RuPaul’s Drag Race Season 9: Work!

Over the weekend, I witnessed amazing lip-sync battles from the queens of RuPaul’s Drag Race Season 9. This was the first time the show had back-to-back-to-back lip-sync battles from the top 4. Well, because it is also the first time in the show’s history that it had a top 4 instead of a top 3.

One of the Best Seasons

I have been watching RuPaul’s Drag Race since its third season. The primary reason I tuned in was because of Manila Luzon #PinoyPride. After that season, I was hooked.

I loved the transformation the queens go through in each episode. Changes weren’t just through the way they dressed up, but you can see queens become better with their craft. They have to work their bums off to show Mother RuPaul and the other judges, especially Michelle, what they can bring to the table.

I tuned in to as many episodes as I can get my hands on, but my favorite so far was season 6 (with Bianca del Rio, Adore Delano, and Courtney Act) and the current one.

Personally speaking, this is one of the best seasons of the queens. So I’ve rounded the reasons why I think it is one for the books!

Best Moments from RuPaul’s Drag Race Season 9

I’ll just enumerate my favorite moments here!

Sasha and Peppermint’s lip sync battle!

https://trixxxyaaaa.tumblr.com/post/162182543808/can-we-please-talk-about-this-lowkey-valentina

Sasha’s lip-sync battle – all that pazzaz! The passion in her face while she was performing was very evident!

https://farrahwhines.tumblr.com/post/162187015631/can-we-just-talk-about-this-until-season-10

Peppermint’s “Stronger” performance – I thought Trinity had it in the bag but girl you came through!

https://valentina-queen.tumblr.com/post/162187652250/season-9-finale-peppermint-vs-trinity-taylor

The reunion read over the “Miss Congeniality” award was epic!

Valentina’s lip-sync boo-ha-ha. Girl, I believed that you can go all the way, I seriously did.

http://ruzyq.tumblr.com/post/160924333284/v-a-l-e-n-t-i-n-a-s-f-a-l-l

Lady Gaga’s appearance in the first episode!

http://logotv.tumblr.com/post/158669265753/want-to-win-a-trip-for-two-to-attend-the-drag-race

Trinity’s 9021HO and Sister Mary Koont performances!

http://somemanyships.tumblr.com/post/160356989556/trinity-taylor-is-giving-me-jennifer-coolidge-in

Crew makeovers that gave us Winter Green!

http://logotv.tumblr.com/post/161111081563/sister-sister-which-queen-slayed

How about you? What are your favorite moments from the recently concluded season 9 of RuPaul’s Drag Race?

 

Korean Drama Fever: The Highs and Lows of Watching Korean Novelas

I’m on my third Korean Novela this year. This is a big achievement for me because the last time I’ve watched Korean Novelas was 2013 or 2014. The long hiatus was due to my work schedule and series preference. From 2013 to early 2017 I watched American series such as; Big Bang Theory, FRIENDS, Scandal, How To Get Away From Murder, Jane The Virgin, Rupaul’s Drag Race, Devious Maids, Grey’s Anatomy, Suits, Drop Dead Diva, The Good Wife, and so on.

Somehow, I got tired of watching shows that progressed slowly. I missed the “kilig” or romantic excitement that I had whenever I watched Korean Novelas. I missed the lightness that RomCom (romantic-comedy) K-Novelas had.

This year, I was lured back to K-Novelas because of Gong Yoo.

He owned my heart ever since I saw him in Coffee Prince, where he played the role of Han Kyul. Perhaps it was his dreamy eyes that made me go crazy – this was before I met E, my husband, and the love of my life – back in college. Because of that show, I started watching more K-Novelas, I started studying Hangul, and I cut my hair short (inspired by the lead actress’ haircut in the show).

Because of Gong Yoo, I decided to watch Guardian: The Lonely and Great God (Goblin). To me and my husband’s surprise, I finished the entire show in 4 days! I’ll try to write a review about it, but because of that show the spark of my Korean Novela loving soul came back.

Emotional Rollercoaster Ride

K-Novelas are different from telenovelas and western series. It usually has less than 20 episodes shown for three to four months. Each episode is at least an hour long, packed with ups and downs, and ends with a major cliffhanger.

