Wednesday, April 30, 2008


No, I'm not talking about the experience of illegal drugs users.
This is the experience the writer of a drama described Beethoven's Violin Sonata No.5 in F Major. Yes, I have showed this piece before but I wasn't able to elaborate on it. It has four movements but I will talk about the first movement since I like it and this is one of the first classical pieces I really enjoyed. In this work, the power of the violin is masterfully displayed magnificently accompanied by the piano. One can appreciate violin more when listening to this (esp. to a classical music newbie like me). Beethoven's Violin Sonata No.5 in F Major or Spring is a cheerful piece that could lift me out of momentary sadness. It is rightfully called Spring - as if the sonata heralds the season's arrival after the harsh winter. In my opinion, this sonata is rock-like could be played with wild abandon (but shouldn't). The first version is a rock-like version as played by the character Mine in Nodame Cantabile (J-drama)- it's messy. The second version is how it is supposed to be played as Beethoven intended it to be.



Monday, April 28, 2008

My Boss My Hero

It is the story of Sakaki Makio (played by Tomoya Nagase) a 27 year-old would be gangster leader. In order to inherit the "family business", he must graduate from high school. Makio's inability to add resulted in a botched business deal which led his father to decide the former is going to school. Worse, he must disguise himself as a 17 year-old teenager and keep his real identity secret. How is the young master going to survive the toughest arena of them all - high school?
Based on the Korean hit movie of the same name, the Japanese made it simple and made it very funny. Most of the issues dealt in the Japanese version are related to growing up and being a teenager but don't get me wrong - the series is not all about fun.
The series is funny save for some melodramatic scenes on the last episode. In fact, self-righteous preaching present in American dramas is almost non-existent here. The characters in J-dramas usually sort their problems out by themselves, realize their fault by themselves, and sometimes they don't change at all - and this dorama is no different. Besides, My Boss My Hero doesn't over glorify gangster life to my surprise! It is a very different treatment of a gangster story.
Two months ago, out of curiousity I took a sneak peek at the dorama with no expectations whatsover. Few seconds into the show, I knew then I have to finish this one. Tomoya Nagase carries the series with his comic antics and exaggerated facial expressions - it is never a dull moment when this guy's on the screen. The humor is so Filipino, we can relate to it. Thanks to this series, I got to know Japanese superstar Yui Aragaki (playing Umemura Hikari - Makio's love interest). I love her character - cute, pretty, smart and gutsy.
It is a great family series.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Bernabe Concepcion Wins!

Filipino boxer Bernabe Concepcion defeated Torrence Daniels via second round technical knock-out in Mexico to successfully defend his NABF superbantam title. The commentators thought there was a clash of heads earlier but replays showed Abe's right hit the jackpot - Daniels' chin. Bernabe smelled blood and finished the fight off quickly - a great showing by the Filipino fighter. Congratulations!

Bernabe Concepcion

Friday, April 25, 2008


Last February 18, 2008, Sana Maulit Muli (renamed Chances for the world market) was aired in Taiwan (making it the first Filipino series to screen in that country). It was given the 11:00pm (PTS) time slot and the show earned a small following. On March 31, 2008 the show was re-aired (with 10:00am schedule) due to insistent public demand. ABS-CBN (the program producer) also shortened the drama from 73 (20-25 minute episodes) to 25 (45-minute episodes).

Chances never made it to No.1 in that country since I've been checking the ratings in Taiwan and the show Love is No.1 and for idol dramas it was They Kissed Again (the bad schedule didn't help despite viewers request for an earlier time slot). But it doesn't really matter, the important thing is at least one of our shows made it. I think the Taiwanese are requesting PTS to secure the broadcast rights of My Girl - the new show of Kim Chiu and Gerald Anderson. Hopefully, more Filipino shows will air in Taiwan. I'm really surprised at the open mindedness of the Taiwanese people! I thought our shows would not have a chance (pun intended) in that country since our cultures are very different but thanks anyway.

This is the Taiwanese version:

Thursday, April 24, 2008

What's Opera, Doc?

Who would have thought this simple six-minute animated short is actually the greatest cartoon as voted for by 1,000 animation professionals? The criteria is simple it has to be under thirty minutes and cel animated. (But knowing the ethnocentrism of the Americans I don't fully subscribe to the assessment.)
Wikipedia describes this work as an operatic parody of Richard Wagner's opera. Most experts consider the animated short as Director Chuck Jones' magnum opus. Look at the following analysis of "What's Opera, Doc?"
What's Opera, Doc? (1957) takes us still more deeply into the world of parody. Here Jones and arranger Milt Franklyn offer a grandiose skewering of Wagnerian themes and conceits. With his cries of "kill the wabbit" unforgettably grafted onto the characteristic dotted rhythm of the "Ride of the Walküres" from Wagner's Ring, Elmer's pursuit of Bugs is raised to a maniacal pitch. Whereas Stalling's score for the Rossini project confined itself almost exclusively to a single overture, Franklyn juggles a pastiche of favorite themes, not only from the Ring, but also from Flying Dutchman and Tannhaüser. The famous Venusberg ballet from the first act of the latter opera becomes a ridiculous parody of a Wagnerian love duet, complete with an overstuffed horse and its gigantic backside...

When I was young, I thought the cartoon was funny. I have no intention of doing an analysis of What's Opera, Doc? Being funny - I'll just leave it at that but some pundits revealed the cartoon's deeper meaning - how it uses opera tools to make fun of opera itself. This is truly a work of a genius and deserves the greatest cartoon tag.

For the musically curious, cartoon sound tracks served as a point of entry into distant musical and timbral worlds that young viewers might never have otherwise encountered, much less understood. And even if some will lament the transformation of operatic and symphonic standards into slapstick entertainment, we must concede that decoding the layered meanings of these cartoons actually requires remarkable imagination and insight. Listening today to the sounds of these decidedly silly cartoons, we can nevertheless marvel at the artistry and wisdom that foolishness can sometimes inspire...

For a spoof to really work, one must have in-depth knowledge and appreciation of the art that he lampoons.

