Friday, August 23, 2013





Mabuhay! If you haven't guessed what that meant, it's a welcome greeting in Filipino. Yes, that's right, I am Filipino and for the next installment in my blog, I decided to pay tribute to Fictional Filipino characters (either full blooded of part-Filipinos) made by Foreign/Non-Filipino media.



Origin: The Real Glory (Henry Hathaway Film, 1939) Portrayed by: Rudy Robles

It is 1906 and the American Army fights to maintain control of the Philippines following the Spanish-American War. The Americans assemble a small team of experts to train the local natives to defend themselves from Moro guerrillas terrorizing the island. Among the natives is Lieutenant Yabo, a dedicated and diligent Filipino officer within the Philippine constabulary.


Origin: The Real Glory (Henry Hathaway Film, 1939) Portrayed by: Tetsu Komai

Alipang is the leader of the Moro guerrillas terrorizing the people of Mindanao. After learning that the Americans have assembled a group to counter his attacks, Alipang starts sending his men to assassinate the officers to goad them into attacking before they are ready and on his terms.


Origin: Back to Bataan (Edward Dmytryk Film, 1945) Portrayed by: Fely Franquelli

In 1942 during World War II, the Japanese forces have tightened their grip in the Philippines and the American forces under General MacArthur were forced to pull out of Bataan. However, a number of American soldiers stayed behind in order to help Filipino resistance fighters to liberate POW's held in Cabanatuan. Dalisay Delgado, dubbed as Luzon's most beautiful actress, appears to be collaborating with the Japanese, broadcasting propaganda over the radio and encouraging the Filipinos to yield. In reality, Dalisay was also using the propaganda broadcasts as a means to relay sensitive information to the Filipino resistance without incurring Japanese suspicion.


Origin: American Guerrilla in the Philippines (Fritz Lang Film, 1950) Portrayed by: Tommy Cook

In April 1942 during World War II, a group of American soldiers led by Chuck Palmer (the film's protagonist) takes refuge in Cebu after being assaulted by the Japanese planes. However, after Gen. Douglas Macarthur ordered the American forces to surrender, Chuck and his group resolves to sail to Australia. However, the boat they used floundered and the crew was rescued by Miguel, a Leyte native who is member of the Filipino resistance against the Japanese. Miguel hid the remaining survivors from the Japanese, who are out to capture the remaining American forces.


Origin: American Guerrilla in the Philippines (Fritz Lang Film, 1950) Portrayed by: Juan Torena

Juan Martinez is the wealthy Filipino husband of Jeanne (the film's heroine), a Frenchwoman living in the Philippines. Juan is a secret supporter of the resistance movement against the Japanese during World War II. He assisted Chuck Palmer and his remaining crew to help set up a network to gather intelligence on the Japanese.


Origin: The Steel Claw (George Montgomery Film, 1961) Portrayed by: Mario Barri

Set in the Philippines during World War II, Capt. John Larsen (the film's protagonist) was assigned to rescue a general held captive by Filipino guerrillas behind Japanese lines. However, he was soon discovered by the guerillas led by Santana and was taken into their barrio. Larsen soon collaborates with Santana and his men to rescue the general who was in reality, being held by the Japanese.


Origin: The Steel Claw (George Montgomery Film, 1961) Portrayed by: Charito Luna

When Capt. John Larsen was acquainted into the guerrillas' barrio, he met the beautiful yet na ve Lolita. Lolita was immediately smitten by Larsen, prompting her to flirt with him and claim that she is part-American, saying that her surname is "Smith." As their relationship grew, Lolita reveals that she was born in the barrio but had to travel to Manila working as a bar hostess so that she can earn money for her sick mother back home.


Origin: The Green Hornet (ABC TV Series, 1966) Portrayed by: Bruce Lee

Kato is a martial arts expert and the aide of the masked crime-fighting vigilante, the Green Hornet.His ethnicity has varied throughout the run of the radio series which ranges from Japanese, Korean and Filipino.


Origin: Star Trek (NBC TV Series, 1966) Portrayed by: George Takei

Hikaru Sulu is of Japanese and Filipino heritage. A lieutenant of the USS Enterprise, Hikaru Sulu has served as the group's helmsman and physicist during their 5 year mission into space and other planets. A man of many talents, Sulu is an enthusiast of science, gymnastics and various weapons.


