I Make Mistakes In México So You Don’t Have To…

I had never before been to Mexico,

I don’t speak much Spanish,

I don’t know The Metric System.

So why not move to Mexico from Chicago to write the Telenovela of my dreams?

What could go wrong….

Listen to my podcast to learn all about my mistake-filled life here, and please give it a great rating even if you have to lie!!

Gracias!!

#podcasts

#mexico

#telenovelas

#travel

https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/my-mexican-mistake-s/id1474401635

I Make Mistakes in Mexico City So You Don’t Have To…

I had never before been to Mexico,

I don’t speak much Spanish,

I don’t know The Metric System.

So why not move to Mexico from Chicago to write the Telenovela of my dreams?

What could go wrong?????

Listen to my podcast, NOW ON APPLE PODCASTS, to learn all about my mistake-filled life here, and please give it a great rating even if you have to lie!!

Gracias!!

#podcasts

#mexico

#telenovelas

#travel

podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/my-mexican-mistake-s/id1474401635

My Mexican Mistake(s)

I moved here to Mexico City on June 1, 2019, inspired by my love of telenovelas!

And I’d never been to Mexico before a day in my life!

And now I’m making lots of mistakes here, so you don’t have to!

The podcast is now on Apple, Spotify, Anchor and lots of other platforms. It’s somewhat awkward, very silly, occasionally funny, and always commercial-free!

Please give it a listen and a high rating, even if you have to lie.

podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/my-mexican-mistake-s/id1474401635

Not One Decorating Or Travel Tip Here. No Recipes Either.

Why You Need to Stop Decorating And Watch “La Reina del Sur 2” on Netflix

One of my favorite series, “La Reina del Sur 2” is now on @netflix everywhere, and coming soon to @telemundointl here in Mexico!

Only GOT beats it in the ratings, which isn’t surprising because basically LRDS is a NarcoNovela GOT, with it’s own cool acronym too.

There is a lot of driving in #lrds2 – and oddly some of it is by a ten-year old girl driving a Cadillac through the winding streets of Tuscany.

You’ll see things in this great series you’ve never seen before, including American actor (and Julia Roberts’ brother) Eric Roberts, speaking worse Spanish than I do.

The show has a wonderful cast, great music (thanks to @flaviomedinal and his back-up singers @robertowoficial & @lincpal) and is a lot of fun and a Truly Excellent Adventure. @calvatwitt as

“Batmancito” is going to break your heart, plus there’s nothing more fun than watching him argue with a ten-year old. Humberto Zurito is a blast as “The Narco Who Would Be President.”

The only real danger of his Presidency would be that Cabinet meetings could get confusing because he calls everyone “Mijo.”

Watch @reinadelsurtv on @Netflix for a very good time!!

#lrds #netflix #gringanovelera

Maybe The Aztecs Should Have Been A Little Nicer…

Listen to the most recent episode of my podcast: “The Mistakes Of The Aztecs!” https://anchor.fm/karen-kerbis/episodes/The-Mistakes-Of-The-Aztecs-e5022r

The Most Meta- Moment In My Life? Easy. I Was A Character In A Telenovela!!

All I wanted to do was learn Spanish from watching a telenovela- and somehow I became a character in one!!

As the hit FashionRomanceTelenovela “Betty En New York” has come to an end with SPECTACULAR ratings, things are just starting to heat up here in Mexico City, where the ratings for this fun and funny show are always #1 in it’s time slot.

Could these fantastic ratings be because I am actually a character in the show, thanks to Sandra Velasco, Luis Mi, Alejandro Vergara, Valentina Del Rosario Parraga and Lizandra Parra!

Yes, “Sofia” is represented in her divorce by Marcela’s good friend, “the Best Lawyer in the USA, “Karen Kerbis from Chicago!”

My favorite part of being a lawyer in this Novela is that just as it was when I actually was a lawyer in Chicago, my advice comes from watching telenovelas, because “Law and Order” was too unrealistic.

Here I am!!

I’m “Karen Kerbis, the Lawyer from Chicago!!”

Of course, I was very lucky to be played by the wonderful actress Lizandra Parra!

And doubly-lucky to have Amaranta Ruiz for my client!!! ❤️❤️

I will never forget that this happened to me!!

Muchas muchas gracias!!

😘😘😘😘

“Santa Diabla” Is On Again In México!!!

Hello! Today is Sunday July 21 and I’m coming to you LIVE from Mexico City!!

