IF one of the more accurate gauges of a star’s popularity is the degree of applause he or she gets, then the recent two-night “Bench Universe” show at the SM Arena in Pasay City should be an affirmation of how sizzling hot actor Coco Martin has become.
Looking initially hunched as he emerged on stage from the weight of his heavy load, a series of metastasized deer horns shaped like a pair of wings and wrapped in teal fabric by designer Cary Santiago, Coco, star of the TV soap “Walang Hanggan,” electrified the crowd as he strutted confidently for the cameras.
And unlike fellow Kapamilya talent Jake Cuenca, who also caused quite a stir as he struck various suggestive and raunchy poses in a pair of orange briefs, Coco didn’t have to strip to his undies to bring the house down.
With the absence of serial stripper Wendell Ramos, TV’s bad boys Cuenca and Paulo Avelino were more than happy to fill in the void by doing all the disrobing. Fans instantly returned the favor by saving some of their wildest cheers for them.
Cuenca went as far as unsnapping his orange briefs to reveal a skimpier pair of beaded black T-back that left very little to the imagination. The crowd was delirious, especially at the sight of his butt.
Richard Gomez, Bench’s original icon, who starred in the brand’s seminal TV ad that captured him rowing in a pair of shorts and tank top in the late 80s, knew he didn’t stand a chance.
Instead of going daring, the senior actor chose to look dignified in a preppy gray ensemble with one sleeve in red. It was an apt move that earned for him a more subdued appreciation from the packed audience.
Show biz can indeed be a bitch, more so in a stargazing event such as Bench’s biennial fashion-slash-underwear extravaganza where the reaction was instant.
A friend, for instance, noticed how a once prized property like actor Dieter Ocampo, one of the original members of “The Hunks,” was no longer that hot in the eyes of fickle fans based on the tepid reception he got.
With a toned body like his, the motorcycle-riding Dieter could still put almost any hot newcomer to shame. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work that way anymore with an insatiable public, who prefer newer and younger faces every time.
(Please stay tuned to this blog for the concluding part. More images, more stars, more stellar bodies coming soon. If you wish to grab some pictures for your blogs and social networking accounts, kindly credit photographer Chito Vecina.)