In an episode, you will usually experience a lot of “kilig moments.”

You will try to keep it inside because people will think you are crazy. Just imagine yourself commuting in a bus or service van smiling like a high school girl.

At times, you will feel a need to scream because the two leads are just so damn cute! Or because you are frustrated with the guy lead for being too mean.

But there will also be moments when you will find yourself crying. Tears will fall down your eyes and you don’t even know why it happened.

Antagonists make you feel the need to scream.

Cliffhangers make you crave for the next episode which ultimately leads you to binge watch as much episodes as you can in a day.

 

When you finally finish the series, you are left with a hole in your heart. You start questioning yourself, why did you watch it all at once?

To fill that hole, you end up asking for recommendations from your friends or you start watching series that star the leads of the last one you watched. Then you start a new cycle again, promising yourself that you will watch the new series slower.

You might succeed at first, perhaps for the first five or ten episodes. But then cliffhanger after cliffhanger you are left with no choice but to binge watch again!

Oh My K-Novelas

I just shared a glimpse of the ups and downs that you might experience when you start watching K-Novelas. Remember, once you start it will be difficult to stop. So if you are ready to start your journey to the land of never ending “kilig” or romantic excitement, venture on and watch any of the K-Novelas below:

Enjoy!

Britney Spears Live in Manila

Britney’s concert here in Manila was 19 years in the making, it was a dream come true!

Capture

I’m a big fan of Britney. My room was filled with posters you would think that it’s my wallpaper! Through her, I was introduced to the world of pop.

I followed Britney’s career since 1999. I fell in love with her songs, rejoiced whenever I watched her music videos, sang along to her live performances, cried when she stumbled, and cheered for her to get back to her feet again. So basically I’m a big fan.

The Road to Watching Britney Live

When it was officially announced that she will have her first ever concert here in the Philippines I knew that I would do everything to watch her perform live. Thankfully a good friend of ours knew the promoter. He helped us secure good tickets minus the hassle of lining up or waiting for the online selling to begin. My mind was basically like this.

I can only afford to shell out P6,000 for her tickets (USD 111) which was good for Upper Box tickets. Thank heavens for my brother! He was kind enough to upgrade my tickets to Lower Box B (P10,500 or USD 233). I was shouting out loud, in my mind, when he said that he will sponsor the upgrade for my tickets.

I had a sudden flashback of my high school days, when my free time would be spent memorizing her music video choreography, watching her concert DVD over and over again, or reading magazines to get the latest news about her.

April came and we finally received our tickets. I almost cried when I held it in my hands. In my mind, it was my passport to an event I had been waiting for 19 years.

See you soon , @britneyspears ! ❤❤❤❤❤

A post shared by Denice Diaz (@denice_diaz) on

Experience of a Lifetime

The day finally came, there were butterflies in my stomach. I will finally see Britney, in the flesh, performing live in front of me.

My brother, his partner, and I walked from Botejyu to the Mall of Asia Arena after dinner. Each step we made brought us a step closer to my queen. I knew that in just a few hours her show will start.

Shortly after arriving at the concert venue we made our way to our seats. After locating our seats I left my brother and his partner.

Amazing seats! Ang lapitd See you soon @britneyspears ❤❤❤

A post shared by Denice Diaz (@denice_diaz) on

I wanted to take a closer look at her official concert merchandise. I knew that I would regret not buying anything. At first, I only bought an armband. In my mind, at least I have something tangible to save aside from the ticket.

My husband thought otherwise, he urged me to buy a shirt because this is just a once in a lifetime concert. I happily lined up again to get a shirt! The long wait to get the shirt was worth it! I have something special from her first ever concert here in Manila!

Merch! ❤❤❤ #britneyspears #britneyinmanila

A post shared by Denice Diaz (@denice_diaz) on

Our Queen

After waiting for more than an hour, the show started. You could hear people screaming, going wild when they caught a glimpse of Britney taking her position on the stage. When the beat dropped the crowd went mad.

Love you @britneyspears ! Manila loves youuuu. #britneyinmanila #britneyspears

A post shared by Denice Diaz (@denice_diaz) on

My eyes were glued to her the entire time that she was performing. She had a certain aura that would make you just focus your eyes on her. Each move was on-point, she was amazing!