Origin: Days of Being Wild (Wong Kar-Wai Film, 1990) Portrayed by: Leslie Cheung

Set in 1960, York is a playboy in Hong Kong, well known for stealing girls' hearts and breaking them. It later becomes evident that York's inability to commit and his instinct for romantic cruelty derives from conflicting feelings about his foster mother, a former prostitute, who reveals to him that she is not his biological mother. Hoping to hold onto him, she refuses to divulge the identity of his birth mother. The revelation shakes York to his very core, unleashing a cascade of conflicting emotions. He soon discovers that his birth mother is a Filipino aristocrat now living in the Philippines.


Origin: Angel on Fire (Phillip Ko Film, 1995) Portrayed by: Melanie Marquez

Supermodel-turned-thief Mimi double-crosses her ruthless partners after they steal a valuable Shaolin temple relic from a museum. Ditching her boss, she heads off to sell the relic to another bidder.

EMMA SALAZAR, MARIA SALAZARAngel Aquino; Nanette Medved

It is November 1992 and the US Navy is preparing to surrender its largest overseas facility at Subic Bay, Philippines, after almost a century. In the middle of it all, the lives of 3 Filipino women get intertwined with this historic event. Lisa Velasquez is part of the local Mayor's team that wants to turn the base into a new city. Emma Salazar, a one-time bar-girl is now engaged to marry an American soldier but sees her own future under threat with the impending arrival of her fianc 's senator father. Emma's innocent sister, Maria unexpectedly arrives in Subic planning to find herself an American boyfriend.


Origin: Third Watch (NBC TV Series, 1999) Portrayed by: Anthony Ruivivar

Orphaned at a very young age, Carlos Nieto spent his early years in various foster homes. Wanting to attend Medical School, he joined the New York City Fire Department to earn money for his educational plans. Becoming a paramedic within the team, Carlos was partnered with Monte "Doc" Parker, whom he initially did not get along with but eventually became a father figure to him.


Origin: Degrassi (CTV TV Series, 2001) Portrayed by: Cassie Steele

Manuela "Manny" Santos is the best friend of Emma Nelson (the Series' protagonist). Initially introduced as an adorable and innocent high school student, Manny eventually develops a new and shocking personal image. Throughout the series, being popular and having a sexy image became her main goal in life. Her actions often led her to several confrontations among her friends, strained romantic relationships, school notoriety and drama with her strict traditional Filipino parents. She eventually shifted her attention on becoming an actress.

PAMDenise Laurel

Rouge is a group of Southeast Asian women who are rock stars by day and undercover agents by night. Headquartered at Singapore, they work for "The Organization." Coming from different countries, the bubbly and cheerful Pam is from the Philippines and is the prime investigator of the group. Pat is half Filipino/half Thai and is skilled in hi-tech gadgets and computers. She is also the most rebellious member of the group which often leads her to confrontations with other members. On their rock star jobs, Pam plays the bass guitar and provides supporting vocals while Pat plays the keyboards and is the group's main vocalist.


Origin: The Maid (Kelvin Tong Film, 2005) Portrayed by: Alessandra De Rossi

Coming from a rural Philippine village, Rosa Dimaano arrives in metropolitan Singapore to work as a domestic maid. She badly needs money in order to pay for her brother's medical fees back home. Her employers are the elderly couple, Mr. and Mrs. Teo, owners of a Chinese Opera house, and their mentally handicapped son, Ah Soon. However, Rosa was unaware that she arrived during the Hungry Ghost Month, a period where ghosts and spirits are believed to be active. She soon experiences living nightmares and strange apparitions around her new environment


Origin: Sunshine (Danny Boyle Film, 2007) Portrayed by: Michelle Yeoh

Corazon was born in Manila, but her Chinese/Filipino parents moved to the Chinese mainland when she was a young girl. She worked in the Pan-Asian Space program, but was drafted into the US program to work on the Icarus project. In the Icarus project, she was a botanist who took care of the ship's Oxygen Garden.


Origin: Smile (TBS TV Series, 2009) Portrayed by: Jun Matsumoto

Vito Hayakawa is the son of a Japanese mother and a Filipino father. Living in Japan, Vito has never met his father and his mother had little time for him while growing up. Being a gang member during his youth, he soon reformed and found work as a food delivery boy by day and works at night part time in a caf . Despite experiencing prejudice due to his mixed ancestry, Vito continues to be positive in life. However, Vito was soon wrongly accused of a crime he did not commit. Now, Vito, together with his friends, must make an effort to clear his reputation.


Dado Tagalog and Manuel dela Cruz are two Overseas Filipino workers employed in Taiwan. While Dado misses his wife and daughter back home, he has been dating a Personal Care Assistant named Anna. Meanwhile, Manuel has hopelessly been in love with a club hostess named Cecilia. One Sunday after Church, a chain of events occurs between the two friends which ultimately led to disastrous results. Talking about their heartbreaking experiences over lunch, the duo notices a Taiwanese couple arguing over a red couch that is delivered on their doorstep. When the couch was abandoned, Manuel sees it as a sign from God and decides that he and Dado bring it back to their dormitory which starts a series of humorous events to follow.