As most of you know I moved here from Chicago about six weeks ago to write the telenovela of my dreams, having been so inspired by the telenovelas I started watching just a few years ago. At first, it was just a crazy experiment, one of the many dangers of living in Chicago during a winter of Thundersnow.

But almost immediately, telenovelas, and writing about telenovelas, became my true passion and eventually led me here, to live in Mexico.

The first telenovela I ever wrote daily summaries about was “Santa Diabla,” by Jose Ignacio “El Chascas” Valenzuela

on Telemundo.

In #SantaDiabla, nothing was as it seemed, and that was not because I didn’t speak Spanish! The plot of “Santa Diabla” was that a woman named Santa Martinez pretended to be a woman named “Amanda Braun,” so she could marry Humberto Cano (and basically into the whole mean and crazy Cano family) in order to obtain her revenge on him and his family for framing her beloved husband Willy for rape and killing him in prison, but then right after Santa married Humberto, she met his saxaphone-playing, perenially-sad brother Santiago, and fell in love with him.

And then things became super-complicated and mysterious and funny after that.

I never missed one episode of the novela and

I wrote summaries of the show every night!

I did that all on my original Facebook page called “La Gringa Novelera,” and my real name was nowhere to be found.

After Santa Diabla ended, I continued to write about telenovelas daily.

A couple of years after I started, Facebook, even though they helped Russia help elect Trump, took a firm stand on my Facebook page, and insisted I change the Page to my name, so I did.

My telenovela-sensei Irma Lopez had the foresight to help me save my old posts chronicalling “Santa Diabla,” and I found them recently!

And now that here in Mexico, Telemundointl is showing “Santa Diabla” again, I thought I’d resurrect these old posts that I wrote about the show, timing them to the episode that’s playing .

The series just started about two weeks ago, and here’s what’s happened so far:

Santa, pretending to be Amanda, has already married Humberto, drugged him during their honeymoon so she could escape and go visit her son in the hospital, fallen in love with his brother Santiago, got her mom a job as a maid in the Cano house but no one knows it’s her mom; got her sister-in-law Paula a job as a legal secretary at Humberto’s law firm but no one is supposed to know they are related, the idea being to destroy the Cano family from the inside-out.

Meanwhile, Humberto’s sex-machine mistress Lisette is back in town, with their 18-year old son Ivan who Humberto just met for the first time. Meanwhile, another guy in town named Arturo who’s terrified of his racist mother who I call Mrs. Trump, but still wants her to support him, is too afraid to tell his mother that his girlfriend Mara is African-American, so he proposes to Lisette because his mother promised him a lot of money if he’d settle down and get married and give her a grandchild. Even though Lisette is Humberto mistress and lives off of the men she’s involved with, she is a more acceptable daughter-in-law to Mrs. Trump that Mara, who is beautiful, kind, hard-working, honest but African-American.

And in another part of town, The Robledo Family, BFF’s and law-partners with the Canos, have their own set of problems in the form of the madcap and sociopath daughter “Ines,” who is my favorite character on the whole show. Ines has also just returned from somewhere (The Psychiactric Ward?), and instantaneously fell in love with Santiago Cano, except Santiago is already madly in love with Amanda/Santa, who just married his brother Humberto.

Ines was played by the great Ximena Duque – who stole the whole show!!!!!

Got it??????????

Don’t worry – you will!!!

So I am going to try to re-post each one of these old posts to follow along with the series in repeats here in Mexico.

I am not changing or fixing anything, except for typos.

I missed a lot as I wrote my daily summaries of the show a few years ago, and got a lot of things wrong. But I think that made it fun and funny for me!

Let’s see how this experiment goes….

——————————————————————–

(From 21 August 2013)

Hola y buenos noches!

Ok, so “Santa Diabla” was very good tonight, but tomorrow looks even better because it involves a very telling DVD played at the Grand Opening of Humbertp’s new club, with all of the Cano (synonymous with “evil, except for Santiago) family and friends there, so this will cause much embarrassment for the Cano clan! I don’t know what’s on the DVD, but it’s gonna be good!!

Jorge (pronounced “George,” as per George) continues to try to kill his poor (but rich) father-in-law Mr Cano with poisoned Scotch, but Mr Cano knows something is up, so he poured a big glass for George too, poured one for himself, and made a toast. George panicked, dropped his tumbler full of poison scotch, and ran out of the room!

Mr Cano then smiled, and said something I did not understand any of because I DON’T SPANISH!!

For the same exact reason, I cannot tell if Barbara Cano (George’s wife and Humbertos sister) is in on the plot to murder her father.

