TW: brief mention of abusive relationships
I have no shame in admitting that I have an affinity for romances— and while I love to cuddle up with the occasional rom-com, it’s the deep, all-consuming love stories that set my fingers (and perhaps, another part of my body) tingling. If you, too, are interested in being triggered into daydreams of a love that has the power to propel you to extraterrestrial worlds— then you need to watch the TV show Cable Girls (or, as it was originally titled: Las Chicas del Cable) on Netflix.
Here are a couple of reasons to binge watch both seasons of the Spanish show this spring-break:
1. The Women
The women in this show are not only extraordinarily gorgeous, they are also intelligent, ambitious, and motivated individuals who are attempting to create a place for themselves in a world that treats them as secondary citizens. More importantly, they are imperfect. The show itself is set in Spain in the 1920s (which means that the costumes are to die for), and is portrayed largely through the perspective of the women in it. All of these women come from different backgrounds, and each of them are dealing with a different set of problems: one yearns for freedom, the other is suffering in an unhealthy and abusive relationship, while yet another is struggling to find her identity in a world that treats gender as a binary concept. These women end up working in a cable company together and in the process develop friendships that, we later find, are bigger than any love story that takes place in the show (and there are many love stories).
2. The Men
The men in the show, too, are imperfect — albeit, much more so than the women. One of the main character’s love interests (Alba, also known as Lidia) is already married, while the other man (her husband) makes some questionable decisions when faced with the discovery that she was once romantically involved with his best friend– a discovery that, for the lack of a better phrase, pisses him off. However, while the patriarchal figures in the show are included in the bracket of abusive husbands and fathers, there is also no scarcity of men who want a better world for women– or, who at the very least, acknowledge the patriarchal nature of the society they reside in. Lidia’s love interests in the show are perfect examples of such men, as is her boss in the second season of the show– who actually fights for her to get credit for something she has worked on when another woman attempts to steal it from her and hand it to a man instead. Also, not to be superficial, but Spaniard men are gorgeous!
3. The Relationships
The main character of the show, (Lidia, formerly known as Alba), is proof that love can and does strike twice: and also that it is very difficult to choose between a man you had once been in love with, and a man who you have recently fallen in love with. Personally, I went from shipping one team to the next as I went from the first to the second season of the show (I won’t give names because I wouldn’t want to prejudice viewers before they’ve had the chance to form their own opinions).
While we watch a love story between two former teenage sweethearts, who were tragically separated, and then reunited ten years later (total swoon-worthy and utterly romantic content, I assure you), we are also given a new exceedingly charming and adorable love interest who falls in love with the new Alba (who is, according to herself, completely different from the person she used to be when she was a teenager). These two love interests: namely Francisco and Carlos, in turn, are also best friends– making the entire situation a fairly messy yet utterly delicious and intriguing situation. That said, this love-triangle isn’t the only one the show deals with. One of the most interesting triangles is between Carlota and Sara: who begin a relationship that is inconceivable in the 1920s. This relationship is made even more complicated when Carlota’s boyfriend is added to the mix — and it turns out that he is okay with it, and all at once they are in a love triangle that is rarely explored by Hollywood. This is a polyamorous one, in which all three people share some form of love for the each other. What I really appreciated about the show was that it doesn’t treat it’s bisexual and transgender characters as tokens for inclusivity and liberalism, but it actually makes an effort to treat each of the characters as individuals with as much depth, emotion, and perhaps even more challenges, than their heteronormative characters.
While this show makes for a very engaging watch because of the love story that enfolds in it, it is not just a love story: both seasons of the show have intriguing plots that include a crime and a murder and the aftermath of those events– all of which is tied together with a social commentary that, despite being set in the 1920’s is still (unfortunately) relevant to us today.
If you would like to write for Her Campus Mount Holyoke, or if you have any questions or comments for us, please email [email protected]