You know something is an absolute hit when even respected journalists start talking about a particular TV show on their Facebook page.
Just as the main cast of the hit Philippine daytime series Be Careful With My Heart landed in Abu Dhabi on Wednesday, a feature writer friend of mine posted on his wall what could be the top three questions every fan around the world is asking until the next episode runs on Monday:
What will Maya do with Sir Chief's injured finger? What was Sir Chief thinking by sending those red roses? Will anyone admit who broke the piece of porcelain?
If you're not a member of the “cult”, you're probably wondering: Who is Maya and Sir Chief? What about the red roses? And what exactly are they talking about?!
Let's rewind to July 9, 2012. Be Careful With My Heart's pilot episode about the innocent nanny Maya (played by Jodi Sta Maria), the heartbroken businessman fondly known as Sir Chief (played by Richard Yap) and his three children (played by Mutya Orquia, Janella Salvador and Jerome Ponce).
It was a shot in the dark. A flash in the pan. After all, it was a daytime romantic comedy pitted against a hit, almost iconic game show from another TV network.
Yet now, 138 episodes later (and rising), the unlikely hit has gained an almost cult-like status among fans, which explains why even the media in the UAE were in a frenzy during the stars' first visit to the country at the start of their world tour to promote their TV series.
The cast members are set to treat fans to a musical evening at the du Forum on Yas Island in Abu Dhabi starting at 8pm on Thursday, and will have a second performance in Dubai on Friday.
Gulf News got an update from the cast in this Q & A:
Are there plans of making this into a movie?
Jodi Sta. Maria: Right now our schedule is somewhat hectic since we are filming episodes every day. But if we are given the time to shoot a film, why not?
Will Sir Chief and Maya get married?
Richard Yap: It's too early to say. And I haven't even courted her yet! (he quips).
Do you think the series will be extended until December?
Richard Yap: Right now there is no confirmed date as to when Be Careful With My Heart will run its final episode. It could be in December, or it could be longer.
What makes this show different?
Richard Yap: I think because it is a feel-good show. It is something that can happen in real life. There are lessons and a lot of moments where we try to make the audience feel the [thrill].
Jodi Sta. Maria: It's light and wholesome. When you're watching it, you will just laugh, or feel thrilled. There are no kidnappings, amnesia or villains involved.
How do you manage your time between your family and your work?
Richard Yap: Work is keeping me busy. I only get to spend about three hours at home.
Do you still have time to play?
Mutya Orquia: Sometimes.
Jodi Sta. Maria (interjects): Mutya is as busy as we are, but whenever she has the chance, she plays with other children around.
What is your message to fans here in the UAE?
Jodi Sta. Maria: It's great to have you here. Thank you for the love and support you have given to the programme.
Mutya Orquia: I am excited to be here in Abu Dhabi and I look forward to giving you a good show.
Richard Yap: I have special memories here in Abu Dhabi and I'm so happy to see all of you here. Thank you for the support.
Be Careful With My Heart is broadcasted in the UAE and around the world on The Filipino Channel. In the Philippines, the romantic comedy is aired for 30 minutes from Monday to Friday starting at 11:45am.
Catch the cast in the flesh at the du Forum on Yas Island in Abu Dhabi on Thursday night and in Dubai on Friday at the Indian High School in Oud Metha. For tickets, contact 0567365230, 0506708699 or 0529089789.