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REVIEW: Maja colossal, Janella remarkable in spectacular The Killer Bride pilot week

Gerry Plaza August 17,2019 09:24 PM


Undeniably, it is one teleserye for the ages.


The Killer Bride brings factors we rarely see on televised dramas, and these are all put together in one breathtaking spectacle.


The outstanding photography, brilliant production design, exceptional direction and writing, cinematic visuals, intriguing yet interesting narrative flow, and of course, an impeccable collection of talent that makes The Killer Bride one teleserye offering we will never forget for a long time.


Thrilling ride


Its pilot week was definitely something that should keep us glued, despite laying all of its cards in the first five episodes of the series. But even though we have virtually seen what has been promised in teasers and promotional activities of the show, we are surely in for a thrilling ride of unexpected twists and turns along the way. 


But what really stood out was Maja Salvador’s monumental performance. 
From the time she portrayed Camilla dela Torre, who had supposedly fought for the love of her life, Vitto dela Cuesta, played by Geoff Eigenmann, who happened to be from a rival family in their town of Las Espadas until she was jailed for the slay of Vito’s brother Javier she apparently didn’t commit, Maja already enthralled us. 


Piercing, heartbreaking, memorable


But her appearance on Wednesday’s episode was even more piercing, heartbreaking and memorable as it presented what became the tragic event at the core of the story—the death of the “Killer Bride” from a prison fire apparently set off intentionally. As she screamed her unforgettable curse before she died, her words of getting back at those who wronged her has truly been resounding and riveting. 


Janella Salvador and Joshua Garcia’s Emma and Elias came at an opportune time—a respite from the intense, heart-rending events that transpired. Emma’s entry to the narrative was seamless and well-executed, not to mention her electrifying first encounter with the flower boy Elias that surely sent shockwaves to shippers for their emerging tandem. But their characters are central to the story as Emma, the mortuary cosmetologist, would work for Camilla’s former governess and second mother Manay Ichu, who had since owned a funeral parlor and would live in her mortuary that had Camilla’s portrait hung by the staircase. Elias is also a trusted gardener and florist of the dela Cuestas, with Vito already married and has a daughter.


Camilla’s return


But their importance was never more emphasized in the climactic Friday episode. Emma would get possessed with Camilla’s spirit, ride her horse, and go straight to the Dela Torre mansion, where the whole family was celebrating the matriarch Guada’s (Aurora Sevilla) birthday. She would confront her uncles Luciano (Cris Villanueva) and Juan Felipe (James Blanco) and blurted out a very detailed litany of their sins against her—something that only the true Camilla would know. And, she would also lash out at her lola Guada, who she said had cast her off as her beloved grandfather Jacobo suffered a heart attack during her murder sentencing. This shocked everyone, especially Guada, who had been remorseful about Camilla’s fate and feared her avowed curse, which she is now seeing with Camilla’s “return.”


Emma would then try to escape the Dela Torre mansion after Camilla’s spirit left her, as Luciano had ordered to put her in custody over her “knowledge” of the events leading to Camilla’s death. As she sprinted away and came across Elias at the town’s Blood Moon festival, Emma would try to hide from Luciano’s men and Elias would then try to help her flee.


It would thus be interesting and exciting to anticipate how Emma would further take Camilla’s spirit, especially when she would eventually encounter the Dela Cuestas, particularly the already married Vito.


Fascinating production


Superbly suspenseful and mesmeric, the pilot week of The Killer Bride presents not only a fascinating production viewers marvel at, but also how we are most astonished with the way the whole cast delivered their characters.


Geoff Eigenmann is showing a new version of himself as an actor, making viewers understand Vito’s difficult dilemma of proving his love for Camilla and remaining loyal to his family with his deeply felt depiction. Joshua Garcia’s participation is promising, as we see him go head-on with his character’s brewing romance with the Killer Bride’s medium and how he would deal with such a phenomenon he doesn’t believe in. Add to that Vito’s daughter Luna (Alexa Ilacad)’s attraction towards him.


We are also stunned and astounded with how the supporting cast is performing—from Eddie Gutierrez’s effective guest participation as Camilla’s loving grandfather Jacobo to the vile, scheming, and murderous Luciano, played impressively by Cris Villanueva. Malou de Guzman is again at her thespic best as Manay Ichu, while James Blanco, Aurora Sevilla, and Jobelle Salvador give us notable, intense personifications of their roles.


Colossal acting


Janella Salvador is beginning to leave a lasting mark as Emma with her careful, methodical approach to her portrayal—something she truly worked hard for. As Emma, Janella is showing her best as an actress, evolving from her cutesy romantic roles, and with the difficult scenes she did and will continue to work in, she has truly become the next renowned actress of her generation.
But nothing compares to the colossal acting Maja Salvador has evoked—letting us feel the misery, the anguish, and the wrath she felt throughout this pilot week. With her powerful, tenacious, and profound portrayal of the doomed Camilla, she truly made us commiserate with a truly lost soul searching for revenge, vindication, and justice, and root for a Killer Bride ready to fight back.


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