That legendary entrance! #BritneyAtMOAArena

A post shared by Mall of Asia Arena (@moaarena) on

I won’t go into detail of each song she performed because you will just read the word amazing over and over again. One thing is for certain, she is an incredible performer. The crowd would go crazy every time she comes out of the stage. You would hear each person singing along to her hits, even the newer ones from her latest album.

Time for Toxic! #BritneyAtMOAArena

A post shared by Mall of Asia Arena (@moaarena) on

When you look at her, you would see the same old Britney from the 90’s. She is the same charismatic girl who owned our hearts.

Britney Hangover

Everyone was on a high after the concert ended. People lined up like crazy at the merchandise booths. We were all singing along to the songs played by the brand booths. People coming down from the escalators were singing, those who were waiting for their turn in the merchandise booth were singing, and those who were exiting the concert grounds were singing too!

@britneyspears concert hangover. Hanggang sa paglabas at pagbili ng merch. #britneyinmanila #britneyspears

A post shared by Denice Diaz (@denice_diaz) on

Everyone left with a smile on their face knowing that we are part of her first concert in Manila. This is something I would remember forever.

How about you?Have you attended the concert of your favorite artist? How was your experience? Share it with me below!

 

 

Now You See Me 2 Movie Review

I was a big fan of the first Now You See Me movie, although the twist in the end was not really at par with the good build up of the movie in totality it was still worth watching.

CTTO

CTTO

When I heard that there would be a sequel I immediately tagged E and said that we should watch it when it hits the cinema. So as promised we did watch it in celebration as well of our 8th year anniversary.

I booked our tickets at SM Director’s Club and picked the back end seats. You can check my review here. The seats were great plus the bowl of popcorn and we were both set to watch Now You See Me 2.

Photo from the Official FB Page of Now You See Me 2 (https://www.facebook.com/NowYouSeeMeMovie)

Photo from the Official FB Page of Now You See Me 2 (https://www.facebook.com/NowYouSeeMeMovie)

The Trailers

As a sneak peek for the movie trailers were released and it really did help in building up the excitement for the movie. I think some, like me, were intrigued with Daniel Radcliffe’s inclusion in the movie and how he can pull off a brat character vs. his Harry Potter portrayal.

Here were the trailers released:

The Story

It picked up were they left off, the disappearance of the Four Horsemen with the help of The Eye. The start of the movie showed the story behind the death of Dylan’s father and set up the whole premise of the movie. It was still about avenging the death of his father and finding out who was behind The Eye.

Photo from the Official Facebook Page of Now You See Me 2 https://www.facebook.com/NowYouSeeMeMovie

Photo from the Official Facebook Page of Now You See Me 2 https://www.facebook.com/NowYouSeeMeMovie

The three men were still part of the Horsemen but the then female lead Henley (played by Isla Fisher) was replaced by a new character named Lulu (played by Liz Caplan). In the movie it was shared that she left because she could not stand Atlas anymore but in reality the lead star got pregnant and could not perform the stunts. (More spoilers up so skip to the verdict if you want to avoid it.)

They were still in hiding and this set up the tension between the group, Dylan, and The Eye. They were tasked though to re-appear during an event of Octa that would lead them to Harry Potter, oops what I meant to say was lead them to Walter (played by Daniel Radcliffe).

This is were things get interesting as they were “magically” transported to Macau you will have to find out how in the movie.Bulk of the movie is spent in Macau and then Europe.

Photo from the Official Facebook Fan Page of Now You See Me 2 https://www.facebook.com/NowYouSeeMeMovie

Photo from the Official Facebook Fan Page of Now You See Me 2 https://www.facebook.com/NowYouSeeMeMovie

Now going back to Walter, he “disappeared” by faking his death but would want to get something he created with the help of the FourHorsemen. This is where things get tricky and where you can see the illusion take place, through their attempt to retrieve something for Walter. But an underlying motive was not known to the Four Horsemen and that was that Walter, like Dylan wanted to avenge the fall of his father, Arthur Tressler from the first movie, and did so by luring Dylan using the Four Horsemen. What he did not expect is how they turned things around to favor them using illusions and magic (ah he is not Harry Potter anymore).

