I have no reservations with my proclamation in that headline. I absolutely believe TV5’s Beki Boxer is one of the best, most enjoyable and most creative scripted Filipino series, drama or comedy, in years.
Most Filipino dramas struggle with just one genre. Beki Boxer, on the other hand, effortlessly blended drama and comedy every day while infusing some exciting sports action, kilig romance and all-out fabulous~ musical numbers.
Alwyn Uytingco was the perfect actor to and maybe the only one who could, not only carry the series, but completely own the character of Rocky “Tsunami Punch” Ponciano. Name any other young actor today who could make you laugh and cry by being a tough boxer in the ring and a flamboyant sirena outside of it. It’s been a long time coming, but Alwyn Uytingco finally got the lead role he’s long deserved. And he absolutely knocked it out of the park.
The series probably would not have worked with any other actor in the title role. Alwyn’s experience in dozens of varied roles, including gay characters, since he first started in the business allowed him to be comfortable and natural in the role.
The writing and directing played just as big a part as well. Throughout the series, we laughed and we cried with Rocky. Many times, those tears were actually from laughing too hard. Other times, they were tears from sincerely heartbreaking and/or touching emotional moments.
Beki Boxer being able to seamlessly flow from one emotion to the next, no matter how far apart on the spectrum they could be, many times in the same exact scene is a major accomplishment and one of the biggest reasons the series is a creative success.
While most of Philippine primetime is riddled with the same stories and concepts, Beki Boxer managed to break new ground. And it didn’t even have to try hard.
It was a series centered around a flamboyant and effeminate young gay man as the title character. It was a sports drama about an incredibly talented young boxer. And it took typical Pinoy suds and injected plenty of humor and heart.
The idea that a young 20-something gay man who is more than comfortable dressing in drag and performing on a gay bar stage can win a championship boxing belt is inspired and was handled perfectly throughout the series. Rocky’s mission to regain his family’s honor while still being true to himself is a universal story, relatable to anyone, gay or straight.
Many Filipinos equate television quality with heavy dramas and how long you can be extended by. But Beki Boxer disproves both of those misguided standards.
Beki Boxer ran for 13 (and a half) weeks, like most of TV5’s daily and weekly dramas. It wasn’t extended for three more months or two years. And it didn’t need to be. Now that’s it’s over, anyone who has watched the series can see the story was easily planned out for a 13 week run. Story beats being hit at just the right times and the pacing quick. They knew exactly where they were going and how to get there.
Beki Boxer is not heavy drama. Sure, there were heavy moments, usually broken by perfectly timed silliness. But a television series does not need to feature nonstop screaming or crying or barilan and kidnappan and api-apihan to be considered good.
Beki Boxer‘s excellent writing provided a fun and enjoyable viewing experience without resorting to lowest common denominator stunts or have the need to dumb down the audience to gain a reaction.
And that the performances of Alwyn Uytingco and the rest of the talented cast may go unnoticed is a crime.
Whether it’s Vin Abrenica’s continued growth as TV5’s leading man. Or Candy Pangilinan’s excellent comedic timing. Or Joross Gamboa’s surefire scene stealing. Or John Regala absolutely relishing his moustache-twirling villainy. Christian Vasquez, Onyok Velasco, Claire Hartell, Cholo Baretto, Kristel Moreno, Rain Prince Allan Quite, Bekimon. The guy who played Dedz!
The entire cast and the amazing line-up of real-life professional boxers all contributed to the show’s ultimate success.
It was fresh, creative and fun. That a series with such a simple premise can be enjoyable, hilarious and exciting is a huge accomplishment. And best of all, it had plenty of sincerity and heart that made the 68 episodes all worth watching.
It is a shame that the greater Filipino population is still so averse to changing their channels because Beki Boxer deserved to be the biggest show on Philippine TV today. It accomplished much more in quality and entertainment with its sincere simplicity and abundance of heart than any of the other options out there. TV5 and everyone at Beki Boxer deserve a big standing ovation for an incredible accomplishment. TV5 and any Philippine network will be hard pressed to find another series that has the same perfect combination of punches like Beki Boxer was able to land on a regular basis.
And because of it, Beki Boxer deserves to be called one of the very best Filipino dramas in years.
Watch the entire series here:
Be sure to start at Episode 1 of course. =]