Monday, February 19, 2018


A brand name defines and differentiates a product from its competitiors in the eyes of the customer. So important are brand names that they can make or break a product---a car manufacturer once named its new vehicle “Nova”, not knowing that “no va” meant “not going” in Spanish. On the other hand, there are perfect brand names like “Jollibee”, “Hapee” and “Mr.Clean” that evoke positive images of joy, clean living and fun. Before marketing experts offered their brand-naming services, many makers of products just coined their own brand names, resulting in odd, unusual names.
1. ATOMI-CHLOR (Anti-fleas and ticks)
This liquid product, designed to rid pet dogs, insects, plants and lawns, was forlumated in the 1950s –known as the Atomic Age—hence the brand name ATOMI-CHLOR. The other half is derived from its active ingredient—Chlordane. The ad dates from 1951.

2. BARRY’S TRICOPHEROUS (For baldness, thinning hair and dandruff)
BARRY’S TRICOPHEROUS was introduced in the late 1840s by "professor" and former New York wig-maker, Alexander C. Barry. The product surprisingly did well in the market and was sold to Thomas Barclay in 1871, who sold it  until 1906. The product contains 97% alcohol, 1.5% castor oil, and 1% tincture of cantharides (Spanish fly), which supposedly help stimulate the scalp’s blood supply. The product is still being sold today.  Ads from 1951.

3. DUSGOCYL (For cough relief)
The name of this cough relief medication is a challenge to spelling bee contestants; DUSGOCYL sounds like the name of a prehistoric creature, a winged dinosaur perhaps—not some product that “combats cough at the start”. It actually contains Cocillana, which has expectorant properties.  Curiously, it also lists wild lettuce as among its ingredients.  Ad from 1935.

4. ELIXIR AURI-BROMIDE (For all acute and infectious coughs)
This elixir has a unique 24K gold tri-bromide ingredient from which its brand name was derived. “Aurum”, the chemical symbol for gold, plus “bromide”, resulted in ELIXR AURI-BROMIDE, that provides soothing relief for whooping coughs, bronchial asthma, pulmonary and other obstinate coughs. Ad from 1961.

5. GALISATUM (For all diseases of the skin)
GALISATUM was a skin ointment developed by Dr. Carlos Jahrling of Botica Sta. Cruz in the 1930s.  “Galis” was an all-encompassing local  term for any skin conditions—from scabies, eczema to skin chafing and mange.  “-Atum” was a suffix that was  commonly used in pharmaceuticl products  like “mentholatum”and “petrolatum”. Ad from 1936.

6. JAGGING JAGGING (Face Powder)
There really is no reason why a  cosmetic product guaranteed to make you “lovely to look at” be named JAGGING JAGGING. It is nonsensical, unfeminine and the sound is far from mellifluous. But  Chun Huat Pomade Factory, the manufacturer, did just that, making it hard to believe that Jagging Jagging  is indeed,  a “girls’ favorite”. Ad from 1934.

7. KULSO-ALIS (Anti-diarrhea, anti-dysentery)
Another product coming from Botica St. Cruz is  KULSO-ALIS, a concoction with a brand name that comes from “Kulso” (diarrhea, loose bowel movement) and “Alis” (to be free from, begone). It was a common way to coin brand names for products—Katialis, the popular skin cream was coined in the same way. It is interesting that Kulso-Alis lists Opium as one of its ingredients. Ad from 1937

8. MONG ALING (Remedy for anemia)
This medicine intended for a serious disease has such a comical-sounding name, that it’s hard to believe it can bring relief to anemic women and mothers with disorders associated with pregnancy and their menses. Even the ingredients do not give a clue as why it was named MONG ALING. To make it more difficult to decipher, the word and numbers “Silang Lab.  No. 8368”, are appended to the brand name. Is this a trademark registration number? It remains a mystery to this day. Ad from 1936.

9. ODORODO (Body odor protection)
The brand name of this early deodorant spray is a palindrome—ODORODO—it reads the same way when read backwards. Such literary devices were used to increase memorability of the brand name, but unfortunately Odorodo, even with its catchy name and unque Action-Proof formula, did not catch on. But at least, the euphemistic “B.O.” (for body other) is still in our vocabulary today. Ad from 1960.

