Maalaala Mo Kaya's Upcoming Episode "Titibo-Tibo" Draws Flak for Its LGBT Portrayal

It's based on the real-life story of the writer of the hit song

(SPOT.ph) The latest episode of drama anthology series Maalaala Mo Kaya hasn't aired yet—it's set to premiere on June 16—but its trailer, posted on June 11, is already drawing the ire of social-media users online. The episode, entitled "Titibo-Tibo," stars Maris Racal, Jameson Blake, and Neil Coleta. It's based on the real-life story of Libertine Amistoso, the writer of the song of the same name. It won first place in the 2017 Himing Handog songwriting competition hosted by ABS-CBN.

 

 

The song, performed by Moira dela Torre, features lyrics that talk about a girl who grows up with bi-curious friends who are also interested in girls. Eventually, she "outgrows" her tomboy persona and becomes more "girly" when she meets and starts having feelings for a boy.

 

 

The upcoming Maalaala Mo Kaya (MMK) episode is based on the lyrics of the song, where Tin (Racal) is a high-school student who starts off having feelings for a girl. "Hindi ko talagang mapigilang magka-gusto sa babae. Alangan naman lokohin ko 'yong sarili ko. 'Yon ba gusto nila?" she asks as she walks hand in hand with a girl. But then the title cards read, "Ang pusong tibo, titibok sa gwapo." Racal's character then meets two boys, and—now with long hair—she eventually introduces one of them as her boyfriend, to which her mother exclaims, "Ang saya-saya ko!"

 

The trailer didn't sit well with people on Twitter, who found the episode's premise to be problematic as it shows that girls being interested in girls—or being bisexual and gay in general—is only a phase. 

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Still, some argue that the story shouldn't be invalidated because it's someone's personal story. Others say that people should watch the episode before making conclusions.

 

 

 

 

Racal has defended the episode in a comment on Twitter. In an exchange with a social-media user, she told her to just watch the episode to see what her character will go through.

 

 

Though it's received criticism for its teaser, the MMK episode is set to air on June 16 at 8:30 p.m. on ABS-CBN. 

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