That’s What I Like: 6 Times Bruno Mars Brought The Magic To His Two-Day Manila Concert

That's the 24k magic right there.

Not even the traffic could stop us from enjoying Bruno Mars in his long-awaited return to the Philippines.

Related: And We’re Live: Concerts, Festivals, And Fanmeets Coming To The Philippines This 2023

Considering that it was five years ago when Bruno Mars was last in the Philippines for a concert, his return to the country for his two-night show at the Philippine Arena was not to be missed. And given how the show was a bit of a homecoming because of his Filipino roots made it even better. Sure, life tried it over the weekend with heavy traffic and the rain, but once inside the Philippine Arena, all those worries skated out the door.

When that curtain dropped, and Bruno started performing, it was over as the superstar brought the energy and a stage presence only a few people in this world can replicate. It was hit after hit as Bruno got in those notes, kaldag moves, and a little bit of Filipino, too. If the PCD or FOMO is still hitting, check out these moments to soothe those feelings.


Filipino fans will always pass the vibe check, especially for an artist like Bruno Mars. When a musician gives 150% of his energy, the crowd will give that right back and then some. 


With a songbook’s worth of slow jams and upbeat classics that stand the test of time, you can expect Filipino fans to sing their heart out to his hits. And that much was true as Bruno and the crowd exercised those vocal cords.  


Honestly, a Bruno Mars concert is just a disguise for the hottest party in town with the kind of show he puts on. While he may have ended the set with Locked Out Of Heaven, we felt like we were in heaven in those couple of hours.


@musichanges “Stop it! I’m shy! Nahihiya ako!” Bruno Mars in Philippines 2023 #brunomars #brunomarsmanila2023 #brunomarsmanila #fyp ♬ 오리지널 사운드 – NewJeans

FYI, the context for this moment is that when he sang the “Tell me that you’re coming through” line from Leave The Door Open, he asked the women in the crowd to say, “I’m coming Bruno.” Well, they did, and this was his reaction. So yeah, he had it coming (pun intended). 


@walfcwuzz #fyp #brunomars #imy ♬ original sound – chichi

Bogoshipo who? We only know miss na kita mahal Bruno.


@kyrebaca someone proposed when bruno started singing marry you 😭 #brunomars #brunomarsphilippines #brunomarsconcert2023 #brunomarsmusic #brunomarsphilippinearena ♬ original sound – kyrebaca on ig

Let us get this straight, while Bruno was singing Marry You in front of tens of thousands of people, a few people decided to propose to their girlfriends in the middle of the crowd? We know that the engagement video is going to be lit. It was a beautiful night and they found something dumb to do.

Continue Reading: How Philippine Concerts Became Everyone’s Go-To Source For Concerts In The Country

8 Golden Highlights From SB19’s PAGTATAG World Tour Kickoff In Manila

What a kickoff.

SB19 + Araneta Coliseum = Magic.

Related: Songs To Listen To On SB19’s PAGTATAG! EP Based On Your Mood

While their music videos and live performances will always give, seeing SB19 in concert is a whole different beast. An SB19 concert is the pinnacle of who they are as performers with talent that was meant for the stage. Over the years, the group consistently delivers when it comes to their concerts, from their pandemic-era livestreams in 2021 and their return to the live stage in 2022. And this year sees the group evolve into their next chapter with the recent kickoff of their PAGTATAG World Tour.

Held across two days in Araneta Coliseum (a favorite location for the group and their fans), the concerts proved again that SB19 will always command that stage. From the looks, choreography, production, live vocals, storytelling, and more, our P-pop kings rocked the Big Dome, as they should. As they continue the tour in a couple of cities across the Philippines and then head overseas, let’s look back at the moments that we still are thinking about.  


While some would say that A’TIN are OA or overreacting, they just don’t know what it means to be dedicated. Their passion and support for SB19 is something else, and it was felt on both nights. The hype was real.


A’TIN will always understand the assignment. We can only imagine what goes through the boys’ minds whenever they look out to the sea of blue in Araneta.


In case you didn’t know, the imagery of a fair means a lot to the group because SBTown’s Filipino staff (who still work with the group today) brought them to a fair to relax when the members thought that SB19 was about to be over. Now, here they are, projecting the carousel on their sold-out show in Araneta Coliseum.


