The finals of Misters 2015: The Pageant was a bittersweet affair, for so many reasons. The most obvious thing is that the 30 candidates had developed a brotherhood over the two weeks of activities, and for us the spectators/observers of the whole proceedings, that the we’ll miss the sight of these fine specimens of Filipino masculinity as many of them would drift back to their regular lives. There are other aspects that gave a bittersweet tinge to the whole affair, including things that I learned from insiders, but more on that when I post my full-fledged review of the pageant.
I got 12 out of 15 right in my “Fearful” Forecast. Two of the ones I missed were in my “Bubbling Under” list, and in a tight competition such as this one, I have no beef as they are worthy of belonging there. The one I only put in my “striking distance” list (well actually all the rest were classified as “striking distance” as this is such a sterling group), I have a feeling there was a certain “political” reason why he made the cut, though his good looks were undeniable: Mati City (Red Bayron). He’s not a headscratcher by a long shot, but his slot could be better served by other contenders out there.
So who wins the Lucas Malvacini award? Actually none of the big front-running favorites were eliminated, so it’s a matter of deciding who among the ones that pageant fans and pundits deemed most likely who missed the cut? My personal choice would be Cebu City (Carlos Ching) as I thought he was a sleeper shoo-in. But I’m sure most people would select the beefy Fil. Comm. of Australia (Rob McNamara) as he figured in many of the fans and pundits’ lists.
Of the six members of the royal court, I got three right. The Top Two were obvious from the get-go, but it’s an interesting twist on who ended up with top honors over the other–despite winning the lion’s share of special awards, Tacloban City (Rick Kristoffer Palencia) ended up with the Mister Global Philippines title while the plum prize of Mister International Philippines went to Pagbilao, Quezon (Reinier Domingo). One person who was also in my predicted royal court was City of Manila (Don McGyver Cochico), who ended up in 1st runner-up. Two guys who fell out of the Royal Court at least ended up in the Top Ten and probably missed the final honors by a tiny margin: Fil. Comm. of Germany (Siegfried Schmidt) and Sta. Rosa City (Karan Singhdole) while the early favorite Lipa City (Nicholo Vasquez) missed out of the Top Ten and was “merely” a Top 15 semifinalist. Bacolor, Pampanga (Arcel Yambing) peaked at the right moment and clinched the Mister Model International Philippines title with a strong overall performance punctuated by a commendable Q&A. Iloilo City (Willan Pagayon)‘s prior pageant experience served him well and he clinched the Mister Tourism International Philippines title. Completing the royal court was 2nd runner-up Fil. Community of Italy (Kevin Fichera).
In general, I find the results justified and acceptable. Though what I learned from my friends and insiders after the pageant made me concerned on how they can sustain this caliber of competition in the coming years, for now, I would like to say to all the winners, a big congratulations! Relish your moments of triumph before hunkering down to the hard work ahead…