10. PENETRO (For chest colds)
St. Joseph Laboratories gave us this medicated rub with  the name PENETRO, which conjures images of soothing, penetrating vapors to give relief to chest colds. But it is also ideal for tired feet, burns and other aches, which makes  ”Penetro” very apt, as it does sound almost like a name for a multi-powered superhero! Ca. 1935.

11. REUTER’S  SOAP (Skin Soap)
The early toilet soap designed to beautify a woman’s complexion is a trademark of Lanman & Kemp-Barclay & Co., Inc., The company, itself was founded in 1808 by Robert I. Murray and its business was conducted under the firm name Murray & Lanman in New York.  The brand name--REUTER’S SOAP-- has nothing to do with the world-famous news bureau. It was named after its creator, Dr. John Reuter. The classic bar soap was sold under its Spanish brand name, Jabon de Reuter, in the Philippines. The company still is in cooperation today with headquarters in Westwood, New Jersey, and continues to sell the soap.  Ads from early 1950s.

12. SAIZ DE CARLOS (Stomach elixir against gas and diarrhea)
It would seem at first that this brand name came from someone named Carlos the Sixth.  However, the famous stomach elixir  bears the name of its maker, pharmacist and doctor Ramón Sáiz de Carlos (b.26  Jan. 1857) whose interest in oenological research led him to pursue laboratory work and develop new medicines and drugs. The acclaimed  Sáiz de Carlos gave his name to such new products that were exported all over the world---Neuranémico, Dinamogeno, Reumator, Purgantina,  Quinofebrina and the popular SAIZ DE CARLOS ELIXIR ESTOMACAL, recommended for gas pains and diarrhea. In the Philippines, the product was distributed by Metro Drugs.

13. SUSPIRO DE AMOR (Women’s perfume)
Not a exactly an odd name, but certainly mysterious, if not sensual. SUSPIRO DE AMOR—“Sigh of Love”—is the brand name of this lady’s perfume guaranteed to arouse passion and love. Even the ad copy is full of innuendos—“the lady languishes  on her silken couch—she murmurs in accents of wild sweetness—“Midnight and after!”. Ad from 1951.

14. TIMOSINA (For cough relief)
Thymosins, small proteins in animal tissues, were originally isolated from the thymus, hence the name. They are used in mucolytics and expectorants to clear coughs, improve hydrations and volume of secretions. TIMOSINA Cough Syrup, a product of the pharmaceutical company in the Philippines—Botica Boie--  is the Spanish term for thymosin. It is indicated for convulsive spasms of whooping coughs. Ad from 1953.

15. VIN DÉSILES (Energy drink)
The brand name of this revitalizing drink popular in the 1950s seem anachronistic as it sound like the name of contemporary Hollywood action star, Vin Diesel. VIN DÉSILES, which claims to restore energy and appetite, was distributed by Oceanic Commercial, Inc. in the Philippines. ca. early 1950s.

Monday, February 12, 2018

150. THE LOST JINGLES OF D.O.T.: "Huwag Maging Dayuhan sa Sariling Bayan”, ca. 1986-87

It was just  after the People Revolution, sometime in late 1986. Filipinos were still reeling from the events of February when a peaceful revolution ousted Marcos which forced him to flee the country. 

Everyone was getting ready for a clean start, and one priority was rebuilding the battered economy. The DEPARTMENT OF TOURISM, under the new leadership of Sec. Antonio Gonzales, with undersecretary Narzalina Lim, decided to ask the help of advertising agencies to come up with a concept for the country’s Domestic Tourism campaign.

It made sense to call upon Filipinos first to rediscover their own, beautiful country as nationalistic pride was at its highest at this time. Ace-Saatchi & Saatchi Advertising was asked to pitch an idea, and the creative team--led by Creative Director Jimmy F. Santiago, who eventully wrote the slogan-- came up with a winning campaign theme that is still being quoted to this day: “Huwag Maging Dayuhan sa Sariling Bayan” (English translation” Don’t Be A Stranger in your Own Paradise”).