Humberto and Santa have been married for about 72 hours, and already she has drugged him to get away to visit her secret son who was sick in the hospital, and made out with his brother Santiago at least twice.

But she can be forgiven because she only married Umberto to destroy his family to avenge her husband’s false imprisonment and true murder at the hands of most of the Cano family.

On the other hand, Umberto has already hooked up with his treacherous former mistress and mother of his (grown) son, the always-evil Lisette.

Who is supposed to marry Albert…

————————————————————–

Can’t wait to see what happens tomorrow!!

The Time Is Now To Start a New Telenovela!

Did you watch the Very Fast & Furious World Premiere of “Falsa Identidad” on Telemundo? It was Fantastic! And the next episode starts in just a few hours!

Basically, Luis Ernesto Franco, as “El Diego,” and Camila Sodi, as “Isabel,” had better be Fast because The Bad Guys are Furious!

So basically, here’s the story so far:

El Diego has been in trouble with everyone ever since his father died when El Diego was a little boy, and before he had an “El” in front of his name.

El Diego and his older brother Eliseo are very tight, and Elisio always bails Diego out of trouble with their mother “Fernanda,” the Very Scary Yet Always Elegant Sonia Smith, who is now married to a creep that no one likes (except maybe Fernanda.

Meanwhile, back at the Ranch (literally), Mafioso Gavino Gaona has a huge house filled with:

-a wife he hates (but wants to possess),

-a daughter named “Circe” who is also a Falconer, and has the coolest name on the show, who he hates but wants to possess (Samadhi Zendejas);

-a huge staff made up of a lot of men who will kill anyone he wants,whenever he wants, who he does possess;

-a right-hand man named “Joselito” player by the always-great Uriel Del Toro, who might be hiding a False Identity of his own, who hates/loves Circe, and definitely hates El Franco,

– and a lot of other people who Gavino hates, and who hate him, but they all seem to live in the same house.

No one plays a perpetually angry and bitterly-disappointed-in-his-non-killer-children Narco better than the always fantastic Sergio-Goyri.

So El Diego and his BFF David (played by the always excellent and very popular Pepe Gamez) get caught stealing oil from Don Gaona’s pipeline.

I thought they had struck oil, and I was about to watch a telenovela version of the “Beverly Hillbillies,” but when they ran away as lots of big black cars drove up shooting at them, I realized there was a big difference between stealing oil and striking oil.

El Diego’s mother Fernanda was very angry that her son was stealing oil from the rich and corrupt and giving it to the poor, especially since the oil belonged to Don Gaona, her new husband’s patron.

As she was trying to throw him out, his brother Elisio was running interference for him, but Fernanda wasn’t having it.

Unfortunately, while Diego’s mother and brother were fighting over how bad Franco is because he stole oil from the NarcoBoss, El Diego then stole the Narco Boss’ much younger wife.

While Diego and Mrs. Gavino Gaona dallied in a tool- shed with no comfortable furniture, Joselito found them and took a lot of photos, which he then gleefully showed to Mr Gavino Gaona.

An angry (well, angrier) Gavino then sent his men, and oddly, his daughter Circe The Falconer, to kill El Diego.

Circe was in the best position to kill El Diego but she didn’t because she loves him, and she’ll be lucky if her father doesn’t kill her once The Evil Joselito tells on her.

MEANWHILE,

Poor Isabel, played by the lovely and talented Camila Sodi, married the wrong guy, and she knows he’s the wrong guy because he beats her up all of the time.

How does he get away with it?

His father is the Chief of Police.

So Isabel can’t leave because her husband will kill her.

And she can’t stay because her husband will kill her.

Since it’s bad either way, Isabel takes her two children and flees to her friend Zoraida’s house, where Zoraida lives as the housekeeper for … wait for it … ELISIO!!

When Eliseo finds a whole new family hiding in his kitchen he demands to know (not unreasonably) who they are.

Here is how pretty Camila Sodi is:

Even with Band-Aids on her face, she’s still beautiful.

MEANWHILE,

El Diego learns that his girlfriend Mrs Gavino’s body has been found hanging from a bridge attached to a note that says “We’re looking for you…”

Diego is pretty sure that the “You” referred to in the note is Diego.

When Diego’s stepfather learns that there is a price on his head, he calls Don Gavino to turn him in.

I’ll be honest: I don’t think step-dad needs the money; I think he’s just that bad.

So Diego flees to his brother Eliseo’s house.