For example, Willie Nepumoceno impersonates Filipino politicians and other big shots. He does it so successfully because of the in-depth knowledge he has on people he copies. His characterization is deep and most likely what the real person would say in the first place. Poohkyaw's impersonation of Manny Pacquiao however is stupid, tasteless and racist - copying Manny's regional accent is not enough to be funny unless one is fond of garbage entertainment.

Efren Reyes Makes The Greatest Pool Shot Ever

This is a tribute to the greatest billiards player who ever lived.
I have been looking for the video of this shot for a very long time - this shot was described in Time Magazine's article about Efren. Most billiards pundit consider this as the greatest pool shot ever and I agree.
Efren has the ability to stupefy billiards analyst as you will see on the second video. He can see shots and angles even some commentators couldn't see. Such is the creativity of the man they rightfully called "The Magician". The greatest ever billiards player? No doubt.

The Greatest Shot Ever


Reyes is no fancy individual, known for frolicking with show business types although he did made a movie with the lovable hero, the late Fernando Poe Jr., nor does he drive fancy cars or live in plush, celebrity-infested surroundings and strut around with a retinue of bodyguards, although he certainly has an entourage of poor relatives and friends with whom he shares his good fortune. His home is simple. His wife and family also steeped in his brand of graciousness and humility.

No wonder whenever he plays abroad alongside bosom buddy Francisco “Django” Bustamante and other Filipino pool players, scores of overseas workers waving tiny flags and placards to signify their belief in him and indeed the Filipino, pack the pool halls to cheer him on, prepare food for him and his teammates in a show of genuine affection that is hard to equal.

Once again, Reyes showed the class he is known for when we called to congratulate him. He admitted he was nervous, that Rodney Morris was unlucky with his break, which probably enabled him to win and that despite the disappointment of his supporters when the referee called a foul on him at a crucial stage of the match, it was a correct call and he had no complaints.

Reyes epitomizes the best in the Filipino in his chosen field. His innate skill, his charming disposition anchored on amazing simplicity and his virtues of being a good husband and a loving father set him apart. And make no mistake about it... playing 10 to 12 hours a day for seven days in a row at 52 years of age against 200 of the finest players in the world, takes courage and confidence. Reyes has an abundance of both in his simple Filipino heart.

This what makes Efren great - his attitude and his simplicity. He doesn't want to complicate his life by engaging in useless things like politics and showbiz. He wants to enjoy his love...billiards. Even today despite the fact Efren is older and has many surgeries that may hamper his game I still expect him to win every time he plays. I can't help it I want him to win.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008


Manny Pacquiao never stops to amaze me. The National Fists of the Philippines will appear on an ad with several other "super athletes" such as Kobe Bryant, Roger Federer, Cristiano Ronaldo, etc.
The slapper Calzaghe is not included nor is the Pretty Boy - thank goodness.

Pacquiao Joins World’s Super Athletes

Manny’s longtime coach Freddie Roach said that Nike Sports selected 10 of the top athletes in the world to be a part of their sports training commercial, Pacquiao included. It was filmed in Roach’s Wild Card Gym in California.
He is the first Asian boxer to win three world titles in three different weight divisions (WBC and Ring Magazine Super Featherweight Champion, Former world champion at IBF Super Bantamweight, and WBC Flyweight divisions).


Bill O'Reilly is the host of a top rated current affairs program (The O'Reilly Factor) in the United States and his conservative leanings has clashed with liberal thinking of comedians Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert.
There was a time the three gentlemen had on-air scuffle (Jon and Stephen vs Bill). In this clip, Bill managed to arrange an interview with Colbert and the result was Colbert 1 O'Reilly 0. It is not advisable to mess with a quick thinking comedians for they have the talent of making one look like a fool in a subtle way. O'Reilly's staff can't help themselves and one can hear their snicker on-air! Man, Colbert has a great talent of reversing O'Reilly attack and use it against the host. I see Bill trying hard to contain a laugh - he should have known better.

The Bravest Comedian

I may like The Onion but my true favorite is The Daily Show with Jon Stewart and one of its former reporters, Stephen Colbert (pronounced without a "t"). Mr. Colbert was so funny that he was given his own show called The Colbert Report (right after Jon's show on Comedy Central ). I think Colbert has even eclipsed the popularity of Jon in the United States.
Unfortunately, Colbert's show isn't aired in our country but it propelled the host into stardom for his fearless brand of comedy. Critics love him unlike other comedy shows in the United States which could be described as stupid, The Colbert Report is smart, witty and funny. He gave a speech at the White House Correspondent's Dinner in 2006 and he roasted Bush in front of Bush. He made it appear he admired the President of the United States but actually made fun of him. This is a classic encounter and a classic speech. Stephen Colbert is credited for inventing the term "truthiness". Please look at George Bush's reaction when Stephen Colbert was called out - priceless.

Colbert Speech Part 1

Colbert Speech Part 2

Colbert Speech Part 3

China is No.1!

China is motivated. It seeks to be no.1 in all fields from sports, economy and culture. The country wants to taste the superpower status it once held several centuries ago. Now, China's leaders could take a breather as it became no.1 in this category - a noteworthy achievement indeed. This would have been my Earth Day piece but I was busy yesterday.


Credits to Michael for introducing this satirical news program to me.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Girly Man

Bernard Hopkins lost to Joe Calzaghe via split decision yesterday (score Ted Gimza 112-115 | judge: Adalaide Byrd 114-113 | judge: Chuck Giampa 111-116). B-hop looked like he should retire from boxing for he was too slow that he became sitting duck! Joe Calzaghe of Wales turned the boxing match into a target practice, methodically connecting off Hopkins as if the latter offered no defense whatsoever. Heavier boxing class is usually boring and this one is no different. In fairness, the match started explosively with B-hop decking the Welshman in the first round. However as the fight progressed, it became apparent that Calzaghe (with his slapping, girly-type punches) was quicker and landed the cleaner blows (sometimes in combo with no answer from B-hop). It became ugly when B-hop was hit below the belt though far from the dangerous area, he acted as if it really connected and consumed all the five-minute rest period. When the match resumed, Calzaghe still dominated the American with flurries. It wasn't pretty for some of his punches were of slapping types that made the Welshman look like a twelve-year old girl. Though it was effective or so the judges thought! Instead of fighting back, Hopkins became the bad guy feigning two more low blows and hitting Calzaghe on the thighs. In the end, Calzaghe and his vaunted slapping punches won. In my opinion, the Welshman also won - I didn't bother to prepare a scorecard as it became apparent at the start of the third round where the fight was going.

