It has already been eight years since the King of Comedy Dolphy passed on due to multiple organ failure at the age of 83, yet his legacy and memory continue to live on in the past years through the impersonations of him done by various personalities and Kapamilya talents.
As we commemorate his 92nd birth anniversary this coming July 25, let’s take a look back on some of the late veteran actor-comedian’s post-humous ‘appearances’ in some ABS-CBN programs that indeed made his former colleagues and Filipino viewers miss him so much.
It’s safe to say that satirist Willie Nepomuceno, who has portrayed an array of famous local and international personalities, is the King of Comedy’s most popular impersonator. While it’s seemingly rare for an impressionist to stand side by side the personality he/she’s mimicking, Willie even had the opportunity to share the screen with the King of Comedy in one of the episodes of the sketch comedy show Quizon Avenue.
Almost a year after Dolphy’s death, Willie was invited to be one of the judges of It’s Showtime’s “KalokaLike” segment, wherein he appeared on the panel as the King of Comedy once. The hosts and madlang people were indeed in awe of his appearance as he interacted with with Karylle, the daughter of his long-time partner Zsa Zsa Padilla.
In the grand finals of “KalokaLike”, Kuya Kim Atienza surprised everyone when he went out to the stage clad in an all-white ensemble, round-framed specs, moustache, and finely pomaded hair – bringing back to life the King of Comedy in his performance of “Singin’ In The Rain” – Dolphy’s favorite song.
Tears indeed filled the room when ventrilonquist Juancho Lunaria auditioned in the fourth season of Pilipinas Got Talent in 2013 with the puppet version of Dolphy. Although he wasn’t the one who voiced it while singing Florante’s classic hit “Handog” for he was still in the process of learning his vocals, the judges, who were then already misty-eyed, were still impressed with how puppeteer seamlessly maneuvered it. He then gave them a sample of his imitation of the late actor-comedian’s voice when judge Freddie M. Garcia asked him to interact with the puppet. In the end, he’s able to get three yeses from them.
Awra Briguela might have needed extra effort to portray the King of Comedy in one of his performances on Your Face Sounds Familiar Kids Season 1. The teen sensation, who is known for his vivacious personality, had to drastically tone down his energy as his portrayal of Dolphy singing Frank Sinatra’s “Fly Me To The Moon” only required minimal movements.
Aside from that, Awra also amused us when he accepted the challenge of host Billy Crawford to translate to English Apl.de.Ap’s “Bebot” that was performed by contender Xia Vigor. Those who were able to frequently watch Dolphy on his shows know that this is one of his ways of bringing laughter to the audiences.
It wasn’t only Awra who had the rare opportunity impersonate the King of Comedy on Your Face Sounds Familiar as band vocalist-turned-actor Kean Cipriano was also assigned to do it in the second season of its regular edition.
Being able to achieve his physical appearance and nailing his performance of Frank Sinatra’s other hit “You Make Me Feel Young”, it wasn’t surprising that the Callalily frontman received praises from the three judges by the end of his number.
And just last year, Rowell Quizon, his grandchild to his son Freddie, joined in It’s Showtime’s Tawag Ng Tanghalan. Not only that he astounded us with his unmistakable singing prowess, but with his skill in imitating the voices of OPM icons Janno Gibbs, Jaya, and Ogie Alcasid, as well as of Pinoy Champ Senator Manny Pacquiao and the remarkable gestures of his beloved late lolo.
It may be already long since he was gone, but Dolphy continues to make us happy with the memories and legacy he left us that the younger generation is able to revive.
Truly, the King of Comedy is forever in our hearts!