[Needed to stay away from the write-o-sphere for a bit because life (aka the school year) was quite hectic. I’m back (yet again– for the millionth time).I spent most of the semester during listicles (not a word) for one of my classes so forgive me for being jaded.]
When I was in highschool, one of my favorite topics post Christmas break would be the year in review quiz we would have in AP class. What would happen was we would watch the ANC year end special (which, obviously chronicled what happened throughout the year), and have a quiz on it afterwards.
Besides almost always doing pretty darn good on that test, I was always fond of the year in review shows because of how much I love to look back on things. This year in particular was quite a roller coaster ride both locally and globally.
It may be too early to do a year in review right now (they’re usually put up during the last week of December or so), but there’s no harm in getting an early start. Here are my personal picks for some of 2015’s biggest news stories:
L O C A L
1. Election Prep!
From colorful personalities, to viral propaganda to quotable misquotes, the election race kicked off (and continuous to be) one of the biggest news stories of 2015.
Notable Notes: there are more, I know! Tell me about them. 🙂
- Sexy Scandal: Francis Tolentino was lambasted by both opposition candidates and LP members for allegedly hiring scantily clad dancers to perform at a local party.
- Grace Poe-No: From the drama surrounding her citizenship to her ‘disqualification’ from the presidential race, there’s no doubt that she’s one of the election’s more prolific candidates.
- The Ultimate Pabebe aka Roddy D: Just when you thought he wouldn’t, he actually would. Rodrigo Duterte made a last minute entry into the presidential race by taking the place of candidate Martin Dinio. Needless to say, this was not even the worst of what was to come.
- Wharton Whapak-an: Mar Roxas and Duterte clash and threaten to do a slapping match over arguing about the legitimacy of Roxas’ academic credentials. Presidentiables, or future PacMan proteges?
- ‘It is Too Late to Say Sorry’: Bongbong Marcos runs for VP, refuses to apologize for his daddy’s mistakes– while his sister Imee poses in red and gets people to see red in the process.
Underrated isn’t even enough to describe our Philippine Armed Forces. Needless to say, it was more than about time that the whole country learned about two things: the unfortunate, botched operation orchestrated by some big men in the military, and the tireless heroism of the poorly paid Filipino soldier.
Kudos to our military men and women and their families. We owe you the world.
Notable Notes: there’s more! Tell me about them 🙂
- Poor, Painful PR: While P Noy made continual societal faux pas, his VP used the moment to gain political mileage by sharing his sympathies with the families of the SAF 44.
- Military Puppetry: We got to know more about the inner workings of the military thanks to this botched operation. Another thing we got to know about? Nepotism, Aquino style
If you’re looking for proof of how social media and virality are now a part of everyday life– than look no further than #Aldub. Alden Richards and Maine Mendoza made Twitter records and landed endorsements thanks to their fabled forbidden love story– which, believe it or not, continues to go on even after their first big event: Tamang Panahon.
Meanwhile, both Maine and Alden have become the new Anne Curtis/ Kris Aquino– their faces plastered all over billboards everywhere. We can only wait and see whether the Aldub fever will continue to live on (or, God forbid: die out), in 2016.
- Nux, GLOBAL: Buzzfeed has featured the couple in one of their many reaction videos, and the response is more than positive.
4. Pope In Pinas!
The Philippines started off the year on a relatively high note, as Pope Francis made his way to the country– causing holidays and hearts to melt in the process. His vibe resonated all throughout the country, and needless to say everyone felt nothing but mercy and compassion throughout his stay.
From his pope hat (there’s a term for this!) flying off upon his arrival, to the pope braving rains to talk to traumatized typhoon victims to the young girl who asked the pope: ‘why?’… his time in the country was simply… magical.
Postscript: One wonders whether all those positive vibes even rubbed off on the country considering the current state of our politics and pre-election situation. AMIRITE?
5. APECtado, APECted, AAAAAAAAAAAA…
2015 was a year of consented week long holidays. Unfortunately, the second long haul holiday of the year came with a torrent of repercussions– another thing it did come with? thirsty Pinoys.
The Philippines played host to some of the world’s biggest leaders during the APEC Summit held last November. This included individuals like Barry Obama of the US, Xi Jinping aka chinese Franklin Drilon, and two very…. comely middle aged presidents: Prime Minister Justin Trudeau of Canada and President Enrique Pena Nieto of Mexico.
To make the long story short: we gushed, Mexico scoffed (rightfully! ask them about Nieto’s issues), and our social media platforms went WILD. Now, on to more relevant notes:
- Trash, Talking: ANC veteran reporter Tina Monzon Palma caught newly minted PM Trudeau on the spot when she asked him about the issue of Canada’s imported trash on Philippine shores. Trudeau delivered a diplomatic, rehearsed answer– but Monzon Palma delivered a home run. Time to wait and see if Canada does something about this.
- T B H : The pageantry of the APEC dominated because we really didn’t get to see much of the good stuff happen (read: the heated political discussions). Again, we have to wait and see whether all those verbal agreements and trade deals will even amount to anything!
- TrAPEC: The biggest issue? The irony behind how an event meant to stimulate economic progression ended up causing a week’s worth of inconveniences.
6. Perfect, Philippine, Pia
Pinoys here and all over the world rejoiced upon the news that Philippine representative Pia Wurtzbach was crowned Miss Universe. Unfortunately, her win did not come without controversy.
- Wroooooong: Family Feud host Steve Harvey announced the wrong winner, initially crowning Miss Columbia as the winner. In a moment of heartbreaking, cringeworthy awkwardness, the crown had to be removed from Miss Columbia’s head and placed upon Pia (the rightful winner)’s head. To add insult to injury, Harvey’s apology tweets misspelled both Columbia and Philippines.
- In Fairness: Harvey owned up to his mistake and was shown to have personally apologized to Pia for his mistake. Its unknown whether he was able to speak to Miss Columbia.
- Trump It Trump: Donald Trump, prolific nuisance candidate and former Miss U owner suggested making the two co winners. ‘Nuff said.
- GrrrrrrMANY: Miss Germany caught the ire of social media users in the country when she openly expressed disappointment of the results and acknowledged that she did not vote for Miss Philippines. Germany later posted (not personally: mind you) an apology to Wurtzbach for her controversial comments.
- Blasted Bases: Wurtzbach’s answer to a question about whether the country should reopen American bases in the country drew disappointed reactions from party list groups.
Stay Tuned for Part 2, which features a shortened list of some of the biggest foreign news stories of 2015!