JOEY VALENCIANatalie Mendoza

A group of foreign documentary filmmakers arrives at the remote Mayaman Island in the Philippines to shoot a jungle survival special. The team's guides are two Filipinos, Joey Valencia, a married family man, and Cecilia "Chill" Reyes, an entomologist. They set up camp, and it's not long until ominous events begin to happen, eventually sparking their suspicion and fear that the mythical Aswang creature inhabits the island. Joey and Chill travel to the village of the Isarog tribe, where the natives had been savaged. Determined to stay for the whole trip, Joey forces Cecilia to keep her silence among the group about the lurking danger. It was revealed that Joey's ulterior motive is to retrieve a hidden Japanese gold from World War II.


Origin: Glee Season 2 (Fox TV Series, 2010) Portrayed by: Charice Pempengco

Sunshine Corazon is a foreign exchange student from the Philippines who was interested in joining the New Directions Glee Club. After seeing Sunshine's powerful singing prowess, Rachel Berry (the series' protagonist and a member of the New Directions) immediately felt threatened and resolves to sabotage Sunshine's audition by directing her to a wrong address. Their rift causes Sunshine to join the rival Glee Club, Vocal Adrenaline.


Origin: Amigo (John Sayles Film, 2010) Portrayed by: Joel Torre

When U.S. troops occupy his village, Rafael Dacanay, a village mayor caught in the murderous crossfire of the Philippine-American War, comes under pressure from an American officer to help the Americans in their hunt for Filipino guerilla fighters.However, Rafael's brother is the head of the local guerillas, and considers anyone who cooperates with the Americans to be a traitor.Rafael quickly finds himself forced to make the impossible, potentially deadly decisions faced by ordinary civilians in an occupied country.


Origin: Deep Gold (Michael Gleissner Film, 2011) Portrayed by: Bebe Pham

Shortly after Cebuano freediver Amy Sanchez breaks an important free diving record, her boyfriend Tony, a Philippine Air Force Pilot, mysteriously vanishes together with a flight that is supposed to bring millions of dollars worth of gold to the Central Bank in Manila. Determined to discover the truth, she goes off with her sister to find out.


Origin: Simfoni Luar Biasa (Awi Suryadi Film, 2011) Portrayed by: Christian Bautista

Jayden Ruiz is a struggling musician from the Philippines. Unfortunately, his career was not improving and he soon ran out of money. Jayden eventually receives a plane ticket from his estranged mother, who was now living in Indonesia, to visit her. Arriving in Indonesia, Jayden is reunited with his mother, who has become a school director for special children. Jayden was instated as a substitute Music Teacher and becomes fond of the children, eventually discovering their talents in singing.



Origin: Strarship Troopers (Robert A. Heinlein Novel, 1959)

Juan "Johnnie" Rico is the son of a wealthy Filipino family who joins the Terran Mobile Infantry. He is sent to Camp Arthur Currie on the Canadian prairie for basic training and graduates as one of 187 remaining recruits, from an original class of over 2000 enlistees. He is assigned as a private in "Willie's Wildcats" aboard the transport Valley Forge. His first exposure to battle comes during the disastrous "Operation Bughouse" and he was subsequently transferred to "Rasczak's Roughnecks" aboard the corvette transport Rodger Young, where he is promoted to corporal and survives several successful battles.


Origin: Ender's Game (Orson Scott Card Novel, 1985)

Fly Molo is one of the students who were handpicked by Battle School teachers to be led under Ender Wiggin (the novel's protagonist) during the Third Invasion of the Buggers, a species of Insect-like aliens. Hailing from the Philippines, Fly Molo is a veteran soldier who leads A Toon in Dragon Army. He is portrayed initially as being contemptuous of Ender's five-toon formation, but later accepts it after an argument with another of his comrade, Bean. Fly Molo's notable skill is his extremely retentive memory. Fly Molo was included in the 2013 Film Adaptation of the novel where he was portrayed by Brandon Soo Hoo.