Now who told SB19 to hurt us like this? TBH, if you weren’t listening closely, you wouldn’t catch the shift, which shows how subtle it was. Two of their earliest ballads came together to get us in our feels.


Aside from being their second world tour, PAGTATAG also marks the first time the boys are holding a concert after the majority of them released their solo music. So, it was only right that PAGTATAG would have each member do their solo stages. From Ken, Josh, and Pablo wowing the crowd with their hits to Stell and Justin delivering moving covers, the boys did that. That’s what happens when you can shine as a group and as individuals.


At this point, SB19 has performed in Araneta Coliseum many times, constantly bringing in crowds for their sold-out shows. This is something the venue’s management recognized, which is why, as an acknowledgment of their feat, they gifted SB19 their very own mural before the show to join the other local and international legends who have performed at the famed venue. It’s giving icon behavior.


If you know SB19, then it’s expected that they wouldn’t hesitate to get wild. From Stell taking his shirt off at the finale to Josh throwing his jacket, they know how to get the crowd riled up. But what we didn’t expect was seeing Justin shed his pureboy image by showing off his dance moves for I WANT YOU and having an almost reveal when he wore a gold crop top.


SB19 gave us quality for their PAGTATAG kickoff, but that’s to be expected. What we would like to also point out is that it was also a locally-made production. Now that SB19 is under self-management, what they gave us for the concert was the group and their teams’ vision come to life. SB19 showing us once again that local talent is worth supporting.

Continue Reading: SB19’s GENTO Is Taking Over TikTok—As It Should

There’s A Lot To Celebrate About Belle Mariano’s ‘Somber’ Album

She really is somber.

For her sophomore release, Belle Mariano gets introspective with a refined touch to her acoustic stylings.

Related: Belle Mariano Brings The Vocals And The Feels In Her Debut Album Daylight

Given the Gen Z superstar that she is, it would be understandable if Belle’s music went for a more pop or modern take. But over the years, it’s been clear that Belle knows the kind of artist she is and the music she wants to make. Following 2021’s Daylight, which saw Belle go more acoustic than synth, the star is back with the recent release of her second studio album, Somber (the first part of a two-parter).

With her new body of work, she proves that Daylight was no fluke as Belle continues to develop her status as an acoustic musician who tells stories through her lyrics, voice, and laidback style. And in Somber, Belle put together an album for the sad girls. Part break-up album, part introspections of a young woman, the album sees Belle refine her sound with a bigger creative touch in six songs that serve as her reflections in a fast-paced world. Let’s break down each song and see how they hit right in the feels.  


While at initial listen, the opening song of Somber seems like a gentle love song about spending time with that special someone, it soon gives way to a melancholic tale of realizing that the relationship is not going to happen. Using the allegory of a road trip, the track sees Belle lay down the sad truth that their time together has reached its destination, as epitomized by the closing line, “Sad to say our roadtrip has come to an end.” Roadtrip expertly lays the groundwork for the kind of vibe the rest of the album will have. 


Somber showcases Belle as a fine storyteller with her music, with Session Road being one of the best examples. After starting relatively simply with Belle trying to get over a boy while in Baguio, it soon leads to her realization that her love for her ex may not be done just yet after a chance encounter with a boy on Session Road. With production that scales and soars to meet its developing emotions, the song embodies how breakups can get complicated.


If Belle can get us in our feels in English, she can also do so in Filipino, as seen in the midway mark of Somber. Mainly with a guitar backing her, Belle goes deep as she ponders on the realization that her relationship is nearing its end date. Knowing that your relationship is coming to an end is a bitter pill to swallow, and that’s a feeling Belle brings to life with her angelic vocals. Still, she ends the track by leaving the door open to rekindling the romance, showing that a fleeting relationship can find its spark again.


This song was made for Gen Z. In this track, Belle vocalizes the feelings that many youth go through today, always feeling as if they are in a rush to do the next thing. We live in a time where many want and expect quick and instant gratification, and Belle narrates how that lifestyle is damaging to your physical, mental, and emotional health. And considering how Belle’s life hasn’t been on pause since she rose to stardom in 2021, the song is one we have a feeling she can relate to. Take it from Belle and don’t think about where you’ll be weeks and months from now. Slow down and take it one step at a time.


