYC and only visiting Mexico, we have not seen her office yet.

However, there is no shortage of glamour for this VIP***. (*** – Very Important Prosecutor).

When we first saw Nora in yesterday’s episode, she was striding off of a private jet that had just landed in Mexico City, where she was met by the dashing and angry Joe Lazaro, the DEA chief in Mexico City who has somehow managed to figure out a way to yell at people through a clenched jaw.

When Nora tells Joe that her husband of twenty years has just died (leaving out the part about pulling the plug and leaving his corpse to science. Or whoever at the hospital wants it), Joe tells her he is sorry, and Nora responds, “I’m not.” Which Joe does not find odd at all, maybe because he’s already thinking about making a move on Nora since she’s already been in Mexico for approximately 7 seconds, and Corina needs a stepmother who can keep her in line.

Nora then climbs in the heavily-armed SUV with heavier-tinted windows, and she is whisked away to the DEA office in CDMX.

OK, as prosecutors, let’s unpack this scene.

First of all, when prosecutors travel for work we ride in whatever is lower than Economy Class, known as Sub-Economy Class, which usually involves standing for the entire flight.

Second of all, we never get to go to foreign countries, but instead we attend out-of state conferences in places like Arizona in the summer and Albany in the winter.

No one ever meets us at the plane. Instead, we stumble off with our too-heavy carry-ons. bleary, dreary, sleep-deprived, in desperate need of food, drink and a bathroom. Or put it another way, we disembark looking just like every other airline passenger.

There is no private car with tinted glass waiting for us at the airport. Here’s what usually happens instead: Some people try to get the whole group to go with public transportation or a shuttle service. A few jet-lagged people go with them, and the rest share cabs, during which period at least two people will claim they haven’t “exchanged their dollars” yet, so could someone else pay for them (ignoring the fact we are still in the USA and still using US currency; and one or two more people will announce they don’t have any change, so could someone else pay for them, with vows (always broken) of repayment.

Then when everyone is reunited at the hotel, someone somewhat cheap will introduce the idea of “The Kitty.” This is a shared fund for food, drinks and transportation into which everyone will contribute equally but some will deplete much faster than others, but then everyone has to “refresh” The Kitty by repeatedly putting more money into it.

At this point, the only thing a prosecutor’s trip for work has in common with #ESDLC is the potential for violence created by the resentment which is fueled by The Kitty.

Back to Nora The Telenovela Prosecutor…

After the luxurious SUV with the tinted windows whisks Nora away from the private plane, we don’t see her for awhile. Then, we meet her again in the very fancy and sleek offices of the DEA, where she is in a gigantic conference room with equipment right out of the movie “Minority Report” lining the walls.

Let the glaring and sideways glances begin:

Here’s who is in the meeting with  Nora: Joe Navarro – Chief of the DEA in Mexico, his Vice-President of the DEA Guillermo Colon, Bernardo Castillo-Chief of Security in Mexico, and Carla Uzcategui, the anti-cartel reporter who is now dating Aurelio Casillas (although she claims they are not dates, they are just kidnappings.)

As Navarro went around the table room introducing them, for each person in the room, when Joe announced their job title, the expression on Nora’s face was “I’ll be the judge of that,” which not only made me doubt whether I had understood correctly who these cast members were supposed to be, but it was clear even the cast members doubted themselves for a moment when they saw her skeptical response. Maybe Castillo really ISN’T the Chief of Security for the whole country of Mexico, after all?

Of course, Nora and Carla instantly hated each other on sight, as only two women who want to be the most popular woman in the room can hate each other. And somehow, I think Nora already knows that Carla hooked up with Aurelio the night before, where she literally and figuratively let her hair down.

Now that Nora has shaken everyone’s confidence in their own job titles, clearly her work is done for the day. Let’s see what havoc she wreaks tonight!!

And here is what I learned from Nora last night:

Striding anywhere with confidence gets you a much better chance of getting a driver, and treating anything your colleagues tell you with skepticism, even its it’s just their name, goes a long way to making you the most popular person in the room, as everyone works hard to get on your good side.

Don’t miss tomorrow’s session!

