Friday, May 09, 2014

Hidden between the lines: What Clara actually said to Marina

Right, last week, may 1st. It's Thursday. Usually a good Clarina day and oh they really delivered. We get a few scenes, first Cadu can't perform, then Clara tells Marina she can’t leave Cadu, Clara tells Ju how divided she is. I had actually started writing right after the episode aired, but it turned out to be way huge, was writing for hours and hours, saw parallels with other scenes and I wanted to make a whole big article out of it. The first scene alone turned out to be a massive block of text and I kind of had troubles seeing the end, underestimated the huge job that would be. Typed for hours all through the night and I was already sleep deprived from the night before so at some point I simply had to put it away and go to sleep. Unfinished, which I hate. My best stuff happens when I get into major ramble mode and I want to stay in that focus. Stepping away takes me out of it and I’m always afraid that I will forget all these things I still have to say, which is usually a lot. When I got back to it the next day, I couldn’t immediately get back into it. I had stuff to do, new scenes were also airing, new stuff happened, 10 pages written but had to take some distance from it. I didn’t look at it for a couple of days. I wanted to cover two more scenes in this article, well, two and a half maybe, but I realized it’s just going to be a *lot*. I kind of put it aside, trying to figure out if I was going to make it a very long thing, include all the scenes and the connections between them, but it felt like such a huge job still to do that I kind of put it away for a bit cause so much other stuff was happening and I was undecided. Much like Clara actually, the parallels are everywhere it seems.

Of course it kept nagging at me. It’s such wonderful stuff to write about and it bugged me that I had this written and it was now doing nothing but I didn’t quite know how to tackle it. Finally I just decided, screw this, it needs to be finished or Clara and Marina will have grandchildren by the time I finally post it and it won’t matter anymore but by that time, it’ll still be itching. Since the first scene alone is quite elaborate (‘quite’), this part will only cover the scene where Clara and Marina talk, the rest is still half written, half chaos and a touch of bullshit, which is how all my posts look before they become the flowing wave of rambled details and descriptions that somehow makes sense and end up on the blog. Well they make sense to me, anyway. So, that said, let’s finally get to the stuff you’re really here for.


There were so many wonderful scenes and I saw and felt so much raw emotions everywhere, so much double meaning all over the place, where on earth to begin? First we had Cadu passing out and Clara understandably freaking out about it. Then Clara told Marina she couldn’t leave Cadu. Then Ju and Clara had a heart to heart. Then we saw Clara remembering her talk with Marina.

Let’s start in order.

The Cadu/Clara shower experience was one I could have done without, but since it’s pretty relevant and also kind of scary if that shit happens to you, I won’t skip it completely. In short, Clara is in a shower, Cadu wants to join her and the first thing she does when he shows up is to cover up her boobs. Yes, her husband wants to join her in the shower and she covers her boobs. I'm sorry but I laughed so hard I think I woke the cat next door. Seems like those gay instincts have taken over more than she thought, huh? Anyway, they shower and start touching each other, but when they make their way to the bed, LGBT karma happens. Cadu passes out mid grope and to be honest, it's Gio he's groping, who the hell wouldn't pass out, right? But anyway. He just slumps over, totally out for the count and it takes Clara a couple of seconds before she figures out this is actually a very bad thing.

She freaks the hell out, keeps yelling his name until he eventually comes to after a minute. She wants to call Silvia and everybody else in the building but he doesn’t want anybody to know he has trouble performing lately, so he insists she leaves him to rest and sends her off to her mother to welcome her back from Italy. Clara was in a total panic mode and I know I’m making jokes about it but to be honest, I can’t blame her, it’s a scary situation if that happens to you without a heart condition involved, so imagine what it’s like for them.

Moving on to the next scene, we’re getting to the good stuff now. The conversation is in Marina’s studio, with Clara having just lived through that horrible experience of Cadu nearly dying on her and the understandable panic that followed. They are talking about it, Marina is calm and supportive. They discuss the transplant, Marina tries to comfort her, saying it’s not certain it’ll come to that. Clara replies it’s scary to even think about it. She’s really scared and it’s killing her. Marina says that’s understandable, Clara cares about Cadu a lot.

