Friday, March 19, 2010

Time to Show some Love

I was preparing my things and was about to leave home for work when I caught a glimpse of today's episode of ABS-CBN's Showtime.

I'm not actually a hardcore fan of the show. Though I watch it regularly, I don't watch the entire program which starts at around 10:30 a.m. and wraps up at around 12:00 p.m. And the reason behind it is I'm switching channels between ABS-CBN, BTV and Jack.

Now, don't expect me to berate on the five judges who are usually just repeating what the first person says, or about the lack of the originality of the concept of the program (though I must admit that ABS-CBN is doing a better job right now compared to TV5's Talentadong Pinoy), or about the absence of actual talent (in my opinion, you can rehearse a dance routine for zillion times until you achieve perfection) on the show, or how naïve these youngsters are in forming groups composed of so many members (it's pretty difficult to see fluidity or clarity in the contestants' choreography because their number, and they have to admit that they also take in non-dancers in their respective groups, all for the sake of a few seconds of fame). No, we won't talk about any of those.

What I want to talk about is the Buko (coconut) King, and I'm talking about the real deal, the original Buko King. And if you're wondering what he's gotta to do with all of this then read on.

Like I said, I saw today's episode of Showtime. For all the viewers out there, I hope you recalled this group that had its members in Tarzan-motif costumes, and one of them was a guy stripping coconuts of their shells using his teeth. Correct me if I'm wrong but I think that guy is Joselito Montemayor, THE Joselito Montemayor.

Back in the 90s, this guy earned semi-celebrity status by doing this kind of thing on Eat Bulaga where he was first baptized as the Buko King. The moniker was so effective nobody cared what his real name was, and whenever Joey de Leon and Vic Sotto would call out the Buko King, the image of Montemayor, his long hair and bandana, comes to mind.

If that's the case, how come neither the judges nor the hosts of Showtime even recognized him? Not even Kuya Kim who's supposed to be the brainy one. Correct me if I'm wrong, but Montemayor had TV guestings in some shows abroad and even held a Guiness World Record (though I've searched the Internet high and low and didn't find anything on such record). And if memory serves me right, before Pacman, Buko King was the next best thing to Lea Salonga, Banig, Paeng Nepomuceno and Efren 'Bata' Reyes in the international sensation category. You got to be someone great if you got your name mentioned with those four people in the same breath.

You might think that I'm exaggerating this guy's reputation but he made a name for himself during a decade when the Eraserheads were in our heads, the Internet was not yet a household term and websites like YouTube were non-existent. That has got to amount to something at least.

And if Showtime's staff and crew are going to tell me that he's old news, GMA's Magpakailanman and Unang Hirit just featured him in a not so distant past. So getting some info as to who Montemayor was shouldn't take a rocket scientist.

I don't know if the program's researchers overlooked this matter or just didn't bring it up since he got his accolades from the other side of the fence. Call me nostalgic but I strongly believe this man deserves some love. A simple introduction would've sufficed so the audience, who were either too young or too preoccupied with other shows/stuff to know him, could have an idea of the man who was in front of them.

And like I told you, I don't watch the entire show so I don't know if they eventually recognized him or if he's group won. He may be no hero, but the guy is a king, the Buko King. Show some love. -Marlone Viardo

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