By the way, Mr. Joe "I'm fair and I'm incompetent" Cortez blew the initial rounds just like in Mayweather vs Hatton but thank God, he recovered later.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Hungarian Rhapsody No.2 - BEWARE OF MICE!

With all due respect to the great composer, I think to visualize it just remember Tom and Jerry. Yes, Tom and Jerry, if I remember correctly this piece was used in the said cartoon. I think Tom was chasing Jerry all over the piano and the resulting sound that they create is Hungarian Rhapsody No.2! It was a great comic combination.
Just now I saw a clip on Youtube, I can't believe its available - I thought its protected by copyright. Man, my memories are being refreshed and I love this clip! I was right I knew this piece was used in Tom and Jerry - nobody can forget a great music and a great animated short.

Tom & Jerry - The Cat Concerto

Academy Award winner - Best Animated Short 1946

An interesting note:
Classic Warner Brothers cartoon made in 1946 featuring Bugs Bunny playing the piano.
The plot and execution are very similar to a Tom & Jerry cartoon that was made and released the same year by MGM called The Cat Concerto. Both studios sued each other for plagiarisms, claiming that ideas were stolen from each other.
It's interesting to compare the two.

Bugs Bunny - Rhapsody Rabbit
The moral of the story is when playing Hungarian Rhapsody be kind to the mice that lives on the piano!

Liszt Hungarian Rhapsody No. 2

It could be described as happy, fun, mischievous, and playful piece. Could words really capture the essence of an excellent musical piece? (Why did I become so poetic all of a sudden?) The word spirited could also be used though I prefer my original description. The rhapsody is really suited in comic works like in animation. Here is a technical description of Liszt's spectacular work:

Liszt wrote fifteen Hungarian rhapsodies, all of them originally for piano solo, but many of them have been scored for orchestra. Of all these the second is by far the most popular and the most frequently heard in the concert room and is therefore selected for description. Its orchestral version was made by Herr Muller-Berghaus, though another version was also made by the composer, assisted by Franz Doppler. The two principal movements are the Lassan, or slow movement, and the Friska, or quick movement, of the conventional Hungarian Czardas, the national dance. The Lassan begins in the clarinets, violins and violas in unison, accompanied by chords in the horns, trombones and basses and is very earnest and resolute in character. A slow and mournful passage follows in the same instruments with a similar accompaniment, the theme of which, after a clarinet Cadenza, appears in the flutes and oboes...

I actually prefer to put Lang Lang here (yesterday my parents laughed when they heard his name since the talented pianist name means abnormal in our language geesh) but the sound quality is poor. I decided to place Rachmaninoff instead - one legend playing another legend's work!

Note: Liszt suffered from critics (like Rachmaninoff) and they dismissed his works but in the end nobody remembered those people. It is Liszt.

Henceforth, some critics condemned him from the very beginning - a dark cloud that hung over him for a lifetime. Yet, it's interesting how some of these intellects couldn't comprehend the complexity of his serious pieces, or they dismissed his works on the grounds that no single person could be both a star performer and a great composer. Liszt couldn't win with these mental midgets. In general they loved his performances and technique, but despised his compositions. It's amazing how the pen of one single-minded critic can wield devastating control over public opinion.

Even today many people will forfeit seeing a movie based upon a critic's review. Many times this can destroy box office sales and plummet a film into obscurity. Yet with time and a lack of bias, it may secure a revival via the video rental market. Many excellent films have risen from the ashes this way, and so too has Liszt... risen like a phoenix. This phenomenon can be succinctly witnessed in a personal letter that Liszt wrote in 1875, "For people now-a-days hear and judge only by reading the newspapers. I mean to take advantage of this in so far that the leading and favorite papers of Vienna, Pest, Leipzig, Berlin, Paris, London, etc.--which abhor my humble compositions and have declared them worthless and objectionable--shall be relieved of all further outward trouble concerning them. What is the good of performances to people who only care to read newspapers?"

It is also curious that Franz Liszt had many parallels to Leonardo DaVinci. The old Italian master was of the highest order in the arena of diverse invention and so too was Liszt. DaVinci experimented in science and the arts developing new techniques and visions never seen before by man, while Liszt too created soundscapes so unique and bewildering to his contemporaries that even the great Hans Von Bulow could not fathom how to conduct a work like Hamlet. These bizarre configurations seemed unmusical and alien to 19th Century ears, and rightfully so, they were prophetically modern.

It is also curious that Franz Liszt had many parallels to Leonardo DaVinci. The old Italian master was of the highest order in the arena of diverse invention and so too was Liszt. DaVinci experimented in science and the arts developing new techniques and visions never seen before by man, while Liszt too created soundscapes so unique and bewildering to his contemporaries that even the great Hans Von Bulow could not fathom how to conduct a work like Hamlet. These bizarre configurations seemed unmusical and alien to 19th Century ears, and rightfully so, they were prophetically modern.

Granted both men did experience the pitfalls associated with experimentation, as can be witnessed by the deterioration of DaVinci's Last Supper or the stylistic fluctuations in Liszt's Christus Oratorio. Yet, both pieces are masterworks of the highest order, as they both broke ground in countless ways and move us with their profound vision. As for their seemingly precarious methodology it's key to remember, only by abandoning the norms and plodding into the deep, dark abyss of the unknown can one engender and reveal the nebulous wonders that lay hidden to lesser beings.

Franz Liszt has always been assured a lofty place in the Pantheon of Composers, yet on that celestial horizon of stars only a select few burn with fervid intensity... Liszt is one of them.