Origin: The Five People You Meet in Heaven (Mitch Albom Novel, 2003)

Eddie (the novel's protagonist) was a maintenance man in an amusement park and was a veteran soldier during World War II. He spends his entire life criticizing himself because he never left the amusement park to pursue his dream of becoming an engineer. One day, in a heroic attempt to save a little girl from a falling off an amusement park ride, Eddie was killed and was sent to heaven, where he encounters five people who significantly impacted him while he was alive. Tala is the fifth and last person Eddie meets in Heaven. She is the little girl from the Philippines that Eddie unknowingly killed during his participation in World War II. Tala helps him forgive himself and shows Eddie all the good he did throughout his life helping others and keeping other children safe by working so many years as the maintenance man in amusement park. The character of Tala was faithfully portrayed by Nicaela and Shelbie Weigel in the 2004 TV-Film adaptation.


Origin: WildC.A.T.s. #2 (Wildstorm Production Comics, 1992)

Filipino born Salvador Joel Alonday joined the Philippine's Marine Rangers as soon as he was old enough to do so, swiftly rising to the rank of Major. He eventually became a member of Colonel Jackson Dane's Team 7. During a mission, codenamed as Grail, he became bonded to a symbiote, giving him the ability to become virtually invulnerable, enhancing his strength and reflexes. Grail remained as the team's assassin, eventually learning to activate his Chi and further enhance his fighting capabilities.


Origin: Street Fighter (Malibu Comics, 1993)

Nida is a young woman from the Philippines who traveled to Japan to undertake training with Ryu and Ken's master Sheng Long. When she arrived at the dojo however, she found it in a poor state, and the master sick from poison. She took care of Sheng Long and he in turn promised to teach her once he regained his health. Despite seeking training from his master, Nida displays considerable ill-will towards Ryu. It was revealed that Nida's father was a law enforcement officer who had been killed by an evil twin of Ryu created by M.Bison.


Origin: Hajime No Ippo Vol. 365 (Kodansha Manga, 1998)

Morris West is a middleweight boxer from the Philippines and hopeful contender for a world ranking. West was first seen in his match against Takamura Mamoru (the Series' secondary character), where he was defeated via a ring-out KO. West was eventually included in the NTV Anime Series, Hajime No Ippo: New Challenger, shown in 2009.


Origin: Hajime No Ippo Vol. 520 (Kodansha Manga, 2001)

Eleki Battery is a Filipino Jr. Lightweight Champion who rose to the top with his Counter Punching techniques compensating for his weak body. He sports a haircut which features a lightning bolt shaved on the top his head. His first match against Tatsuya Kimura (the Series' supporting character) ended in a draw, but the two would meet again to settle the score the following year. Eleki Battery also appeared in the 2007 AQ Interactive-developed Video Game, Hajime no Ippo Revolution, where he is a playable character.


Origin: Hajime No Ippo Vol. 661 (Kodansha Manga, 2004)

Randy Boy Jr. is the former OPBF Interim Featherweight Champion, holding a victory over the Philippine Featherweight Champion and fellow countryman, Malcolm Gedo. He is the son of Randy Boy Sr., the boxer who caused Miyata Ichiro's father's to retire from boxing. It is revealed before his fight with Ichiro Miyata (the Series' supporting character) that Boy's father died after his world title bout and he suspects it was because of the sustained brain damage after the fight with Miyata's father.


Origin: Sayonara, Zetsubou-Sensei (Kodansha Manga, 2005)

Maria is student no. 8 of class 2-F. She is an illegal immigrant most likely of Filipino background due to her name, brown skin tone, impoverished disposition and the war-torn state of her own home country. She purchased the birth certificate of a Japanese male student and is attending school under his name, thus her full name has become Sekiutsu Maria Taro. Maria lives in an area with other illegal immigrants and is fascinated by "Japan's abundance." Maria also scavenges for food and used appliances she finds on the ground or in garbage cans. While Maria frequently displays wild behavior, her impoverished appearance and illegal status, coupled with a bright smile, often encourage her classmates to happily give her things. Maria also appears in the 2007 Anime adaptation of the original manga.


Origin: Hajime No Ippo Vol. 758 (Kodansha Manga, 2007)

Prior to his boxing career, Malcolm Gedo stole money off the streets to survive. These actions earned him a bullet in the shoulder and midsection as well as a scar that would remain there for much of his life. Gedo indicated that he had ambitions of reaching the world stage, but his loss against Randy Boy Jr. shattered his hopes and turned him into the greedy fighter he is now. As a result, he became fixated on earning money, offering to throw fights for large sums.


Origin: Invincible Iron Man #2 (Marvel Comics, 2008)

The Triumph Division is the main superhero group of the Philippines. As per Filipino tradition, their superhero names are passed down from generation to generation ever since. Their names are: Red Feather, St. George, Mighty Mother, Anitun, Fighter One, The Wishing Man and The Great Mongoose. One incarnation of the Triumph Division was gathered in Manila to be honored with a historic monument for saving victims of a major tsunami in the Philippines. While they were celebrating, a group of suicide bombers in the guise of monks attacked and blew up the gathered group. All the Triumph Division heroes were apparently killed and it was soon revealed that the monks were actually agents of Ezekiel Stane, a rival of Tony Stark.