If This Is What Witness Protection Is, Where Do I Sign Up??

Did you watch Al Otro Lado del Muro on Telemundo last night?

First of all no one was more surprised than Patrick to see a very much alive Sofia storm out of Agent Richie Garcia’s Office last night, with Joel right behind her, demanding a beer.

A beer is just what this great episode deserved!!

Apparently, here’s what Joel learned in a meeting with the FBI and Sofia, once he could stop yelling long enough to listen. He was very upset because Sofia was supposed to be dead.

After 10 years at the FBI, Sofia takes a backseat to no one, and yelled right back at Joel, and then they both blamed Richie, who was in the unenviable position of being a cross between a matchmaker and a divorce lawyer.

So for the past ten years, Sofia has been living in L.A., working at the FBI as an undercover officer, rescuing victims of human trafficking, photographing her daughter Alondra as she grows up, andhelping to build the Human Trafficking case against that really tall senator whose Spanish is even worse than mine.

Sofia is sticking with her “confession” that she killed Joel’s sister and single-handedly ran the Human Trafficking Ring, but after the attempt on her life while she was on her way to be executed, she agreed to go into Witness Protection because Richie knows she is innocent despite her protests that she is guilty, which is pretty much the opposite of the way things work in law enforcement.

All the while, she has been living in a beautiful, white-on-white loft with lots of exposed brick, a darkroom/studio/exhibit space, with subway tile in the kitchen.

I wondered if part of Witness Protection includes a new identity for Sofia as a hip, edgy artist, and if the FBI got her a book deal too.

I also hoped that none of my own witnesses are watching the series because they’d want that loft too.

Who is signing the expense vouchers in this case??

At first, Joel angrily rejected the idea of working with Sofia and Agent Garcia, and can you blame him?

Sofia still insists she killed his sister, even though Joel is the only one who believes that mishegoss anymore.

Richie tells Joel he’s gotten to know Sofia pretty good in the past ten years, and she’s not capable of killing anyone, and that Sofia has done a great job building the Trafficking case, which must be how Sofia pays the rent on that loft I’m still stuck on.

Meanwhile, I continued to wonder what supervisor in the FBI was still authorizing overtime and rent receipts on Sofia’s SuperCool loft and will she hire me, or in the alternative, whether I could somehow get into this witness protection program?

At the end, Joel decided he’ll join the team, if only for the opportunity to kill Sofia himself.

And now Sofia says she’ll never work with Joel.

They are sort of like the Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton of the FBI, and Poor Agent Garcia is like the head of the studio trying to hold the production together.

Meanwhile… in Mexico,

My favorite new character Don Carlos, who seems to be the REAL King of Mexico, broke the news to Ernesto and Paula that he can’t run for President, and is better suited to an Ambassadorship, where he can get drunk every day, behave as badly as he wants, and rack up millions of dollars in parking tickets.

This job has Ernesto’s name all over it, (and sounds pretty good to me too), but Ernesto wants to be El Presidente.

He feels he’s killed enough people to get there, and it’s his time.

Don Carlos is pretty persuasive, but the meeting was cut short when Julian called with an emergency; the emergency being that his girlfriend overdosed on what I think was Molly, and threw herself off the balcony.

Still wearing Julian’s tie.

Or should I say ONLY wearing Julian’s tie.

I guess he’s not in bow-ties anymore…

Julian is in big trouble unless Ernesto can cover it up.

And if he can’t, Paula can just kill anyone who annoys them.

And Eliza??

She had it out with Max and threw him out of The Bakery.

Max thinks that the father of her youngest son Rodrigo is Andres The Carpenter, but Rodrigo knows better, since there are (or were) photos of Max all over the house, and he’s a smart kid.

Well, at the very least he’s smarter than his older brother Tomas, who has agreed to hide the $30,000 his friend stole from the local gang while they were sleeping.

And how will Jennifer punish Eliza now, for having a second family with Max AND for turning down the invite to visit with Rodrigo because Charlie and Rodrigo are friends (also brothers), and also because Jennifer doesn’t realize that “Mrs Romero” is also “Mrs Sullivan?”

