Friday, August 30, 2019


Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, the Disneyland and Disney World – Hollywood Studios expansion areas based on the iconic space opera film franchise from Lucasfilm, has been offering a unique in-universe “Star Wars” experience to guests ever since their openings last May and this Thursday, respectively. This is reflected in their merchandise, presented as if they were actual products from the “Star Wars” galaxy: lightsabers, costumes, dolls of Wookies and Porgs, mini-Droids, and even bottles of Coca-Cola, Sprite and mineral water with logos written in in-universe galactic script/Aurebesh. Unfortunately, their unique shape has run into trouble with the Transportation Security Administration (TSA).


There was a time perhaps, when the first known fact one has about actor Alden Richards is that he was one half of the iconic love pairing Al-Dub, with fellow TV personality Maine “Yaya Dub” Mendoza. While the sheer brand recognition power the tandem got from what started out as a mere impromptu team-up on the GMA7 noontime variety show “Eat! Bulaga” was a big boon to their careers both Alden and Maine have also managed to strike out as individuals. Richards particularly just came off from a blockbuster pairing with Kapamilya star Kathryn Bernardo in “Hello, Love, Goodbye.” Now the actor just got major award props from South Korea.

Thursday, August 29, 2019

JOAQUIN PHOENIX Awes and Scares in Final TRAILER for “JOKER”

When it comes to cinematic takes on DC Comics’ arguably most popular superhero character Batman, it has been thrice that his most iconic arch-enemy the Joker has been portrayed on the big screen. The first time was in 1966 in a movie spinoff of the “campy” “Batman” TV series starring Adam West, where Joker (Cesar Romero) was merely a clown-themed Prince of Crime. In the 1989 film starring Michael Keaton, Joker (Jack Nicholson) was a psychotic mob enforcer disfigured and driven insane by chemicals. And in 2008’s “The Dark Knight” starring Christian Bale, Joker (Heath Ledger) was a facially-scarred “agent of chaos” who infamously wanted to watch the world burn.


Dedicated TV viewers who watch shows on Netflix might be aware of the political thriller drama series “Designated Survivor,” starring “24” star Kiefer Sutherland as a lowly US cabinet secretary who becomes an unexpected President following a terrorist attack that kills his predecessor and the entire Presidential line of succession. The circumstances that allowed his character to survive is based on an actual US government protocol for continuity of governance, where a chosen cabinet secretary or other ranking official is kept securely away from any large-scale government gathering with the President and his other potential successors. Now several lawmakers are pushing for similar legislation here.


Warehouse clubs as a concept began in the US back in around 1971, though earlier examples have been recorded in the fifties. These are massive retail stores that allow wholesale purchases of merchandise, particularly to customers that pay for membership fees to be allowed entry to shop. Numerous examples of warehouse clubs have come and gone over the decades. One that has stood the test of time since its opening in 1976 is Washington-headquartered Costco, its current form a result of mergers with previous competitors. The retail giant currently has stores in 12 countries, the latest being in China, which opened this Tuesday. And what an opening that branch had.

LIZQUEN Tandem Share First Tidbits of Their Upcoming ABS-CBN TELESERYE

In the continuing buildup towards Star Cinema’s latest film adaptation of iconic Filipina super-heroine “Darna,” the name of Liza Soberano had once been intimately tied to the project, as the title character to boot. Unfortunately, a rather nasty injury on the set of her last ABS-CBN teleserye put a damper on those plans. By the time Jane De Leon was cast to replace her, Liza was already in the US for her series of operations to fix her finger bone fracture, to great success. During that time there was a blank as to what production she might join next. Now it is revealed, and she will be joined by her love team partner Enrique Gil.

Wednesday, August 28, 2019

TESLA Introduces INSURANCE Offering for IN-HOUSE E-Car Owners Starting in CALIFORNIA

When the name Tesla is mentioned nowadays, it is likely to refer to the major car manufacturer specializing in electric vehicles. The company has brought quite the number of notable e-cars to the market, with the latest and their current baby being the Model 3 sedan. But Tesla is also aware that electric-powered vehicles are notoriously for being pricey, not just at first purchase but also in the matter of car insurance. To this end, and perhaps to further its directive of making profitability sustainable, the company is now entering the insurance market by offering coverage to their cars’ owners.