Lyrically, Bugambilya delivers the most complex take on the entire album in a four-minute tour de force of emotion. And that bridge? Belle did that with her transition from Filipino to English, and back to Filipino.


If you listened to the album in chronological order, then you’re probably an emotional wreck by this point. And for the album’s closing, Belle leaves one last punch in a song about feeling lost in the midst of it all. The track, which was co-written by Belle herself, brings to life the power of stopping and realizing that life has its merits when you take the time to take it all in. It’s a feeling many can relate to as it puts a period on Belle’s musings and reflections on life. Despite how hard and complicated life can be, there is still hope at the end of the tunnel. 

Continue Reading: What To Know About Belle Mariano’s First-Ever Solo Live Concert

Johnnie Walker’s Rhythm & Roll Event Will Get The Local Roller Skating Scene Moving

Here's to more safe and inclusive spaces for roller skating.

If you’re looking for that sign to try out roller skating, here it is.

Related: 8 Filipino Cool Girl Collectives You’ll Want To Be A Part Of

While basketball and volleyball usually dominate the conversation when it comes to sports in the Philippines, there are many other kinds of sports played along Manila’s colorful streets. Such is the case with roller skating. At first glance, roller skating might seem like a sport of the 80s where people go around the roller rink as they bop along to disco tunes.

But roller skating is so much more than a nostalgic throwback or the catalyst for one of the most memorable scenes of Stranger Things season 4, it’s a sport done by quite a few Filipinos. Manila is home to a small yet growing community of skaters who are as diverse as the streets they skate on. This is an aspect Johnnie Walker is looking to celebrate with an event that will remind us that there’s nothing wrong with trading those sneakers for a pair of roller skates.


Aside from being the world’s #1 Scotch whisky brand, Johnnie Walker also inspires many to celebrate what makes them unique and turn the streets into their canvas of self-expression. With their Walk Beyond campaign, they’re doing just that by highlighting and championing the subcultures in modern culture that make society as vibrant as it is. The Manila roller skating community takes center stage with Rhythm & Roll, the Walk Beyond campaign’s event, which was celebrated at Kondwi in Poblacion, Makati on June 17, that will see music, dance, and skates come together. 

Photo taken from the Skatebomb Girls’ Instagram

Photo taken from the Skatebomb Girls’ Instagram

Serving as the highlight of Rhythm & Roll, the event will see a screening of Johnnie Walker’s documentary in collaboration with Vice Asia following the local roller skating community. The episode produced as part of the timeless brand’s Walk Beyond: Collabs series will see James Reid trade in his microphone for a pair of skates as he gets an up-close look at the thriving Manila rollerskate community with Steffi Lucero and the rest of the boss ladies of the Skatebomb Girls, an all-female skate squad.

Steffi, who is one of the proponents of Everywhere We Skate PH, a local community of skaters that grew to thousands throughout the pandemic, has seen first-hand how skating in Manila has gone from a niche and even misunderstood sport into a growing activity. The rise of skate shops, as well as new and restored rinks in and around the Metro has made the sport more accessible. She brings along James into the welcoming community for a one-of-a-kind pop-meets-roller-skating collaboration.


Rhythm & Roll will see skate groups, musical acts, and live acts come together as Johnnie Walker toasts the best of the local roller skating community. Some highlights will include an afternoon skate session from invited skate groups to the beats of guests DJs. And if the skating energy has guests wanting to try roller skating themselves, they can have free skating lessons from Rolyo Sk8 House.

Photo taken from James Reid’s Instagram

As skaters grind on rails, guests will have the opportunity to watch a different form of art courtesy of a live art session from Bea Policarpio, who created a Walk Beyond-inspired mural. And the fun doesn’t stop when the sun sets as the Rhythm & Roll is about to get lit up with performances by ATEAM, Lesha, Massiah, August Wahh, and James Reid, the latter of who will perform his recent single, So Fire. More DJ sets will then close the night.  

