Young, decent, conservative. And yes, good-looking and intelligent, too.
That’s how many of us have seen ABS-CBN host Robi Domingo over the years, so the confession that he went to bars and at times danced on top of tables is shocking.
He did it for a whole year, from around midnight to six in the morning, recalled the host of the network’s revived play-to-win show Game Ka na Ba? (GKNB), which now airs on the Kumu digital platform.
He hit the bars because he was brokenhearted. He said this was the time he and his then-girlfriend Gretchen Ho, the sportscaster and 2008-2013 star volleyball player from Ateneo de Manila, broke up. Since Robi is a full-blooded Atenean himself from grade school to college, it was mostly with school friends that he was spending time with in the bars.
A son of two medical doctors, Robi recounted his “dark nights” to the hosts of the ABS-CBN morning show Magandang Buhay just the day before the disenfranchised network started airing on free TV through a blocktime deal with Zoe 11 which has been rebranded as A2Z to mark the new partnership.
Robi’s friends must be the kind who don’t post their night life on social media, just like Robi himself. That’s how it came to pass, that until the morning of 9 October, we never knew he had been a bar habitue for a year.
“I knew that one mistake on my part at those bars, my whole career would blow up. The years I invested on my career would all go to waste,” he said in Filipino.
He added that the wildest thing he did was dance on top of tables.
He admitted that he expected to meet a girl he could fall for at the bar. “But I realized that I am all bark but no bite. I can readily say ‘hi!’ to a girl I like, but that’s all. I don’t know how to follow it up,” he confided again in Filipino.
The young man, now 31, can’t switch on his hosting skills in front of girls.
Last year, he finally found a new girlfriend, not in a bar, but in a Christmas reunion with fellow Ateneans.
He knew Maiqui Pineda and liked her since their college days. But she always had a boyfriend until two years ago. When Maiqui told him that she was unattached, he lost no time in pursuing her.
“She’s graceful and yet full of substance,” said Robi. “When I am with her, I automatically cease being an alpha male.”
He also declared that Maiqui is the woman he would marry, though he cautiously did not mention when.
Not all heartbreaks lead to bars — unless thirtyish heartthrob actor RK Bagatsing is not ready to tell all despite his admission that he is heartbroken at present.
The male lead star of I Got You, Brightlight Productions’ first series on TV5 as a blocktimer, revealed that he broke up last year with his girlfriend of 15 years.
The long relationship seemed not to have included living together. Ah, another conservative and decent showbiz idol!
“It was a mutual understanding that we have to start a new chapter in our lives. We’re both okay,” said RK on PEP Exclusive, a YouTube talk show whose episodes are selectively published on the website Philippine Entertainment Portal.
RK (Ramon Khino), however, admitted that he had to go through mending a broken heart just the same. It was his first time, he said.
Happily, he found help by confiding to an older sister, former actor Monina Bagatsing, who is now based in New York. Since there are now practically cost-free means to spend much time talking with someone far away, RK talked his blues away with Monina.
He said that Monina was like a psychiatrist who knows everything happening in his life.
RK’s other sibling is actor Raymond Bagatsing.
It also helped a lot that RK has been busy practically the whole of last year in the drama anthologies and teleserye of ABS-CBN (including Nang Ngumiti ang Langit) and movies with Regal Entertainment and indie outfits.
In I Got You, which starts airing today, 18 October, at 2 p.m. on TV5, RK plays the heartbreaker of two women portrayed by Beauty Gonzales and former child actor Jane Oineza. The series is directed by Dan Villegas, who is identified with Blacksheep and other subsidiaries of ABS-CBN’s Star Cinema.
Dan, along with his three lead stars, are still managed by ABS-CBN’s Star Magic. They are just on a freelance contract with Brightlight Productions, owned by Negros Occidental’s ex-politician Albee Benitez.