Jewels at the Market.

Subtitle: Bitchfest 2006

I believe the true test of being a certified K-entertainment junkie is this: when you make the effort – as in EFFORT – of standing on high heels for more than 2 hours, only to see a Korean star in person for less than 15 minutes, and you’re not even that crazy over that Korean star. Sure, we love Dae Jang Geum/Jewel in the Palace, sure, we love Lady Han and little Jang Geum, but we don’t love them THAT much to do this. However, since we’re certified K-junkies, we did it anyway. Can you imagine if it was Ji Jin Hee and Lee Young Ae who came over, how much worse can we do? Moreso, what if it’s RAIN who came over? Gaaah! :dizzy:

Anyway, so we heard Yang Mi Kyung (Lady Han) and Cho Jeong Eun (little Jang Geum) are coming over to Manila for a special fans day at Market! Market!, so 2/3rds of the Voltes V+laser sword team decided to check it out. Thet arrived first at around 5:30 or so with her BYJ friends, then Rizza and I, then Charity came with her sister. Unfortunately, the seated section is already cordoned off for VIP guests (read: Korean dignitaries and sponsors), so we ended up standing amongst the many that had already gathered at the mall since God knows what time. You know what made it worse? When we learned that we could’ve been seated amongst those VIPs had we contacted the right people earlier. It turned out, all of us know someone, either from GMA 7 or elsewhere, who can help us get better seats. Argh. :???:

Some papers said the show will start at 6:00pm, others said it’s 7:30, but it started at almost 8:00pm. Some people from the audience were not able to stand the heat and/or hunger and/or boredom and decided to just leave. However, the Voltes Team stayed on. We amused ourselves by listening to the piped-in music and naming which Tagalized Korean drama was it used. The only thing that kept us going is the thought that they can’t start really really late coz I know the two Korean stars have to catch a flight for Brunei (I just don’t know if it’s tonight or tomorrow morning), and/or little Jang Geum is already way past her bedtime.

But of course, as expected, just because the show has started, it doesn’t mean we’re immediately gonna see the two Korean stars. Nope. We still had to endure a one-hour variety show courtesy of our Kafuso Prends (tm CJ Muere) and some members of the Korean community. And now comes the ‘bitchfest’ part of this blog entry:

1. The hosts – Hey, GMA 7! I know you need to build up your Star Struck finds, but whose idea was it to use the still untested CJ Muere and Megan Young to host this event? I know you have other talents in your roster who are much much much more capable than these two. This event is not just your usual ‘Koreanovela Day’ gig. It was attended by Korean dignitaries and VIPs. You could’ve picked a much much better host to do the job. Hey, I know John Nite (of Master Showman ‘Walang Tulugan’ fame) is baduy, but, man! That guy can sure do a heck of a hosting job. You could’ve gotten him instead.

Ok, in fairness to them (hahaha), if not for them, we would’ve been bored as hell. We just kept ourselves entertained by waiting for CJ to do a blunder – which is just about once every 10 seconds . Megan is kinda ok… that is, until she started calling Jang Geum, “Jang JEUM”. Eek! :eek: I actually stopped watching the Tagalized version of JITP because everytime someone utters the name “Jang GYUM”, I tend to scream, “it’s Jang friggin’ GUM, for Chrissakes!” at my TV set. And now here comes the hostess of a JITP event shamelessly murdering the lead character’s name. In front of Korean VIPs, no less.

Also, isn’t it such a shame that the two hosts – Megan, in particular – didn’t even bother to dress up when the Koreans were even wearing black ties and pretty hanboks?

2. Sex Bomb Dancers – Hello, Jewelry? Lee Hyo Ri? THIS is how you do it.

3. Jonalyn Viray – Jonalyn’s probably hungry… she ate all her lyrics. I didn’t understand a thing. Also, she needs to learn how to avoid ‘dead air’ during lulls due to technical difficulties. While waiting for her accompaniment to cue, she was dead quiet onstage. After 10 years, she decided to talk and talk… not noticing that the sound guy was already signaling her that her tape is on cue. Maybe she thought the ‘thumbs up’ that the guy is doing means “honey, you’re doing a good job yakking onstage, just keep talking…”??

