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Rubí (2004-2005) is a telenovela produced and distributed by Televisa in Mexico, and distributed in the United States by Univision.The original story (with the same name) was a short story by Yolanda Vargas Dulché, published as a serial on the 1960s Mexican comic book Lágrimas, Risas y Amorfirst. The first telenovela adaptation aired in 1968 and was remade in 2010 in the Phillipines.
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The 2004 remake stars Barbara Mori as Rubí Pérez, a beautiful smart student on a scholarship at a prestigious school thanks to the hardwork and efforts of her older sister Cristina. She desires to be rich by marrying her way out of poverty. She is best friends with Maribel de la Fuente, a wealthy yet kindhearted lady with a defect on her left leg which prevents her from having a normal social life.

Rubí meets Maribel's boyfriend Héctor Ferrer , an architect, and his best friend Alejandro Cárdenas, a doctor. Héctor intrigues her because she knows he is very rich, and marrying a rich man has always been her ambition to leave poverty behind. However, she finds herself falling in love with Alejandro. Héctor and Maribel get engaged. Rubí starts dating Alejandro, but when she finds out that he is from a middle-class background and is not rich, she dumps him, though it breaks her heart. Rubí's mother tries to make Rubi see that money is not everything and that she will regret leaving Alejandro. She then sets out to seduce Héctor and makes it her mission to escape the poverty she is in.

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This work provides examples of:

  • Abduction Is Love: When Hector discovers that Rubí only married him for his money and that she's pregnant with Alejandro's child, he becomes insane and kidnaps her in their home, not only to get back at her for ruining his life but also to force her to love him.
  • Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: The best way to describe Rubí.
  • Bittersweet Ending: The bitter: Rubí losing everything she ever held dear; her husband dies, her friends, Alejandro and family octracize her. Worst of all her face gets disfigured and she is now a cripple. The alternate ending shows her finding solitude elsewhere but still very much alone.
    • The sweet: Alejandro becomes a successful man later in life and marries Maribel.
      • The 2010 version ends with Rubi bearing a scar on her face and crippled after Hector, who in this version becomes deranged, tries to kill her. However, she finally understands the destruction she has caused and becomes free of her own greed, even happy that Maribel and Alejandro get married. In the end, she apologizes in her mother's grave and lives with her aunt. She's poor, but says she is free to love without allowing greed to get in the way
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  • Black Widow: Subverted with Rubí, while she didn't cause Héctor's fatal accident, she suggested Alejandro to murder him in his surgery, which he refused, and at the funeral Rubí didn't feel any grief for her husband's death, instead, she's glad by that.
  • Blonde, Brunette, Redhead: Hector, Alejandro, and Maribel, respectively. Interestingly, both Alejandro and Maribel are rather brainy, whereas Hector is both dumb and fiery.
  • Color Motifs: Rubí usually dresses in red outfits and wears red makeup which is the color of rubies.
  • Cool Big Sis: Fernanda treats her aunt Rubi this way and that naturally leads to-
  • The Corrupter: Rubi ends up teaching Fernanda her evil ways and tells her to go cause chaos between Alejandro and his son thus causing serious heartbreak for Maribel out of sheer spite.
  • Destructive Romance: Rubi's relationship with Hector in spades
    • She married Hector for his money and manipulated and lied to him. The irony of this is that she still loved Alejandro. As a result, Hector dies in a car accident.
  • Gold Digger: The central premise of the series. Rubi wants to escape poverty by all means by marrying a rich man.
  • False Friend: Rubí to Maribel, as she only befriended her because of her wealth and because Maribel gave her fancy gifts as jewelry, but Rubí still was envíous of Maribel's social status and even insulted her behind her back, and eventually betrayed her by stealing her boyfriend only for his money.
  • Four-Philosophy Ensemble: Rubi (Cynic), Alejandro (Realist), Maribel (Optimist), Hector (Conflicted), Loreto (Apathetic).
  • Freudian Excuse: the 2010 remake goes hard in giving Rubi a tragic past and several Freudian excuses for being a bitch, including having her biological father leave her mother and marry into a rich family (and Rubi's wealthy female friend Maribel retconned her half-sister) to the backstory that Rubi's single mother briefly lost her daughter in a crowded city, which led to Rubi spending several years a child homeless and wandering the streets starving; which is why her mother (upon finding her) spoiled her rotten.
  • Gilded Cage: Rubí's house becomes this when she's kidnapped by Héctor.
  • Happily Ever After: For Maribel and Alejandro.
  • Happily Married: Maribel and Alejandro.
  • Hopeless Suitor: Subverted woth Héctor as he was married to Rubí, but she's in love with Alejandro, and Héctor ends up begging her for another chance together which results in his death.
  • Humiliation Conga: Shortly after Rubi finally gets the power and wealth that she had always wanted, she stole Hector from Maribel to get to the top and this in turn causes a lot of problem for her as her friends and family turn their backs on her and she is left alone to suffer for her actions.
  • Irony: After betraying Maribel, Rubí mocks her by telling that no man would ever love her, and she latter gets a photographer named Ernesto, a count named Lucio Montemayor and more importantly Alejandro interested on her, while Rubí only has Héctor who is insanely jealous of Alejandro and mistreats Rubi for that.
  • Karma Houdini: To Rubí and Héctor.
    • To Rubí because she betrayed Maribel stealing her boyfriend and mocking ber for her disability in her leg, and Rubí ends up with losing Alejandro to Maribel and with an amputated leg. Also because she sent her sister's fiancé Cayetano to jail only to keep him apart from Cristina,and Rubí ends up kidnapped by Héctor.
    • To Héctor because he betrayed Maribel, who genuinely loved him to marry Rubi, a golddigger, and Rubí ends up betraying him, who really was in love with her for Alejandro.
  • Lovable Alpha Bitch: Maribel
  • Please, Don't Leave Me!: Rubi's reaction to Alejandro breaking up with her in the ending of the series. This also happens to Alejandro himself as Rubi dumped him earlier after finding out he was from a middle-class background.
  • Ragsto Riches: Rubi's entire modus operandi
  • Redenption Equals Death: With Ernesto, who is Bermudez'son, when he discovers that his father was responsible for Héctor's death and that he went to jail for his corrupt dealings, he turns against his father and prevents him from shooting Elena, but he ends up accidentally shot by his father, much to the latter's horror.
  • Rich Bitch
    • Rubi was already a bitch but she hid the rich part until after she married Hector.
    • Maribel is the much nicer version and the only reason she counts here is because she was born into a wealthy family
  • Runaway Fiancée: Hector runs away from the altar during his marriage to Maribel and runs off with Rubi
  • Scholarship Student: Rubi at least at the very beginning until she abandons her studies when she escapes with Héctor.
  • Strong Family Resemblance: Fernanda to her aunt Rubi in her adult years, with the only difference being Fernanda's blonde hair.
  • Taking the Bullet: Rubi protects her niece Fernanda from getting hit by a car and loses her baby as a result
  • Villain Protagonist: Rubi big time. Her greed gets in the way of whatever love she feels for anyone deep down. which should not come as a surprise given what happens to her years later..
  • Will They or Won't They?: Maribel and Alejandro
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