Rounding this all up will be the Johnnie Walker highball bar, where guests can get a drink (or two) of signature Johnnie highballs and cocktails. The iconic Scotch whiskey brand is pulling out all the stops to let people know that the Manila roller skating scene has arrived, and we’re here for it.

If all this talk of roller skating has got you itching to see James Reid and the Skatebomb Girls zoom across Manila, you can watch the documentary here.

And don’t forget, drink responsibly. Visit to learn more about alcohol facts.

Continue Reading: 9 New Indoor Hangout Spots That’ll Beat The Heat

The Round-Up: New Music Releases To Check Out This Week

Nadine says goodbye to her twenties.

It’s time to sound off with new songs from Nadine Lustre, Belle Mariano, Nicki Minaj, Ice Spice, and more.

Related: The Round-Up: New Music Releases To Add To The Playlist

Something must be in the air during the week of June 23 because the releases have been fast and hot. From long-awaited comebacks to iconic collabs, this week’s new music drops deliver fresh beats that you need to be aware of. After all, you can never be too prepared for when someone passes you that AUX chord. Take a listen at these fresh picks.


We’re gonna ignore the fact that this song is less than two minutes long given how much this serves. Nicki and Ice give us a worthy modern-day take on Aqua’s iconic Barbie World that’s heavy on the beats and attitude.


For her comeback single after two years, Nadine gives us Overgrown, an alternative pop piece with striking beats and synth that serves as her tribute to her 20s and the lessons, challenges, and everything that’s shaped her to be who she is today.


HYBS will always deliver the vibes when it comes to their music, such is the case with their new single, Tip Toe. The funky song sees the duo get steamy as they bring a special time between two lovers to a more intimate setting.


Belle Mariano gets reflective on this new song on feeling lost in the midst of it all. The track, which was co-written by Belle herself, brings to life the power of stopping and realizing that life has its merits when you take the time to take it all in.


Juan Karlos is really in his feels in this six-minute number through the POV of a persona speaking to a love lost, painfully questioning his self-worth—and whether their love truly meant anything.


That sample? We know that’s right! Coi and David Guetta snapped with this pop and hip-hop number.


KZ demonstrates her multihyphenate powers once more as she delivers both vocals that equal parts strong and sultry and fire bars to R&B beats.


Carly Rae delivers a slow pop jam in her new song that continues to build on the appeal of shy boys.


This cut, taken from her recently released debut album to love in the 21st century, is a great example of Lyn’s ability to have this unique yet relatable viewpoint when it comes to being a Gen Z.


Just in time for Pride Month, Kim Petras dropped her new album filled with pop bangers, like in King Of Hearts that could get the club going.


If YGIG had something to prove they did it with this hard-hitting single that firmly places the group as one of the rising P-pop girl groups to watch out for.


Gabe’s new single discusses the comfort and sense of security that one feels while being with someone, and the sorrow that sets in when the relationship ends. While one party can move on, the other one usually remains in the same place, continuing to reminisce about the old times that can still bring a comforting warmth.


Singer-songwriter rienne takes us on an emotional journey, capturing the essence of both the elation and heartache that come with the experience of new love. Inspired by the warmth of a rising sun and the bittersweet anticipation of what lies ahead as they pour their heart into this soul-stirring ballad.


This slick track is playful and bouncy, a flamboyant “look at me now” to anyone who might have doubted Curtis’ upward trajectory.


After 4 years since the release of Dynamicduo’s 9th full-length album, they’re back with their 10th album 2 Kids On The Block. It contains various stories about how their outlook on life and perspectives have changed from when they first started music to the present. Part.1 of the album contains a deeper look and stories from their school days when their genuine love for hip hop music grew to the starting point of Dynamicduo’s music

Continue Reading: The Round-Up: These New Songs Are As Hot As The Summer Sun

Being At Peace: Here’s The Inspiration Behind Nadine Lustre’s ‘Overgrown’

That's some Mother Nature energy right there. 🍃

After two years, Nadine Lustre makes her music comeback with an introspective track that’s all about acceptance and thriving in peace.