The whole atmosphere changes when Clara suddenly says Marina’s name. She says it very seriously. Clara then tells her ‘I'm not playing with you’. What she means is, ‘This is a very serious thing I’m about to say. I’m already about to cry and I know you can see I am hurting, I can see you are hurting too but my message is too important, so I need you to listen now more than ever. I need you to really hear this.’

Marina instantly knows enough to be afraid of what she will hear. Clara's tone and face are enough to let Marina know immediately that what she’s about to hear isn't something she actually wants to. If it was anything she wanted to hear, Clara wouldn’t have such a serious face on her and she wouldn’t have said her name like that. She doesn’t want to hear this and she braces herself by ever so slightly lowering and tilting her head. Clara says 'Everything that happened between us has been real, it was and is very important to me'.

What she doesn't say but what’s also very important to her is that Marina knows this. Clara has never talked to Marina like she is doing right now. So soft, so gentle, so honest, so completely from the heart, she tries to cushion the blow. Make her understand why. She knows Marina doesn’t want to hear it and she doesn’t want to say it but she has to. Her eyes are pleading, please forgive me for having to do this, I don’t want to.

She then tells her 'I've rediscovered myself as a woman.' By saying this, she acknowledges that that’s because of Marina, that she is aware of it and how much that matters to her.

By saying this, she acknowledges that that’s because of Marina, that she is aware of it and how much that matters to her. Marina’s reaction to this is mixed. There is pride, happiness, but also pain, fear, agonizing anticipation. She knows there is more to come, more things to listen to that she doesn’t want to hear, she is scared. But the pride is evident. From day one, from the first moment she laid eyes on her, she saw the Clara that was hidden. From day one she was on a mission to bring that woman out. She knew she succeeded, she saw the change, but now for the very first time, she actually hears Clara say it. Clara not only acknowledges that she has become a different woman, she also admits that Marina and all the things they experienced together were the reasons that Clara became who she is now, who she was supposed to be. Marina hears this underlying message and she is happy for Clara that she gets to be the woman she loves to be, hearing Clara admit that she became who she was supposed to be because of Marina, ignites the flames in her heart.

It’s this acknowledgement that tells Marina that Clara is aware how close their bond is, how she touched her heart, how much of an influence she has been, how deep into each other’s souls they can see. Not only could they see what was hidden, they also knew how to bring it out. This confession comes straight from the heart and she knows it and that’s why it delights her, but at the same time hurts and scares her even more, anticipating what else Clara has to say. She knows it will hurt before she even knows the words, before it’s said. She knows cause Clara is already pleading with her eyes to forgive her, she knows the rest of the message isn't one she'll like. Up until now, she only heard Clara say how important she is to her. That warms her up but at the same time she knows the message is not over. She fears Clara is going to close the door. Having just heard her say how close to each other’s heart they are, would make closing that door even more unbearable. She doesn’t want her to say the words she’s about to, whatever they are. She fears Clara is about to make a decision and she knows that a decision made now, in this situation, isn’t the one she wants her to make. She doesn’t want her to make a decision. Not now. So she attempts to offer Clara a way out before she even knows what ‘out’ actually is, before she knows the exact decision. Don’t close the door on me now, I can wait.

‘I’m not demanding anything from you,’ she says. The subtitles might as well read, ‘I don't need you to make a decision now, I’m not asking you to. A decision that’s made now, isn't one either of us will like and it will likely close the door. Please keep the door open, please don't close it. If whatever you say is going to kill us both, please take this way out that I am offering you of whatever it is you’re about to tell me.’

Her voice cracks as she says it, the tears are on the verge of breaking out and frankly, so are mine. The fear of closing this door forever is not something she knows how to deal with, she wouldn’t know where to begin. So she gives Clara a way out. She never asked her to leave him. She never asked her for anything. She wanted to beg her, but she knew that Clara leaving her husband was not an option, not in this situation. Not with his heart giving out. The worst part… She understands. So she never asked. So she doesn’t want Clara to make that decision, but she fears she might.

Clara replies, ‘No, but I want to explain it to you. I want you to understand my reasons.’

Reasons. I want you to understand my reasons. This is so important, it’s giving me the chills even now. The reasons matter and they matter a lot. By first telling her how all of this has been real, how she felt all of it, how this wasn’t a dream they were living, they didn't turn a corner on a movie set, this is not a movie. It's real life. It's their reality. A reality in which Clara knows they are in love and she’s about to admit it.