This month of August has seen President Rodrigo Duterte in a flurry of using his powers as chief executive of the national government by signing into law a sizeable number of notable legislation from Congress. One of these lucky bills is the Universal Healthcare (UHC) Act or the country’s own take on similar legislation from the US during the Obama administration. Optimally the provisions of the new UHC law, enacted this past February, would take place in its entirety next year. Unfortunately, the implementing arm of universal healthcare, the Department of Health (DOH), is insisting that funding for the law is not enough to go ahead with a full rollout.


BREXIT – that was the nickname for the plan for the government of the United Kingdom, acting on the wishes of a vehemently vocal sector of its population, to withdraw their country’s membership in the European Union. It has been a shadow hanging over their nation since the 2016 referendum, and the complicated legalese of such a motion has led to the resignation of two Prime Ministers, the one who reluctantly oversaw the referendum and his successor, who could not negotiate an exit from the EU without interference. The current PM, Boris Johnson, is grimly determined to realize BREXIT, without deals if necessary. And he is taking a rather heavy-handed step.

Watched the “HELLO, LOVE, GOODBYE” Movie? Then READ THE BOOK!

Star Cinema’s “Hello, Love, Goodbye” has by now undoubtedly cemented itself as one of the biggest Filipino blockbusters of 2019. It has surely made bank on the box office thanks to its heavy-hitting combination of a dramatic love story, a relatable setting background of OFW life in Hong Kong, and a formidable cross-network pairing of Kathryn Bernardo and Alden Richards. While the cinematic run of “Hello, Love, Goodbye” is all but wrapped up that does not mean the experience of its story has to end. While the home media release is heavily anticipated, fans can check out the plot in another form, as a novel.

2019 VMAs Still LOSING VIEWERS, But Getting Improved SOCIAL MEDIA Presence

It has been considered something of a trend that award-presenting shows in general have been in something of a decline with regards to viewership. There are several factors as to why that were so, some rooted in the political atmosphere of the US. The Video Music Awards (VMAs) of Viacom’s flagship cable channel MTV is no exception, as it has been tracking decreasing ratings over the past few years. In their case it might also be added that it simply is because MTV today is a rather different animal from the “Music Television” that it was in decades past. That will explain the dearth in ratings of the 2019 VMAs.

Tuesday, August 27, 2019

PBA and MPBL Discuss Ways to CO-EXIST Without Unintended COMPETITION

There is no doubt that the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) is the country’s top professional league for the sport. Such is its indelibility in the Filipino public consciousness that it managed to survive a serious challenger in the late 90s-early 21st Century from the ABS-CBN-founded MBA league. Still, the PBA’s Metro Manila-centered and corporate-sponsored format limits exposure of provincially homegrown talent, though this has been addressed by Sen. Manny Pacquiao’s semi-pro Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League (MPBL), which has geographically-based teams. While there has been some discussion of issues between the two leagues, relations between PBA and MPBL are mostly cordial, as exemplified by a recent collaborative meeting between their officials.


This day and age is seeing the rise of digital streaming services and platforms as a top purveyor of quality media content; and what better way to establish media quality than to have their programs winning media awards? Already, Netflix has scored plenty of awards for their original exclusive streaming series, but they want to go further by having their original streaming films stand for awards too. This is somewhat difficult considering award-giving bodies like the Academy Awards rule that potential nominee movies must be shown in theaters first. Traditional cinema chains are also concerned that streaming films will undercut their business. To this, Netflix is offering a reasonable mediation.


The general perception of South Korean popular entertainment, and one that industry is not shy of letting the world know, is that of the “talent factory.” That means near-monolithic Korean talent companies hold auditions to find prospective idols in music, TV and film. The company management then has final say on what their in-house talents can say and do in terms of projects, media appearances, private life, and so on. But there are still exceptions to that rule, such as South Korean boy band SEVENTEEN under Pledis Entertainment, a so-called “self-producing” group with some liberty in songwriting, choreography, and more. SEVENTEEN has already performed in Manila before; next year they are coming back for more.


It can be said that global fast-food brand KFC became one of the “victims” of a greater wave of health consciousness among commercial food consumers. After all, the franchise juggernaut created by Colonel Harland Sanders in 1952 was originally called “Kentucky Fried Chicken” until 1991, when the company decided to rebrand as simply the initials to remove any reference to “fried” and the health concerns it tends to connote. But the story of KFC offering healthy eating does not end there. Recently KFC has partnered with plant-based meat substitute producer Beyond Meat to develop plant-based chicken for frying. This week they are announcing that they are ready to test it.