Photo from the Official Facebook Fan Page of Now You See Me 2 https://www.facebook.com/NowYouSeeMeMovie

Photo from the Official Facebook Fan Page of Now You See Me 2 https://www.facebook.com/NowYouSeeMeMovie

The ending for me was unpredictable as they met who is behind The Eye. The illusions and magic they demonstrated and how they lured Arthur and Walter to their big illusion though was expected already (especially if you watched the first film the narrative of the last illusion is somehow the same). I will not reveal however who was behind The Eye as I see it fit for you to discover on your own.

The Actors

The original cast’s performance was great although I had to say that Daniel Radcliffe surprised me. I was used to seeing him in glasses acting awkward and all. In this movie though he tried to break out from his wizarding world by playing a spoiled brat. It wasn’t easy for me to disconnect him from his old role but it did help that he played his part well. As for Liz Caplan although her performance was good I still prefer Isla Fisher as my original woman lead of the Four Horseman. Isla has a more demanding presence and she was a perfect fit for me for the role.

Photo from the Official Facebook Fan Page of Now You See Me 2 https://www.facebook.com/NowYouSeeMeMovie

Photo from the Official Facebook Fan Page of Now You See Me 2 https://www.facebook.com/NowYouSeeMeMovie

The Verdict

With the fast hand movements and focus on how each trick was executed I give this movie a 4 out of 5. I know that most movie critics say that the first one was better, but for me both movies had it’s ups and downs. I didn’t overanalyze things and I ended up enjoying the movie the way it should be watched. So if you want to relax and enjoy almost 2 hrs of fast hand movements and illusions, this is a must watch for you.

SM Director’s Club Review

It has been more than a year since E and I watched a movie in the Cinema House. Let’s just say our plans get cancelled due to last minute errands or the weather is just not as cooperative. So for our 8th year anniversary we planned to watch a movie in MOA’s Director’s Club.

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Why the Director’s Club? Just so that it is special and not the usual cinema house. I heard that it is worth the buck and E loves Lazboy Seats.

I went online and booked our tickets in advance. I just want to avoid the lines and ensure that we have good seats. I asked around which seats were best and Camille and Anj, from my team, said that the best were the back seats. So I booked two tickets for E and I for the 5PM screening time of Now You See Me 2 (review to follow soon!) and the total cost was Php 840 (Php400 for seats and additional Php 20 for service fee).

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At first I thought that it’s not really that costly to think that you will have butler service, free bowl of butter popcorn, you have super LazBoy seats, and only a handful of people will be with you inside (around 30 if I remember correctly).

When I compare it to normal screening tickets which cost Php 250 you only add Php 150 for great seats and great service and it is really worth the extra charge.

When we got there we were welcomed to comfy seats where we can wait while they were setting up the movie and cleaning the theater. We also had access to our own washroom which is a big plus for me too (no long lines just to pee!).

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We were allowed to enter around 30 minutes before the start of the movie. Bowls of popcorn were already served in our tables and it was one bowl per person so E and I had 2 bowls of popcorn. Butlers also approached each guest and asked if we wanted to order anything (menu was same as that of the cinema treats outside – from popcorns to sandwiches and nachos also drinks pala). Since I was still full from our meal before we just order nachos and beef with cheese and drinks. We just had to wait for it to be served while we were watching the movie.

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While we were watching the trailers I already found my comfy spot at the LazBoy seat, with my feet up and the back of my seat just at a right angle (back seats or the last seats really are best).

Our snacks and drinks were served during the first part of the movie and our snack mid movie.

Audio and visual quality was great as well but it really was the seats and service which made the Director’s Club a must try.

My overall rating? A 4.5 out of 5. I hope they have couple seats available but we will definitely continue watching movies there.

Book Review: Bo Sanchez’ Life Manual 101: How To Make Your Dreams Come True

It has been awhile since I last read a book. Most of my free time is given to blogging or watching korean novelas, or series. What urged me to read the book of Brother Bo was the fact that it was given as a gift by Brother Bo (perk I think of subscribing or being part of the Truly Rich Club) and I wanted to start January with an inspirational self help book.

