To celebrate 10 years of Asianovela loving, ABS-CBN brings back “the one that started it all.” Meteor Garden
loyalists rejoice as this phenomenal series once again heats up national TV viewing, giving its fans another stroke of MG fever, and a whole new generation a modern fairytale to fancy and adore.
What makes this program such a beloved blockbuster? ABS-CBN.com asked the fans themselves why Filipinos have fallen in love with Meteor Garden, its stars and every single thing that has to do with F4 and Shan Cai.
Janelle Diega Escote shares, “Here comes a short and tweetams show that has kilig factor without the presence of a bed scene or sumting.”
Many formulaic romantic tales that make the heart swoon are portrayed well by this Taiwanese hit. The classic love triangle is perfectly angled between Dao Ming Si, Hua Ze Lei and Shan Cai. The usual poor girl-rich boy, opposites-attract coupling is enjoyably depicted in the show. These seemingly worn out cliches never fail because they are what fantasies are made of. And of course, the “kilig” is easily drawn out thanks to the beautiful faces that give life to the stories.
“It’s funny and romantic,” says Florilyn Galagar Cade, “ plus the stars are handsome and Shancai is simple but beautiful. Many Pinoys can relate to the story when it comes to admiration of a girl to a handsome boy. And Daoming Si, a rich boy who only knows money but suddenly smitten by Shan Cai’s beauty and personality.”
Franz Delariarte says that, “I'm turning 23 this mid-year kinikilig pa din ako at ramdam ko na namumula pisngi ko dahil kay #Sancai at #DaoMingZi...Sobrang Lakas nilang makahatak ng mga Viewers...at ang pagiging Bad Boy ni Azi ngunit Inosente pagdating sa Pag-ibig eh nakakatuwa...Eventhough they're like Cat and Dog na dalawa ni Sancai sila pa rin yung Couple na hindi ko kinaisan o pinagsawaang panoorin...”
Aside from serving eye candy every episode, the characters whom viewers follow have proven to be both relatable and aspirational. Language has obviously not hindered the autheniticty and remarkability of Shan Cai and Dao Ming Si to shine through. Aside from their quirks that help make the series enjoyable, Meteor Garden’s characters value love, family and friendship that Filipinos strive to emulate. And so the F4 heartthrobs became pegs for anything cool, and Shan Cai became an icon of girl empowerment.
Franz Delariarte continues and further elevates these themes, “ We Filipinos are fond of stories of how poor people fight for their principles and dignity against rich individuals. In that sense, we love the character of poor Shan Cai. She represents most of us who are striving to have a better life; every marginalized citizen can relate to her.
THE BEST THOUGHT OF MG IS IT SHOWS THAT THERE ARE TIMES THAT WELL-OFF persons sometimes beg for the indigents, not for penny, but for LOVE. I guess that its theme of how the wild grass like Shan Cai rooted, grown & conquered the heart of influential Azi makes us Pinoy adore the series;-)”
Meteor Garden not only refreshed the TV landscapte but also influenced a number of lifestyle trends, from hairstyles and fashions during its peak in the early 2000s, to hit songs filling the airwaves. KC Candelario can’t put her finger on it it but expresses it as, “meron xang ‘urff!’.. I mean yung feeling na di m ma explain, parang tulad din nung 1st tym na ipalabas xa..ang daming pauso ng Meteor Garden noon na till now patok pa din.”
Arecel Maj in turn reminices those MG fever days, “I remember hiskul days..lahat ng cover ng notebooks ko mga F4. pati hair style ni San Cai gnagaya. kahit di alam ang lyrics ng kanta pilit kinakanta bsta alam mo ang tono.haha.” F4’s romantic anthem has certainly become an LSS of an entire decade of Chinolovers. “Oh baby baby baby..”
Of course being veritably the original and first hit of its kind, versions of its success in many countries attribute to Meteor Garden as the benchmark of a lovabale rom-com series.
Ria Estrecho affirms this claim, “Dahil wala kanang makikita sa mundo ngayun na katulad nila ... at ang ibang mga kasing asianovela ngayun nagongopya nalang sa mga dating napanuod na natin ... at sila ang kauna unahang asianovela na nagpatibok sa puso ng mga pinoy , nagpaiyak sa mga kabataan , nagpatawa sa mga matatanda at nagbigay ng pagasa sa mga sawi na that is why kahit ilang miyon nyu pang ipalabas yan ..... ilang milyun din naming papanuodin ng hindi nagsasawa.”
For a large number of fans who are already way pass the high school age, the setting of young love and teenage life provides nostalgia that each generation readily cherishes in their own special ways.
KC Candelario puts it perfectly, “meron xang nostalgic feeling na parang bumabalik at naaalala m ang hi skul days. tas matatawa k n lang kz noon sobrang adik ka sa F4 pero ngayon parang nababaduyan ka na sa porma nila.pero enjoy pa din panuorin..”
And airing the program again in 2014 certainly doubles the charm of romance in the yesteryears. G-Ciela Mauleon says, “Ganun ata talaga pag first love mo kahit kailan d mo makakalimutan. Haha sabi nga the asianovela that started it all. Super dami kong love na novel ngayon pero walang makakapantay sa #meteorgardenF4.?????? Haha drama pero true. ??”
Keep on watching Meteor Garden Mondays to Fridays on ABS-CBN’s Kapamilya Gold and on Jeepney TV at 8:00 p.m. and join a new wave of the Asianovela fever, like Hajji Salalima who wins first prize for capturing it all, “ang gagwapo ng f4 at ang astig nila..isa pa napakaganda tlaga ng story ng meteor garden..saka nila nagsimula ang lahat kaya my mga korean drama na ngayon..wlang tatalo sa meteor garden kahit baliktarin man ang mundo at sa tunay na f4...f4forever4..f4fever ahahaha..”
Acknowldegements: Thanks to Ms. Micah Rivera of ABS-CBN, and all the Kapamilya fans who shared their thoughts via ABS-CBN’s Official Facebook Fan Page