Hurray for the innovators - immortality is their prize!

Thursday, April 17, 2008


Look at what happened to this blogger, he claims ABS-CBN used his pictures without his permission. In light of this, I've decided to keep some of my essays in my journal and it will not be published here anymore. I have no protection for my articles. Better safe than sorry.

How then do I protect myself from cases such as these? Pictures can be protected through watermarking, however it is not possible for essays. Besides, I don't want to post pictures here. By the way if I want how is that process done? Here's what happened as the blogger reported:

Thursday, April 3, 2008. No big event was scheduled. My blogging calendar is set free. I was supposed to report for work at one in the afternoon, but due to a nagging headache I have to call in sick for half day.Then with nothing much really do to at home, I turned on the television. Switched the channel to ABS CBN for their morning talk show Boy n Kris. I must admit I am not a big fan of this show. I don’t like it. But I don’t hate it either. Then there was this short snippet about the Pintados Kasadyaan Festival of Tacloban Leyte. At first I was kind of excited to see them featuring this festival. Excitement quickly turned into doubts as I started to see photos that are not related to the Pintados Kasadyaan Festival. One particular photo I saw was the Dinagyang Photo which is also being used by the Department of Tourism. Then my doubts turned into anger. Three photos from my blog appeared one after the other. What made it worse is that the photos were zoomed so close that the watermarks can no longer be seen on television.


The blogger deleted the post maybe the entire misunderstanding was settled. Good.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Asian Drama Cliches

Here is a video showing Asian drama clichés - it is very often used - the scenes lose its meaning. It doesn't matter though I will still watch Asian dramas. It is still way better than American ones and it has this charm even Hollywood remakes of Asian classics couldn't capture. The concept of romance in Asian series is different from American ones and in the former scenes are thought of really hard. It is only in Asian series that a simple bicycle riding, simple snow fight, and simple window washing ( Full House) becomes romantic. Other pretenders can't copy it for they are too jaded even to conceptualize it!

American movies are mechanical no heart and no charm - it doesn't go for subtleties for the its audience will sleep if that happens. They have series about s!x in the hospital, s!x in the suburbs, s!x in the city. I have a sneaking suspicion the writers have none of what they are talking Want to see sexy? Watch Latin telenovelas! Sometimes, the maids are more voluptuous and beautiful than their masters! Latin telenovelas are sexy, their Northern counterparts however are sluts.

The #12 observation is funny - if you're rich you are a jerk - happens in real life too!!!


Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Rachmaninoff Piano Concerto No,2 in C Minor, OP 18 I_Moderato

Wow, the title is a handful! I encountered this piece on a Japanese dorama and I liked it. As an amateur classical music fan, I can't believe how much this piece can stir my emotions. The moderato starts as if it is building up on something. A very intense start, full of fervor I can imagine the faces of the conductor and the pianist on this one. It ebbs on the middle preparing itself for another chance to explode - slowly the piece builds up and the distinct sound of the piano is making itself heard as if emphasizing the fact that it is a piano concerto. This is probably the most amateurish description of Rachmaninoff's work but who cares?

According to Wikipedia, when it first came out the symphony was derided by critics but now it is recognized as a masterpiece. (It reminds me of the Sydney Opera House when it was first unveiled it was also scoffed at by experts but now the structure is recognized as an architectural wonder.)People.

Rachmaninoff began work on his Piano Concerto No. 2 in C Minor, Op. 18 in the latter part of the summer of 1900. Rachmaninoff, having regained his confidence, composed the second and third movements “quickly and easily” (125). However, he had much difficulty with the first movement. He premiered the work in incomplete form at Ziloti’s suggestion in Moscow on 2 December 1900. This was a daunting performance for Rachmaninoff, since the continued restoration of his self-confidence as a composer hinged on its reception. Furthermore, he had contracted a bad cold days before the performance. Also, this was to be his first performance with an orchestra in eight years, having played with an orchestra only three times prior. Moreover, Ziloti was to make his professional conducting debut with this performance. Luckily, the performance went off without a hitch, and Rachmaninoff was greatly reassured. The concerto was premiered in its complete form on 27 October 1901. It was a tremendous success with the audiences. The concerto quickly gained international fame with Ziloti’s performances in January 1902 with the Leipzig Gewandhaus under Nikisch and under Sapellnikov in London in May of the same year.

The opening of the concerto begins with a series of swelling piano chords that are punctuated by bass octaves. Once again, this passage brings to mind the sound of bells, heard from far off at first but growing more powerful with each stroke. It is interesting to compare this opening with the final bars of his Prelude in C Sharp Minor. It is possible that he may have derived the opening of the concerto by inverting the layout and dynamics of the final bars of the prelude, in which the bass octaves precede and not follow the chords. As is common with Rachmaninoff, the opening theme has a distinctly Russian sound. Rachmaninoff’s friend, Medtner, described this Russian quality of the Second Concerto’s main theme, stating that it is “not only the theme of his life but always conveys the impression of being one of the most strikingly Russian of themes, and only because the soul of this theme is Russian…every time, from the first bell stroke, you feel the figure of Russia rising up to her full height” (127)

The effect of Rachmaninoff's work could still be felt today like these young kids from Dipolog. Lucky kids, I only got to hear Rachmaninoff's Piano Concerto No. 2 THIS YEAR. Though he was discussed at Music Class in High School nobody bothered to let us listen to his works. I was fortunate enough to hear the works of Beethoven, Mozart and Haydn thru the BBC World Service documentary on great composers and...Warner Bros. and Tom and Jerry which I will explain later.

MANILA, Philippines - Classical music got a much-needed shot in the arm in Dipolog City, Zamboanga del Norte, when over 800 students from different schools in this city cheered pianists Ingrid Sala Santamaria and Reynaldo Reyes Friday last week on their 15th Romantic Piano Concerto Journey Tour.

Held at the Atrium of Top Plaza Hotel with a view of the sea, Santamaria and Reyes played Liszt’s Piano Concerto No. 2 and Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 2 and were rewarded with a standing ovation.

