Manila made history indeed on August 10-13 as the biggest entertainment convention – History Con 2017 – staged another gigantic concoction that satisfied the eyes and ears, minds and hearts, and even tummies of the tens of thousands of visitors who went. The World Trade Center was abuzz with an overwhelming serving of activities, workshops, shows, demonstrations, as well as trinkets for the young and old alike. And it’s all thanks to A&E Networks Asia for bringing it to Manila the second time around!
A&E, owner of History channel may not be a local outfit, but I must say they brought an international affair with a truly Pinoy appeal! As one of the Main Stage hosts (lucky me!) I had a more intimate experience, likewise, a responsibility in fulfilling the promise of “bigger, bolder, better!”
So I bring you the ten things I spotted during the 4 days of History Con that made it a breath of Pinoy vibe.
- Forged in Fire’s Ryu Lim is so Panday with a long wavy hair
Fil-American Ryu Lim was an epitome of a Pinoy action hero! Clad in his trademark black sando shirt and a katana on his hip he looked like he was ready to draw and slash anytime to protect a damsel in distress, reminiscent of local action movie plots. For his demonstration, he even used a banana tree trunk!
What’s more? Beneath his serious skills in blades, he was one seemingly shy but humorous fellow! I jokingly asked why he kept his hair long, his response was that so he could run faster from his opponent if needed!”
- Swabe hairstyles and bigote styles
Be it a pompadour, a mustache or a beard, the mark of a Pinoy gentleman is having a hair plan! The winning pompadour contender stood tall on stage with his (at least) 7-inch pomp and won prizes courtesy of Eight Wolves Pomade – a Bulacan-based Pinoy pride in the handcrafted pomade industry.
In another segment, the contender with the most epic mustache and beard, respectively, were picked, and likewise, paraded on stage and won prizes courtesy of Bearded Pinoy – a celebrated beard grooming kit company!
- Corey “The Big Hoss” Harrison shouting out his wife while on stage
Not only was Corey (from the hit reality show Pawn Stars, co-owner of Gold and Silver Pawn Shop in Las Vegas) was naturally soft-spoken, he was also so sweet. During our segment with him at the main stage, I asked him:
“Since you’re in the business of assessing the value of various items and things, what for you is that one thing in life that has the most value?
He paused for a few seconds and you could tell it made him think before he answered “My wife…” pointing to her in the audience. Her eyes just sparkled along with her pearly whites.
- Big screen and big screams!
Today’s hottest matinee idol, James Reid (cue girls screaming), graced the main stage of History Con as he was announced as the next comic book hero, Pedro Penduko, in an upcoming movie! Copies of the popular komiks were made available.
Likewise, people behind the blockbuster hit Heneral Luna gave an exclusive teaser of its upcoming sequel entitled, Goyo: Ang Batang Heneral, featuring another “crush ng bayan” – Paulo Avelino.
- Justin Mott loves his mobile phone’s front camera, as much as we do ours
The Philippines once took pride being called the “Selfie Capital of the World” thanks to Times Magazine. When Photo Face-Off’s Justin Mott joined us on stage, guess what the first thing he did? Yes – SELFIE! Or in this case, WEFIE or group selfie with me and my co-host and the audience! That was followed by his very clear and direct guidelines in taking photos. The one that stuck in mind was to be a thinking photographer.
Hmm, a thinking selfie…
- Bikes caused traffic, but for a good cause
On the last day of History Con, I was greeted with high-spirits and smiles courtesy of a swarm of cyclists surrounding the World Trade Center. Almost 5,000 Filipino cyclists participated to make a world record of the longest single line moving bicycle! But still very Pinoy was when they broke their line to let a lady driver in. Awww. =)
- Kobayashi: From burgers to Sisig
Oh, how we Pinoys love our sisig! We love it with calamansi and lots of pepper, never minding that it’s chopped meat of a pig’s head and liver. Apparently, Takeru Kobayashi enjoyed it, too — gobbled fifteen plates in just two minutes!
- There was basketball, couch, and booze
Professional slam dunk artist Jordan “Mission Impossible” Kilganon showcased his high-flying moves on court – jumping over History channel celebrities and even exchanging slams with Pinoy counterpart David Carlos.
Off court was Sky Cable booth called “Man Cave” in which visitors could enjoy playing ball at a mini shooting booth along with alcohol concoctions from the bar which was just a step away. Did I forget to mention a huge television was beside the ring, too?
- The whole program catered to Pinoys fancy for freebies and prizes
Exhibitors like Leather.PH gave away leather crafts they used during the short workshop on what’s real and what’s not. The envious purse-lover in me visited the booth and also got a very pretty hand-made genuine leather strapped purse!
Our “Tanduay Rhum Pong” segment was a hit as contestants could choose whether to Drink or Do (a dare) when their opponent scored. But of course, most chose free drinks! Likewise, there was pa-games and pa-raffle! Audience won prizes such as umbrellas, bags, and various premium items from sponsors.
- History Con started and ended with a WEFIE
Aha that’s right! Opening day had all History channel stars on stage and they had their selfie sticks and phones up for a “wefie” on stage. Closing ceremony was no different except that our stage was full of confetti! Us being the last people on stage together with the production people had our final chance and took more and more selfies. Who needs a photographer nowadays? LOL
There were so many other Pinoy elements! The History Makers segment, hosted by Paolo Bediones recognized the likes of Maestro Ryan Cayabyab, and our very own Ms. Universe, Pia Wurtzbach. National hero cosplayers marched side-by-side Star Wars characters, while Guevarra’s and Quezon booths satisfied our endless love for good Filipino food!
Until next time, Manila! We make history everyday and it may not always be record-breaking, but make sure it’s worth remembering!