Superbly captivating and well-crafted, Maalaala Mo Kaya’s “Paru-Paro” aired on Saturday, September 4, brought much romantic thrill and kilig to viewers.
Its finely structured presentation with enrapturing visual and aural elements, the story of Iron (Christian Bables) and Jay (JC de Vera) has truly showed how anyone can feel and share a love so genuine and beautiful.
IN PHOTOS: The serendipitous love story of Jay Umali and Iron Guerrero on MMK
While it may exude that same feel from familiar romantic films or series, MMK “Paru-Paro” stood out with impressive portrayals that show restraint, credibility, and delightful, heartfelt thrill.
Iron had longed for a partner for life, even after several failed relationships made him feel uncertain, not to mention how same-sex marriages remain illegal in the Philippines. He did have casual hook-ups, but meeting Carl, a common friend with his ex Will made him believe, that romance could be a real thing. Things turned sour, however, when he caught Carl two-timing with another guy.
Iron then turned skeptical anew – can he find the kind of love he always wanted? Not only having those striking physical features, but one who would take him seriously; one would truly love him till the end.
Working as a barista at a café, Iron might have thought time stood still and his heart throbbed uncontrollably as he saw a dashing figure entering and taking his seat. The handsome customer, Jay, noticed that Iron was giving him a serious gaze. He would then approach a very nervous Iron to make his order.
Their first conversation? “Anong masarap dito?” asked Jay. Iron answered, “Ako.”
Since that hilarious first meeting, things turned rosy for Iron, who would soon find the qualities of an ideal guy in Jay. Iron would first try to text Jay, but was disappointed to get no reply. It turns out Jay was already in Norway, where he had been finding an I.T. job. Iron then had finally contacted Jay through online messaging where they further knew more about each other, including their horoscope signs that showed compatibility.
Jay told Iron that he will return to the Philippines to spend Christmas, and during that time he said look forward to meeting him in person again. And as they met, they became closer and intimate, and eventually fell in love, notwithstanding the heartbreaks they felt in the past, and the fears Iron faced knowing that Jay might have come into his life too fast.
In one touching, unforgettable scene, Jay confessed his love for Iron, proposing marriage on bended knee, vowing that they will walk down the aisle in Norway, where same-sex unions are legal, someday. But Jay had to return to Norway to reach his goal of finding a thriving I.T. career. But during this time, Jay might not have the time to reply to Iron’s messages or engage in video calls, and this made Iron anxious. He thought that with their whirlwind romance and now long distance relationship, things might just not turn out right for the two of them. With the knowledge that an ex-flame is helping Jay find a job in Norway, Iron feared he would just move on and ghost him.
In a video call, Iron expressed his resentment towards how things are turning out between them, and Jay telling him that nothing has changed, and that he had only been distrusting. Their heated exchange ended with Iron passing out due to hyperventilation.
As he remained anxious over what he thought was his troubled relationship with Jay, Iron’co-barista friends tried to convince him not to continue doubting the man he loves is his destiny. They assert recalling the time when the same butterfly Jay saw on his table when he first went to the café also landed near Iron, who was also fascinated by it. They remembered Iron took hold of the butterfly and set it free. It seemed the butterfly knew they were meant for each other, even if they haven’t actually met years back.
In another video call, Iron would profusely apologize for being immature and distrusting him, begging him not to give up on him, and that he could forgive him. Jay said he would always accept and forgive him, no matter the faults or limitations he shows. And that is because he truly loves him.
Jay promised that once he lands a stable job in Norway, he will see to it that Iron gets a fiancé visa, so that they won’t be away from each other anymore. And, finally they exchanged vows as a married couple, promising to each other the deepest and most genuine love through thick and thin, for better or for worst, till death do them part. As Jay promised his forever love, Iron told his husband, he would always choose him no matter the difficulties or challenges they encounter.
A touching, electrifying tale of lovers finding their ideal partner in life, a spouse in the truest essence, MMK “Paru-Paro” shows that this overwhelming happily-ever-after can be attained, no matter the gender preference or orientation anyone can have. It gives that intense sparkle of hope for the LGBTQ community that forever love is real, and finding the right partner is always achievable, no matter the hurdles they face.
Director Jerome Pobocan gave a delightful, visually stunning episode, leaving viewers breathless with intense kilig feels and heartwarming thrill, due to the lead actors’ undeniable onscreen chemistry. It showed a real, organic though somewhat subdued expression of kindred affection, which the audience could identify and find much excitement witnessing.
JC de Vera has always been the charming romantic protagonist, and his portrayal of Jay showed much believability and passion in bringing out a character that expresses only genuine, sincere love to the person who captured his heart.
Christian Bables maintained his exceptional streak of brilliant portrayals in LGBTQ-themed dramas. He presented the necessary dramatic restraint in keeping the character credible and identifiable, and express the kind of affection to the man he loves so deep, realistic and true.
Netizens were also impressed: