‘Valeria’ is another arbitrary by-the-numbers slice-of-life drama that is primarily targeted towards the Spanish demographic. It truly shines when it proclaims its values about family, friendship, and career and even leaves you with a lesson or two about it. But in all of its moralizing and hindsight, there’s nothing exceptional. It seemingly borrows ideas from slick dramas of the 90s, especially ‘Sex and the City,’ but even these abstracts don’t come off as reverences of any kind. Instead, it seems more like the creators of the show have simply adopted the generic mannerisms and atmosphere of other similar shows that created quite an uproar back in the day.
To put it simply, ‘Valeria’ is a guilty pleasure and just reflects on the day-to-day snags of its characters. It is neither a representation of any didactic subject matters nor is it a graphic portrait of the society in general. Nonetheless, it remains focused on what it intends to offer and gives you pure and simple entertainment.
Valeria Plot Summary
The show predominantly revolves around the titular protagonist, Valeria, who is a struggling writer. After suffering from writer’s block, her self worth as a writer begins to dwindle. And the fact that her photographer husband also struggles to stay afloat, makes things even worse. For a while, Valeria is even forced to give up on her dreams. That’s when, with the help of her three best friends, she decides to delve into a whole new genre of writing and attempts to regain control over her seemingly lost life. This not only leads to a lot of traction between her and her husband but also potentially threatens her bond with her friends. While Valeria tries her best to grab life by the horns by dealing with her past and her present, even her three best friends go through the ups and downs of life.
At its outset, as intended, one aspect of ‘Valeria’ that first grabs your attention is its four leading characters—Carmen, Nerea, Lola, and Valeria. They’re all unique and have been intentionally given personalities that not only contrast but even complement each other. Valeria, the protagonist, was once quite certain about what she wanted in life and even married the man she loved. But after all these years, she now perceives herself moving in a completely different direction. In the quartet, Nerea turns out to be the most likable character. She sticks to her morals and never does anything to hurt others but deep down, she too struggles with forming meaningful relationships and accepting herself.
The other two female leads, Lola and Carmen, are both extremely outgoing. While Carmen is often weighed down by her high expectations from her love life, Lola strives to live the way she wants to and listens to nobody. All four characters of the series, although a little trite, are well written and almost all of their actions are well justified. For obvious reasons, the main narrative of the show only focuses on Valeria and her relationship with her husband. But every once in a while, it shifts its focus onto the secondary stories of Nerea, Lola, and Carmen, which adds a whole new spicy undertone to it.
I’m not at all familiar with the original books it has been adapted from. But one look at the show makes it evident that its viewership will be divided into two different ends of the spectrum. There will be viewers who’ll appreciate how it treats its characters and the relationships between them with brash vigor and feminist risqué. On the other hand, there will others who will be a bit hateful towards its screeching selfish characters and shallow social outlook.
I’ll take more of a middle ground here. For me, personally, even with all of its flaccid stereotyping, ‘Valeria’ seems self-aware. Although its emotional resonance feels weak, it finds its feet with its creativity and stylized editing. Moreover, it also ticks all the right boxes for a “chick flick” to be enjoyable and cherishes all the base banalities of the genre that it attempts to instill. So, in conclusion, if you’re looking for a show that aptly reflects on the blazing trials of modern women, it is highly recommended. If not, there isn’t much in it for you.
Read More: Valeria Filming Locations