Understanding the AlDub phenomenon

Understanding the AlDub phenomenon


August 18, 2015 5:58pm
A few days ago I had a TV interview on this latest “ALDUB” phenomenon. The crux of the interview was simply to identify the reason why many of our compatriots (“kababayans”) are hooked in watching (and even enthusiastically anticipating the events that might transpire) this accidental love team born from a segment of a popular 36-year-old noontime variety show.

So what makes this love-team so liked and admired by many despite its simple plot?

You have an ordinary nanny (who loves dubbing songs in the segment of the show hence the name Yaya Dub) that enchants a handsome heartthrob (Alden Richards) despite the objections of a cruel stepmother in the persona of Lola Nidora (comedian Wally Bayola in drag).

Well, the immediate social reaction we can get is the obvious kilig or thoughtless giddy sensation we feel while watching this two lovebirds yet to be seen together. But at its core, we can further understand this phenomenon through the following social realities:


In Aristotle’s Poetics, he mentions that MIMESIS (or imitate) plays a vital role in a person’s appreciation of art. Aristotle believes that the replication or mimicry of nature or “real-life events” is very important so that its audience can relate to the message of art. The more accurate art reflects the true experience of an individual, the more he or she can be drawn to it.

Any struggling Filipino can surely relate to the “power-play” of this heartless old woman who tries to rule over this poor and helpless damsel in distress, who in turn, hopes that her handsome prince will finally take her and keep his promise of love and happily ever after.

By the way, I may sound old school and antagonistic by agreeing with Lola Nidora when she asserts the need for Alden to prove his love by performing tough chores (pamamanhikan) but I am believer that love that “easily comes … easily goes”.

AlDub’s love for each other will only last forever if it can endure this “true tests of love” as laid down by Lola Nidora.

Hope and hopeful anticipation

Though many feminists would see it on the negative side (e.g. a woman’s fear of independence reflected by the unconscious desire to be taken care of by others), Yaya Dub’s Cinderella-like anticipation of finally meeting her Prince Alden (in all its rosy romantic images and ideals) brings a sense of Hope to all watching.

This sense of hope comes from the desire that despite all challenges and obstacles things would still come out for the best. To eloquently put it, “The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern” (Elisabeth Kubler-Ross).

Another sense of hope this love-team brings is “finding a diamond in the rough.” This expression found meaning in the persona of Yaya Dub. It means that even though a person has talent, characteristic or quality that are not evident to others due to one’s rough and undeveloped exterior, he or she still has the possibility of being discovered by someone with the social gravitas like Alden Richards.

And, all those seeing this possibility are endowed by this deep sense of hope that someday his or her untapped potential or quality may likewise be discovered, nurtured and refined by those like Alden.

By way of concluding this article, allow me to postulate a “gentle reminder” to the parents and adults supervising their children’s viewing of this Split-Screen TV Romance.

Teach your children that though a sense of hope can be drawn from the events of this TV
Show segment-series, everything is still fiction. And that though you may get inspiration from what you may see, ACTION is still required to make one’s dreams come true.

Escapism should never be the result of these “kilig” moments, but rather a motivation to strive harder to achieve one’s goals in life.

Prof. Clifford Sorita teaches sociology at the Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila, Far Eastern University Institute of Technology, and Philippine Women’s University in Quezon City.

For any personal comments or suggestions you may email him at [email protected]

Source : http://www.gmanetwork.com/news/story/533437/lifestyle/artandculture/understanding-the-aldub-phenomenon