comedy, entertainment, humor, Philippines, television

1995 Flashback: Bubble Gang Turns 20

Michael V (center) has been the driving force behind ‘Bubble Gang’, now entering its 20th year on the air. (Photo credit: GMA Network/Bubble Gang Official Facebook)

1995 was a memorable year in Philippine television. As part of a year-long special, From the Tube will look back at a year full of historical debuts, unforgettable moments, and celebrated feats in the history of television in the country.

GMA’s ‘Bubble Gang’ will have its 20th anniversary special next month.

The theme is still a mystery at the moment, but based on teasers from the show’s social media accounts, it appears that it will be a mostly formal occasion. The show’s current and past cast members will be on hand, as is a die-hard fan who will be invited on the said anniversary episode.

Indeed, ‘Bubble Gang’ has come a long way since premiering on October 20, 1995. Every Friday night, viewers were treated to the show’s assortment of parodies and skits that reference both pop culture and real-life situations, most of which end with the cast members showing disbelief in the most humorous way possible.

At the heart of ‘Bubble Gang”s longevity is Michael V. One of two original cast members left on the show (the other is Antonio Aquitania), Bitoy also acts as its creative director, formulating most of ‘Bubble Gang”s infamous skits and characters, not to mention composing and singing the opening theme song.

It was with ‘Bubble Gang’ where Michael V (real name Beethoven Bunagan) achieved his greatest success. Whether he’s Mr. Assimo, Tata Lino and Donya Ina, or even past characters such as Junee Lee, Yaya and Lito, Bitoy’s portrayals with these personas helped him become one of the most popular entertainers of his generation.

Bitoy even showcases his musical talent on the show, as part of his Myusik Tagalog Bersyon and Music English Version skits. One such song was ‘Sinaktan Mo ang Puso Ko’, which became a hit single.

But ‘Bubble Gang’ isn’t just about Michael V alone. Over the years, the show featured a revolving cast of talents, from Ogie Alcasid, Wendell Ramos, Maureen Larrazabal and Rufa Mae Quinto, to Boy 2 Quizon, Paolo Contis, Betong Sumaya and Chariz Solomon.

Even the skits evolve as well, just as trends in pop culture and everyday life were also in the midst of a transformation. Just ask the long-running ‘Ang Dating Doon’, which made some numerous changes during its run.

Despite the constant changes in both the skits and the cast members, one thing is still certain about ‘Bubble Gang’: they can still make people laugh. And after 20 years, they are still going strong.

Come this November, ‘Bubble Gang’ will have its 20th anniversary special. For long-time viewers of the show, it is a deserving tribute.

Advertisements
Standard
comedy, humor, Philippines, television

Social Media and ‘Ikaw at ang Ina’

In a world where social media is becoming a force in the history of technology, television programs tried to take advantage of this new medium. ‘Bubble Gang”s ‘Ikaw at ang Ina’ is no exception.

During each sketch, the titular character Donya Ina (Michael V) questions her children’s use of social media with the phrase ‘paki-explain’, only to finish with an exclamatory ‘labyu’ with a confused reaction from her children. The sketch immediately proved popular from the first skit, due to Donya Ina’s amusing and timely delivery of jokes. And even when ‘Bubble Gang’ was off the air, Donya Ina continued to deliver the jokes through her Facebook fanpage.

In the previous week’s episode of ‘Bubble Gang’, Donya Ina criticized her daughter (Sef Cadayona) for using Facebook and Instagram for her personal enjoyment. In case you missed this joke, watch the video below.

Throughout its 18-year history, ‘Bubble Gang’ has found new ways to adapt to changes in culture and society, taking advantage of recent trends and styles. With the use of social media, it is no wonder why the writers decided to use it as a skit for ‘Ikaw at ang Ina’. And in keeping with the times, ‘Bubble Gang’ has been able to maintain its status as the top gag show in the country today.

Standard