Part of the agency pitch was the presentation of jingle studies so that the concept can be better illustrated, and these two initial studies, with different melodies for the two versions  (Pilipino and English), were composed by jinglemaker, Caloy Agawa. For some reason, the D.O.T. jingle project  never pushed through, and these two studies were never finalized and produced.

For the first time, these jingles are being presented here:


CREATIVE DIRECTORS: Cid Reyes, Ramon Jimenez Jr., Jimmy F. Santiago
LYRICISTS: Pilipino Version: Jimmy F. Santiago / English Lyrics: Alex R. Castro
COMPOSER: Caloy Agawa / PRODUCER: Paul Suarez

Sunday, February 4, 2018

149. Boxers or Briefs?: MEN’S UNDERWEAR ADS, 1950s-1970s.

Before BENCH underwear introduced the Filipino males to skimpy underwear fit for cavorting on the fashion runway, our ancestors wore loin clothes or g-string to cover their modesty, over 7,000 years ago.  In fact we have local terms for those early undies—“bahag” in Pilipino,  “pinang” in Kapampangan, “kuval” in Ibaloy, “wanes” in Bontoc, and “ba-ag” in Kalinga.

As Filipinos were already wearing shorts before the Spaniards arrived , they took to wearing the Western ‘calzonsillos’ --drawstring shorts-- which were often hand-sewn. These evolved into buttoned-up,  commercially-produced white drawers, with opening in front. They were to become  staple underwear,  found in every man’s aparador from the pre-war American-occupied Philippines all the way through the 60s.

Modern briefs were introduced only in 1935, sold first by Cooper’s Inc. in Chicago. They were the invention of hosiery designer, Arthur Kneibler, who was inspired after seeing a leg-less male swimsuit. He made a fitted underwear, with an overlapping Y-front fly—and thus the Jockey shorts was born.

Boxer shorts in the U.S. found favor only after the war, adapted from pugilist’s shorts that came with elastic waistband introduced by Everlast in 1925 (Pinoys would take to them only in the '90s). Meanwhile, local Chinese undershirt and pants manufacturers cashed in on the growing demand for modern underwear that provided support and style, by branching out into underwear. Classic briefs were made of cotton, but in the 1970s, nylon briefs came into vogue.

On this page are early Philippine ads that show the evolution of the modern briefs and shorts over 3 decades.

DE LUXE STETSON SHORTS (1955,1957). “Once Tried, Always Used”. LEFT, Stetson Shirt and Pants factory was a leading manufacturer of shorts, pants and later, briefs, in the 1950s.  The  popular brand was available at all leading bazaars and department stores and it regularly advertised in major dailies, like this magazine ad, 1955. RIGHT. De Luxe Stetson Shorts, 1958.

YANKEE SHORTS (1955). “The Perfect Cut”, Shift to Tankee Shorts yourself, and feel real fine! A generic pair of white, snap-buttoned shorts popular during the post-war era, 1955.

HANFORD BRIEFS (1957). The brand HANFORD began in 1954, in the business district of Juan Luna, started by the Te family. HANFORD has become a well-loved tradition that has been passed from one generation to the next an continues to operate to this day. Currently, its signature model is Mikhail Daza who appears in their advertising, a far cry from this illustrated ad from 1957.

GUARD BRIEFS (1961). This “comfort brief” has all the elements of a modern brief—elastic waistband supported by 20 bands of rubber;  fine, duraknit fabric that will not shrink, and  a snug fit that will not chafe inner thighs. The manufacturer is not named. 1961.

LEFT: DERBY MEN’S BRIEFS (1961). DERBY is cut along the body line to allow for freedom of movement and a conforming pouch for gentle, ample support. Uncle Sam Associated manufactured this underwear, along with undershirts. RIGHT: MAYFLOWER (1961).A popular shirts that is the only one in  the market with a bar-tack reinforcement to prevent tear on the crotch area,

CRISPA BRIEFS (1963). Named after the department store chain & textile company owned by the Floro Family, led by Valeriano “Danny” Floro in 1956. The fabrics are ‘redmanized’, a process which pre-shrinks them, so the products are guaranteed to stay snug and fit. One of the most successful garments factory in the 60s thru the 80s, CRISPA even fielded a basketball team (‘Crispa Redmanizers’) in the games Philippine Basketbal Association (PBA) and won 13 championships. 1963.