4. Shamrock – I am so not looking forward to seeing this band. They are the reason why APNA got kicked out of the Tagalized JITP. Everytime I hear their song Alipin being played whenever Captain Min Jung Ho and Jang Geum are having a romantic moment, I just wanna hurl tomatoes at my TV. Now they are in front of me, and they are lucky I didn’t bring tomatoes.

They started with Naaalala Ka, which is the theme used for Sassy/Delightful Girl ChunHyang. At the same time, scenes from the drama were shown on the wide screens, interspersed with shots of the audience. I almost screamed coz I thought Jae Hee was in the audience.

Then, the vocalist announced that they will be singing something we shall be hearing in the future… and I was like, what, are they singing the theme for Emperor of the Sea (the next drama lined up for GMA7)? True enough, they launched to a rockified version of Peter Cetera’s Glory of Love, and then scenes from Emperor of the Sea popped into the wide screens. Well, in fairness to them, the teaser trailer was well done and according to our resident K-Drama Expert Rizza, the song actually fits the story. However, I just couldn’t listen to Glory of Love without Ralph Macchio in a headband and a toy drum popping into my head.

5. Shamrock and Faith Cuneta – First of all, we went to this gig to see Jewel in the Palace stars. When did it become The Shamrock and Faith Cuneta Show??? These two acts decided to band together and sing David Foster’s The Best of Me as a tribute to the old and upcoming Korean dramas to be shown at GMA 7 and sister station QTV-11. Shamrock and Faith basically murdered the song, that no matter how much we tried to ignore them by watching the wide screens to see clips of our old faves and check out which ones are coming up, we just couldn’t. Ugh, my ears are screaming murder! Suddenly, All For Love (that’s SangDoo, Let’s Go To School! for all ya non-Pinoy Bi’ers out there) came in and the Voltes Team became a happy bunch. Finally, a Rain fix! It was great that they showed a lot of scenes, too. Then the logo for Full House followed, so we braced ourselves. Unfortunately, the song has already ended, so we didn’t get even a glimpse of our favorite onscreen couple. AAAARGH!!!

6. Faith Cuneta – Gah, I now know why I couldn’t stand her… her countless runs drove me nuts! Honey, can’t you just sing without the melisma, please? In fairness to her, she did dress up for the occasion, although a debutante ball gown is a tad bit too much.

She did a medley of all the Koreanovela themes she sang, from Autumn in My Heart, to Winter Sonata, to Stairway to Heaven. Which is not entirely bad, as we had a grand time ogling at Won Bin, Song Seung Heon, Bae Yong Joon and Kwon Sang Woo, all in one clip. For her last number, she sang Pangarap na Bituin (theme of JITP here in PH)… then suddenly, on the last verse, she was singing in an entirely different language. All four of us looked at each other and said, “is that supposed to be Korean???” Well, it’s not English… certainly not Filipino, either… Thet: “maybe it’s Japanese???” It could be an alien language, I dunno. Ok, I may be Hangeul-challenged, but I listen to K-pop every single day of my life lately and that was certainly not Korean-sounding. To confirm, I asked Rizza, who actually studied Korean. She didn’t understand a thing, either. So, memo to Faith: next time, if you’re gonna do something to impress guests, do it right. Araso?

