A mother’s love knows no bounds, and that extends where you least expect it.
Maalaala Mo Kaya’s episode “Jacket” on May 15 showed how a mother would remain as loving as genuinely and unconditionally as she can even for a child borne out of her husband’s betrayal.
For any mother, loving an illegitimate son is difficult, but for Larcy (Meryll Soriano), it was nothing more than doting, caring, raising, and nurturing her own.
Larcy was devastated when she learned that her husband Jun (Manuel Chua) was having affair with Rose (Ingrid dela Paz), and things turned for the worse when Rose had become pregnant with Jun’s child.
Yet when Rose gave birth to Ryan (Aljon Mendoza), she had been unprepared and inept at caring for her son. Because of this, Rose took it upon herself to attend to Ryan, and when Rose asked if she could leave Ryan with her, Larcy consented.
Since then, Larcy became the mother Ryan needed, as she oversaw his welfare as he grew up, accepting him as her own, all for the sake of keeping their family whole.
In the years she cared for Ryan and reared him, he enjoyed the love and acceptance of a real family, recognizing Larcy as his nanay, even as Larcy made it clear to him that she was not his real mother. But time came when Rose, who was now living a prosperous life in the United States, reached out to Larcy and expressed her intention to take Ryan back.
When Rose visited the Philippines, Larcy brought Ryan to where Rose stayed so that the biological mother and son would get to know each other better. Yet Rose would soon show her disgust in witnessing how her son remained affectionate to Larcy, choosing to wear the old jacket his foster mother gave him than the new outfits she bought for him, and took Larcy to task over it.
Despite this, Larcy acceded and remained supportive of Ryan’s reunion with his biological mother, who decided to take her son to the US. While Ryan first resisted the idea, his half-brothers would persuade him to agree to his real mother’s wishes since he would experience a better life in the US.
But things didn’t turn out well for Ryan when he set foot in the US, since he could not get along with Rose, who had been so demanding and forceful in dealing with him. Ryan, meanwhile, had been longing for Larcy, being so used to his foster mother’s qualities of being so understanding and demonstrative of her love for him.
It came to a point that Ryan blankly told Rose she was never like Larcy as a mother in a heated argument, which ended up with Rose telling him to leave her house. Ryan agreed and told Rose that Larcy had been right all along about her “habit” of abandoning him.
Ryan went back to the Philippines and returned to Larcy, who accepted him back with open arms. Rose would angrily call Larcy to know if Ryan indeed was with her. She chided Larcy for consenting to his every whim, and she said this made him uncooperative and disobedient. Larcy then reminded Rose that she had been the one at fault all his son’s life for abandoning him and she should make this up to him by being understanding and patient with him, since being a mother is not just about giving birth to a child.
A few months after Ryan came back, he would soon learn of Larcy’s financial troubles. In a heart-to-heart talk with Larcy, Ryan said he must return to the US to help her out in easing her burdens. Larcy then tearfully told Ryan that even if she was sad to let him go again, she knows it was for the best. Larcy also told Ryan that he must approach Rose if he needs her, even if he encounters discord or anger. Larcy told Ryan that Rose is still his real mother, even if she is not the mother he expects her to be.
Taking Larcy’s advice to heart, Ryan would reconcile with Rose who was so remorseful over her callous and ruthless attitude towards him, admitting that she is the one who was negligent of her duties as a mother ever since and must make up for it. Ryan also was apologetic over his being rude and spiteful towards Rose, saying he must not expect to see the qualities of Larcy in her and that his real mother has her own way of expressing her love towards him.
Ryan since then had succeeded in finding a stable job in the US, while keeping good ties with Rose, as he continues supporting and loving the real mother his heart knows so well, Larcy.
MMK’s “Jacket” provided a heart-tugging and piercing take of how a mother’s love can stretch anyone’s understanding or imagination. Director Raz dela Torre crafted a thought-provoking, touching piece with powerful and affectual dramatic performances that are truly memorable.
Aljon Mendoza was impressive in his first lead dramatic role, as we truly saw and felt the range of emotions that character needed, both verbal and non-verbal. Oozing with immense charm and matinee idol material, Aljon has learned so well from his dramatic mentors and peers, making him a promising actor of note.
Meryll Soriano outdid herself in this outing, as she never let a single second pass without her optimal dramatic quality and thespic depth in realizing the genuineness of her character. From just seeing her, viewers already knew and felt her painful tale, and this shows how exceptional and encompassing her craft is.