Bo Sanchez

So as I mentioned I got the book: Life Manual 101: How To Make Your Dreams Come True by Brother Bo late last week. I started reading it this Monday and I finished reading it today. Overall it has a very natural flow to it which made it so hard to put down and so easy to read. I think I could have finished it in a day, but I wanted to read it bit by bit just to help my days start better (with a cup of inspiration).

Reading the book was a good decision for me, especially because we have a lot of plans this year (more on this on my next posts). Brother Bo basically tells you that you have the power to reach your dream, if your dream comes from a purpose and not from pride and if you work for it and not just be a passive receiver of blessings from God. That in a nut shell is what I learned from the book.

He shares that God has dreams for us and we also have dreams as individuals, we just have to meet in the middle to determine if our dreams will help us push forth with our main purpose in life or if it stems from pride. Badly put, do you want to be rich to help your family or you want to be rich just because you want to or you want to buy a car for the family vs. you want to buy a luxury car for show. He shares in his book that even if we sometimes think that God is not listening to our prayers (aka I want to be rich) God really wants us to succeed (aka if you want to be rich you have to work with God and not just wait for it to fall from the heavens above).

Dreams really do come true, especially if you pray for it and act on it. Emphasis on act because most if not all of the people I know pray day in and day out for a dream but they do not do anything to reach that dream. Aside from this he also points out that in achieving your dream (therefore succeeding) you must also help people around you achieve their dreams – for your life to have purpose or in his words significance.

At the end of reading the book I feel more inspired to work on my dreams, our dreams, and to be active in achieving it. I give this book a 4.5 out of 5. 🙂

 

Peanuts Movie Review

I am not really a big fan of Charlie Brown and the gang before, but after watching the movie it changed. Over the Holidays we were able to watch the movie, albeit over and over again because Bunny particularly liked a scene between Snoopy and Woodstock. To count, we probably watched it for 8 times already!

From Peanuts Movie Website

From Peanuts Movie Website

The movie has a simple storyline revolving around Charlie Brown and his admiration for the new girl. At the very start of the movie the plot was already set up and if you look at it closely you will already see the problem that he will face, that is his lack of self confidence. He sees himself as a bit of a failure and the new girl presents the chance of a new beginning.

What follows next is a series of events that start off good but then ends up with a bit of a fumble for Charlie Brown. In each situation though you get to see the goodness in him that he fails to see. Which is very apt for kids and grown ups, like Charlie Brown we tend to focus on the bad instead of the good. A human error that tends to lead to self doubt because we fail to see the silver lining.

In each situation presented, Charlie Brown exerts his very best. I particularly liked the bit with the school dance. He practiced and practiced until such time that he was confident of his skill (thanks to his best friend Snoopy).

Snoopy and Charlie Brown

Another constant theme throughout the movie is how Charlie Brown feels bad due to what Lucy says – which IRL is also true. We sometimes listen too much to what other people say about us, especially the negative stuff. Instead of working on it we just dwell on it and allow it to affect our overall self esteem.

The resolution comes in at the last part of the movie when Charlie Brown realizes the goodness in each hurdle he faced. This he was able to see when the new girl talked to him before she left. Sometimes we just need an affirmation from an outsider to see how other people see the goodness in us that we ignore because of our insecurities. In his own words, Charlie Brown said that he is “An insecure and wishy washy person,” to his surprise the new girl said that what she sees in him is his compassion, honesty, bravery, and sweetness. She doesn’t see a failure, rather a person with all of the qualities she admires.

peanuts-gang-winter

After watching the movie I realized that even though it seems just like any other animation it provides watchers insight to how life is. I recall telling my team how much I liked the movie because it is really well told and because of the lessons which seemed to be directed more to adults than to the kids.

Overall I give this movie a 5 out of 5 and I highly recommend this for the whole family.

The Fault In Our Stars – Fandom

I read the Fault In Our Stars last year (before Christmas – I know bummer for the Holiday season). Back then I didn’t know that it will have a movie. When I started reading book reviews about it (after I read it), I got super excited for the movie.

I wanted to see how the movie will translate what I read, especially the relationship between Hazel and Augustus. When I finally saw the trailer I cried, because I felt that the movie will be great, but also a bit disappointed when I saw the bus scene, well because Augustus drives his own car in the book. Nevertheless, super excited for the movie, and my fandom begins!

 

 

And I do wish that this song will be part of the OST. 🙂

 

Regine’s Silver Concert

Last night, Regine Velasquez held her 25th anniversary concert, Regine Velasquez “Silver,” at the MOA Arena. The venue was full of Reginians and of people who like her. I was looking forward to this concert because I was with my closest friends, because I wanted to see her perform live, first time to watch it at the corporate sosh/posh suite, ,because this is my first legit local concert, and my second concert this year, well ever in my life!

Our seats…
view from where we were seated 🙂
fish and chips plus margarita 😀

Once the orchestra, Raul Mitra, and Mr.C came in, the crowd went wild. Everybody was waiting for this, everybody wanted to see her sing! The overture played and I felt chills, seryoso. 🙂 Of course this plus hearing Ate Joyce scream, I was like this show will be AWESOME!

However when Regine came in, she didn’t look well, at one point I noticed that she was catching her breath in between the dance routine. I felt that something was off. Her voice wasn’t hitting some of the high notes so it made me think if she was really okay.

After her song, that was when she admitted to everybody that she was sick. My best friend even told me that Regine seemed to have lost her voice. True enough, paos si Ate. 🙁 She started crying saying that she wanted to give us her best, but she wasn’t even able to give even 50% of herself because of the virus she caught. People started cheering her, we all clapped and encouraged her to make her feel that she doesn’t need to explain anything. We understood that crap happens, and that we know that she is a great singer she need not prove anything to us or to her haters.

What she showed is true professionalism, she is a real performer ready to give everything that she can for the crowd. I guess this separates her from the other singers. Regine has a personality that is very unique. She was so honest! I almost cried when she said that she was expecting the worst, that the crowd will boo her and that we will leave the arena. Nobody left, everybody was there for her! Her fans don’t just like her, they love her and they are very understanding. They know how hard she worked for this, and how much she wanted to give us her best. It was then that I realized that I am becoming a true blue Reginian, yes I like her and everything my favorite song pa nung bata ako is Zoom na rendition ni Regine and Bluer than Blue, but last night she gained my respect.

Not only did she give us everything that she can, she showed how much she loved what she was doing and just how passionate she is with her craft. Aside from that she showed just how much she loved Ogie and her boo boo bear. She sang God Gave Me You, and I cried, the way she sang it was just so beautiful.

When she came out and announced that she will be having a repeat or a take 2 and that we should all hold on to our tickets. The concert will be for free to all of the ticket holders. Everybody was ecstatic even more when MOA said that they will be giving the venue for free (good job guys). She danced gangnam style out of joy! Here are Cacai’s tweets about it:

I resist to post any of her performances because I know that it might just hurt her feelings, but here’s Vice, Regine, and Sweet. 🙂 Get well soon, and see you at Silver Take 2! 🙂

When Harry Left Hogwarts

I’m a Potterhead through and through, I started my journey into Harry’s world as a 11 year old girl, clutching the first book close to my heart each day, re-reading it and imagining each scene in my head. I fell in love with the world that J.K. Rowling created, and I will love it forever.

Harry Potter is one of those things that became part of my life and it shall forever be the best series for me. Which is why I cried when my journey ended, when the last film was shown, I cried and I just told myself that it was over, but lo and behold, two amazing projects are here to keep the Potter Mania around. 🙂 And I shall share one of them with you in this post.

As a give away, the title tells it all. 🙂 Morgan Matthews was given unlimited access to the set of the Deathly Hallows, Part 1 and 2, and he made a special documentary, titled “When Harry Left Hogwarts.”The documentary is 48 minutes long, (but for me, that’s short) and it basically revolves around the end of the series that we all loved. If you love Twilight, and hate Harry Potter,stop reading this. 🙂

I’m very much looking forward to having my own copy, I begged my brother to buy me one from the US since nobody’s selling it here (I think). This is something that all Potterheads can look out for, as we will all get to see the characters we loved, and even the characters we barely noticed as they share with us what happened and what they felt during the last days of Hogwarts. 🙂

Here’s a sneak peek. 🙂 (Also, the documentary is only available on Blu ray)