The Rules of the #ManilaVerse [No Curtains Needed]

By William Elvin

By now, a number of you #KapaFEDs might  have already noticed some nuances and details in MWF’s stories and character building that may not be usual in recent pro wrestling products anywhere. At MWF, we strive hard to make the #AksyoNovela saga as uniquely Pinoy as possible, drawing inspiration from Philippine pop culture such as TV shows, movies or familiar images around Metro Manila.

Our love for iconic action heroes such as Fernando Poe Jr., Rudy Fernandez and Robin Padilla (sure, Coco Martin for the younger audience members) surely inspired Gigz Stryker and his “Sagot Kita” film universe. The “Bahay ng Liwanag” story arc mirrors the Pinoy masses’ fascination with charismatic religious evangelists like Apollo Quiboloy, Mike Velarde and Eli Soriano. Fabio Makisig is someone we often encounter in the streets of Manila, along with the likes of the jologs/hypebeast Khayl Sison, bullying every-man characters like RG and Aldrin Richards, who are brave enough to fight back when provoked. Of course, the growing trend of Pinoys resorting to life coaching and get-rich-quick programs has given us the gift of Coach Gus’ “Gus Global” and his muscle “Danger” Rex Lawin. 

Who can ever forget Robin Sane’s catchphrase, “Tara, Let’s Go”, and the way he turned a mundane, all-too-familiar expression into a hyped up battle cry? And, when you come to think of it, a closer examination of MWF’s aesthetics would you realize how much we’re emulating the vibe of Eat Bulaga or Showtime in our live events.

At the heart of all this is the MWF Creative Team’s love for solid, consistent and patient storytelling. Please allow me to share to you some of our declared “Rules of the ManilaVerse”, a set of guidelines we strive hard to live by in writing the MWF shows:

  1. A story has a beginning, a middle and an end. There shall always be a set-up, a consequence and a final pay-off.
  2. Every small action affects the ManilaVerse, building upon each other and growing the tension until it blows up to a grand dramatic climax.
  3. Every match, every interview, every promo, every video segment is designed to either push stories forward or develop characters. No detail is a throwaway.
  4. There are good guys and bad guys. But bad guys sometimes do good things, and good guys sometimes do questionable stuff – just like in real life. That being said…
  5. There are no “heel turns” and “face turns”, only character development. The characters will always stay true to their core values, regardless of whether they’re being cheered or not.
  6. Wins and losses do matter. However, what’s more important is how every wrestler reacts to their wins and losses.
  7. No matter how fantastical the storyline may be, there always has to be a basic emotional hook for the audience to hold on to.

There you go, #KapaFEDs! That’s it for this week! We’ll try our best to make our columns a weekly thing again. However, our schedules just keep on getting busier and busier as MWF grows. That’s a good problem for all of us!

See you all on September 8, as we have lots of surprises prepared for you at MWF 4: Road To Fate! Such as this one…

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