Last episode introduced us to the “kontrabidas” in Benjie’s life, people who would create hurdles for our male lead to overcome. In this episode, we will get to know (and hate) the kontrabidas in Sinag’s life, and the whole town of Pelangi. Namely, the corrupt mayor of the town and his spoiled rotten daughter. And we’ll find out how Benjie ends up in Pelangi.
I’ll try to make my recaps more concise and less detailed. *sigh* I'm relying on episode snippets uploaded by the official youtube channel of GMA Network. Excuse the sloppy screen caps.
Benjie complains to bestfriend Jason in the pantry on their less-than-ideal first day of work. Instead of doing work as architects, they are reduced to being errand boys. Ends up going on a coffee run. But he does get a glimpse of the proposed Pelangi project and he realizes that he could probably come up with a better design.
Back in Pelangi, Ninay gushes over the painting while the guys refuse to acknowledge the so-called soulmate’s attractiveness. Mang Elvis interrupts the squad’s conversation to inform Sinag that the town’s mayor is calling for a meeting the next day and wanted to use the radio to make an announcement. Quick thinking Sinag suggests that since their antenna is still broken, they can resort to the “umalokohan” (town crier) to spread the news to the whole town.
After Catalina and team’s presentation for the Project Pelangi, Don Vicente rejects the proposal, citing that the design was uncreative and run-off-a-mill. So despite his initial approval of Catalina’s design, he tells the team to come up with newer ideas to impress the investors. When he asks if anyone in the room has a fresh idea in mind, Benjie stand up to show him his design sketches in his handy-dandy notebook. Don Vicente is impressed and orders the team to re-do their proposal and use Benjie’s designs. Of course, this infuriates Tita Catalina, the principal architect.
And that is how Benjie ends up being involved in Pelangi, making him one long drive closer to his soulmate.
We finally meet the Mayor of Pelangi (and his spoiled daughter, who for some reason choses to stand behind his dad when she could sit somewhere out of sight. She makes no effort to show she’s bored, one wonders why she even came with her dad’s as he does his official duties as an elected official. She’s not even dressed appropriately. GAHHH!) The mayor Escobar wanted to inform the citizens of Pelangi that a big company (the Rosales Development) intends to buy off their lands and properties to turn their town into the next Tagaytay. They’ll get 5 M php for their land, he says. That’s a great deal since that is higher than the market value of their land, he says.
Mang Elvis asks, “what if we chose not to sell our land?” Our good mayor answers, “Most of you don’t pay property taxes every year. Some of you don’t hold real land titles to your properties. So if I were you, I’d sell.” WOW. The meeting adjourns with most of the citizens pissed off, some confused.
Back in Rosales Development, Benjie takes the helm of the Pelangi project. More high falutin technical terms to make it seem that they’re neck deep into planning. Jason gets Benjie to agree to treat the team to burgers while Catalina and Elton watch from afar, incensed at the newbie. Catalina reveals how hard she had to work to take her older brother’s place in the company when he left. She’d be damned if she lets his son take her place.
At Bahay Obispo, Sally and Teddy tell the kids about what was brought up in the meeting the other day. Nanay Sally asks, “What if we just sell our property so that our money woes would be solved?” Sinag immediately protests and points out that 5M is not enough to live in Manila. She further points out that no matter how appealing Manila is, nothing could beat the natural beauty of their town. “And what about the radio station?” The whole family agrees that they are not selling their property.
At Rosales Development, Don Vicente receives news that some residents in Pelangi don’t want to sell. “That can’t happen, dad. That’s where we’ll build the mall, hotels and theme park.” (I find it so ironic that they are uprooting people from their homes to build temporary residence for outsiders.) Catalina schemes to send Benjie to Pelangi to get him off her back. “So that someone on our end could help in the negotiations.” Suddenly Benjie is considered as “one of the family.” Nice, Catalina. Nice.
At a market in Pelangi, Sinag and friends discuss the pros and cons of the Rosales Developments plans. Marjorie, the mayor’s daughter, butts in (because she thinks she’s entitled to do so) and basically just insults Sinag, Bahay Obispo and the whole town for being “cheap.” (It’s like her character is written to just be a source of irritation. I mean what is she even doing in the local marketplace in a night-club outfit, alone without her bodyguard and yaya posse? My gahd!)
Don Vicente informs Benjie of his assignment in Pelangi. Gone is the cold and intimidating Don he met during his job interview. “I believe that you are a very talented architect. And you can contribute a lot to this project.”(Watch Benjie’s eyes glisten with happiness).
Trust Catalina to be the wet blanket to snuff Benjie’s fire. After giving him a veiled threat, spiced with subtle put downs and a perfectly drawn raised eyebrow, she leaves Benjie speechless. (His eyes though).