When Elisio learns that Isabel and her children are hiding from her abusive husband and the Chief of Police, and he realizes that he’s got to get his brother out of town, he solves two problems in one brilliant way:

Diego and Isabel can flee together, pretending to be married.

Even though they just met in the hallway between the kitchen and the living room, they agreed to do it.

If this relationship works out, it will change the face of courtship forever!

The only catch was there were not enough passports for Isabel’s daughter, so Isabel had to leave the teenager with Eliseo, who vowed to raise her as his own.

This is a very generous gesture by Eliseo, who apparently hasn’t ever met a teenage girl before, and is not prepared for the tears, screams, unreasonably hurt feelings, massive, massive texting, and eye-rolling.

Think this is a lot for one episode???

You don’t know the half of it!!

And don’t miss tonight’s episode on Telemundo!

If you’ve always wanted to watch a telenovela now is the time!!

With “Falsa Identidad” just starting, and my recaps of the show (and the English subtitles, if you want), this is the perfect show for you!!

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!

“Mary For Mayor” Is A New Kind Of Telenovela! With Many Of Your Old Favorites!!

Que tal!

Mary for Mayor” is a new kind of telenovela, and it’s a lot of fun! It was available on Netflix, and now you can find it on Venevision USA!

Mary For Mayor

MFM is a sly story combines the best of the old and the new: It’s a new way to watch telenovelas, but it’s full of your old favorites too. It’s like a novela family reunion, but without the possibility of a family murder. “Mary for Mayor” is not like any novela I have seen before! Some of the Stars you’ll recognize are Anthony Alvarez, Katie Barberi, Rosalinda Rodriguez, Alfredo Huereca, Nicolas Maglione, to name just a few!

I know … I know … I am a late arrival to the telenovela party that has been going on for generations, but ever since I watched my first novela a few years ago (because I knew I’d learn Spanish and have more fun learning the language from telenovelas than from a teacher), I have been devoted to them. You know that I pay close attention to them, and when I watched “Mary for Mayor” I saw a series that is fast, fresh and fun.

The show has many of the qualities you love in your favorite novelas and a terrific cast we recognize from Novelaville but with a new twist: It is bilingual in the exact way many of us are – the characters fall into English as naturally as they speak Spanish, and it just fits. Don’t worry! When a character speaks English, the dialogue is subtitled in Spanish, which not only works perfectly for viewers who are more comfortable with Spanish-language television, but it is also something that is very helpful for someone like me, who is trying to learn the language.

The transitions from Spanish to English (and vice-versa) are seamless, and give the show a very authentic quality. Your ears, your eyes and your heart will love watching Spanish and English just melt into each other.

Mary for Mayor is the story of Mary Ramirez (Tatiana Rodriguez) who lives in Rincon del Rio, a small town in New Mexico, with her husband Ricardo (Anthony Alvarez), and their three children: teenage daughter Paula (Gaby Borges), who spends most of her time reading or yelling at her equally teenage brother Ricky (Xavier Rubalcava) , who spends all of his time recording embarrassing family moments on his cellphone and posting them on Snapchat, and their younger brother Georgie (Nicolas Maglione and his trademark blue glasses!)

You know Mary’s a great mom because when Georgie throws up on her, she is more worried about him than the fact that he actually just threw up on her. It’s a good thing for the family that Mary is such a great mom because Papi is far less interested in his own kids than he is his own toys. And when I say “toys,” I mean other women. To say that Ricardo has a “roving eye” would be incorrect because that phrase suggests his eye is even in sitting an eye-socket. It’s not. That eye never rests. That’s how busy his eye is.

The Premiere of “Mary For Mayor” is equally busy! The show opens with a lot of plot-lines kicking off: Ricardo’s father Mayor Odilon Ramirez (Alfredo Huerca) is about to finally retire, but he is plotting the nomination of his successor so that he can still rule. Rincon may be a small town, but that always makes the Mayor even more important, right? And Rincon may be small, but it’s big enough to have its very own hipster who is also a reporter very wise to the Mayor, who has a bit of a crush on Mary too.

Meanwhile, across town, we are treated to a fiery sermon from Padre Armando (Sebastian Ligarde) while we get the rundown on Rincon del Rio from the long-dead founder of the town, Padre Menudo (Carl Mergenthaler). Apparently, Padre Menudo is up for beatification because he somehow founded a town where everyone is really great-looking, and no one ever gets divorced. Even Padre Menudo was exceptionally handsome, and we know this because as he narrates the opening of the show (from The Great Novela Beyond),he wants us to know two things: That because nothing is more important to the citizens of Rincon del Rio than The Family, no one in the history of the town has ever gotten divorced.

