Right now, Melisa Cantiveros, more popularly known as Melai, is probably planning her TV appearances and/or how she will spend her million-peso prize. From being the Inday Kenkay when Pinoy Big Brother Double Up began, Melai has come a along way and eventually became this season’s big winner.
Was her victory surprising? Not really. A history of the competition reveals that those favored by the PBB voters is the the one with the biggest personality that keeps the house alive (Keanna Reeves) or the one with the most comic appeal (Ruben Gonzaga), or the one they would like to see succeed (Ejay Falcon). Melai has all the above qualities. But what other things ensured Melai to clinch the title and avoid a very possible upset (most likely by Paul Jake)? Melai’s chances were upped by these facors:
- HER CONSISTENT AIRTIME. There is no denying that Melai was the most visible housemate in the duration of the competition. And it’s not completely her fault. In reality shows all over the world, producers spend precious airtime on competitors who are most likely to capture the public’s interest. Her, having the most airtime was a result of her smart move to hog the limelight through her personality, and her accidental pairing with Jason, which lkeads us to…
- THE MELASON LOVE TEAM. Her teaming up with Jason provided a show, within a show. Much of the PBB storylines revolved around them, from the courtship, to the pair-up, to the jealousy, to the birth of their “kid”, to the arrival of the ex and until the “proposal.” The two has built a fanbase even before they were officially launched as artistas. (Off topic: It is also interesting to note how Big Brother evolved in the Philippines as an artista springboard, rather than a social experiment).
- HER LOVER-HATER BALANCE. Yes, Melai can be annoying. Others find her, in local pop parlance, OA. This is true to all housemates, past and present, with strong personalities. You assert and express yourself, you get haters (example: Uma, Wendy, Beauty, Priscilla). But it helped Melai that her haters never outnumbered her fans. This was seen via this season’s Vote to Evict ruling. Though she had her share of votes to evict, it was always balanced, and even overruled by her save votes.
- THE BIG REVEAL. If ABS-CBN really wanted Melai to win, this has got to be a very smart move by them. Towards the end of the competition, we are all already conditioned that Melai will win it all. But the big reveal revealed otherwise. Melai was actuallt third, trailing behind Paul Jake and Jason. If not for the big reveal, fans could have voted complacently, unaware of the threat that is Paul Jake. But since we all saw that Melai wasn’t a shoo-in as we all perceived her to be, fans worked extra hard to bring their housemate back on top.
So for the people who aspire to be housemates in the future, it is always personality, likeability and chemistry with other housemates that will make you win. It’s not your competitiveness or how well you strategize. It’s not even pagpapakatotoo as the show has always told us since the beginning. It is about always putting your best foot forward, your best attitude and best demeanor, especially when the world is watching.
And isn’t that how it goes in real life?