Ok, enough bitching! Finally, the moment we were waiting for… Yang Mi Kyung and Cho Jeong Eun! Wow, ‘Lady Han’ sure is every inch a lady… and little Jang Geum? Adorable with a capital A in bold font, 24pt. Too bad we only had 10 mins to see them, and in those 10mins. the two stars had to endure really idiotic questions from the hosts (the requisite ‘how do you like the Philippines?’, ‘any message to your fans?’, asked about 3 times… GEEZ!). And Lady Han’s mic conked out. Uh, Megan, can’t you lend her your mic??? Sheesh. :roll:

PICTURES!!! Click on thumbnails to see a bigger image


10 precious minutes, and it’s over. We then had to brave the crowd and pray that a stampede won’t happen. I’m just too glad that I went through all these with 2/3rds of the Voltes Team with me. At least we all got a good laugh every now and then. As I told Rizza on the way home, if it was just the two of us, this blog entry will be much much much uglier.

Edit: More pics and less bitchy stories at Thet’s blog.

****NOTICE: Please credit Paulette Espiritu or when using the photos. And please, pretty please, NO HOTLINKING!!!! Thank you. ****



  1. Arggh! I couldn’t believe I missed this one chance of seeing Korean stars in the flesh! :( I wasn’t aware they were coming (thanks to my not-so often TV veiwing nowadays). Thanks Pau! At least, I knew how it turned-out. Like you, I always cringe everytime they mention “Jang Gyum” on TV. The first time I heard about it, when they were just playing the teasers back then, I almost hurled the pillow I was holding at the TV. I have even corrected some of my friends ‘coz I can’t really take the wrong pronunciation. I go even as far as writing the name in Hangeul and explaining each syllable to them. :)

  2. Wow, thanks for the account and the pictures.

    I agree with everything you said about the whole affair, BTW. CJ Muere puhleeeezzz. Couldn’t they just have made the effort to at least LEARN how to pronounce Jang Geum correctly? Buti pa si Kuya Lhar. If I were there, I would also have brought rotten tomatoes to throw at Shamrock when they sing that stupid Alipin song. Grrr.

    Pero, still, swerte mo na nakita mo si Mama Han in person :)

  3. Hey Pau! Inggit ako! You saw little Jang Geum and Madam Han in the flesh. :) Like you, I hate hearing “jang gyum” and I will definitely boo anyone who says “jang jeum”.

  4. hahaha, Pau you forgot about the anneonghaseyo of CJ and Megan. Why did they let them do the hosting when they can’t even greet their korean guest properly. I just watched Unang Hirit this morning and how I wished they let Lin Ching do the hosting last night. Since she’s a korean junkie like us, her pronounciation is perfect!

  5. Ahhh Thet… there were LOTS of bloopers made by those two. Everytime they introduce a Korean, somehow all the names they say sounded like, “Lee Dong Gun”. I don’t know if it’s just my ears or what…

    I heard even Jolina and Rhea Santos made the Jang Jeum booboo. Sheesh, can’t they teach these people what to say before they go on air???

  6. Can i ask if you were the girls with the poster that read, “mamanim saranghaeyo” in hangul?
    ^_^ just wondering.. + CJ was uber corny.. aiguh!
    & i also had to fight back the impulse to BOO shamrock when they sang alipin… but then i think the other “fans” who were singing with the band might hurl cuss words @ me >_

  7. … & i had to LOL at yer comment with faith cuneta.. mi omma/appa who also saw her commented; “Bakit naka pangkasal yun?” LMAO & she had cue cards when she sang the “korean” part of pangarap as she sang it.

  8. Hi Maureen! Nope, we were not the ones with the ‘Mamanim, Saranghae!” banner. (that banner was waaay cute, btw. I only wish Mamanim was able to read it, they should’ve written it in both English and Hangeul).

    So Faith had a ‘kodigo’, eh? Well, someone should tell her it’s not about just READING the words, it’s all about pronouncing it properly so that the Koreans can understand her. Same thing with CJ and Megan. ‘Annyeoung haseyo!’ is just not the same without the proper intonation.

  9. hello again, um actually that pink poster with mamanim saranghae was mine :blush: i first thot of writing it in hangeul but my cartolina is not that big. judging from her curt nod towards me i think she understood it (i hope! ^_^)
    yep faith had a kodigo i saw it with my two eyes & i was cringing when cj & megan was saying korean a wrong way :/

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