There is one show that I missed watching on the local TV channels – The Strange Brew (ang show na may tama) which starred Arvin “Tado” Jimenez, Angel “Erning” Romero, Ramon Bautista, Jun Sabayton and directed by R. A. Rivera.
It was a down-to-earth, crudely indecent, irreverently hilarious yet educational and a good reality checker show. Its unconventional format gave the show its unique mark and signature in our TV industry that is driven and dominated by commercialism and escapism.
Strange Brew tackles the most ordinary of topics about everyday ordinary things and people. In this show, the man/woman/people behind the balut, the candy factory, the LRT/MRT, La Loma Cemetery, toll gate, etc…are given face and life as who they are and what they do. They don’t appear as objects to be poked and ridiculed just to solicit laughter, like those we see everyday ad nauseam on TV Game shows like Wowowee. These ordinary people are interviewed with questions about the what’s and how-to’s of their work, wares or products. They’re also asked questions like, “if your life is going to be made a movie, who’s the actor you would like to protray you?” In spite of being taken aback by the question, yet all of them had a ready answer for it, as if it is a very common question for them.
The Strange Brew’s brand of comedy is plain and simple. Other than being smart and intelligent, its sense of humour will surely get the approval of one happy dobbie brother. Watching an episode of Strange Brew is one heluva educational laughing trip, sans the doobie of course. I can single out the episode with Kefeir Ocampo, the taong grasa – ang pinakamatalinong tao sa UP, and it simply ROCKS.
Strange Brew was first shown at UNTV, a less known local TV Channel, in 2001. The show immediately gain a loyal following from among the youth, particularly the isaw-eating-rugged -looking-activist-type horde and not the classy-english-spokening-burgis-konyotik few. Despite the show’s obvious handicap in terms of exposure and casting, as it was fronted practically by unkowns at that time, yet all existing mainstream local comedy show pales in comparisson with it in form and content, even until now. For some arcane reasons, Strange Brew suddenly went off-air. One of those Jesus Fans Club TV show took its slot.
I miss Strange Brew. “Erning, ihanda mo ang oto,”. “Tama!”