This can all only Break Bad, until of course, it Breaks Good!

Don’t miss a minute of this series!!

If I Was A Better Lawyer I Would Be Playing The Prosecutor In The Telenovela “Al Otro Lado Del Muro!!”

Last night’s episode of Al Otro Lado del Muro on Telemundo was the very definition of Must See TV, and if Telemundo would ever steam the entire run of the show I think viewers would end up literally glued to their couches, having not moved for approximately 100-120 hours.

First of all, I’m very proud that I had a tiny bit of input on Sofia’s confession and what’s coming NEXT by answering a few questions for the show’s writer Laura Sosa Pedroza about the criminal justice system in the USA!!

Watching the show last night, I felt that law school and 20 years in the business had FINALLY paid off!!!

While I watched the scene where Sofia confessed, I thought I should have included a clause in my contract where I play the prosecutor,

but then I remembered that there was no contract, and even if there had been one, I don’t know where the “clauses” go, or what a “clause” actually is.

I am not that kind of a lawyer.

Alright, now let’s get down to last night’s episode!

Sofia is the best evidence that a Beauty Queen can still be the smartest person in the room.

When she didn’t make any headway with Joel from Interpol, she called for the FBI.

Not only did she realize that it’s the the FBI, not Interpol, who is the police department who can get things done in the USA, but also she somehow knew that the FBI agent assigned to her case was going to be the very handsome and smart “Richie Garcia” played by one of my favorites, Christopher Millan !

Unfortunately, before Agent Garcia could meet up with Sofia and the prosecutor for what I would have described as a “proffer,” – a meeting to see what evidence Sofia could offer against others in exchange for leniency – Sofia had another visit from the always unwanted Paula.

Since Paula’s Boss and Boyfriend The Governor is now perpetually drunk and mooning over the loss of Sofia (even though he’s the one who framed her),

and since the Corrupt Congressman in the USA is now Confined to Quarters,

it’s once again left to Paula to get the job done,

especially since Los Pinos is breathing down the Governor’s neck, and not in a good way.

Plus, the Congressman has someone on the inside who told him that Sofia was asking to speak to the FBI.

Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.

Who could that Inside Man be??

So Sofia is escorted into the jail Visiting room reserved for visitors from Mexico who are visiting Sofia for the purpose of torturing her, and there is Paula.

Paula is a pragmatist – an evil pragmatist, but a pragmatist for sure.

One thing I love about Paula (even though I hate her) is that she never makes small talk.

In fact, I’ll bet that Paula has not once in her whole life ever discussed the weather, or sports scores, and I can tell you from experience could not survive a Baby Shower.

Anyway, so Paula is there to cut a deal with Sofia:

Confess to it all – the murder of Joel’s sister, the Human Trafficking – all of it, take the Governor out of it, and in exchange?

What’s in it for Sofia?

Paula will not tell the Governor where Alondra is, and will leave Eliza to raise her as her own.

And if Sofia doesn’t confess?

Then Paula will not only ship Alondra to Thailand, she’ll take Eliza’s daughter too.

For Sofia, there was no choice.

Next up for Sofia was her meeting with the FBI and prosecutor, to which Joel was invited, but told to keep quiet. The prosecutor pointedly reminded Joel that he had no jurisdiction there.

The prosecutor is correct, but I wanted someone to remind her a California prosecutor does not have jurisdiction over a murder in Mexico either.

So maybe she should have piped down herself and let the only person in that room with any jurisdiction over anything, FBI Agent Garcia, take over!!

No one in that Visiting Room was prepared for Sofia’s confession, which included killing Joel’s sister, running the Human Trafficking Ring out of her father’s ranch in Mexico, and even hacking the 2016 Presidential election.

And of course now that she was confessing to all of these things, Joel didn’t believe her at first, and rejected her confession,

but I think he eventually came around during their later, private meeting when she really sold it, a quality she learned as a pageant contestant.

The prosecutor was very unhappy with the confession, because now, as a witness to the confession, she can’t try the case, and lost the opportunity for scene visits to Mexico.

Agent Garcia was very skeptical of the confession, because he knows that a confession is almost never that easy to obtain. It will happen, but not before some pop, cigarettes, potato chips, McDonald’s and pizza.

And a bit of cat and mouse.

But in #AlOtroLadoDelMuro, Sofia walked into the room, fired her lawyer (a good thing because he was also Pastrana’s lawyer), and confessed to everything.

Everything.

Then she called Eliza and asked her to raise her daughter Alondra, because she was going to be locked up for awhile.

“Awhile” is one way to put it, if “Awhile” is another way to say “Forever” in Spanish.

Remember, she confessed to the pre-meditated, cold-blooded murder of a pregnant journalist because the pregnant journalist was about to expose her human trafficking ring of little girls.

I guess now that she is representing herself, she’s going to have to throw herself on the Mercy of the Court, and hope that Mercy has a big, cushion-y forgiving, lap.

And meanwhile, in other happenings on this great show, Steve barely remembers his wife, has no memory of his son, but can’t forget Eliza, who visited him when he had amnesia.

Max, Steve’s brother-in-law and Eliza’s husband, is doing a pretty good job of forgetting Eliza and the two kids he has with Eliza, as he and his Evil Battle-Axe of a Wife (his OTHER wife) Jennifer prepare to move to Manhattan.

At Sofia’s direction, Eliza returns the Human Trafficking evidence to Pastrana, who gives it to Paula, who gives it to the Congressman.

Patrick had the unenviable job of explaining to Joel why Pastrana was released without charges after Joel arrested Pastrana when he caught him trying to break into the Bakery/Apartment while Eliza was inside with Alondra, which actually is a Home Invasion.

No witnesses, and no jurisdiction.

If you ask me, since Joel is a witness to at least three different murders committed by Pastrana, including being accountable for the murder of a police officer in L.A., I found Patrick’s answer very suspicious and thought he might have been making it up as he goes along.

Angry as Joel was, Patrick cheered him up when he told Joel that Joel could sit in on Sofia’s proffer.

But I say keep your eyes on Patrick, which is actually pretty easy!

It looks like as Sofia prepares for life in prison, Life Goes On for Governor Ernesto as he publicly distances himself from Sofia and privately has alcohol-fueled empty sex with Paula in his office.

If I was Paula I’d demand a raise.

I cannot wait to watch the Sentencing Hearing, which I hope happens tonight.

Agent Garcia knows something is wrong with Sofia and that confession, Joel seems to accept the confession, and if you ask me, Patrick continues to be the Wild Card.

It is hard for me to evaluate him fairly because he has awesome dimples.

Don’t miss tonight’s episode!

Even A Simple Trip To The Grocery Store Is More Exciting In A Telenovela!

The start of the work-week can be tough, unless of course you watch telenovelas on Telemundo, in which case the start of the week can’t come soon enough!!

Don’t like Mondays?

Think Tuesdays are too tough?

Pobrecita!!

Every weekday is a great day if you watch telenovelas on #Telemundo because it’s just another week of mayhem and madness!

In “Al Otro Lado del Muro,” Sofia is having a Very Big Week so far, starting with running into Joel at the grocery store.

Of course she was at first ecstatic because she thinks that the Amor de su Vida has somehow miraculously found her at the Publix, until she realized that Joel had been convinced by a forged autopsy and lying Congressman that Sofia killed his beloved sister and the sobrino she was carrying.

Paula, Governor Martinez’ personal, private henchwoman, and Pastrana, Paula’s personal, Private henchman, did an excellent job of  building a fake case against poor Sofia, but Joel has disappointed me because he believed a Congressman.

My rule of thumb is to do the opposite of what any Congressman says.

I wish they had met up at the Whole Foods or Mariano’s, two fancy grocery stores in Chicago that have a wine and sushi bar, so that Joel could arrest Sofia under more quasi-date-like conditions.

The guy to keep our eye on in all of this continues to be Patrick, Joel’s Interpol Boss and BFF.

Is he part of the conspiracy or not??

As a seasoned law-enforcement professional, I’ll say this:

Patrick is so handsome I might not care.

Typically, criminals are not that handsome unless they are in telenovelas.