One of the simple fallacies regarding the rainy season in the Philippines is that the brunt of tropical storms and typhoons that visit the country falls in the months of June and July. Of course the real story is far more complex, and a run-through of weather reports over the past few years will indicate the relative spacing of significant atmospheric disturbances throughout the year save for the summer months of March to May. Case in point, the country and the general region is currently reeling from a one-two combination of tropical storms. The latest, called Jenny by PAGASA, only just received its storm designation.

Monday, August 26, 2019

D23 EXPO Unloads Massive Reveals for DISNEY, MARVEL, “STAR WARS”

This past weekend has been one of epic wonderment and hyped-up excitement, if one happened to be a fan of Disney, or its two major subsidiaries Marvel and Lucasfilm of “Star Wars” fame. That was the period of the 2019 D23 Expo, held at Anaheim Convention Center, and it was chock-full of some all-new reveals for what the three major branches of the Disney media umbrella. The announcements run the gamut from the upcoming blockbusters, to exclusives for digital streaming, and even a planned expansion area of attractions for one of Disney’s major theme parks. Let us consider them all.

Saturday, August 24, 2019

Season 3 Veteran IAN PRELLIGERA Sings BUWAN to Return to THE VOICE KIDS Season 4

If there is an easily spotted trend happening in the ongoing fourth season of “The Voice Kids” on ABS-CBN, it would have to be the Juan Karlos song “Buwan.” Coaches Bamboo Mañalac, Lea Salonga and Sarah Geronimo (back in her chair after letting Sharon Cuneta handle her spot in season 3) must have heard it being sung end on end in the blind audition phase from so many aspiring young performers. Granted, the soul alternative rock number is not always a guaranteed chair-turner, but when it does work the Coaches who turned are sure to be gushing at the singer, just like with this one.


Ever since its first game in the franchise was released in 1992, the “Mortal Kombat” fighting game series has exploded into a multimedia phenomenon with a one-time comic book title, some movies and TV series to its brand name. But the core of the franchise has always remained with the games, for which the original was a contributing factor to the formation of the Videogame Ratings Board for how violent it was (at the time of release). Close to three decades later, the latest game title “Mortal Kombat 11” upped the label’s cultural prominence by adding DLC characters from various other franchises, including “The Terminator.”

Friday, August 23, 2019

“MS. MARVEL” Announced Coming for DISNEY+ Streaming at D23 2019

It is that time of the year again for Disney to reveal their hand at what is in store for the media super-brand’s future to a select audience in the annual D23 Expo. Set to take place in Anaheim al through this weekend, the event is certain to have some major reveals. It does not take much deductive reasoning to know that this 2019 D23 will see the unveiling of the Disney+ streaming service. Other goodies hinted at include a new Marvel expansion area or theme park for Disneyland Resort. But back to Disney+; apparently there is a new MCU-related series to be announced too.


The 2019 FIBA Basketball World Cup will kick off in China on the very last day of this month, and team Gilas Pilipinas is determined not to waste its hard-earned tournament spot in the competition, by trying to get is as much quality tune-up games as they could without wearing themselves out when the real matches begin. This is rather important considering that some of their best players are sideline either due to injuries or waiting out a FIBA suspension. To that end Team Gilas took on the Adelaide 36ers from the Australia-NZ NBL league this Friday, and the resultant victory spoke of great promise.


Major global toy brand Hasbro has scored quite big with its big-screen live adaptations of several of its iconic toy lines. Granted, most of those films are based on “Transformers,” but at least two have brought a Real American Hero to cinemas with 2009’s “G.I. Joe” and its 2013 sequel “Retaliation.” Both films did well enough in the box office despite mediocre reviews. Now Paramount and Hasbro’s film arm AllSpark Pictures is taking a page from the “Transformers” movies by making a “G.I. Joe” spinoff featuring the franchise’s most popular character Snake Eyes, starring Henry Golding of “Crazy Rich Asians.”

