Sobrang ‘relatable’ si Boy Abunda as broadcaster

ONE for the books ang pag-cross over ng King of Talk na si Boy Abunda sa News and Public Affairs ng Kapamilya’s who’s news anchors of Bandila namely Karen Davila, Julius Babao and Ces Oreña-Drilon.

Initially, this act of Boy Abunda was met with not a few quizzical eyes in the direction of a put-down side by side with many others including us who were content with the thought that the new territory at hand is not at all Greek for the Kuya Boy of showbiz.

He has been there, done that in news and public affairs. He did “Kontrobersyal,” “Private Conversations,” “In The Cinema” (think in-depth face-to-face ebullience with film icons in the movie industry, etc.)

“Bandila” is a different platform alright, one may argue requiring a different kind of  intelligence, training and experience  as well which Boy I could vouchsafe possesses in good measure through much of my association with him in the distant and not so-distant past.

Barring other tete-a-tete,  I have had several “in situ” as in first-hand experience with him on the set of Private Conversations. This was when I facilitated on different occasions  the guesting of two National Artists on the show, the late Dr. Alejandro Roces for Literature and Cecile Guidote Alvarez for Theater.

Right off, I was convinced that he is more than the King of Talk as long touted around. He is a genius in the direction of coming to par if not above with his subject’s level of multiple intelligences and subject matter at hand as well. I was floored at how nonchalantly he recapped the essences of the two National Artists without the aid of the so-called idiot board or prompter at all.

That’s how spontaneous and breezy he can get with brilliance of mind tucked at the right places.

You might ask what about Boy Abunda’s performance in Bandila? Does he deliver?

Yes, more than what was expected of him I must say. Notice that he is seated at the head of the table, meaning nasa-kabisera siya. In space psychology (this I learned from my graduate subject in Nonverbal Language at UP under the late Dr. Lagmay, pasensya na ha i-write-in ba ang sarili?), Boy is highly in control of both the verbal and nonverbal languages of his three other co-anchors.

Meaning, the seating arrangement over the three others gave Boy so much vantage points and convenience to speak out, do running commentaries  as much as he fancies with the least  restrain in the way of prescience, sharpness of mind, and spontaneity compared to the three others  whose commentaries largely border on the safe and predictable, popular opinion perhaps matched with body English that are a bit stiff than relaxed.

And fancies he does when Boy makes his sincere commentaries deep down from the heart, from the gut level eye-ball to eyeball with his co-anchors. Boy’s insouciance when he speaks out on any subject matter at hand makes me a bit “inconvenient” at how Julius, Karen and Ces intellectualize their commentaries, highly cautious not to cross the edgy boundaries of what perhaps are acceptable in standard broadcasting commentaries if there is such thing.

Mararamdaman mo sa kanilang body language na ingat na ingat sila at baka magkakamali sa  kanilang sasabihin. Which makes for my unease as viewer to belabor my point.

In contrast Boy does cross the boundaries of making commentaries which are “relatable” to the collective consciousness of the masa. Maybe because he is deeply rooted and his grasp of human behavior is one coming from the heart and true-to-life experience. Kumbaga sa acting, he has a lot of it to “make hugot from” with the least effort possible hahaha!

He relaxes the all-too formal and sometimes tension-filled atmosphere of reporting news and that is where the difference lies in Boy Abunda’s presence in Bandila, a breakthrough that I saw and felt taking place only after he was placed there.

Should I say Boy Abunda is a “breath of fresh air” in Bandila? The accolade is cliché but the subject is not.

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