It’s been a rough couple of years for Team Michael fans, and quite honestly for Jane the Virgin fans overall. Following the shock death of Jane’s beloved husband Michael midway through season three, Michael made an even more shocking return in the closing scene of season four, setting up a dramatic final run for the CW dramedy when it returns in late March. And while actor Brett Dier’s role was kept strictly under wraps for the year and a half before Michael’s surprise revival, star Gina Rodriguez knew that he’d be back.
“At first it was like, Michael’s going to die, and that was really huge and really difficult, because we love Brett Dier,” Rodriguez said during the show’s Television Critics Association press day on Thursday in Pasadena. “It was really, really devastating to me, and then [Jane the Virgin showrunner Jennie Snyder Urman] said, ‘But he’s coming back!’ I had just stopped sobbing and was like, Okay! And then it’s like, ‘But you can’t tell anyone for a year and a half.’ And I didn’t!”
Urman noted during the panel that resurrections are a major trope in telenovelas, to which Jane the Virgin has always paid overt homage, and so the decision to bring Michael back felt organic. “We have a telenovela writer in the writers room, and I asked her Can we do this?, and she said, ‘Jenni, you have to. You must do that. That is what would happen in a telenovela, he would come back.’”