DEREK RAMSAY Explains Part in Troubled 2019 MMFF Entry “(K)AMPON”

Making quite the splash on showbiz news over the past few weeks was the eventual cancellation of an entry to the 2019 Metro Manila Film Festival. The movie in question, Quantum Films’ horror flick “(K)ampon” starring one-time Queen of All Media Kris Aquino in a rather anticipated big-screen comeback, ran into an insurmountable snag when her lead costar Derek Ramsay bowed out of production due to scheduling conflicts. While Gabby Conception was available to pinch-hit, his replacement notice came after a deadline for casting changes enforced by the MMFF executive committee. Some observers have since described Ramsay’s last-minute departure to have been an unprofessional action that ruined Kris’ cinematic return.


Of all series based on DC Comics characters that are part of the “Arrow”-verse franchise on The CW, “DC’s Legends of Tomorrow” has a unique approach to its principal cast of characters. That is because its cast comprising the titular time-travelling team was conceptualized to be dynamic, with members coming and going as mandated in the story arcs across its seasons. After all, they were comprised of one-off side-character heroes from the other “Arrow”-verse shows. Case in point, sometime during the run of “Legends” season 5 in 2020, two of its cast – one “founder” and one “replacement” – will both depart.

JOLLIBEE and Associated Chain Restaurants in City of MANILA to HIRE SENIOR CITIZENS and PWDs

Tourists in some Southeast Asian countries like Singapore, when they might drop in for a snack in any branch of McDonald’s in the region, might notice something about the attending staff. In Singapore especially, some of the employees manning the counters or making the rounds cleaning up used tables are middle-aged and elderly persons, who perform their work with sometimes surprisingly dignified efficiency. The reason for this trend in staffing for fast-food restaurants in Singapore is due to the youth preferring office-employment over counter duty. In the Philippines however, such a thing is rather unheard of. But Jollibee Foods looks to be changing that soon.

Thursday, August 22, 2019


The Netflix anime train is on full steam, as their platform carries not only hit anime series from Japanese networks but all-original productions from the country’s anime studios made just for streaming. The results are a potpourri of genres from action to drama to horror to comedy, featuring either lush traditional 2D animation or crisp 3D. There is one adaptation that Netflix is working on, a live-action version of the legendary anime series “Cowboy Bebop.” The primary cast of this in-production series, centered on John Cho, was announced way back in April. Now, a significant cast addition has been revealed.

PRESIDENT DUTERTE Allowing PCSO STL to RESUME Operations as Well

Towards the end of last month, Filipinos who were willing to spend some of their money on the off chance that they might become millionaires got a nasty surprise when President Rodrigo Duterte ordered the shutdown of all operations for the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office. This meant all outlets for the Lottery, scratch cards, Keno and so on were closed while investigations regarding corruption within the agency were carried out. For a few days lotto players were utterly listless until operations for that game of chance were restored, but not for the rest. Close to a month after the initial shutdown, another game was reinstated.

GOOGLE Abandons DESSERT Naming for "ANDROID Q," Officially ANDROID 10

When talking about the many versions of Android had been released since its introduction in 2008, one cannot help perhaps to feel their sweet tooth being tickled. That of course refers to the sweets-themed naming scheme employed for the Google-developed mobile operating system that took off from version 1.1, known as “Petit Four” in development. Android 1.5 “Cupcake” in 2009 was when the nicknaming scheme was introduced to the public, and succeeding versions followed up with an alphabetic scheme. Tech-savvy Android users have wondered what Google’s official name for the Android Q (version 10) would be. As it turns out, it is just the number.

“JUST A STRANGER” from VIVA Gives a New Spin and Depth to the “LOVE AFFAIR” Storyline

At first blush it may seem odd to consider Filipino-Australian actress Ann Curtis-Smith as the older woman in the portrayal of a romantic pairing, but then one remembers that she is aged 34 and already married to Erwan Heusaff since 2017. Furthermore, despite her still-bubbly persona she is a full decade older than Marco Gumabao, her 24-year-old costar in the “erotic romance” drama “Just a Stranger” from Viva Films. Premiering early this week, the film is the latest notable “older woman-younger man relationship” story to come out this year, following two Cinemalaya 2019 entries “Malamaya” and “Belle Doleur.” But “Just a Stranger” delivers a unique standout experience from the rest.