“We are really excited because this is our first time to watch a classical concert,” said students Jane Krish Erasmo, Franz Roezyl Lugo and Kathleen Alberca from the Dipolog Pilot Elementary School. “Before this, we only had exposure to rock bands like Bamboo and Cueshe,” they added.

For this rare classical event in the city, 10 men were hired to move two upright pianos to the fifth floor of the hotel through the

Rachmaninoff plays his Piano Concerto No.2 in C Major OP 18 I_Moderato

Monday, April 14, 2008


Thai Lakorn (drama) is getting the reputation of having too many rape or attempted rape scenes. A Lao-American pointed this disturbing pattern at the d-addicts forum. Since I haven't seen any lakorn yet I checked out the thread. The thread starter cited several examples from Thai dramas which strengthened her claim. These are some of the videos she provided which have attempted rape or rape scenes:
(with English subs)
Duang Jai Patiharn
(no subs)
Pee nong 2 leuard
Rahut rissaya
Taung Paun Kamathep

Worse, it is often the lead guy who initiates the sexual assault to the lead girl and eventually they fall in love! Since they don't show the full rape scene as it would be tantamount to pornography - the audience don't realize the horror of the act.
In other Asian countries, male leads usually treat their female counterparts like dirt and for the life of me the girl even falls in love with the guy. Funny! And some crabs in my country would point out how realistic other Asian series are in their portrayal. Really? Try reading between the lines, crabs, only masochistic women do that.
There are more dramas, the thread starter enumerated, you may check it out at this link and see for yourself:
As for me, I'll just stick to Tony Jaa martial arts flicks.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Absolute Boyfriend

What makes an absolute boyfriend? Is there even such a person? One of the most intriguing mangas that explored those issues is being adapted into a live-action series. In fact, Absolute Boyfriend aired its first episode last Tuesday. I gave up on the manga hoping I could pick up the story on the television adaptation. The characters on the live action series are older than their manga counterparts which I think is appropriate since the issues covered by the story isn't for minors. I am hoping I could gather more romantic ideas from this series. A little romance goes a long way in a relationship anyway.

Yuu Watase's Absolute BoyfriendAdapted for Live-Action

23-year-old Mokomichi Hayami (Densha Otoko, Gokusen live-action dramas) will star as the "ikemen (handsome) lover robot" in Absolute Boyfriend, the drama adaptation of Yuu Watase's romantic comedy manga that will premiere on Japan's Fuji TV on April 8. Watase created the popular Fushigi Yuugi and Ceres: Celestial Legend romance manga, both of which were adapted into anime. 22-year-old Saki Aibu (Doraemon: Nobita no Shin Makai Daibōken - Shichinin no Mahōtsukai) will play the young office lady who accidentally receives Night Tenjō, the latest model of "lover robots." 23-year-old Hiro Mizushima (Hana Zakari No Kimitachi E: Ikemen Paradise, Lovely Complex) will play the human "rival" to Night Tenjō...


You know what Japanese women have cute voices - the actress here is no exception!

Slip of Fortune

In this clip, the contestant revealed his true feelings and made a huge boo-boo. So huge it made headlines on CNN. The category was people who annoy you and the words seem to fit what Randy (the guy) was thinking only to be surprised at the end! His mind was bent on that word he forgot other possibilities. This is what racist do - they don't accept anything good from the people they hate. In fact, it is minimized or trivialized to suit their twisted thinking. I thought Lyle F., a purported boxing writer fits the description. He hates Manny Pacquiao so bad he comes up with flimsy reasons to belittle the guy's achievements. Now I know what F in his surname stands for -

The N word was also used by U.S. Forces to refer to Filipinos when they were burning the province of Samar to the ground during the Philippine-American War. It's not nimble unfortunately.

More Like a Niche

Koreanovelas’ Fever is sweeping the Philippines

In the last few years, Korean films, TV dramas and pop music have become immensely popular abroad, a phenomenon known as the Korean Wave. This is the second in a series of essays by a select group of foreign scholars and journalists looking at the spread of Korean pop culture in Southeast Asian countries and beyond. - Ed.

The names Johnny, Jenny and Andrew may not ring a bell for Koreans, but for Filipinos, they started the so-called Korean Wave in the Philippines. They were the "Filipinized" names of the main characters in the drama "Autumn Story," better known as "Endless Love 1" when it was shown in the Philippines. It was the first-ever Korean drama to air in the country.

In 2002, the Taiwanese drama "Meteor Garden" swept through the Philippines and the rest of Asia, paving the way for Chinese dramas to enter local markets. The drama was aired on the ABS-CBN network, one of the Philippines` largest broadcasting companies. More Taiwanese dramas soon followed, heralding the start of the "Chinovelas" (Chinese + novelas, a word derived from the Spanish "novela") fever. Facing the risk of saturating televiewers` interest, the network’s rival, GMA-7 looked elsewhere and took a chance on Korean dramas...


If the article was written three years ago I would have agreed but its not the case anymore. The article failed to note that the Korean "wave" is only limited to television shows. Philippine radio airwaves are dominated by local and American artists, occasionally some British acts and Japanese dance divas. Only one Korean pop act made it here -Mina and her song "Answer the Phone"- no one else. Only hardcore fans (and there are few) listen and sing to K-pop beats while the rest of the population prefer to listen and sing in a language they understand.

Even the assertion the "Koreanovelas eclipsed local shows" only happens if the K-series is shown on GMA -7. Winter Sonata was second to Starstruck (talent search) on AC Nielsen's December, 2003 ratings survey and so was Lovers in Paris (to Mulawin). Full House though did its job. In fact, the Korean show Legend starring Bae Yoon Joon is struggling to make it past the 20% mark while Lovers is out of the top ten primetime shows since it started a few weeks ago. The press should know balance is needed in reporting stuff like this. I've read many news items about the Korean "wave" and I used to swallow it hook, line and sinker but some news items became mere press releases and praise reporting that I became more cautious and skeptical.