Related: In The Visual Telling Of Wildest Dreams, Nadine Lustre Demystifies Her What Once Was, Realizing Who She Really Is

It has been quite some time since Nadine Lustre enchanted us with her visually, aurally, and emotionally transcendent album, Wildest Dreams, and her empowering tracks, Own It and Wait For Me. These exquisite creations served as a testament to Nadine’s undeniable talent and solidified her status as a force to be reckoned with in the music industry. Now, after a couple of years, the Filipina queen herself returns to captivate us once again with a new song that delves into her nostalgic past, explores uncharted horizons, and marks a historic collaboration.


Nadine Lustre Overgrown

Nadine Lustre makes her much-awaited return to the music scene after a two-year hiatus with her latest single, Overgrown. This heartfelt composition serves as a tribute to her transformative twenties, encapsulating the invaluable lessons, daunting challenges, and profound experiences that have shaped her into the person she is today. As she embarks on her journey into her thirties, Lustre embraces her past, finding solace and inner peace in the process.

Overgrown not only showcases Lustre’s audacious artistic growth and fearless experimentation but also immerses the audience in an enchanting soundscape inspired by the picturesque island of Siargao where the song was initially conceived. The track effortlessly transports its audience to an idyllic and lush soundscape, resonating with authentic sincerity. 

With this release, Lustre also pays homage to her twenties, coinciding with her thirtieth birthday celebration this year. The song’s drill-based foundation is artfully interwoven with drum and bass elements, creating a truly distinctive addition to her discography. Overflowing with introspection, Overgrown allows listeners to embark on a poignant and heartfelt exploration of personal growth, peace, and acceptance.

With lyrics penned by Lustre herself, along with singer-songwriter Linying and producer Josh Wei, Overgrown is an alternative pop gem that seamlessly melds captivating beats and synth elements. While Lustre’s lyrical prowess and storytelling have always resonated deeply with her dedicated fanbase, Overgrown evokes a newfound boldness and experimental spirit in her composition.


Though currently an independent artist, Lustre joined forces with WILD Entertainment, a 360-entertainment company hailing from South Korea, for the release of the track. Under the leadership of CEO Leonard Lim, WILD Entertainment has recently entered the Philippine music scene, and this collaboration with Lustre on Overgrown marks their first release in the country. This partnership serves as a dynamic prelude to the label’s ambitious plans for fostering local talents and revitalizing the music landscape.

Nadine Lustre Overgrown release schedule

Nadine Lustre’s latest release, Overgrown, represents a significant milestone in her musical journey. On the one hand, it’s another musical feat for Nadine, as she bares her soul into this new single, and lets us bask in her own wilderness. On the other, collaborating with WILD Entertainment marks an exciting chapter not only for Lustre but also for the burgeoning music scene in the Philippines.

Overgrown starts streaming today, June 23, 2023, on all streaming platforms. Nadine Lustre and WILD are also set to treat the fans with the song’s visualizer coming out later this month.

Continue Reading: Need Some Therapy? See How Nadine Lustre Spends Her Chill Weekends

Sassa Gurl Introduces Us To Sassa Boi In Her New Single, ‘Maria Hiwaga’

"Sampu aking babygirl kahit ngipin ko hiwalay."

Find us someone who can be their own leading man and lady like Sassa Gurl in Maria Hiwaga.

Related: Sassa Gurl’s Oscars Parody Is So Spot-On It Feels Real

After conquering TikTok with her relatable skits and being an advocate for the LGBTQIA+ community, Sassa Gurl is ready to do more. Naturally, the next step for Sassa is to enter the world of music and release her bops for us to enjoy. But while you think you may have an idea of what Sassa Gurl’s music might sound like, the social media star showed us that you can never anticipate what she does next by dropping the banger that is Maria Hiwaga. Sassa Gurl? No, that’s Sassa Boi as she honestly impresses with the R&B track.


Officially released at the start of June, Maria Hiwaga is an R&B song that sees Sassa embody a more masculine persona as she sings and raps about getting smitten over a special someone with heavy allegories towards drugs. Without knowing who made the song, you would think that Maria Hiwaga was Al James’ latest fire track, but Sassa proves once again her versatility as she breaks stereotypes. Even Mima can give us a BGC boi anthem. This is basically Sassa’s take on Filipino hip-hop artists who like to brag about women and vices in their music and, more importantly, show that queer artists can do well in a genre that’s typically male-dominated.