Much as Marvel would like to have all its eggs in one basket, when it comes to film rights to all of their characters they do not have them in their entirety. Sony is famously known for keeping its movie rights to “Spider-Man” to their chest, and it was only a landmark sharing deal with Disney-Marvel Studios that allowed the Friendly Neighborhood hero to appear in team-ups and new solo pictures as portrayed by Tom Holland. Not long after “Spider-Man: Far from Home” was released however, this fragile rights deal may have just been ended between Disney-Marvel and Sony-Columbia Pictures.

Wednesday, August 21, 2019

WARNER BROS. Confirms “THE MATRIX 4” with One WACHOWSKI, KEANU Returning

Prior to 1999, it was said that actor Keanu Reeves, by that time established as an action star with some high-concept lead roles like Coppola’s “Dracula” movie, had a small fear that his eventual gravestone will read “He played Ted,” a reference to the slacker rock-star wannabe from the “Bill and Ted” comedy franchise. After 1999 with “The Matrix” taking off, the future gravestone might have read “He played Neo. He also played Ted.” Granted, Reeves is actually pretty chill about both roles, considering he is starring in a third “Bill and Ted” film and, as newly revealed this week, a fourth “Matrix” movie too.

Tuesday, August 20, 2019


People who have lived in the eighties and early nineties might still remember a time when commercials for cigarettes had a prominent place on TV. Several years and a rise of greater health awareness later, cigarettes have been mostly consigned to just print ads, forced to carry graphic health warnings, and are made more expensive by Philippine “Sin Tax” legislation. That has not stopped many Filipinos from risking their health by buying cigarette sticks or their less-than-ideal alternative, vaporizers/vapes. In a bid to make them get the message, Congress is pushing a bill calling for a new Sin Tax hike.


Fans of the high-speed vehicle action “Fast & Furious” film franchise from Universal might have divisions regarding its genre shift from underground racing and street crime to international terror incidents, but most will agree that the decision to end the 2017 installment “Fate of the Furious” on a cliffhanger was a bummer. Then again, it did introduce the series’ most diabolical antagonist yet in Cipher (Charlize Theron) who not only manipulated Dom (Vin Diesel) into a brief heel turn and has plans to literally destroy the world, but was also behind the plot of the big bad in this year’s spinoff entry “Hobbs and Shaw.”

Monday, August 19, 2019


It is not casually known by moviegoers, but the ABS-CBN Star Cinema horror film “Eerie,” which premiered in the Philippines just this March, was actually already produced since last year. The movie, which stars Bea Alonzo, was actually screened publicly for the first time during the Singapore International Film Festival in December 3, 2018. It was a hit there, it was a hit in its cinematic run, and now “Eerie” is also getting plenty of attention with its international distribution courtesy of being on Netflix. And it is actually from watching there that lots of critics in major overseas markets are turning their eyes on its lead, Bea Alonzo herself.

DISNEY STREAMING to Also Be AVAILABLE in APPLE TV, ANDROID and Other Major Digital Devices

Ever since Disney began pulling out all of its online content from the traditional streaming platforms like Netflix, the anticipation has begun to build for one of their latest brainchildren. Disney+, the exclusive new streaming platform for all things Disney (and Marvel, and Lucasfilm/”Star Wars”) will be launching in the penultimate month of this year with the promise of the massive combined library of what already is, plus the oodles of interesting new original content that have already been promised and even teased in so many events. With November coming soon, Disney has also revealed the various streaming devices they have partnered with to deliver Disney+ widely upon its launch.

The Verge reports that the House of Mouse has given an official listing of what digital devices will be able to pick up their exclusive Disney+ streaming service when it launches this November 12 in the US. The media juggernaut has committed itself to making their platform available to most if not all of its major world markets some two years after launch, and will be able to meet that deadline by partnering with several other platforms to offer Disney+ on their devices. The initial offer of $6.99 per month (and a $69.99) annual fee also serves to attract first-timers.

As soon as Disney+ launches, these following platforms and products will have access to the service, namely Android, Android TV, iPhone iOS, iPadOS, Apple TV (tvOS), PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Roku TV and streaming, Chromecast, and all major web browsers on desktop computers. Countries that can immediately access Disney+ after launch will include (along with monthly rates) Canada (CA$8.99), Australia (AU$8.99), New Zealand (NZ$9.99) and the Netherlands (6.99). In addition, Disney is also offering an integrated monthly package of US$12.99 to bundle Disney+, Hulu and ESPN+ in a single payment.

