The Dolphy I know–the John Purungtong that preceeded the modern Pinoy Husband
July 12, 2012 § Leave a Comment
I met Dolphy only once in my life. I remember seeing this man wearing an all white outfit in an exclusive restaurant where I was fortunately in. It was him–He Who Made Us All Laugh.
He was very dapper in his suit. He doesn’t look like he’s eighty or something. And he’s not the “joker” or the thin comedian we see in his early films.
Dolphy, as I saw him back then, was a dazzling person of distinction.
For the millions who weren’t able to see or meet him in person, the Dolphy they knew was He Who Made Us All Laugh. I am extremely fortunate that I grew up during the time when he got the highest accolade from the people whom he gave his life for.
It was the John en Marsha era, the time when Dolphy was king and lording it over the airwaves with his witty jokes–simple yet most effective in eliciting those hearty laughs.
His improvisations on the show were exceptionally good. John en Marsha, back then, was the longest running comedy show on air. It filled up the dreary nights of Filipinos everywhere and shone during a time of great darkness. People went home early back then, to watch the show together with their loved ones. It was the only relief from the stresses of every day life during Martial rule.
John Puruntong was everyone’s father, the kind that you want to be with back home. He was jolly. He was unselfish. He was caring. He was affectionate, to a fault.
John Puruntong was the modern father figure, the kind that allowed his daughter to date for as long as the suitor does the traditional ways of courtship, or the father that took care of his newly married son and took him under his wings while he worked his way towards independence.
The Purungtongs of old preceeded the modern Filipino family of the Now. Several people says the Purungtongs reflected the kind of life back then, but if you looked at those scenes one more time, you’ll find that the Purungtongs actually showed what kind of family life the Filipinos will have several years later.
The Millions who met Dolphy during this heyday of his career were the very ones who crowned him “king”, much the same way, as People crowned Fernando Poe Jr, the “King”.
Last July 10, people will remember that day as his day, Dolphy’s Day. It will be remembered as the day when comedy just suddenly, stopped. Comedy will never be the same again, with Dolphy’s demise. Comedy, as what Dolphy represented, is not the kind of comedy Vice Ganda or Chocolait or Pokwang represented, no.
Comedy is very dapper, very sophisticated, the kind that makes you laugh naturally, not being forced, or the kind that makes you laugh because you saw your laughable self in it. Comedy, as we know it today, depends on someone’s physical deformity or some one’s ugliness. Dolphy’s is not like that.
As we mourn the passing of a Great Man, let us comfort ourselves to the thought that, probably God is giving us the chance to do our comedy by ourselves, and try to do a Dolphy, each and every single day.