VERTEX BRIEFS (1963). One of the earliest printed bikini briefs (without a front opening), is Vertex Briefs, that is made from cool, absorbent fabric yarn.

LEFT: WALKER (1963). WALKER brand was distributed nationally by Sehwani Marketing Corp. in Mandaluyong. It became a market leader in shirt and briefs manufacturing in the 60s decade. It s Gold Line briefs featured innovations like the superior elastic Lactron 37 and Permalex leg openings to ensure no irritation. RIGHT: DMC (1971). DMC was one of the first to introduce lightweight, nylon briefs in the market.

WARREN BRIEFS (1971). WARREN BRIEFS popularized the use of 100% nylon in underwear, which were lighter, softer, and easier-to-dry than cotton. The only problem was that they felt hotter, despite being thin,  and absorbed less. Thus, WARREN also had cotton, terry-towel and de-hilo briefs. WARREN also introduced the first unisex briefs in the market. It reached its peak in the mid 1980s, with full color advertising on TV and print.

MONSIEUR NYLON BRIEFS (1973). MONSIEUR was another briefs brand that jumped into the nylon briefs bandwagon. It enjoyed a measure of success, as it was looked at as a premium underwear, right down to its innovative cylindrical packaging.

FALCON BRIEFS (1975). A product of Veindra Garments Industries, Falcon Briefs was a short-lived brand in the mid 1970s, but the company still exists to this day but as a textile merchant firm.

LEFT: MONTAGUT (1975). MONTAGUT is a clothing company with origins in France, which, in 1925 sold lingerie and silk stockings. In the 60s, Montagut expanded to include clothing and polo shirts manufactured with Fil Lumière which became international brands. Its Philippine partner, French Fashion Philippines, Inc., launched the premium MONTAGUT brand of classic and fashion briefs, which featured a variety of prints. RIGHT: PURITAN (1978). PURITAN Quality Mens Underwear is manufactured and exclusively distributed in the Philippines by General Garments Corporation. Launched in the Philippines over 40 years ago, it is currently one of the leading brands in the market, with 3  main product categories: Briefs, T-shirts and Undershirts.

Thursday, January 25, 2018

148. Brand Stories: LIWAYWAY GAWGAW, 1948

LIWAYWAY GAWGAW ANG GAMITIN. The classic package of the  oldest and
leading cornstarch brand in the country, Source:

One of the most successful Filipino brand that is still in existence today is a cornstarch product called LIWAYWAY GAWGAW. It found favor in Filipino homes not just for cooking, but also for keeping clothes in shape, and giving them that clean, crisp look while the garment is pressed.

The Chinese-Filipino couple, Chan Lib and See Ying, are credited with launching LIWAYWAY GAWGAW to the Philippine market way back in 1948. They actually began bulk-buying cornstarch from wholesale markets, and re-packaged these in their Pasay home, in consumer-size paper packs for resale and distribution to sari-sari stores.

They gave it the brand name—“LIWAYWAY”—which was in keeping with using native brand names as a wave of Filipino nationalism swept post-war Philippines

LIWAYWAY means “dawn”, an appropriate name that presaged the future of a newly independent country, free at last from American rule. Even the package graphics reflected this hopeful optimism. It carried simple, comics-like illustration (sunrise behind mountains with swaying coconut trees on the front, a Filipina in native dress  pressing clothes at the back), the package copy  was composed in pure Pilipino, almost lyrical in style: "Sa minsang gamit ay di ninyo malilimot ang linis, puti at puro na pinanagutan namin" (at first use, you will not forget the clean, the whiteness and purity that we are liable for). Even the instructions for use were written  Pilipino, with words rarely use today: "Ginagawang maaluan at mabilis ang pagplantsa ng damit", 

LIWAYWAY GAWGAW was distributed all over the city in sari-sari stores and became an instant hit with Filipino housewives. The practice of treating fabrics with starch—“almirol”—was still popular then.