Some Filipinos still have Korean "fever" of course and Korean series are definitely here to stay but they are more used to fill a certain niche market GMA-ABS series can't satisfy. The Koreans should be aware more Filipinos are getting bored with their predictable story lines and formulas and turning to doramas for fresh stories.

Legend ratings
April 7 19%
8 19.9%
9 18.1%
10 17.8%

AGB Nielsen Phils (

O Canada

The Canadian National Anthem is simple and heart warming and definitely not a war song.
The Canadian temperament is reflected by their national anthem. It could actually pass a great single if it wasn't a national anthem.

The Canadian National Anthem sang a capella by Hojas

Official Lyrics of O Canada!

O Canada!
Our home and native land!
True patriot love in all thy sons command.

With glowing hearts we see thee rise,
The True North strong and free!

From far and wide,
O Canada, we stand on guard for thee.

God keep our land glorious and free!
O Canada, we stand on guard for thee.

O Canada, we stand on guard for thee.

The country is not a paradise of course and has its fair share of racists like the French-Canadian teacher who insulted a Filipino kid. This country should get over its denial and clamp down on racists. There are racists still and they are covering their tracks by using euphemisms to disguise or explain their actions.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Canadian Idiot - Weird Al

Before some Canuck bashes me - this is Weird Al's parody of Green Day's song "American Idiot". I found this video (done South Park style not from Weird Al) on Youtube when I was searching for the Canadian National Anthem. No offense, guys.
I remembered South Park characters singing "O Canada" and I want to see it again. The creators of SP seem to love the country as the made it the butt of their jokes. Now the Canadians had enough and declared strike:

Canada on Strike.

For better version click this link
credits to: JesseMeza07

Efren Reyes Needs Help

Efren Reyes is a Filipino billiards player, nicknamed “The Magician" for his ability to make mind-blogging shots and safeties. He revolutionized the game with his kicks and safeties. In short, he made them into an art form in billiards something that no one has ever done before. He won the 9-Ball World Championship in 1999 and is a four-time World 8-Ball Champion. He is also a Billiards Hall of Fame honoree.


Efren “Bata” Reyes, acknowledged as the greatest pool player of all-time and one of the most humble athletes the Philippines has ever produced, hangs on to the No.1 spot in the race for the IPT Tour Viewers Choice Ultimate 8-Ball Challenge on April 29 in the US...


It's still a long way to go and anything can happen so please our countryman needs your support.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Charice Pempengco on Oprah

The young Filipina singing sensation, Charice Pempengco will perform on Oprah. She has been wowing foreign audiences lately, first on the The Ellen DeGeneres Show and lately on Paul O’Grady Show in the U.K. though she doesn’t need outsiders to validate her amazing talent. She’s unbelievable and I wish her good luck. I only heard of her when she first performed on The Ellen DeGeneres Show. I’m not particularly into show business stuff but this news is too irresistible to ignore. Hopefully, the news will lift up my people’s sagging spirits. The show will air next month.

Filipino singing sensation Charice Pempengco will once again charm audiences in the US and the rest of the world with her upcoming performance in the highest-rating television talk show, "Oprah".

"I have a guesting on Oprah. I already finished singing for an episode," Charice told in a phone interview after returning from London where she appeared in a popular British talk show.

But other than confirming her appearance on "Oprah", the young diva declined to give other details.

However, she disclosed that a teaser for the episode, which includes her, can be viewed on YouTube.

"I think it's already on Youtube," Charice said.

The episode will air in May.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Filipino Series Abroad

It seems Philippine broadcasting giant, ABS-CBN earned a lot in television series exports. This is great data which I believe Filipino crabs ( Filipinos who pull other Filipinos away from success) and colonial freaks (Filipinos with illogical love for anything foreign denying their own - sickos) will find it very hard to accept. But who cares? They can turn green and rot for all I I successfully pissed off one today. This is fun putting crabs in their proper places. It doesn't pay to argue though - it rarely works out well. Besides, in the battle of wits I refuse to fight an unarmed man. This news however, is great for Filipinos in touch with reality, who knows what they are and what they stand for. Though, we are few - it doesn't matter. The reality is, no country can have a perfect entertainment industry there are bound to be flaws to deny that reality is, insanity.

This is an old data but exports are still ongoing and it shows the scope of Filipino entertainment:

Philippine television giant ABS-CBN Broadcasting Corp. has said it will sell more Filipino soap operas to Asia, Africa and even Eastern Europe, following the successful export of one of its shows.

Reena de Guzman Garingan, Director of International Sales, said its drama "From the Heart" did well in Malaysia in 2002. It was followed by the airing of other ABS-CBN-produced series in Kenya, Cambodia, Brunei and Cameroon this year.

Other drama series have been sold to Indonesia, Nigeria, Ghana, Mauritius and the Seychelles

Next year ABS-CBN will expand its export market to Myanmar, Vietnam, Romania, Hungary, the Czech Republic, Russia, Croatia and Bulgaria, she added

"It's already a significant revenue contributor to the parent company," Ms Garingan said, adding that revenues from this sector grew by 40 percent in 2003 and are expected to post "conservative" annual growth of at least 10 percent in succeeding years."



Rene Sta. Cruz hosts the most racist show on Philippine radio. His show - every weekdays from 11:00 -12:oo noon on DZBB - makes fun of the Bisaya people - their regional accent and pronunciation and his creation, Bai, stereotypes the Bisaya people as backward and uneducated. We are in the 21st century! Obviously, this Rene Sta. Cruz guy and the management of Radio GMA are the backward types since they insist on age-old racism as humor. These people make me sick. Ever since I heard this show I've been avoiding it - besides Rene's analysis could be done by anyone. It is nothing special nor in-depth. I hope the law pending in Philippine Congress against making fun of people's regional accents get passed so Rene Sta. Cruz and his RGMA staff will be the first ones jailed.

No Wonder

No wonder the Japanese actor Yamapi got beaten up. He was in Korea for a private visit according to Japantoday - so he didn't bring his security detail and his manager! He should have known not to take chances. Yamapi became the latest victim of fangirling.