Back at Bahay Obispo, Nanay Sally is fuming mad upon learning what happened between her beloved daughter and the mayor’s daughter. A similar scene is happening at the mayor’s house, where Marjorie is throwing a hissy fit over Sinag. Her father placates her (to stop her tantrum cuz her shrill voice is sooo irritating, imho) telling her that when the plans with the Rosaleses pushes through, their town will soon be the new playground of the “rich and famous.” It’s clear that the mayor doesn’t care about his constituents. This deal with the Rosaleses is mainly to fill up his pockets.
Sinag and family plan to convince their neighbors not to sell their land to protect Pelangi. Tala suggests making a painting showing the beauty of their town, Sol adds that their town’s situation should become viral in social media, while Sinag proposes that they organize a protest rally. Oh here’s an ultimate despicable bad guy move: Lolo Elvis and Lola Delia are forced out of their homes in the middle of the freakin night by the mayor’s men because they cannot show them the title to their property. Heartless monsters.
Benjie catches his mom smoking (I swear my heart twitched because RFJ’s mom used to be a heavy smoker) and tries to allay her fears because of his out of town assignment. With an affectionate son like that, how can you stay mad and matampuhin? (Trivia: this is one of the first scenes A shot for DTBY. This was shot last year, a few days before the new year.)
Benjie gets his bestfriend Jason to come with him to Pelangi. On the way to the town proper, Benjie gets a feeling of déjà vu, remembering that he had been to this town when he was younger, meeting a young girl in a bright yellow dress.
Preview to the next episode: ( Read more... )
* I find it funny when they use highfalutin words that don’t actually mean anything when they show scenes that involve highly technical presentations.
* I totally get Catalina’s ire with Benjie. He’s such a cheeky little smart aleck. I’m with Catalina on this one.
* There’s a stark difference between Sinag and Benjie’s stuggles in this episode. While Sinag is fighting for the whole town’s environmental treasures, Benjie is fighting to get his grandfather’s acceptance and be acknowledged as an architect. Different scope but have the same gravity. Too bad that in order for Benjie to overcome his struggles, he would have to exacerbate Sinag’s problems.
* It is just mindblowing how the mayor is painted as someone so all-powerful, as if there is no provincial council or even a vice mayor to provide a check-and-balance or to at least consult with before doing a major move, like selling the land where his constituents live and thrive. I mean, hello! Before even signing with a big company, he should’ve consulted with the people first. What ended up happening is instead of consulting, the people were just merely informed that a big company from Manila is offering to buy them their land. (According to Catalina in an earlier scene, her team has already spent millions in “getting to know the site” without even securing the express consent of the constituents of the land who live in the areas they plan to build on) It’s insane but sadly, that does happen in most provinces in the Philippines. Instead of a government for and by the people, we have overlords who see their public office as an avenue to get rich. This is the kind of underhanded move that activists in UP go out to the streets for.
* It’s heartbreaking how real the simple thinking of some citizens of Pelangi are. So short-sighted. “I’ll think about it when the money runs out.” What’s even more heartbreaking is that greedy capitalists and politicians take advantage of them, without them even being aware of it.
* Catalina’s fashion ootds for episode 4. Still slaying. Show them who wears the pants girl!
* Are these big real estate companies really this egocentric? How can they make plans and grand designs over a large land mass inhabited by a community, without even consulting them? They want to bulldoze over properties without even considering the culture, the history, the rich natural environment of the land. It’s so infuriating.
* Another infuriating element of this episode was how distasteful Marjorie’s character is. It’s not because she is written to be Sinag’s rival and to attempt to seduce Benjie, but because she is so unapologetically self-centered and self-entitled. “Why can’t you just make them leave? Aren’t you the mayor?” She complains to her dad. This statement is so wrong on so many levels, I cannot even begin to dissect it because my head hurts. (Another headache inducing statement: “Of all the places you can be mayor, why this place? Why can’t it be in Metro Manila?” MYGAHD!!! What does she think of public office, a typical corporate job? I’m so tempted to take the sayote from Sinag’s hand and stuff it in her empty head.) Again, what’s even more frustrating is that some (most) corrupt government officials have sons and daughters who think and act the same.
In conclusion ( ranting from me. you can choose to skip this )
Maine is such a natural in tarayan scenes, I pity anyone who would dare cross her in real life. And Alden was a treat to watch how he portrayed Benjie’s different emotions in this episode: when he was downplaying his success when Jason praised him for being chosen to design for the Pelangi Project, when he was trying to hold himself back when his estranged grandfather acknowledged his design in front of the whole senior architects of the company, and again when his grandfather gave him his assignment in Pelangi as an architect, and when he wordlessly took in Catalina’s putdowns. Speaking of Catalina, Ina Feleo is brilliant as usual. I can’t wait to see her make Benjie’s life more challenging (cause Benjie’s character is too arrogant and thinks highly of himself. He needs people like Catalina and Elton to put him down a notch.)
THEY'RE FINALLY GONNA MEEEEETTTT IN THE NEXT EPISODE!!!