Women still wore baro’t saya which had sleeves and panuelos that required starching so they stay straight when worn.  On the other hand, menfolk still donned white Americana cerrada with white pants that had to look crisply white all day long.

Most students and young professionals too, too, wore white shirts to school or to their offices  (polo shirts for students, U.S. trubenized shirts for male office workers) , necessitating the use of ‘gawgaw” to give fabrics a clean finish, free from creases and wrinkles the whole day. LIWAYWAY GAWGAW, when applied to fabrics delivered unsurpassed results, to the great satisfaction of Filipino homemakers.


No wonder, LIWAYWAY GAWGAW became an established Philippine brand, especially when it was promoted in the 60s and 70s using a highly memorable radio jingle, now an icon of our times. The success of the brand enabled the Chinese-Flipino couple to venture into other commodities—from candles, snack goods, coffee to hair products.  Today, their humble business has grown into an Asian empire, thanks to LIWAYWAY GAWGAW, and to the efforts of their visionary son, BENCH founder, Mr. Ben Chan.

Liwayway Gawgaw (radio ad and jingle with photos), uploaded by Oishi Philippines, March 18, 2012,
Photo of Liwayway gawgaw: FASHIONABLE FILIPINAS: An Evolution of the Philippine Dress in Photographs, 1860-1960, by Gino Gnzales and Mark Lewis Higgins,
Liwayway Gawgaw product packs, front & back:

Friday, January 19, 2018

147. MISS CALTEX 1962-1970: A Corporate Beauty-Personality Contest of Caltex Philippines

MISS CALTEX was one of the most successful corporate event mounted by Caltex, 
winners who were all acclaimed for their beauty, personality and achievements. 

This 1963 batch 
of finalists include the eventual winner, Elsa Payumo,

One of the most prestigious and successful corporate events of the ‘60s decade is the search for MISS CALTEX PHILIPPINES, the brand ambassador of one of the leading oil and gas companies of the Philippines. It was designed primarily to promote Caltex Philippines and make it more accessible and familiar with the general public, by giving the company a beautiful face, and an amiable, articulate voice.

Running for eight long years, the MISS CALTEX quest was looked at as among the prestigious beauty searches in the country, known for attracting ladies of good standing in society, student achievers, career professionals and daughters of de buena familia.

Eligible to join are single women over 21 years of age,  5’2” or more, Filipino citizens with at least 2 years of college education, and of upstanding character. They should also not be related to any Caltex dealer, and free to travel and participate in all Caltex-sponsored activities.

The premium image of the contest was also due to its array of fabulous prizes, which includes foreign and local trips aboard American President Lines,  and via intrenail airlines like Air France, and Thai Airways. Semi-finalists were flown in free, courtesy of Philippine Airlines.

Cash prizes were much bigger than other pageants, for the winners also received savings accounts from Philippine Banking Corp.  For example, the first MISS CALTEX winner romped off with a cash price of Php 5,000 in 1962, a tidy sum at that time. The finalists were given free wardrobe, a monthly allowance of Php 500, travel insurance, appliances and jewelry pieces.

The Coronation Night was televised from the ABS Studios along Dewy Boulevard, and later at Makati’s Rizal Theater was conducted with class,  pageantry and with musical extravaganza. The winner was determined by  public voting through the use of newspaper coupons—which pre-dated today’s audience text voting. The last two editions had a distinguished panel of judges which picked the winner. It was no wonder then that MISS CALTEX rivaled the mainstream pageants of their time, including the premiere Bb. Pilipinas Pageant that began in 1964.
FIRST MISS CALTEX 1962, Mila Amunategui,
The very first MISS CALTEX 1962 search yielded 5 finalists: Esther Zuluaga, Mila Amunategui, Tessie Lizaso, Shirley Cuyugan and Maggie dela Riva. First Lady Luz Magsaysay crowned the eventual winner-Mila Amunategui (now Abad, she would have a long career as a top Philippine Airlines executive).
1963 MISS CALTEX, Elsa Payumo, center.
Elsa Payumo was crowned MISS CALTEX 1963, singled out from co-finalists Lina Iñigo (now, Winebrenner, former Bayanihan dancer and PR girl), Vicky Trinidad, Amparito Llamas (now Lhuiller) and Henrietta Silos (now Mendez, former MTRCB chair). Payumo would work for many years in the travel industry; she is now involved with a religious/healing ministry.
1964 MISS CALTEX, Amelia Reyes.
MISS CALTEX 1964, was U.P. Foreign Service graduate Amelia “Ammy” Reyes, who won over Cecile Espiritu, Leticia Gonzales, Carmen Araneta and Hortencia Cacho.

