6 January 2019 | cinematickiss
ABS-CBN's best series ever.
For so many years, the Philippine television have always been dominated by romance-comedy shows that mostly lack substance, shows that always involve third parties in romantic relationships, shows whose protagonist is this self-righteous saint-like individual who allows everybody to step on him/her/them. This typical Filipino product is what the media has been feeding its audience for so many years. It was sickening; the profusion of the same thing over and over again. But today, a part of the Philippine television has been revived. This show is truly a massive refreshment from the previous television shows.
This must be ABS-CBN's best series ever. It's a compelling revenge political thriller melodrama that revolves around a woman deprived of justice growing up. Lily Cruz, played by Maja Salvador, grew up in a family of working class, newcomers in the small town, Poblacion Ardiente. Her family is as ordinary as a regular Filipino family until they find themselves entangled in a conflict with the Ardientes, a powerful political family that vests oppression and tyranny over its colony. Having her father killed, and her mother raped then murdered, she was forced to leave town to escape the threat to her life imposed by the Ardientes. Later on, she was adopted by a wealthy and influential woman who equipped and prepared her in order to attain the long-lost justice for her and her family under the name of Ivy Aguas.
Wildflower is a show that depicts the country's political, economical, and even societal situation; a country ruled by authoritarians, dictatorship and political dynasty that disregard human rights. The lower class, the farmers, who have always worked the hardest yet (have always) unjustly received the least amount of pay is also shown in this series. It also shows the misogyny that is still prevalent in the society, the presence of prejudice and discrimination against women socially, politically and economically is flawlessly shown in the show. Wildflower fabulously tackles these issues by exaggerating the themes to put over-emphasis on the significant issues of today (e.g. corruption, human rights violation, political dynasty, dictatorship, rape, sexism and classism) to create an impact.
The cast did an exceptional job. Maja Salvador proved how much of a great actress she is, the emotion is easily seen through her eyes, the gestures, facial expression, body language, she nails it. Her delivery on English though is still a bit rough, but that could be worked out. Tirso Cruz III is a powerful actor, the great villain Julio Ardiente is a role he mastered very well and managed to deliver it in the best way possible. Aiko Melendez is wonderful, her character as Emilia Ardiente wouldn't be as effective and incredible if it wasn't for her. Joseph Marco and Vin Abrenica did very well too. However, RK Bagatsing was a revelation. He showed his versatility and passion as an actor. Arnaldo Ardiente is the most interesting character for me. He is wildly egoistic and dangerous, he's likely to explode any time. His character truly revolves around Ivy Aguas/Lily Cruz. I love how outside that Ivy-zone, he is just this selfish, violent, arrogant man, but inside that circle, he changes, he softens, he is somewhat humanized. He works hard to win Ivy/Lily over, that he even goes out of his way, subconsciously, to blatantly cover up Ivy's tracks. Deep down he knows Ivy is hiding something yet his love for her drives him to blindly believe her, kill for her and protect her, even from his own family. And a man who is both evil and emotionally unstable is a much terrifying villain than your regular one. RK Bagatsing showed rage, love, greed, obsession, and pain effortlessly. Whenever he performs, he really performs and draws the audience to him, to his character, that despite his wicked character, Arnaldo, he manages to receive love and support more than what he's supposed to get. He is truly a promising actor in this industry and deserves more projects in the future because an actor like him rarely comes around.
Wildflower is a show that aims to entertain people by exaggerating the themes while serving as an eye-opener as well. It is a story that is very much relevant to the world we live in today regardless of its minor flaws. Wildflower is a campy television show that has substance and is delivered in the best way possible to draw the audience in. Wildflower isn't only about women empowerment but it also speaks about the societal, economical and political issues that we face today. Truly deserving of all the awards. Bravo.