Pope Francis’s over-the-top reception in the #Philippines

Building a cult of personality. That is the last thing Pope Francis is likely to have wanted included in his agenda for his visit to the Philippines. The Pope said that his visit to the Philippines is about the poor and the victims of the two recent calamities that devastated the Philippines. To further punctuate […]

Showbiz ‘Bakya’ helps keep Filipinos Poor

Sorry, this #DongYan issue won’t die when people keep talking about it. Not just us. Other people, too. Actually, this isn’t about just “show of wealth” – which a wedding should not be (but that’s another topic for another day). It’s about what showbiz in the Philippines does. We write about showbiz because we believe […]

Yikes! Pope Francis with Filipino celebrities in commemorative painting!

Ok, just when the whole brouhaha over the grandiose wedding of Marian Rivera and Dingdong Dantes is simmering down, I came across this supposedly recently-completed painting by Dante Hipolito… Apparently Hipolito is known in art circles as a “hyper-realist” and his favorite subject involves depictions of scenes of traditional Filipino rural life. Well, the scenes […]

Why it is wrong to spend P100M on a celeb wedding in the #Philippines

Filipinos’ values are indeed perverted beyond recognition. In many Filipino movies, the bad guys are often pointy-nosed fair-skinned snobs (keeping to the narrow-minded way Philippine cinema’s jeje-culture traditionally portrays the rich) living in obnoxious tacky mansions while the “hero” is an other-side-of-da-riles lad or lass living the Pinoy challenge of scraping together a “decent” life. […]

Is diskarte more important than good English as Marian Rivera says?

Don’t look now but Marian Rivera’s come out swinging at her detractors, presumably over the subject of her famous English language skills (or lack of it). I’ve always found Marian fascinating. Her face and physical stature does not match her style of speech. Perhaps this is what endears her to her fans — she physically […]

The #Philippines is a nation of starstruck ignoramuses

[The following is an article by Star columnist Don Pedero published in The Philippine Star 29 October 2000 and also featured in Get Real Philippines on the same year.] * * * Last July 23, I wrote about Nasty (short for Anastacio), a balikbayan from Los Angeles, who, while vacationing in Manila, had nothing to […]

Was the #DongYanWedding really Dingdong Dantes’s and Marian Rivera’s wedding?

It’s been several days since the spectacular wedding of Filipino starlets Dingdong Dantes and Marian Rivera (referred to as the “DongYan” couple on social media) and the Net is still abuzz about the circus. The event was said to have cost more than 100 million pesos and was purportedly shouldered by the GMA Network, one […]

One Man’s Poison Is Another Man’s Royal Wedding

  This is television, that’s all it is. It has nothing to do with people, it’s to do with ratings! For fifty years, we’ve told them what to eat, what to drink, what to wear… for Christ’s sake, Ben, don’t you understand? Americans love television. They wean their kids on it. Listen. They love game […]