Technically, this isn’t Sassa’s first foray into music. Last June 2022, she dropped Lagot!, a bombastic, confidence-boosting pop anthem that’s fit for Pride Month. But for her comeback single a year later, Sassa pulled a 180 and then some. Maria Hiwaga was co-written by Sassa, Kumareng Harvey, and Silas, with Ken Ponce serving as the producer. The song’s surreal yet vibey feel was also translated into its music video.


Directed by Rod Singh, the video sees Sassa pull double duty as the leading man singing the track and the leading lady, who is the video vixen attracting all the attention. Pura Luka Vega, Aries Night, and Silas co-star in the ethereal video as part of Sassa’s crew. While first reading about and hearing Maria Hiwaga might seem like a joke, the song is anything but. Sassa’s vocals and bars eat, and you wouldn’t think that it was her singing the song. The beats hit, and the overall production makes Maria Hiwaga a solid R&B song that goes beyond its inherent campiness and comedy with its lyrics. And based on the track’s reception, people have been loving this new creative direction for Sassa Gurl.

Following the music video’s release on June 17, it shook up the charts, where it peaked #2 on Trending for Music on YouTube. It entered the Top 50 chart of Spotify Philippines with over 1 million streams to date. It’s also been going viral on TikTok, with tens of thousands of audio uses to date. 

Needless to say, this new music era from Sassa Gurl is everything, and we’re here for it. The only thing we need now is the remix with Shanti Dope and Denise Julia. 

Continue Reading: Zack Tabudlo and Al James Want You To Vibe To Their First Collab Together

5 Reasons Why The Big Bad Wolf Sale 2023 Should Be The Place For Your Next Book Budol

Bad done good.

The world’s biggest book sale is back in the Philippines as Big Bad Wolf 2023 promises an in-person return filled with books and deals galore.

Related: Beyond The Story: Is BTS’ 10th Anniversary Book Worth Buying?

Few things unlock as wholesome of core memories as a book fair. Going to your school book fair to see if you can buy a new book to read is a joy we would gladly experience all over again. Even as adults, there’s a heartfelt feeling of being able to just browse through rows upon rows of books. And this June, we get to experience that feeling again with the return of the Big Bad Wolf sale in the Philippines.

Running from today until July 3, the world’s biggest book sale opens its doors once more to bibliophiles and curious shoppers, and this time, Big Bad Wolf is returning to an onsite event for the first time since the pandemic. Ready to cop your next book? Then check out a few reasons why Big Bad Wolf 2023 is the place for your next budol.



This year, the Big Bad Wolf sale is going all out with a collection of over two million books from international and local publishers on offer. The organizers filled the 4,800 square meters of the PICC Forum Tent in Pasay with books as far as the eye can see. Once you step inside the tent, you’ll see the space divided into three main sections: fiction to the right of the main entrance, non-fiction in the middle, and children’s books to the left. Each section contains a grocery list worth of genres to check out, so, if you’re on the hunt for romance, sci-fi, horror, self-help, a cookbook, or more, you’ll find it at Big Bad Wolf 2023.


Big Bad Wolf prices

One aspect that makes the Big Bad Wolf sale so loved is how the prices go lower than Felix’s voice from Stray Kids. And this year is no exception, with discounts going as high as 95% and prices going as low as 20 pesos. This 2023, the organizers are implementing a universal price tagging system where, instead of seeing the price, you’ll see a letter code like A, B, C, etc. that is associated with a corresponding price. As for payment, they accept cash, debit card, credit card, and e-wallets.



With all the deals going on at the Big Bad Wolf 2023 book sale, you would think that would be enough. But the organizers prepared even more deals to get you rushing to Pasay. Before you enter the venue, it’s advised that you sign up for the free membership on the website app so that you’ll be eligible for exclusive offers and deals. Also, Metrobank cardholders get a special promo where they get 0% installment for purchases over 3,000 pesos for three months and 10% cashback when spending 5,000 pesos or more. There will also be exclusive payment lanes and a special lounge for Metrobank users. Talk about the VIP treatment.


morning to midnight

Everyone knows that reading never stops, no matter what time of day it is. This is why the Big Bad Wolf sale is making sure shoppers have enough time to get their budols. Until the end of the sale on July 3, it will run from 10 AM – 1 AM, which means shopping in the morning until midnight. 


