We are pretty fortunate that God is so unlike mortals who find it so hard to forgive and prefer to wallow in their anger. Perhaps because God is merciful and slow to anger. And he knew better what’s best for us even if that meant saying “No” to some of our prayers.
This so far is the best week that My Beloved has aired – from the supernatural to the pretty ordinary life of their characters. Lovers that traveled to hell and back in order to save the one destined for hell even if that was the only time that she became evil … and didn’t have enough time for a confession with a Catholic priest to have such sin absolved. (That’s why some relatives can’t immediately reason out that a sick person is not yet on death’s door to receive Holy Sacraments. If the person lived despite receiving sacraments, thank God instead.)
And so the black sundo arrived to take Sharina to hell, literally. This is the disadvantage of dying without receiving sacraments or at least the benefit of a confession prior to her last breath. Pretty easy to blame it on Emmie since even if she claimed she is not a bad person, people like her are the reason why we have trials like the impeachment – because no matter how sinful a person is, he/she would still find ways the evil nature lurking within and blame practically everyone else for what the person has become.
If we, the audience, didn’t know that Benjie is a former white sundo named Arlan, we would immediately judge his jump into suicide as a source of depression. No, he had to die in order for his soul to follow Sharina into the underworld and try to win it back for Sharina to live again. The moment I saw the shots of dark water with an inanimate soul rowing the boat that carried Sharina’s soul, I had an Amaya deja vu. Trips into the realm of the dead are often portrayed as excavation into the dark river onwards the scary realm of hell and damnation. It is made even scarier by the fact that the black sundo is portrayed as a black cloud with indistinguishable features.
The moment Arlan tried to convince the dark cloud to let go of Sharina’s soul, I suddenly remembered reading the Diablo storyline (their latest installment is Diablo 3, a game I hope to play soon), where forces from Heaven disillusioned with God cohabited with forced from Hell disillusioned with Satan in a parcel of land on Earth and tried to live peacefully. Too bad the dark cloud chose to abide by his master’s orders. When Arlan challenged him to a duel in exchange of Sharina’s soul, he simply accepted it. It was a pretty nice fight. I even saw a Batista Bomb delivered to Arlan to finish him off (too bad the censors didn’t want it to be too violent). Upon failing in Hell, Arlan immediately went with Rowan in order to help him talk to God. He begged for Sharina’s soul be taken back to Earth.
The next thing we know is Sharina was a few meters short of being embalmed before regaining consciousness for a bit only to fall asleep again. Nice touch there since coming back to life doesn’t automatically mean regaining her energy. Good thing she came back to life. Monica is out of her wits at the knowledge of her sister’s death.
(I can’t wait for Monica’s comeuppance though. But not because I’ve read spoilers, it would stop me from watching even previous episodes.)
Shifting our attention into the human realm, Monica was in denial of her sister’s death. And even at the height of her mourning, she still hated their mother. She’d rather hug her sister’s corpse than accept and share the sorrow with their mother that she only managed to forgive when the mother herself is in a coma. (I was yelling “Plastic! Plastic! Plastic!” at the screen in my head.) She’s so unforgiving, her own sins end up becoming way bigger than whatever mistakes the people around her have ever committed. Never underestimate the power of hatred. It can turn you into a monster.
As for those left behind of Benjie, it didn’t take much for us to connect the dots in the aftermath of Benjie’s fall into coma. More on that later. I was touched at the sight of Lola Inggay scared like a child to enter the church to ask for God’s grace in order to save her grandson. Of course she was shy to approach God after all the things she said to Crisanto at the time that she still refused to forgive her own son for leaving them in the cold. I prefer to think that was the bigger reason behind the shame that Lola Inggay felt at asking God for a favor – the fact that she begged for forgiveness when she herself is not the forgiving type of mother to her prodigal son. Forgiveness is the biggest difference between God Almighty and human beings but that should not always be the excuse not to forgive someone repentant of his/her shortcomings. The scene bordered on the preachy. But by the time Lola Inggay started narrating the things she would stop doing in order for God to heed her prayer, I had to suppress my laughter. I know it wasn’t intended to be something funny but I’ve heard similar prayers that bordered on desperation, the best reaction I could muster other than suppressed laughter is rolling my eyes. Still, Ms. Nova had me at the shameful entrance. I could relate. (Yes)
Most of the time, the people who are evil are the ones who are clueless of how bad they have become but due to the victim mentality, they always claim to be the ones short-changed by fate. It’s why I hate the victim mentality. It’s a pathetic attitude that veered towards self-centeredness = the idea that the world revolved around them and there is no other way but theirs. This is where we end up meeting the really selfish people = Monica (she keeps claiming to be hurt without knowing or even caring that people close to her get hurt too), Emmie (she realized she can use the money she double-crossed Gimo with in order to get Benjie back by figuratively/literally buying his family out) and Nelson (really insensitive way to put across the fact that he can get his way to Sharina by mentioning Benjie’s death). We never doubted Nelson’s love for Sharina but never did we expect him to be this insensitive. We should have known …
Around this time, I have noticed that Marian have quit one bad habit in acting in primetime soaps = screaming her lungs out in breakdown scenes. This week, there was none of that. Even when Sharina was hysterical at the intensive care unit upon being told that Benjie is dead, true to the situation that her character is in, while she was trying to get out of bed, she is not screaming. Sharina just regained consciousness which affected her capability to even raise her voice and Marian was able to get the gist of a weak patient who’s still connected to the tubes. Sharina is half-livid, half-drugged with all the tubes connected to her – it’s the kind of scene you usually see in a soap and forget about the actress who played Sharina because she became Sharina … I know, I sounded garbled explaining how Marian succeeded in disappearing into her role. But you may throw whatever complain you have in this soap but you can never deny that Marian more than delivered acting-wise.
As for the part where she finally accepted Nelson’s offer of marriage to her, Sharina verbally said yes but emotionally, you can tell it’s no. Sharina found it very difficult to say her approval to Nelson, she can’t even find the courage to look at him straight to his eyes. While Nelson is happy that Sharina said yes to finally pushing thru with the wedding, Sharina’s teary-eyed and avoided eye contract with her fiance in the process. It was heartbreaking in a way.
This is my fave week among all those episodes that MB has aired. And I love the subtleties that Marian has imbibed into her performance. While we all know the naysayers will never give her credit that has always been due her, at least the initiative to deliver in her performances remain. And we love her for that.