Popular Johnny’s idol Tomohisa Yamashita, 23, was mobbed by fans at Kimpo Airport in South Korea on April 6 when he was in the departure terminal.According to an observer, Yamashita was privately visiting the country with his friends. When some local fans found him, they grabbed his hair and clothes. There were about 1,000 fans and local media waiting at the airport but Yamashita didn’t have his manager and security personnel, the source said.


Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Charice Pempengco on Paul O'Grady Show

The latest exploit of the Filipina singing sensation:

Kim Tae Hee's New Commercial

This is the pretty Korean's new commercial. I think her cutesy projection in this ad works well with me although some people didn't like it. They thought she was milking her cutesy image too much. This is not her best commercial as far as I'm concerned. I believe the one where she dances along some hip hop beat is the best for me!

I like this girl - she's very pretty and talented. She studied at Seoul National University so she's smart too. How's that for a triple threat? She reportedly sang on this one too.


My brother plays this game from late night until early morning. I woke up at 3:30 am today to find out he just finished playing. He is so addicted to this game, he used to play this 10 hours straight on weekends! But for other people, playing is not enough. They even came up with a "prayer" based on the game. Here it goes:



Thank you for OWNING me another day.

May all the WICKED SICK be

healed by your DOMINATING touch.

May your PERSEVERANCE be present


May you increase our CRITICAL from

LUCIFER and damage his ARMOR


Sorry if we BACK STAB you.


to save us.

May you continue to bring

UNSTOPPABLE blessings and

fill our HEARTS with TARRASQUE

and remove us from this



Tuesday, April 8, 2008


Talk about obsessive fangirling, the guy in this video is a Japanese actor named Yamashita Tomohisa or to his fans, Yamapi. When he arrived in Korea, he was warmly welcomed. The welcome was so warm his fans almost pulled his clothes and groped him. Scary! The fans unintentionally hurt their idol.

Kimpo Airport Scenes

Yamashita Tomohisa was stormed by the crazy little Korean fan girls who grabbed and groped at the top star, tearing away his clothes. The fans also hit the star on his head with presents they were trying to throw at him.

Although the entire situation was extremely dangerous, Yamashita Tomohisa stayed calm, waved at the fans and even helped pick up fans who had fallen down. As soon as he had made it thru the gate however, Tomohisa's legs gave out and he had collapsed for a little bit. Yamashita Tomohisa remained cool and calm, but his accompanying friends were extremely angered by the behavior of these Korean fans. They left cursing the fans, "these crazed Korean fans, are making Korea look extremely bad."


This person pathetically masquerading himself/herself a writer incredibly called this a rape. Talk about lousy journalism or writing - but he/she got the readership. Journalists in this Asian country tend to exaggerate their accomplishments in the creative exports arena raising the ire of the countries they write on.

What is fangirling? It is a gathering of two or more fangirls in which they proceed to waste endless amounts of time ogling, discussing/arguing, stalking, etc. the object of their "affection".

Monday, April 7, 2008

More World Cup Memories

Writing about the World Cup rekindled my memories about that spectacular tournament. The whole world really goes on a stand still. I've seen it happen esp. in 2006 - the world stopped and took a breather. Can you imagine the tournament was the headline in all cable channels in different languages too? No other sports event could do that except the Olympics. I got a massive dose of football every day of June-July 2006. I think I got overdosed with various analyses from every pundit imaginable (from ESPN, BBC, DW, Channel News Asia) but I loved it. Of all experts I heard, I thought the Indian commentator for Sahara was the best though I failed to catch his name but his analysis wasn't tainted with nationalistic bias like those ESPN Star commentators who seem to think Asia is a borough in England. His explanations were simple but accurate. Boy, I really missed those days. Here in the Philippines, Solar Sports showed its greed by putting the World Cup on Pay-Per-View. They said the world is watching - yeah right. If it wasn't for this unnamed channel I would have missed several crucial games including the semi-finals and finals!

The World Cup Memories

June 8, 1998 - a Wednesday (my feelings and thoughts that day)
I'm eagerly awaiting the start of France 98 the first game will be Brazil and Scotland. A year ago Brazil showed its form in the French Tournament with Roberto Carlos scoring that spectacular free-kick. Everyone's eyes are on Brazil - the tournament favorite. Oh no, there's school unfortunately. Worse, very few people are interested in the game of football in my school. Some of them watch those stupid soaps and talk about other people's lives. Oh well I might as well enjoy the matches on PTV (now NBN). The good way to live the World Cup fever by playing FIFA '98 on Playstation!

The hype is killing me. its just too bad in Asia summer's over and school has just started. Man, the Europeans are having another great summer. Why can't the World Cup start earlier maybe in April?

Skills of France 98 including the best one of them all The Blanco's Bounce

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Ong Bak

Ong Bak is a Thai film about a man Boonting (Tony Jaa) who went to the city to recover a stolen head of Buddha (Buddha statuette is called by the villagers as Ong Bak). To the poor villagers, Ong Bak is their god and losing it is a disaster for them. Boonting uses his Muay Thai skills against enemies who want to stop him from his quest. I don't want to use give any more details or I'll spoil the movie for you.
I've heard of this movie through word-of-mouth with people telling me about the "spectacular fight scenes". I've seen Muay Thai before and I believe in its effectiveness. Muay Thai moves are regularly employed in MMA fights. When I saw the movie, my admiration for Thai boxing increased even more. I saw moves I've never seen before. In fact, the movie is refreshing as it’s not overloaded with special effects (sfx only makes a martial art move look unnatural in a movie) which have become a staple in film making nowadays. All outrageous Muay Thai moves and stunts were done naturally or so the producer said (Tony Jaa can perform these moves and stunts live backing the claim up successfully).
I'm familiar with Kung Fu movies so when I expect a kick, Tony knees his opponents. He also displayed his mastery of other martial arts like Wushu (when he used those long sticks reminiscent of Jet Li in Hero), and Arnis (when he used two sticks to beat up another adversary) in the movie.
If there's any showcase piece for Muay Thai, Ong Bak can claim it. The film lived up and exceeded my expectations.