Belle with books

FYI, the Big Bad Wolf sale 2023 is free admission. Need we say more? But if that and the two million books aren’t enough for you, the organizers have also prepared other activities to check out. Book readings, workshops, and contests will all be held during the sale as well as live performances from local artists so that you can have some tunes with your music. Also, if your tummy starts grumbling from all that shopping, food and drink stalls are at the premises.

Continue Reading: Shops In And Around Manila Where You Can Buy Or Donate Secondhand Books

7 Filipino LGBTQIA+ Commercials That Captured What It Means To Love

How to get us in our feels 101.

From going through a ride-thru on a skateboard to coming out to your father, these local LGBTQIA+ ads hit us in the feels.

Related: Sing It Loud, Sing It Proud: These Queer Filipino Musicians Are Unapologetically Raising Their Voices For The LGBTQIA+ Community 

When it comes to proper LGBTQIA+ representation in media, it shouldn’t be just limited to movies and shows, but in all mediums, such as commercials. As trivial as it may sound, having LGBTQIA+ characters star in commercials and ads does go a long way in helping normalize the experiences of the community. After all, the experiences of queer individuals, couples, and families deserve to be told and catered to in commercials. Their stories matter, and it’s exactly what takes center stage in the following locally-made ads.

Over the years, Filipino companies and local branches of multinational corporations recognized the power of representation and the community’s spending power by putting LGBTQIA+ stories at the heart of their commercials. And while these companies offer different services, their ads all spoke to the importance of being loved, something many members of the community don’t get often. Scroll down for a list of local ads that got social media talking with their inclusive stories.


The fast food chain is no stranger to releasing LGBTQIA+ commercials, but the one launched by McDo Philippines for this year’s Pride Month stands out as something special. Entitled You’re My Happy Place, the ad follows a woman (played by queer TVC actor Ky Mahinay) as she goes through a McDonald’s ride-through on her skateboard as she buys items from a female employee (played by SEA Games medalist and three-time World Obstacle record holder Kaizen Dela Serna).

It’s clear that the two have a spark going on, and they take their flirting to the next level when they meet outside the restaurant after the employee’s shift. Once released, the simple yet sweet sapphic love story broke the internet with millions of views and impressions on Facebook and Twitter. Who knew going through a ride-thru would be so wholesome?


For Christmas 2022, Ikea Philippines released an ad that brought together seemingly unrelated things, coming out, drag, and tables. Entitled Hapag, the commercial follows a son who tries but seemingly can’t come out to his father. One day, the father catches his son making out with his boyfriend. During Noche Buena, the son officially introduces his boyfriend to his dad, which causes him to go into his room.

While the son initially feared rejection, it turns out that the dad was just getting into drag as Ramona, revealing that he accepts the son for who he is before using their Ikea table to have dinner. While it was a twist we didn’t see coming, we love how it was released during the holiday season, showing that LGBTQIA+ families are just as valid as straight families.


Who could forget this iconic ad from Bench? Used to promote their So In Love scent, the commercial stars Limer Veloso (who would later go on to play Migz Agripa in He’s Into Her) as JR, a closeted college student who develops a crush on a boy in school. While JR tries to keep his sexuality a secret, his dad soon catches on. When JR gets heartbroken as his crush is in a relationship with a woman, his dad comforts him and buys him a new bottle of the scent he used to get his crush’s attention, showing that he accepts and loves his son for who he is.


Coming out can be one of the hardest things members of the LGBTQIA+ community can do, especially for sons coming out to their fathers. This award-winning ad from Smart in 2016 showcases the power of having a loving parent. Entitled Accepted, the commercial centers on Kevin, a young man who is afraid to accept his dad’s friend request before he fears that he’ll see his photos with his boyfriend. But that fear dissipates when Kevin texts his dad that he accepted his request, and he responds by saying that he accepted who he is. Cue the waterworks.


Despite the strides Philippine society has made in terms of LGBTQIA+ acceptance, some still see identifying anything other than straight as an illness, disease, or sin, causing some members of the community to feel ashamed of who they are. This Lazada ad wants to remove those feelings of guilt and implore you to Be Proud. Be You. The commercial starts with a gay man, transgender woman, and lesbian saying sorry since they feel that they’re in spaces they don’t belong in.