I’ve often thought that their bad looks might account for their criminality, and maybe we should be investing less in prisons and more in plastic surgery.

So as we say, the jury is still out on Patrick.

Meanwhile, we are all waiting to see how Steve recovers from the surgery to remove the aneurysm that might have been keeping him from recovering his memory.

However, even if he does remember he might pretend that he does not, because I’ll bet  Eliza is much nicer than his wife plus she’s an excellent baker.

Faking amnesia is something I’d like to try out, and I don’t know why it doesn’t happen more often. There’s really no downside when you think about it.

And just how did Interpol Joel find Sofia?

In Los Angeles?

With no leads?

Not an address or even a hint of an address, addresses from prior arrests, or a list of known associates?

Only lots and lots of head shots of Sofia, because she is so beautiful and was the First Lady of an Unnamed State in Mexico, so there were plenty of photo ops?

Well, armed with the most flattering photos of Sofia, and a budget with apparently unlimited overtime, Joel and Patrick hit the hot streets of L.A., showing her picture all over the place.

They got lucky when they showed Sofia’s photo to a woman who must have been in line with Sofia at the grocery store, because next thing you know, here comes Sofia, pushing a cart through the parking lot, just like the rest of us mere mortals.

At least Joel did not wait for  Sofia to unload her groceries into the hot car before he arrested her.

That would have been extra-painful.

Sofia could not have been happier when she thought Joel found her in the parking lot, and she was grateful that even though she had only gone to the grocery store, she had put on some lipstick and fixed her hair, remembering her mother’s advice that you should always have lipstick on, even to throw out the garbage, because you never know who you will run into.

However, Sofia’s hopes for a romantic reunion were dashed quickly when Joel put her in handcuffs (although for one moment Sofia worried that Joel might be a fan of “50 Shades…, which would have been a deal-breaker).

While Sofia was trying to understand what was happening, Joel was trying to get her to pipe down so he could give Sofia her Miranda rights without interruption, because believe me, if you ever try to give someone their Miranda rights and they keep interrupting you, you have to start all over again from the beginning or you will forget one.

And in the midst of all of this, there was Pastrana, who appears to be the most valuable member of the Governor’s team, shooting at either Sofia or Joel, or both of them.

Joel tried to capture Pastrana but he escaped with the help of two deadly Sicarios.

At the police station in the Interrogation Room, Joel confronted Sofia with the accusation that she killed his sister, which is definitely a conversation killer.

A stunned Sofia sat silent at first, stunned, sobbing, and of course ultimate denyied the accusation.

I could have told Joel this is not the best way to start questioning someone, if you want to get anywhere.

He should have offered her something to eat and drink, and a cigarette. A good interrogation always begins with good manners.

But Joel was never going to get anywhere with Sofia because The Lawyer No One Called For showed up.

If Joel had ever worked in Chicago he would have known the age-old saying: “You Don’t Want Nobody Nobody Sent For.”

That’s when the alarm goes off!

But he left Sofia alone with The Lawyer She Never Hired. Bad bad move.

Once this lawyer could not get a bond for Sofia, he began asking her about her daughter.

Sofia was already suspicious of him because the day before he suggested she call her daughter.

Now he wanted to know where she was, and it wasn’t to have the 10 year-old Alondra sign the contract.

Sofia realized that it was her husband who hired him!

Without a bond and without her daughter, Sofia will have to await trial in jail.

And meanwhile, her BFF Eliza, worried that Sofia never made it back from the store, went looking for her with Andres The Carpenter.

There was Sofia’s truck, and an excited bagboy to fill them in on what happened.

I’m pretty sure that the groceries were spoiled by the time Eliza and Andres got there.

Meanwhile, Max, married to Eliza, but Emotionally & Unlawfully Restrained by his Other Wife, Jennifer, has been stalking his family with Eliza, sitting in his car and watching them having a great time without him.

And Max’s battle-axe of a wife Jennifer (who would get along great with Andres Battle-Axe of a Wife, Maria) is stalking Max.

To paraphrase the great line from the movie “My Best Friend’s Wedding:”

“But Jennifer, who is stalking  you?”

This series is Absolutely Fabulous!!!

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