Saturday, September 22, 2018

Cebuano social media sensation seizes the spotlight

/ 12:20 AM March 10, 2018

Rowell Ucat aka “Medyo Maldito” (right) and Akiko Solon

Cebuano social-media sensation, Rowell Ucat aka Medyo Maldito is now a certified movie star. He topbills “Magbuwag Ta’ Kay” (Let’s break up, because…) with Akiko Salon (dubbed the Sweet and Sexy Siren of Cebu in ABS-CBN’s defunct show, “Star Power”).

Currently, Rowell has 213,000 followers on Instagram, 558,000 followers on Twitter, and 1.6 million followers on Facebook (@medyomaldito)—and counting. His posts are mainly about modern-day romance and heartaches. I liked Rowell instantly when we met in an event in Davao. He’s a “good vibes” provider. I saw how he was mobbed by his rabid followers.


We gave the movie a grade of B at the Cinema Evaluation Board. It’s poignant and funny in equal parts, and an unusual take on breaking up. It reminds us that when we let go of someone, we should not let ourselves go, too.

The Cebuano dialogue (with subtitles) makes it all the more charming. Rowell and Akiko share unmistakable chemistry. It’s like she is copper (Cu) and he’s tellurium (Te) because they make quite a “cute” tandem.

Here’s my chat with Rowell:

Is there life after “the one”? Life doesn’t stop after a breakup with “the one.”

How do you handle a breakup? A rewarding “me” time works wonders. I travel to take my mind off the pain. Change of heart calls for a change of scenario. And who knows? I might meet “the (next) one” in my journeys.

In what ways are you “maldito”? It’s just a screen name that I used three years ago. I started with tweets on Twitter sharing tweets that give ideas on how to handle relationships and breakups in a quirky way.

Sharing the “hugot” lines in a feisty manner honed me as one of the “maldito” guys.

Why do you think your videos are popular online? The goal of my videos is to get the viewer to say, “I can relate [to that].” I was surprised that my videos with “hugot” lines went viral. Having four to five million views gave me an opportunity to be featured on the National Geographic Channel last year.

Are you joining show business full-time? If opportunities arrive, I have to embrace them wholeheartedly (laughs).


As of the moment, I’m concentrating on social media endorsements, striking while the iron is hot.

Nadine Lustre will be launching Lustrous, her makeup line, this summer. It’s in collaboration with leading Australian cosmetic brand BYS. The actress says that each run will be available for a limited time. (For updates, follow @BYSPhilippines on Facebook.) As Coco Chanel once said, “When you’re feeling sad, add more lipstick and attack.”

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TAGS: Akiko Solon, Rowell Ucat aka Medyo Maldito, social media sensation, Star Power
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