1965 MISS CALTEX, Susan Suarez, with finalists.
 MISS CALTEX 1965 was Susan Suarez, who polled close to 600 million points, a contest record. Other finalists included Elnora Conanan, Wilhelmina Dulla, Maria Victoria Pamintuan (now Celdran, mother of David and Carlos Celdran)  and Gladys Baban. The finales were held at the posh Rizal Theater in Makati.
1966 MISS CALTEX, Cecilia Borja, 3rd from left.
Cagayan de Oro’s Cecilia Borja (now Chiongbian, won the MISS CALTEX 1966 title, ahead of Lourdes Ledesma, Maria Cristina del Gallego, Rosky Balahadia (a Bayanihan dancer soloist) and Marilyn Recio (who would become a successful PR executive).
1966 MISS CALTEX FINALISTS, in a Lady's Choice ad.
Barbara Cervantes of faraway Surigao del Norte emerged as MISS CALTEX 1967, outpointing Clavel Asas, Fenny Cantero (now Mrs. Kit Tatad), Mary Lou Kessel and Medalla Macariola.
1968 MISS CALTEX, Aurora Patricio
MISS CALTEX 1968 was the statuesque Aurora Patricio, a U.S.T cum laude graduate,  who competed alongside Rosario Cervantes, Elizabeth Dinglasan, Ma. Elena Domingo and Mary Ann Ojeda.
1969 MISS CALTEX, Amy Gustilo
For the first time, a jury that included former Miss International Gemma Cruz MISS CALTEX 1969, won by Amy Gustilo (now Lopez,  a Christian music composer).  Other finalists were Mary Ellen Rutherford, Marilyn Tan, Maria Carmen Lopez and Corito Rivera. Gustilo donated all her cash prize and everything she earned from her one-year reign for the education of  poor Ifugao children in Bontoc.
THE LAST MISS CALTEX 1970, Zenaida Benedicto, foreground, with Igorot headband.
Zenaida Benedicto (now congresswoman, wife of Harry Angping, former Philippine Sports Commission chair) has the distinction of becoming the last MISS CALTEX 1970. Other finalists were Nina Lim, Yasmin Kiram (a Muslim princess) , Emilie Tiongson and Ma. Luisa Matti (mother of actress Amanda Page.

By then, the novelty of using pageants was wearing off. All sorts of beauty contests—including corporate titles--proliferated, which followed the beauty-cum-personality formula. The cost of mounting the annual promotional events was also staggering. Also, the victories of Gloria Diaz and Aurora Pijuan in international pageantry overshadowed that of MISS CALTEX. The contest was discontinued, but the image that MISS CALTEX left behind—that of being the most prestigious, most highly-regarded pageant based on the quality of contestants alone—remain as its best legacy. 

AMY GUSTILO PHOTO (Miss Caltex 1969):
Sunday Times Magazine, Nov. 14, 1969

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

146. Is That Who I Think He Is? LITO LEGASPI for COKE, VASELINE (1966) & DURACRON (1965)

LITO LEGASPI , REFRESHED WITH COKE. With actress Liberty Ilagan. print ad, 1966.