The exact words she uses next are the ones that hide this declaration of love.

‘I can’t leave Cadu.’

‘Can’t’. Those words are key. She doesn’t say ‘I won’t’. She doesn’t say ‘I don’t want to’. She says ‘I can’t’. What matters here is everything Clara says before she tells her she can’t leave Cadu. How she knows it is real, how important everything was, how she has become a different woman because of it, how she needs Marina to understand her reasons, there’s your declaration of love, right there. The choice isn't hers. If the choice were made based on love, she would choose. Clara desperately wants Marina to know that love is not a factor. That’s a joy, a curse, a blessing and torture all at once. The love exists, but she can’t leave. She knows it, the love exists. More importantly, she wants Marina to know that she knows it.

‘The reason that I can’t leave him is not that I don’t love you, the reason is that I can’t leave him now.’

Significant detail, they both know now that they are at the stage of love where leaving a husband is one of the options. If it wasn’t one of the options, there would be no reason to have this incredibly emotional conversation about why you’re not leaving him. The decision to leave is included in the multiple choice, in the options. That’s the kind of love between them. If you don't love enough to leave, then that's what you say. You don’t consider leaving your husband for a crush. You leave for a love that might just be bigger than the one you are living now. That is what they are discussing and they both know it.

It’s also important because not only do they both know it, they also now know that they are both aware of this, that they are on the same page about it. This impacts Marina cause Clara not only acknowledged it, but she wanted to make sure that Marina knew exactly how aware she was of just how deeply this all goes. It impacts Clara exactly cause of that, because she is willing to admit it to Marina, it matters to her that Marina knows Clara is on the same page as she is. It’s important to her that Marina knows that love between them exists, that leaving her husband is one of the options. It’s just not an option that she can take, right now. It'll become an option once this situation is over, when she can finally sit down, take a breath and have a heart to heart with her own wishes and desires and ask herself what she wants. She's not able to do that yet, but she knows that the love between them is so strong, that it's one of the options.

Clara is not just opening her heart to Marina here. She’s opening it to herself as well. This might actually be the first time she has openly admitted to these things in this manner. She admitted to being in love before, to her sister, to herself. But never like this, never this personal,  never face to face with the woman she loves. Never with that vulnerability in her eyes, the pleading for forgiveness for having to do this to her, the fear of anticipation of what those eyes are about to see. She’s fearing Marina’s reaction. She’s giving the news that she can’t leave in the most delicate manner possible, with a declaration of love hidden inside the message.

She knows it will sting her, she knows because she feels it too, she wishes it won’t, that she didn't have to. Right here, this is the woman she loves and she is knowingly hurting her. But she has to do it. If she has to do it, she’ll do it the best way she can: by acknowledging her love at the same time. Acknowledging that her feelings for Marina are so strong, they've even made her consider leaving her husband.

‘I can’t leave Cadu’, she says. She can barely get the last word out, it’s almost as if she wants to wrap them into soft pillows. As her voice abandons her when she says his name, she turns her head to the side, maybe it’ll hurt a bit less. She knows rationally that it won’t, but instinctively she tries whatever she can. Not only does she not want to say the words, she doesn’t want Marina to hear them. But she has to. If she were free, she wouldn’t have to say them, she’d probably tell her she loves her and kiss her instead. But she’s not free. Love is not a factor. Not in this decision.

Marina is actually slightly relieved. She thought Clara might close a door forever, but this is something she already knew, something she understood. If you are expecting to be locked out forever, you can't help but be slightly relieved when it turns out to be bad news that you already knew. Or hear the woman you love say that you've changed everything, that she found herself because of you, to hear her admit between the lines that she does love you. So the painful anticipation of bad news disappears from her face.

She answers, 'I know, I already told you that, I admire you even more for it. I admire and support you. You know why?' She pauses for a moment before she continues. 'Because I want you to be in peace.' She doesn’t want to be the thing that gives her stress. She wants to be the thing that gives her joy. She understands Clara can’t leave. She understands the situation very well. It’s also why she told her moments before that she’s not asking for anything. She doesn't want to risk pushing her away by forcing her to choose, while her husband was dying, she'd lose. So there is no pressure, she's not asking. She’s only offering.