It is interesting to note on the devices listed, there are none from Amazon whether in its Fire tablets or the Fire TV platform. Disney has not given an official explanation why, though hopefully the Disney+ support could come along later after launch. The company also announced that users of Apple TV, Roku and so on, will be able to subscribe for Disney+ streaming straight from those same platforms. Apple TV is pretty chill about the arrangement considering it is also launching its Apple TV Plus service in the same month, with a $9.99 monthly fee alone, with no bundles.

Image courtesy of On MSFT


It is quite something to know that a failed bid by Mattel to make a licensed toy line for the classic fantasy adventure franchise “Conan the Barbarian” led to their development of their own property that, while superficially similar, stands well enough on its own: “He-Man and the Masters of the Universe.” The classic 1980s toys were bolstered by a memorable animated series from Filmation, followed by two remakes in the 90s and 2000s. Mattel being Barbie’s creator however, they also created a girls-oriented spinoff in “She-Ra: Princess of Power,” which saw its own 80s show and newer 2018 remake on Netflix. On a seemingly separate note, a third “He-Man” remake has just been announced.

KRIS AQUINO Comeback Horror Movie for 2019 MMFF Now CANCELLED

Considering the severity of the medical condition that ultimately forced actress, TV personality and one-time “Queen of All Media” Kris Aquino to leave the world of showbiz, it is amazing that she could muster the resolve to make any comeback at all. But she was coming back, in a starring role for a horror flick that is a Metro Manila Film Fest entry premiering in the Holidays to boot. The operative word however is “was,” as due to some very unfortunate circumstances involving a surprise development and a tight festival schedule, said movie comeback is now dead in the water.

POLITICIZED Statement on HK PROTESTS by "MULAN" REMAKE Star Leads to Calls for 2020 Film BOYCOTT

Last month, Disney put out their first teaser for an upcoming new live-action adaptation of one of their “Animated Canon” movies, that of the 1998 entry, “Mulan.” Said teaser promised a more down-to-earth narrative that hews closer to the original Chinese ballad about the legendary girl soldier, to be portrayed by Chinese-American actress Liu Yifei in the remake set to premiere in 2020. Initial reaction to this short preview was relatively positive, but a recent development might have unexpected consequences. Liu has made her personal opinion known about the ongoing disorder in Hong Kong, and while it may have support in the world’s largest film market, others are not pleased.

Sunday, August 18, 2019

KAPAMILYA Environment, Social Welfare Warrior GINA LOPEZ DEAD at 65

While ABS-CBN is arguably the biggest media network in the Philippines, and therefore primarily engaged in the business of entertainment, they also have a significant arm when it comes to public service. And the face of that charitable facet of ABS-CBN has been Gina Lopez, daughter and sister of two generations of the network’s chairmen. It was she who pioneered the groundbreaking Bantay Bata 163 along with other ABS-CBN-connected social welfare initiatives. Her work has led to her being appointed by two Presidents in state commissions or cabinet positions, and she did these later achievements with the specter of cancer. Sadly, her time has ended.

Friday, August 16, 2019

New QE2 OLIVIA COLMAN Muses on Taking Over for “THE CROWN” SEASON 3 Coming NOVEMBER

One might say Netflix has an original series for many different audiences, from 80s nostalgia hounds with “Stranger Things” to recent-history buffs in “The Crown.” Premiering back in 2016, the historical drama drew audiences with its look into the lives of the British Royal Family with Princess Elizabeth, later Queen Elizabeth II as the focal point starting from her marriage. The central role was ably played for two seasons by Claire Foy, with a cast change as the timeline skips several years for Season 3. This week Netflix reveals the premiere date for the continuing story of “The Crown,” just as the new QE2 actress expresses the difficulty of picking up from a prior performer.

BULACAN AIRPORT Project Awarded to SMHC; Environmental Group Lodges PROTESTS

The Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) has served as the main national and international air travel hub for the Philippines for decades, and any regular traveler through there can tell the public that air traffic has become frighteningly congested. A proposal by the Department of Transportation (DOTr) has called for the construction of a “New Manila International Airport,” one to be sited on Bulacan. This week following a meeting of the project’s Bids and Awards Committee a contract valued at P734 billion was awarded to San Miguel Holdings Corporation to build the Bulacan airport. But not everybody is happy at this particular turn of events.

