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The Cleaning Lady – El Reloj

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Viewers have known since the season’s outset that Arman’s exit was inevitable, but that did not make the moment any easier to bear. Last night’s episode, titled “El Reloj,” saw the end of Arman, with “El Reloj” being the title of a song that perfectly encapsulated the heartache experienced by everyone involved in the series, including the viewers.

Following the heartbreaking loss of Adan Canto, who was arguably the heart and soul of the show, it was uncertain how the writers would navigate the challenge of writing out Arman’s character, and propel the show forward. Adan’s portrayal of Arman was integral, his essence woven into the fabric of the series, which posed a significant challenge for the creative team. Showrunner Miranda Kwok was honest from the outset, revealing that the season was crafted with flexibility, in hopes of Adan’s recovery and eventual return to the set. The storyline of Arman’s kidnapping ingeniously left a window open for this possibility. However, with Adan’s tragic passing, the audience was left in suspense all season thus far, anticipating how Arman’s arc would conclude. The resolution came last night, in a poignant and fitting tribute that allowed fans to mournfully bid farewell to both Adan Canto and his character, Arman, marking a beautifully somber moment in the series.

“El Reloj” – THE CLEANING LADY, Pictured: Santiago Cabrera as Jorge and Kate del Castillo as Ramona Sanchez. Photo: Jeff Neumann/FOX ©2024 Fox Media LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Viewers were aware that Arman’s relatives, Ramona and Jorge who are deeply entwined with the cartel, had joined forces with Nadia in negotiating his release with his captors. In their quest to finalize a swap- cash in exchange for Arman – Thony stumbled upon a crucial piece of information about his location. She discovers that Dante, who had been aiding Ramona and Jorge in facilitating Arman’s freedom, may actually be behind his kidnapping. Amidst her frantic search for Arman, Thony confides in Fiona that she is finally ready to open up her heart to Arman. Together with Fiona, Thony ventured to a dilapidated apartment complex to rescue Arman, roping in her handyman, Jeremy, played by the talented Brandon Jay McLaren, who found himself in way over his head.

“El Reloj” – THE CLEANING LADY, Pictured: Elodie Yung as Thony De La Rosa and Martha Millan as Fiona De La Rosa. Photo: Jeff Neumann/FOX ©2024 Fox Media LLC. All Rights Reserved.

At the apartment complex, Thony caught a glimpse of Arman through a window, and through a stroke of AI-generated brilliance, viewers were treated to a poignant moment where they could both see Arman and hear his voice beckoning for Thony one last time. In the final moments of the episode, Thony and Fiona, in a truck driven by an unfortunate Jeremy, followed the captors carrying Arman on the highway, heading to meet Nadia and Dante at the exchange point. A fleeting, yet intense moment unfolded as their vehicles drove parallel to one another, allowing Arman and Thony to share a longing gaze, loaded with profound, unsaid emotions, rendering a heartbreaking moment. Amidst this, a hostile move from one of Arman’s captors, aiming a gun at Thony, was thwarted by Arman. This led to a critical shot being fired, causing the driver of Arman’s truck to lose control and plunge off a cliff, leaving Thony to witness its harrowing descent. The aftermath wasn’t shown to viewers, instead, Thony’s devastated, soul-crushed expression conveyed the magnitude of the tragedy. The episode ended on a nostalgic note, with a flashback to a cherished memory from season one of Thony and Arman dancing and sharing a kiss in Mexico, tugging at heartstrings as the scene widened to reveal a white screen with black writing that read, “In Loving Memory-Adan Canto.”

“El Reloj” – THE CLEANING LADY, Pictured: Eva De Dominici as Nadia Morales and Kate del Castillo as Ramona Sanchez. Photo: Jeff Neumann/FOX ©2024 Fox Media LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Facing a difficult situation, the writing team succeeded in giving Arman’s character a respectful departure that celebrated both the essence of the character and the actor who brought him to life. From the onset of the season, the writer’s maintained Arman’s dignity and preserved his legacy. The loss of a central character is a significant challenge for any show, especially when it is compounded by a real-life tragedy. Nonetheless, the introduction of dynamic characters like Ramona and Jorge has been executed brilliantly, promising engaging plot developments that will surely keep viewers engaged. Arman’s passing will undoubtedly have a profound impact on all of the characters, especially Thony and Nadia. As Thony observed the aftermath of the wreckage, the FBI arrived raising questions about potential repercussions for Thony. There is also sure to be an escalation in the resentment that Ramona feels for Thony, since Thony’s presence at the exchange essentially botched its success.

Adan Canto in The Cleaning Lady. Photo: Fox/Getty. ©2024 Fox Media LLC. All Rights Reserved.

CRISTINA ALMEIDA

Cristina manages the site and reviews several shows. She is an Elementary
School Counsellor by day and avid TV buff by night. True Crime, thrillers,
dramas and dramedy’s are her favourite genres. When she is not at work or
managing SpoilerTV, she loves spending time with her two dogs, a Chihuahua
Pug mix named Holly and Terrier mix named Penny. She also loves Travelling
to visit family.

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