And the offer is what comes next. 'There's something else. I don't need exclusivity.' she says. 'To me, love and ownership don’t match.' I have seen some people comment that this means Marina doesn’t believe in monogamy. I could not disagree more. What she means is in my opinion, that Clara is staying with Cadu now cause she simply has to. She’s belonged to Cadu for years. Right now, she’s driven by her loyalty to him. She cares about him, he needs her, she’s staying. That’s the ownership she’s talking about, that loyalty. The love she mentions, is the love Clara and Marina feel for each other. They are two different things. Sure Clara loves Cadu, but the actual drive to stay with him right now is loyalty, because he needs her. If there was no heart problem, the drive right now would be love and she'd be exploring it. If she were in a relationship with Marina, it would be all about love, not ownership and Marina would have no desire whatsoever to look any other way.

So I do believe Marina is monogamous. Marina turned down Vanessa when she offered, someone she cares deeply about. She did that even though she doesn’t even have Clara yet, she’s being monogamous already. I know for sure that when Marina and Clara get together, Marina won’t even think about doing anything with anyone else. Her love for Clara is all she needs. What she’s offering, is that while Clara remains loyal to Cadu while she has to, she can still experience love with Marina. Marina knows they are two completely different things. Marina wants Clara to see it as she does. She doesn’t have to choose one or the other right now, she can do both, until the situation changes.

When Marina tells Clara she doesn’t believe that love and ownership match, she goes from very serious to casual big smile in record time. She wants it to sound light, almost like a casual thing. She also wants to put the thought into Clara’s head. She wants to plant the seed, she wants Clara to know she has the option. As soon as the words 'I don't need exclusivity’ are out of Marina’s mouth, her eyes shoot up at Clara, to see her response. She then goes on about the comment about love and ownership and is still gauging Clara’s reaction as she does so but she does it in the most casual way possible.

Clara is even amused. She jokes back, how she thinks she learnt everything from her, thinks she’s all modern and here she comes with something new. She’s smiling as she says it, too. Her look as she finishes the sentence tells me she fully understands the meaning, she has this ‘I see what you did there’ almost naughty grin as she tilts her head back a bit. The thought amuses her, attracts her even, but she doesn’t take it too seriously just yet. The full significance of this offer hasn’t completely hit her, also because of the ‘casual’ way Marina delivered it. It’s one of those things you remember later, one of those things that turn out to be much more important than you realized at first, when you take the time to actually think about it. She’s still at that point where cheating is not really an option, but let’s not overlook a tiny little detail here. What she doesn’t say. She doesn’t say ‘no’. The thought entertained her enough however to smile at the idea, but for now, it’s not something she’s seriously considering. Not yet.

Tiny side note, when Clara mentions she’s all modern, I’m thinking she’s mainly referring to the fact she’s in love with a woman. Three months ago she wouldn’t have even entertained the thought,  she is more than entertaining it now, so she’s more ‘modern’ now than she was a while ago. I also think it refers to her new self as a whole, the new way she dresses herself, different hair, her newfound confidence but also her new belief that happiness and loyalty to her husband are concepts that aren't as black and white as she previously thought, how she finds herself not fully agreeing anymore with Helena’s point of view. These are all things she has different views on now.

As the conversation changes subject to Marina’s father, it becomes less charged with emotion. Marina’s casual delivery just now kind of broke that very emotional atmosphere and it was something they both kind of needed. Staying in that extremely emotional state of mind is draining, it’s not something you can afford to stay in for a long time. For lack of a better word, I will call it breaking the ice, comic relief. The conversation is still a serious one, but the deep emotion that comes with the topic of love and what you have to give up for it, has been replaced with concern for Marina’s state of mind. How it’s keeping Marina up at night. Clara switches to concerned right away. She might have problems, but Marina does too. She’s worried for her girl. She also has a moment where it looks like she’s thinking about how it’s possible for them both to have so many reasons to be worried. Like she is thinking, ’This situation is so screwed up, how the hell did we end up here, with all these problems?’

Clara notes that he didn’t seem as worried as Marina is and her tone suggests it surprises her a little. After all, it all seems rather serious, but he’s being very casual about it. Marina agrees, says it’s like he thinks he’s in some American movie, but she knows that in the movies, the bad guys usually get caught.

The next thing Clara says matters a lot. Not only cause of what it actually means, but it matters also because Clara is the one that says it. She wonders, ‘Maybe he’s right. Maybe it’s better to live each day as it comes. Maybe that way we can worry less.’

