REVIEW: A scintillating start for Langit Lupa

A strong bond of friendship usually transcends life itself. It’s a celebration that seems never-ending, but when tragedies set in, it may become just a painful memory until another chance at redemption emerges.

Wonderful friendship

The premiere of Langit Lupa, which begins touching our hearts weekday mornings on ABS-CBN, showed how such a wonderful friendship began and progressed. Lala (Faye Alhambra), a rich young girl and Dey (Trisha Redd Yosa), a simple province lass first met by a river crossing. Lala had lost one of the pair of sandals she was holding as she crossed. Dey chased and retrieved it. She brought it back to a surprised and amused Lala, who appreciated her efforts but told her she didn’t need it as she threw away the other sandal.

Little did they know that such footwear became an item that would bring them together for years to come.

Dey’s father Lolo Pogi (Buboy Garovillo) is a shoe repairman and when one Lala’s sandals got broken after playtime, he made it a point to fix it even if it needed procuring supplies from the faraway city. And when the sandal was fixed, Lala instead gave Dey the now complete pair of sandals, which further strengthened their friendship.

Since then, Dey and Lala became the best of friends. Even as they go separate ways, with Lala studying in the city and Dey staying in their rural town, the girls won’t lose touch. When Lala returns to their province, she would bring home gifts for Dey, especially those cute stick-ons they would put on their shoes.

They would eventually cheer for each other, again by that river crossing, having been accepted at a state university to pursue the respective degrees—Dey (Alex de Rossi) set to study Fine Arts and Lala (Yam Concepcion) ready to take up Business Management.

New journey

As they embark on their new journey, Lala promised Dey that when they graduate, they would become partners in selling shoes for a large market in the city. Dey, she said would design the shoes, and she would manage a business that would market and sell them.

Both had those goals in mind, even as they had heartwarming distractions. Lala met Ian (Patrick Garcia) in an almost tragic encounter as he nearly hit the besties with his car inside the campus. Even so, Lala was smitten by Ian, who also tried to win her heart. Dey thought Ian was bad news, and rightfully so, as she caught Ian “carpooling” with another girl.

Dey also had her own “distraction,” but this man was someone she could trust. Joey (Jason Abalos), like her dad, focuses on shoes as his trade. And even if Joey had initially was attracted to Lala, it was surely a no-brainer that he would eventually fall in love with his close friend. Joey wooed Dey, who would always become skeptical about a man’s true intentions given what she has witnessed when Ian had apparently cheated on her best friend. No, Joey said, as he sees what their relationship would turn out to be—just like a pair of shoes, made for each other. Since then, they became a couple.

Cheated on

But as she returned to the city, Dey would try to spill the beans on Ian but Lala was just so trusting and in-love with her now boyfriend that any thought of being cheated on was the farthest from her mind. Until, a classmate texted her to “report” that Ian was seen with another girl in a bar. Lala would then ask Dey to accompany her to confirm if that report was true. Then as they arrive at the bar, indeed, the report was confirmed—he had been cozy with another woman. While Lala’s first reaction was just to weep and leave, Dey charged and confronted the two and made it clear to Ian what he did wrong, with Lala just looking on.

And as Dey became Lala’s shoulder to cry on, it was clear that Ian remained in Lala’s heart. When Dey chanced upon Lala and Ian talking, her best friend approached her to say they’ve reconciled. While Dey was first flabbergasted, she would then give in to her friend’s admitted “foolishness” as she had emphasized how much she indeed loves Ian and that he apologized for his misgivings.

That truly warmed Lala’s heart as she continued to have a friend so understanding and mature, and would fight for her no matter what. Years pass and before they graduate, Lala gave her blindfolded best friend Dey a surprise. Removing her blindfold, Lala presented to Dey all they had dreamed of in the first place—the office of their shoe manufacturing business venture which her mom gave as a graduation gift. Now they could live their dreams until an unfortunate tragedy surfaces that will eventually take its toll on their friendship and their would-be families.

Great story

Langit Lupa’s premiere is truly one of the most fluid, effectual, and well-produced and directed, awesomely written piece. You are simply glued to what’s transpiring without any need for epic scenes, heart-wrenching drama, or even that clinginess to big name, popular personalities. We see a great story unfolding before our eyes as we await the misfortune and redemption in the upcoming episodes with all the interesting characters being revealed one by one.

The cast was well chosen, with Alex de Rossi presenting her deeply felt portrayal which makes her such an esteemed actress. Yam Concepcion is a revelation and would really measure up or even go beyond our expectations in fulfilling the demanding thespic exploits her character presents. Jason Abalos is again another welcome sight in the series as he would surely deliver in essaying such a crucial role. Patrick Garcia, meanwhile, still has that allure, charm and acting prowess that mesmerizes viewers as well. And, Buboy Garovillo really has made a giant leap from his days at the Apo Hiking Society to a riveting character actor.

It definitely made us excited in anticipating better episodes to come, with the upcoming introduction of the main protagonists—Dey’s daughter Esang (Yesha Camille) and Lala’s own Princess (Xia Vigor), and what their destiny is to redeem what was lost.