Movie and TV actor LITO LEGASPI (b. 25 Jan. 1942) was only 17 when he was included in the 1959 ribtickler “Ipinagbili Kami ng Aming Tatay”, topbilled by Dolphy. He would be signed up by Sampaguita Pictures (Vera-Perez productions) in supporting roles in the drama, “Halik sa Lupa, (1961, with Carmen Rosales), and the action pic,  Kapitan Lolita Limbas (1961).

He would find his groove when Sampaguita Pictures built him up as one of their “pretty boys”, which included the likes of Pepito Rodriguez, Bert Leroy, Dinod Fernando, and Romeo Rivera. LEGASPI was cast in light romance-musical-comedies like “Joey, Eddie and Lito” (1961), where he was teamed up with Liberty Ilagan. 

He was finally launched that same year in the movie, “Lab na Lab Kita”, with no less than Susan Roces, and for awhile, they were promoted as a love team.

It was Susan’s partnership with Eddie Gutierrez, however, that fans clamored for, but LEGASPI would always appear alongside the popular love duo in such movies as “Susan, Susay, Susie” (1962), “Sabina” ( 1963), “Sa Libis ng Baryo” (1964).
With his clean, well-groomed looks, LEGASPI snagged print a assignments from softdrink giant, COCA-COLA (with reel partner, Libery Ilagan), Chesebrough-Pond’s VITALIS Hair Tonic, and DURACRON fabrics, a product of the country’s leading textile mills, Gentex.

The so-called “bomba” craze—sexy skin flicks—started with the 1970 movie, “Uhaw”, starring Merle Fernandez. LITO LEGASPI was caught up in a maelstrom as he was one of the featured male stars (Tito Gala was the other) in the controversial movie that was considered pornographic by many, the case was even debated in the Congress.
LITO LEGASPI, strikes a Duracron Pose. 1966.
Shedding off his wholesome matinee idol image, he went on to do another follow-up “bomba” movie—“Hayok” (1971) –again with Merle, Tito, and a newcomer bombshell, Rosanna Ortiz. With the government hot on the heels of  “bomba’ movies, LEGASPI made “Sinong Kapiling? Sinong Kasiping” (1977) where he won critical acclaim and was awarded an Urian trophy for Best  Supporting Actor. (1977). LITO LEGASPI is best known for playing Rodrigo Duterte in 1992 film Pugoy Hostage: Davao.


Wednesday, January 3, 2018


LEFT, PCSO, the Blessedness of Giving", with a 1 Million Pesos First Pirze. Print ad. 1965.

“Loterias” were revenue-generating activities employed during the Spanish colonial times; in fact. Dr. Jose Rizal won a Php 6,200 windfall in 1892.  But it was only in 1932 that the first Sweepstakes draw was conducted by the government to finance various sports projects. 

So successful was the venture that a similar sweepstakes draw was held for the benefit of the Philippine Anti-Tuberculosis Society, held by a group called National Charity Sweepstakes.

This led eventually to the institutionalization of  the Sweepstakes as an official funds-raising events to promote public health and welfare.  Thus, in 1935, the PHILIPPINE CHARITY SWEEPSTAKES OFFICE was created with pres. Manuel L. Quezon’s approval of Act 4130. 

The new agency held the first Sweepstakes draw on Sept. 8, 1935. Backed by Filipinos for its humanitarian and charitable  missions, the PCSO has not stopped holding Sweepstakes draw ever since,

PCSO embarked on regular advertising to drum up interest for its Sweepstakes draws, and the biggest prizes were often reserved for the holidays season—when people had more disposable income. The print ads had seasonal themes—for example, Summer draws featured Maytime festivals, and the Christmas draws had ads that featured local holiday traditions.

Draws in January predictably had a New Year’s theme, and another favorite then was the Feast of 3 Kings, which had more significance to Filipinos until the late 1960s. 

In fact, it extended the Yuletide season by a good week, with a fixed date of January 6. Today, of course, vacations end after January 1.

These two ads, from 1956 and 1965 respectively, celebrate the Feast of three wise and generous men, and the blessedness of giving—which was what the PCSO is all about. 

Like the Three Kings, the ads say, the PCSO is driven by the same spirit—“to help many a hapless soul in charitable institutions not only on Christmas day, but the whole year round.