Origin: Invincible Iron Man #28 (Marvel Comics, 2010)

Timothy "Tim" Cababa was once a technological builder for the Triumph Division based in Manila. Years after he quit, Tim was hired by Tony Stark in his new company Stark Resilient to be one of his builders. It was also revealed that Tim was a homosexual and was in a relationship with Leonard Pimacher, a fellow builder at Stark Resilient.


Origin: Family Guy Season 3 (Fox Animated Series, 2001)

Ricardo is from the Philippines and was introduced a companion of Jasper, the flamboyant and openly gay anthropomorphic dog who is the cousin of Brian (one of the series' protagonists). Ricardo doesn't speak English and is referred to as "a skinny, hairless Filipino boy" by Jasper. When Jasper and Ricardo visited Brian and his family, Jasper announced that he and Ricardo were getting married. However, Jasper's plans of marriage were threatened when the local mayor announced his attempts to ban gay marriage.


Origin: Darker than Black (Tensai Okamura Anime Series, 2007)

Irene is a neighbor of Hei (one of the Series' protagonist). Irene is from the Philippines but she moved to Japan to earn money for her family back in her homeland by working as a bar hostess. She is friends along with other foreigners Lewis, Joshua and Babo.


Origin: Yarudora Series Vol. 3: Sampaguita (Sony Computer Entertainment Video Game, 1998)

Maria Santos is an amnesiac Filipino woman lost in Japan. Maria was soon rescued by the Japanese male protagonist (the player of the game) and brings her home only to discover that she has a gun in her possession. As they try to uncover Maria's past and regain her memories, it was apparent that the Japanese police, the Yakuza, and a Chinese Mafia are pursuing her, and the criminals are prepared to take her life.


Origin: Yarudora Series Vol. 3: Sampaguita (Sony Computer Entertainment Video Game, 1998)

Boy is an older brother figure to Maria Santos. Boy and Maria were once street children who had to sell sampaguita flowers or junk in order to survive. The street-wise Boy eventually managed to get him and Maria taken in charge by a Chinese Mafia. Although they were given them a more comfortable life, Boy had to render his service as a hired killer.


Origin: Front Mission 3 (Square Co. Video Game, 1999)

Jose Astrada was an OCU Philippines Navy Sniper who quit obeying orders after mistakenly killing his wife during a mission and was convicted for insubordination. Swearing never to take up arms again, he was forced to pilot a Wanzer one last time during the attack on OCU Taal Base. Jose specializes in using the Rifle.


Origin: Front Mission 3 (Square Co. Video Game, 1999)

Pham Luis is the spoiled daughter of one of the richest families of the Philippines. She joined the Philippines Liberation Front, an organization sworn to separate the country from the OCU. Initially introduced as an overbearing spoiled rich kid, Pham gradually becomes more serious and responsible and decides to go with the team of Kazuki Takemura (the game's protagonist) after the incident at Taal Base ends. Pham specializes in using Melee Weapons.


Origin: Soul Calibur II (Namco Video Game, 2002)

In a region of Southeast Asia, there lived a tribe of people who could control the winds. This was the Village of the Wind Deity and Talim, the daughter of the village's shaman, was reared to be the last priestess of their tribe. One day, a foreigner visited Talim's village bringing with him a strange metal fragment. Talim recognized the evil energy from the fragment and felt the same evil aura emanating from other parts of the world. She left on a journey to collect the fragments and return them to its rightful place in order to restore peace. Talim's name is actually a Filipino word for "Blade" or "Sharpness." Additionally, most of her move list contains Filipino words.


Origin: Def Jam: Fight for NY (Electronic Arts Video Game, 2004)

A native of the Philippines, Santos immigrated to the United States to pursue a professional career in kickboxing. Due to an unfortunate event that led to Santos almost killing a man, he is forced to make his living fighting in an underground circuit at the Dragon House.

That's a wrap! I will continue to update this post if ever. As a summary, Filipinos are virtually everywhere around the world and our people definitely had an impact in society, culture, media and entertainment. The personalities, backgrounds, appearances and plots of the characters mentioned are really diverse, which reflects the actual society of the Filipinos, whether they are in the Philippines or abroad. Surely, there were both positive and negative stereotypes associated with the Filipinos. But for me, I find that most of the portrayals are fair and accurate and I can totally relate with the characters. PEACE!
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