Aiko weighs in on the Toni-Bongbong brouhaha | Inquirer Entertainment

Aiko weighs in on the Toni-Bongbong brouhaha

/ 12:20 AM September 25, 2021

Aiko Melendez

Aiko Melendez

After the ballyhooed interview of Toni Gonzaga with Bongbong Marcos, I thought of asking some celebs if they would dare interview someone as controversial as the Marcos scion on their YouTube (YT) channel. Or would they rather play it safe?

Many celebs begged off from answering. The only brave soul who gamely replied was my “sis,” Aiko Melendez.


As pour moi, when I finally launch my YT channel, “Hello Dolly,” I will have no qualms about featuring infamous guests. But I must make sure that I ask the right questions so there will be no loose ends. I won’t treat my interviewee as a sacred cow so there will be no elephant left in the room.


Here’s Aiko’s sentiments: “My YT channel is Aiko Melendez. Yes, I will still interview someone like Bongbong Marcos, because YouTube is also an avenue for millennials and the Gen Z to be updated on the current issues,” she said. “Toni did a great job on the interview,” she added. “She was fair, and I’m not really here to please my bashers. I am here to inform and entertain my viewers. I also give viewers the option to skip if they don’t feel like watching my content. We are in a democratic country, so to each is own … This is my channel. I make my own rules, otherwise my bashers should create their own channel, so they can feature whoever pleases them. They have the option to skip my video if they don’t like it.”

Jao Mapa

Jao all revved up for career revival

Would you rather stick with someone you have history with, or fall for someone new whom you have chemistry with? That’s the dilemma of Jao Mapa’s character in “Paraluman,” now streaming on Vivamax, in which he is paired off with Rhen Escaño in the romance movie directed by Yam Laranas.

After his hiatus from show biz, Jao is revved up for the next chapter of his career. The ‘90s heartthrob is out to show that he still has charisma by getting steamy with Rhen in their film about a May-December love affair. L’amour knows no age, that’s why hearts don’t have wrinkles.

Here are some quotes from Jao (J), Yam (Y) and Rhen (R):

J: When I did “Matrikula” back in the day with Rosanna Roces, who was the hottest star then, I was the younger one being mentored by Osang in our movie. This time around, it’s my turn to play teacher to Rhen.

Y: The cinematography of our movie is inspired by Amorsolo’s paintings. “Paraluman” is a term used by painters to refer to their muse. Our setting is rural, so it’s very Amorsolo. I tried my best to emulate the look and feel of his masterpieces.


R: It depends on the situation if I will fall for an older guy in real life. I come from a broken family, so I don’t want to be a homewrecker by falling for a married man, who’s older than me. But I don’t judge girls who do so. We all have our reasons for falling in love, even when it’s wrong.

J: I don’t regret quitting show biz after seven years because I wanted to finish my studies in UST (University of Santo Tomas). My Fine Arts degree saved me. When the pandemic broke, selling my paintings kept me and my family afloat.

Y: Jao and Rhen had an intimacy workshop, where I saw that they have chemistry. Both of them are “swak na swak” to the characters they portray. It’s no fairy tale romance. It’s a love story about real people.

R: We all have a Mia, my character in the movie, in us. When love hits us, we don’t care if it’s right or wrong—all that matters is how we feel. But when reality sets in, we must learn from the mistakes that our heart made us do.

Special ‘gift’ from Cesar

The best birthday gift I got this year was finally hearing from my BFF Buboy (Cesar Montano) after his COVID-19 battle. Even if he was still catching his breath, he called me up and also sent me a video greeting. That’s how sweet he is. Thank God BFF is already COVID-free, but he is still recovering from severe pneumonia. He no longer wears an oxygen mask, though it’s still on standby in case he has difficulty breathing.

“BFF, it’s a good thing I am not a smoker, that’s why the antibiotics worked on my lungs,” he said. “When our lungs are not functioning well, it’s our heart that works overtime. So, bugbog ang puso ko.” To lighten the mood, I told him in jest, “BFF, ilan na ba’ng puso ang nabugbog mo sa love?” Then, I ribbed him some more, “Hope you liked the fruits I sent, but I didn’t include the forbidden fruit so you won’t have a relapse.”

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We both had a good laugh. Hearing BFF’s hearty laughter made my birthday more than happy.

TAGS: Bongbong Marcos, Celebrities and Showbiz, Dollywood, Paraluman, Toni Gonzaga

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