Scenes from ONG BAK with music from Story of the Year

Friday, April 4, 2008

The Real Nodame

Megumi Noda is real! Megumi Noda or Nodame the one of the lead characters in the popular dorama Nodame Cantabile actually exists in real life. Its old news but for fans this is an exciting discovery.

Will the real Megumi Noda please stand up?

Megumi Noda, the star character of the manga series “Nodame Cantabile,” which was a popular feature in the woman’s comic magazine “Kiss,” and became a hit as a Fuji TV drama, exists in real life, it has emerged.

“Nodame Cantabile” tells the story of a meeting between Shinichi Chiaki, an elite student of Momogaoka Music Academy whose father was a famous pianist, and Megumi Noda, a hopeless piano student going by the nickname “Nodame,” who lives in a messy apartment.

After drinking too much Chiaki ends up staying at Nodame’s place. As he wakes up to the sound of a beautiful piano melody, he sees Nodame heading toward the piano in her messy room. Chiaki instructs Nodame, who hates piano practice, and as he tries to draw out her talent, he learns about the real fun and difficulty of music, and realizes his own dream of wanting to become a conductor.

The 16-volume original manga series by Tomoko Ninomiya was a major success, selling 15 million copies, and the drama which has screened up until the ninth volume achieved an impressive viewer rating of 19.9 percent during a Nov. 13 screening, according to ratings firm Video Research.

The idea for Nodame, who is regarded as a strange person because she continues to live in a messy room and often makes strange noises, was conceived in 2001. A female fan posted a photograph of a piano being played in a messy room on the bulletin board of a Web site operated by Ninomiya, saying, “Look at this interesting photo I took.” The woman was a music college student named Megumi Noda.

At the time, Ninomiya, who was looking for ideas for a new serial publication, gained inspiration from the photograph, and decided to produce a musical comedy with a sloppy main character. Editors at Kodansha, the publisher of the magazine “Kiss,” gave the work the thumbs-up, saying the gap between classical music and a hopeless girl was interesting. This led to the serialization of “Nodame Cantabile.”

Ninomiya reportedly continues to phone Noda, who has since graduated from the music college and is teaching piano in Fukuoka, to get ideas for the manga series. Nodame’s episode in the manga of creating a song called “Mojamoja Taiso,” for example, came after Noda played a piece through the telephone to create an image for the song.

At the end of each comic book, the phrase, “Special Thanks Megumi Noda” always appears.


Manga: 13 (Thirteen)

My brother recommended this manga (comic book) with a very interesting storyline. It is called 13. Here is the story: Mondo Fujieda is in love with a girl named Izayo Gorugo. However, there's a problem: her family are all assassins. He ends up humiliating her and upon this humiliation, she vows to kill him. Luckily for him she moves away. Years later, she comes back to seek vengeance, but what is a guy to do against a skilled assassin?

The first chapter was already translated. It's a good read so far. An underworld character just wants to live a normal life is also tackled in other Asian series like Gokusen (Gangster Teacher), My Boss, My Hero and others. The characters are often mum about their lives and unable to shake off the stigma of being a part of the underworld no matter how hard they resist or ignore it.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Hey, Please

This is one of the greatest songs I've ever heard - a pure Filipino masterpiece. It is sung by the defunct local band Orange and Lemons from their first album. They sound like some old British band but who cares? The melody and the lyrics are simple but catchy.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008


The emo people are being persecuted worldwide (don't laugh) even in the Philippines. Their lifestyle, clothing and music are being challenged by some bigots who have mental problems. You can see that in every comment box of every emo band in Youtube. Though largely ignored and dismissed this hatred has sprung in the most outrageous manner in Mexico! Punks and metal heads are the main culprits. The news is so unreal. At first I thought it was a joke but the video proved it wasn’t.
Unfortunately, the main reason for this anti-emo feeling is homosexuality. Most Mexicans identify emo subculture to homosexuality! Talk about the dangerous mixture of hatred and ignorance! Read on:

Riot police have taken to the streets of several cities in Mexico to ... defend emo kids?

A series of attacks on dyed-hair, eye-makeup-wearing emo kids began in early March when several hundred people went on an emo-beating rampage in Querétaro, a town of 1.5 million about 160 miles north of Mexico City.

The next week, shaggy-haired emo teenagers were harassed again by punks and rockabillys in the capital, prompting police protection and a segment on the TV news. Most recently, a Mexican newspaper reported that metal heads and gangsters have warned Tijuana's emo kids to stay away from the town's fair next month.

But the so-called emos are organizing, too. Last week, they demonstrated against the violence, pictured above, and Wednesday some met with police in Mexico City.

"They're organizing to defend their right to be emo," wrote Daniel Hernandez of LA Weekly on his personal blog, which has provided stellar coverage of the whole affair.

Music-based subcultures have permeated Mexico's major cities for decades, fueled by constant migration from rural cities. But only in the past year have emos begun to make their presence felt in the streets. In response, many of the established so-called tribus urbanas like punks and metalheads are responding with violence. The emo-punk battles are reminiscent of earlier subculture fights among various factions, like the Hell's Angels fighting hippies at the Altamont Music Festival or the Mods taking on the Rockers.

But while videos of Mexican teenagers with pompadours advancing on equally baby-faced emo rockers seem like scenes from a south-of-the-border version of John Waters' Crybaby, there are ugly undercurrents to the story.

First, by some accounts, the emo subculture is identified with homosexuality in Mexico. As Mexico City youth worker Victor Mendoza told "At the core of this is the homophobic issue. The other arguments are just window dressing for that."

Gustavo Arellano, the author of Ask a Mexican and an editor at OC Weekly, said that the sexual ambiguities cultivated by emo fashion helped set the group up for targeting by more macho groups.

"What do you do when you are confronted with a question mark about sexuality in Mexico?" Arellano said. "You beat it up."

Whatever happened to respect in Mexico? The problem with some people is that they generalized all emos as homos. This happens when hate is being tolerated. Any signs of hatred should be crushed as early as possible.