Before this week, local television was banned from my home except the news because I did not see anything worthwhile for my son and I to watch.
Those gyrating women, pretentious hunks, offensive gay jokes and stupid game shows was just not something I want my son to grow up to so I refused to expose him to it.
Then people started pestering me about this AlDub thing. They say it is hilarious, the jokes are wholesome and the lessons on relationships, love and the old Filipino culture is very timely.
I did not believe them. When I left ABS-CBN, most shows were being produced by obnoxious gay people (as opposed to upright gay friends) that the programs were too bad for my tastes.
In fact, even GMA 7 had a string of unpalatable shows that I really thought our entertainment culture on the boob tube was spiraling down the pits of hell.
Talk about shows like The Other Woman, My Husbands Lover and other shows that promotes the evil of society instead of the good and you get what I mean.
Or game shows like Pinoy Henyo where stupidity is the leading man and ignorance the leading lady.
But because of 3.7 million Tweets on one day I decided to take a peek. I got that plywood episode and I thought it was quite humorous in a good way.
I watched a few more intermittently and then I saw myself wanting to know more. So I watched some more.
Today, find it entertaining. It promotes values and morals I want my child to learn. AlDub teaches the value of a good foundation in a relationship.
But more than anything, I saw in it the blossoming of affection between two former strangers caught in the whirlwind of showbiz.
Showbiz, that very place where falsity and pretentiousness is the lifeblood of all players. Where one has to be someone he is not in order to succeed.
And here are two people slowly falling in love for real because of the situation they accidentally fell into.
I watched the first episodes on YouTube. And there is saw that Maine Mendoza really was attracted to Alden Richards. Some form of love at first sight if you would put it that way.
Alden was playing coy then. A showbiz animal, he was playing the part. But as the show progressed day to day you could see the change in him.
Add to this the other elements of the show.
Lola Nidora, played by, erstwhile sex fiend, Wally Bayola dishing out morality like the old sentries of virginity of old. She kept the two apart. And when I say apart I literally mean physically away from each other.
Vic Sotto and Joey de Leon playing pranksters and hecklers, not realizing that they were becoming instrumental in the developing love story.
The crowd of the now called KalyeSerye who egged the two on and on. Cheering and crying with them through all their trials and jubilation.
And finally the TV audience who began following them like the adulating fans that they were.
Suddenly we are watching true love on national television. Something so true and pure has been delivered to a nation wallowing in lies and corruption, led by insincere politicians and big business that continuously fail to deliver proper service.
Suddenly something real is available daily. And if the two are acting they are doing a very good job at it because even to a cynic like me, they have the look of two people truly in love.
What could have possibly created this situation? What magic was at work that infinite passion is so real and palpable suddenly on the tube.
I think the old ways of Lola Nidora sparked this reality of reality shows. Alden having to work hard to get a glimpse of someone he could have had had it been a regularly produced show. Maine needing to control her passion and not give in to her baser desires.
In a world of texting, sexting and eyeballing for immediate gratification, this form of courtship is insane, unacceptable and yet so very titillating to the higher senses.
Any accomplishment that allows any form of contact becomes a major success. A smile, the movement of a finger, eye contacts are so electrifying because of the promise behind it but so far from becoming real.
This is how true passion is developed. It is how a marriage of 55 years begins. It is the way my parents ended up together.
And this is why it is a hit.
Even Vic and Joey would be hard pressed to point this out when asked because they are too close to the action.
Only a nation deprived of such sincerity can feel the electricity of it all. And yes, a nation bombarded with bad news of traffic jams, high power rates and commodity prices, inept government service will catch the tingle of truth.
It is refreshing to see innocence. Yes innocence. For Alden because he could have his way with any girl he wishes to but could not fathom this attraction he has for Maine. And why he is compelled to suffer his fate the way he does.
For Maine because she is after all an outsider from showbiz suddenly thrust into global limelight. And believe you me, AlDub is now a global phenomenon.
How long will this little game be played? Will it end like fairy tales do in “forever after?” Or will real life catch up and teach them bitter lessons too?
Me, I am hopeful. Hopeful that the trials and lessons Alden goes through etches the love he developed for Maine deep in his heart of hearts and keeps that fire burning forever.
Hopeful for Maine that the restraint she exercised teaches her that love is more than just the physical and continues on to a lifetime of joy.
It will not be roses everyday for the lovebirds if they choose that path. But it would be worth all the time and effort they spent when the prize is finally in their clasped hands.
And I personally choose to watch the love story from the vantage point of innocence, because it awakens feelings in me I thought long dead, murdered by life and experience.
This car nut has admittedly been AlDubbed and he feels grateful for the return of his emotions.