Again we have a another double meaning that I can’t wait to pick apart one layer at a time.

First she puts her hands lovingly on Marina’s shoulders as she says it. She says it with a smile and she even stares into the distance for a moment as if she’s daydreaming about it when she says they might worry less. She’s imagining it. She doesn’t want to worry when it comes to Marina because then they wouldn't have to hold back. It’s something she would love to see happening. How lovely would that be? Not having this horrible situation that hurts them both, that has them both so concerned for themselves, for the other, for them together. Right now all their worries keep them apart. After she says it, she looks lovingly at Marina but it's also kind of suggestive even. as if she's playfully thinking, ‘Not worrying, not having to hold back. Wouldn't you just love that? I would love that.’ Marina would love that too, she can totally picture it. A situation where Clara and Marina don’t have to worry is something she could get used to. What Clara says, she's only partly serious. It’s also partly a joke, another part is wishful thinking. But it’s spoken out loud, which makes it significant, cause of the looks they share and the hug right after but even more because of who said it.

The situation now is that Cadu is still in of danger of dying. Looking towards the future at this point in time with everything that’s going on, all the love between Clara and Marina, all the worry cause of Cadu, it means the future is uncertain. Making a long term plan is not something they want to do, because there is no scenario at this point under these conditions where any long term plan would be even remotely attractive. They don’t want to have a long-term plan because the only one they can make at this point is the one where they won’t be together for a long time. That hurts them too much, they can’t even entertain the thought. There are no options, it would be a long term plan to not be together and that’s not a long term plan they want to have. A plan would also be something they’d have to stick to, it would make them feel guilty if they didn’t, if they broke their own promise. So instead of making a long term plan neither of them likes, Clara suggests they make a short term plan. Take it one day at a time. Even though she says it casually, it’s more relevant than it sounds. Every day is a new one, every day can give new information and with that, they can make the next short term plan for the next day. That way they can’t break any promises they made. They don’t have to look towards the future knowing they won’t be together for a long time because they don’t want to know that. They don’t want to know they are going to be apart for a long period. By doing this, they can just look towards tomorrow and see what that brings. It’s much more promising to think that any day can be the day that might change everything.

Like I said, Clara is the one that brings it up and that’s rather significant. It’s something Marina could have brought up just as easily, but it’s Clara who does. It’s because she knows she has this desire and she knows it’s not going anywhere. She knows she wants to act on it. She knows she’s walking dangerously close to the line and she knows she wants to cross it. It’s also her situation right now, not Marina’s, that’s keeping them apart. If it were up to Marina, they would have started with the kisses and the lovemaking a long time ago. But it’s up to Clara. By saying this, Clara is keeping the door slightly open. She doesn’t want to make a long term plan if she knows there is a possibility she’ll break her own promise, because she knows she’d want to. So she doesn’t make that promise. Instead she says they will take it one day at a time. It’s not ideal, no. But right now, it’s the best plan they can make. I love that it’s Clara’s suggestion, no matter how casually it was mentioned.

The girls simultaneously go for the hug. It’s another one of those incredibly cute ones like they had after Marina almost gave Clara that kiss. The one they seem to save for special moments and conversations. It’s totally endearing. It’s not a hug like the ones we normally see, this one has Marina with her head on Clara’s chest. It’s extremely intimate. It has all the elements of protection, seeking protection, wanting to protect, wanting to be close to someone’s heart, wanting to shelter the one you love. A normal hug can be intimate, but these ones, they’re a whole other kind of special. I absolutely adore them. So do they.

So this wraps up this scene. Next up is Juliana’s conversation with Clara but as I am typing this very sentence, that part isn’t done yet, not by far. In the meantime, I thank you for making it to the end, I hope you enjoyed it and I will be very grateful if you leave a comment, tell your grandma, tweet it around, link it on tumblr or alert other people to my rambles in whichever way you prefer. For now, have a good day!


  1. Shared with my Clarinatics friends! I cat wait for another post!

  2. I adore the way you write! It is such a pleasure! Thank you from Italy

    1. I'm glad you enjoyed it :) Thank you for your comment <3

  3. Wonderful .. waiting for your next post .. Thanks

  4. Wonderful as always.... i can't wait to read the next one, as it was for a also a very crucial scene.

    Thanks for the posts!


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