The ad then goes on to show how often LGBTQIA+ people say sorry just for being who they are. Yet, the trio is met with kindness and encouragement from straight allies who accept them for who they are. It just goes to show the importance of building safe spaces for the LGBTQIA+ community, especially for straight allies in making them feel accepted in society.


Sometimes, LGBTQIA+ stories can just be simple tales of kilig, as seen in this wholesome commercial from Uber. Based on the actual experiences of AJ Tabangay, the ad centers on a young man on an Uber pool, with the person he’s carpooling with so happening to be his crush. As his dream-come-true carpool continues, AJ updates Twitter on his kilig moments, eventually ending with the Y/N experience of his crush talking to him and saying that he should pass through his side of the door because it’s nearer to his destination. 


This Close-Up commercial is all about shooting your shot. Entitled P.S. I Love You, Bro, the short film tells the tale of two men who have a chance encounter at a café. Their quick glances at each other soon give way to their internal monologues revealing that they like each other. Eventually, their meet-cute gets its happy ending when one of them overcomes his fears and makes the first move.

Continue Reading: PeliKULAYa: Celebrate Pride Month With This Vibrant LGBTQIA+ Film Showcase By FDCP

Niana Guerrero Was Busy Rubbing Shoulders With Celebs In LA

Niana stays winning.

Niana Guerrero’s recent trip to the City of Angels had sun, surf, and stars such as collabs with Troye Sivan and more.

Related: Ranz Kyle And Niana Guerrero Celebrate Their Star Moment On The Eastwood Walk Of Fame

When people go on vacation, it’s usually a time for relaxation and stepping away from the work email. For Niana Guerrero though, a trip abroad isn’t complete without filming a TikTok or two. And during her recent trip to Los Angeles, the social media superstar got her share of the Californian sun while linking up with a bevy of artists, content creators, and more. Niana really saw the stars with these link-ups. Take a look at these collabs that further proved Niana’s continued reputation as that TikTok star.


@nianaguerrero met up w @iamdoechii in LA!!! 😮‍💨🔥 dc by the one and only @Aira Casim ♌ ♬ What It Is – Solo Version – Doechii

We really got this full-circle moment. ICYDK, Doechii is the singer behind What It Is, the R&B song that had its foot on the neck of TikTok for a while. Back in April, Niana uploaded a video of her and her friends dancing to the track, which Doechii dueted and marveled at seeing the song reach the Philippines and complimented Niana’s moves. Fast-forward to June, and the two met up in person in LA, where they did the choreography to What It Is. Aside from how iconic this is, we also love how Niana matched Doechii’s energy.



bet u didn’t see that coming 👀😮‍💨 (dc me)

♬ original sound – Niana Guerrero

Given the reputation Niana has built in the global dance scene, it’s no surprise that she has a roster of some of the top dancers in the world in her contacts. And she met up with some of her talented friends while in LA. In particular, Niana, along with superstar creators Michael Le, Jean-Victor Mackie, Kat, and Rafi Rodriguez tore the rooftop as they did Niana’s dance challenge. Who’s doing it like Niana?


@nianaguerrero just bumped into @Troye Sivan ♬ Rush – Troye Sivan

If he isn’t simping over Stray Kids’ Hyunjin, Troye Sivan is getting that cardio with Niana Guerrero. In a collab we didn’t see coming but are happy it exists, Troye and Niana met at the Capitol Records Building where they danced to Troye’s catchy new single, Rush. Niana continues to thrive, and we’re here for it.


@xg.official The Mother and Daughter back at it again😎🔥 #XG #JURIN #COCONA #XGALX ♬ original sound – Niana Guerrero

Her link-ups in LA weren’t the only celebs who were moving with Niana. At this point, she’s a pro at getting global stars to do and credit her dance challenges. Case in point, XG’s Jurin and Cocona were the latest to try Niana’s recent dance challenge. Everything Niana does is A1, flawless.  

Continue Reading: Niana Guerrero And SB19 Stop Traffic For Their Mini Crosswalk Concert