The Padre also wants us to know that the bronze sculpture of him that guards the doors of the only church in town does not do him justice: according to Padre Menudo, he was much better looking.

The show, and the town, are drenched in colors that pop out at you from everywhere, and the local color, in the form of the townspeople, is the same. The tone of “Mary for Mayor” is funny, and if I had to describe the show in only one word, “sly” is the word that comes to mind.

You have to watch the show closely, and I’d recommend watching it twice just because there are a lot of jokes scattered throughout this fast-paced show.

“Mary For Mayor” opens with a bang on two fronts when Mary’s three kids crash a shopping cart into the middle of one of Padre Armando’s awful lectures that are all anti-divorce, and pro- “The Family.” He is very clear: No one in town can get divorced ever. His rapt parishioners may hate each other, but they had better stick it out. The only Divorce Court is in Heaven, and that’s only because someone in dead.

You know who would hate the town of Rincon Del Rio?

Divorce lawyers.

You know who would love the town of Rincon Del Rio?

Funeral Directors.

The other explosion in the show happens at Mary’s house when she comes home early to change clothes for The Mayor’s party and walks in on her husband Ricardo engaged in very athletic and extremely extra-marital sex. It is as this point that you realize this show is going to turn convention on its head: Mary does not scream and yell. There are no tears, knives or guns with cries of “Matame!!” (Not that there’s anything wrong with that…)

Instead, Mary closes the bedroom door behind her, thinks about what she just saw, and realizes that she feels nothing. Absolutely nothing. No anger, no sadness, no homicidal intent. Nothing. Mary’s ambivalence towards her husband runs throughout this episode and is the catalyst for her later, monumental decision. Ricardo does nothing to help his cause when he emerges from the bedroom in a silk lounging robe wearing a cowboy hat which he discreetly moves a bit lower while insincerely apologizing for the “indiscretion” which meant nothing to him. Why? Because The Family is the most important thing in the world to him. And he says this with a straight face.

Mary and Ricardo put his infidelity aside long enough to take the kids to the Abuelo the Mayor’s Garden Party, where he will announce his successor. Well, a different successor, since the one he had in mind died very suddenly after eating over a pound of chocolate. We get our first glimpse into the Royal House of Ramirez at the party, where we watch Mary’s in-laws, Lord and Lady Mayor (Katie Barberi) preside over the townspeople like an off-brand Lord and Lady Crawley from “Downton Abbey.” They may be Rincon’s First Couple, but it’s clear that they think they are Second Coming of President and Nancy Reagan with a touch of Marie Antoinette.

One of the best bits in the show are the visual jokes surrounding this couple: The Mayor presides over Rincon from inside of a life-size replication of The Oval Office, where his desk is covered in bobble-head dolls of the former presidents, and for inspiration, he fondles and gnaws on a Pez dispenser with a Donald Trump head. The walls are lined with paintings of former presidents with the Mayor’s head superimposed on them. When he is not in his Oval Office, he presides over the town’s affairs (and perhaps his own) while sitting in a very lavish chair that comes as close to a throne as a Mayor in Smalltown, USA can get away with.

Katie Barberi is perfect and so funny as his wife, the First Lady of Rincon.

She wears white gloves, Adolfo, and knocks on her own front door so that her maid (wearing a traditional Mexican dress from another century) has to open it and escort her upstairs to bed. This show is so visual, you can watch it with the sound off and you’d be able to follow it, but don’t deprive yourself of the great dialogue too!

Mary is genuinely unsure about what her next move should be. But after watching a few betrayed and sobbing wives humiliated on a “reality” show hosted by a bubbly “La Chapina” (Nadia Escobar),doing some soul-searching, and eating lots of ice cream with her “I’ve Seen It All” mother (Rosalinda Rodriguez, who is fantastic in this series), Mary ends the first episode with a decision that may bring a plague of biblical proportions to Rincon del Rio – she decides to divorce her husband!!

The series takes off from there, with moments of surprise, hilarity, romance, and a few dark moments, too. I don’t want to reveal too much here – but it’s a roller-coaster of novela fun. And the easy give-and-take between Spanish and English feels so natural – it feels exactly how so many of us live our lives. You may speak Spanish to your parents and English to your kids, and somehow it all works out and everyone understands each other! “Mary for Mayor’ is a new kind of novela – and it’s a novela for right now!

To keep up with my sideways views on novelas, follow me on Facebook and Twitter @gringanovelera!