SEGA GENESIS MINI Retro Console to Release SEPTEMBER at $79.99

It is nearing three years now since Nintendo stunned the gaming world and sent gamers on a nostalgia trip when they introduced the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) Classic Edition, and somehow the community has not yet sated in their taste for retro game consoles in small emulation hardware packages with present-day audio-visual options. Other game companies followed suit with a Sony PlayStation Classic and SNK Neo Geo Mini, while Nintendo followed up with an SNES Classic Edition. Old-time game fans originally wondered why Sega had not joined in the bandwagon, only for word of the Sega Genesis Mini to be revealed in 2018. Now, its release date has been revealed.


She joined season 5 of “Canadian Idol” in 2007 where she finished in third place, and then went on to release an album and some singles in her native Canada. But it was not until 2012 and her single “Call Me Maybe” that the name of Carly Rae Jepsen became known in pop music circles around the world. And with that success she has built a strong idol name globally, even getting to go on international concert tours. That of course includes the Philippines where she performed in Manila years ago. So her Filipino fans better buck up because she is coming back this year.


“Star Wars Story,” an anthology of films in the “Star Wars” saga of Lucasfilm that does not directly focus on the Skywalker family, may have theoretically been sunk with audiences after the poor reception to 2018’s “Solo.” Still, fans of the franchise believe the concept is viable, with the first “Star Wars Story” being 2016’s “Rogue One” being the example. A high favorite for such as spinoff is Jedi Master Obi-Wan Kenobi, preferably a trilogy if fans could have their way. Actor Ewan McGregor, who played Obi-Wan in the Prequels, has long been clamored by fans to star in such a spinoff. While a pipe dream, recent developments speak otherwise.

Thursday, August 15, 2019


People who know what the term “Renaissance Man” means might somewhat be able to argue that Manny Pacquiao is one of them. He certainly does go out of his way to do as many different things in his life as possible, not just the ones he is good at. Outside of his illustrious boxing career he has played basketball, acted, enlisted as an Army reservist, served as a government official on the local and national levels, even become a recording artist with several novelty albums and singles. It is in that vein that Manny is performing his next big act.


As the default posture of a human is standing on two legs, they actually have a more difficult time maintaining their balance than a four-legged animal might. About the only appendages that a man naturally has to keep their body’s equilibrium are their arms, and usually they are not enough. But some researchers in a university in Japan have hit upon a quirky conceptual tech solution for the balance problems of a human, potentially useful for the elderly or those who are “clumsy,” tripping or losing balance frequently. Their solution is a reminder that Japan can still think up cutting-edge tech: a fully-articulated robotic tail.

“KILLER BRIDE” Tops Triumphant Premiere Week with Well-Received “JOSHNELLA” Pairing

High-concept shows stand a chance to be a real treat whenever they air on Philippine television. It can be a foreign production like the action drama series “24” starring Kiefer Sutherland (dubbed in Filipino by ABS-CBN back in the 2000s), or it can be a local masterpiece like “May Bukas Pa” with the then-young Zaijian Jaranilla, also on the same network. In short, the Kapamilya network is a master at this, if the international trending reaction to their new suspense-drama tele-serye “The Killer Bride” is any indication. The backstory of a vengeful spirit was awesomely terrifying enough, but the new love team that formed there was a big bonus too.

BEERMEN Win 2019 COMMISSIONER’S CUP GAME 5; But Victory Soured by Random Act of RACISM

While probably not completely impossible, it would be difficult to bounce back from a 3-1 win deficit in a “best of seven” game series. The San Miguel Beermen know this well enough that they powered through the Talk n Text KaTropa to secure Game 4 of the 2019 PBA Commissioner’s Cup Finals last Sunday. From there, all that remains for either team is to take Game 5 to make the series 3-2, and get the morale boost of being one victory away from the Cup. Last August 14, despite some questionable action in the first half, would see San Miguel triumph over TNT once more.

New Trailer Reveals “STAR WARS RESISTANCE” Season 2 is LAST

To be perfectly blunt, the “Sequel Trilogy” of the long-running “Star Wars” saga, and all spinoff media relating to it, have been rather hit or miss in terms of reception from the franchise fandom. While it did bring “Star Wars” back into prominence, the story development that killed off some original characters and the seemingly “politicized” characterization of the new-generation heroine have soured opinions of some audiences. The same goes for its side-story material such as the Disney Channel/XD animated series “Star Wars: Resistance,” which fans compared unfavorably to franchise predecessors “Clone Wars” and “Rebels.” That might explain why its second season has been announced to also be its last.


