With Nonong de Andres’ passing on Tuesday, November 6, at the age of 71, people fondly remember him portraying the ever amusing yet touching character named Mang Bangky, who connected with us as a heartwarming father figure and even a kilig romantic in the 2014 teleserye Forevermore.
“Bangky” is a current, millennial renaming of his more famous screen name, Bangkay, due to those novelty roles he was identified with since the 1980s, breathing life to corpses and zombies. Yet, he still dreamed of a day he will be recognized as an actor.
And, three decades after his first film as an “ekstra” in Dolphy’s “Kisame Street,” his biggest break at age 67 on Forevermore was his dream come true.
Not only did he have the most talking scenes in his career, wherein viewers heard him lengthily for the first time—a lot speaking in fluent “pa-English, English,” he said in an ABS-CBN News interview—people were actually moved by his portrayal.
“Kung kalian pa ako tumanda e,” he said in a Rated K interview in 2015. “Masayang masaya ako. ‘Di ko akalaing darating ang swerte na ito.”
Moreso, he surprisingly even made people giddy and charmed with his hit “love team” opposite the late Lilia Cantapay called “BangLi,” which viewers actually eagerly anticipated to see on each episode.
Those scenes he shared with Lilia are quite thrilling and unforgettable.
But what made his character significant to the narrative and moving to viewers, was how he delivered Mang Bangky’s profound advice to Xander (Enrique Gil), guiding him in handling his ties with Agnes (Liza Soberano) and her family.
He sounded like a father we always wanted.
A belated revelation, Nonong de Andres, once a mere passing figure has become that memorable Mang Bangky etched in our hearts and minds.