Miss Universe 2018 Catriona Gray is now winding down the latter half of her reign before the next pageant at the end of the year, but never let it be said that she is not utilizing her position to promote her advocacies, doubly so if they include issues close to her home in the Philippines. This week she was especially affected by the recent incident wherein a transgender woman was not only barred use of a Quezon City mall’s female comfort room, but also arrested and nearly arraigned for trying to record her experience. As Catriona has lobbied for the LGBTQ community before, she cannot take this event lying down.
And so it was, according to CNN Philippines, that Catriona Gray went on her official Instagram page to not only say her piece on what befell Gretchen Diez this week, but also to reiterate her support for a bill in Congress that would add safeguards against extreme maltreatment to LGBTQ members in society. On her post, dated Thursday, August 15, Gray called out all involved in the altercation that took place at Farmer’s Plaza mall in Cubao, QC Tuesday, August 13, that went against recent local ordinances against gender discrimination.
Catriona said the incident involving the transgender named Gretchen Diez stresses the necessity of legislating the Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity, and Gender Expression (SOGIE) Equality Bill, which will impose stronger penalties on acts of societal discrimination based on a person’s gender identity or expression, as well as professed their sexual orientation. The bill was authored by Senator Risa Hontiveros during the preceding Congress, and re-filed it anew just this June.

View this post on Instagram

Last night's incident involving a transgender woman being prohibited from using the womans washroom and resulting in being escorted off premises in handcuffs by local police only highlights further, the Philippines need for implementation of the #SOGIEEqualityBill. LGBTQ+ rights are HUMAN rights - mga karapatang pangkaligtasan at kalayaan mula sa diskriminasyon, karahasan at pagmamalupit batay sa pagkakakilanlan. The incident happened in a city that has an existing anti-discrimination bill. Ibig sabihin, walang saysay ang isang bill na hindi maipatupad sa isang komunidad. Kasabay ng hinihinging pagpasa ng #SOGIEEQUALITYBILL, dapat din tayong humiling ng mga sumusunod bilang isang komunidad: 1. "Accessible forms of information for the public such as educational drives, programs and awareness campaigns": para mas maintindihan natin ang mga pangangailangan ng LGBTQ+ community at para malaman natin ang mga bagay na maaari pa nating magawa bilang mga kaalyado o mga taong may awa sa kapwa ❤. 2. "A SOGIE workplace policy": para sa lahat ng mga pampublikong tagapaglingkod at mga taong may impluwensiya sa komunidad. Gusto ko ring pagtuunan natin ng pansin ang katotohanang wala dapat makaranas ng anumang uri ng pagpapahiya at pang-aabuso (emotional, physical o sexual), LGBTQ+ man o hindi. The whole arguement of shifting the blame to the victim for reasons of being trans to justify abuse - is still victim blaming and IS NOT RIGHT. The blame should be on the perpetrators who should be held accountable and corrective actions should be taken (in last nights case - points one and two above could greatly help prevent future similar incidents from happening). Ang LGBTQ + ay nakikipaglaban para sa kanilang mga karapatan - ang karapatan sa kaligtasan, proteksyon at pagkakapantay-pantay - ay laban din natin. 🏳‍🌈 #SOGIEEqualityNow
A post shared by Catriona Gray (@catriona_gray) on
Diez was prevented earlier this week from using the Farmer’s Market mall female comfort room by a janitress that argued with her. When Diez attempted to record their conversation on her smartphone, the janitress called for mall security to handcuff her and escort her to QC Police Station 7 where an attempt to charge her with “unjust vexation” was ultimately dropped. That particular detail in Diez’s story was what upset Catriona Gray the most, saying on her Instagram, “The whole argument of shifting the blame to the victim for reasons of being trans to justify abuse - is still victim blaming and IS NOT RIGHT.”
Prior LGBTQ-related activities that Catriona engaged with in her capacity as the Miss Universe include her promotion of the 2019 Pride Month, an international event celebrating the community as well as a platform for advancing their rights in countries worldwide. Diez has announced her intent of counter-filing a suit against Farmer’s Plaza for violating Quezon City’s anti-discriminatory Gender Fair Ordinance.
Image courtesy of PEP Ph