Kapamilya soap ends as 'Princess and Jao'

By Miguel Dumaual, ABS-CBNnews.com

Posted at Feb 01 2013 10:07 PM | Updated as of Feb 02 2013 08:01 AM

Mikay, Gino get happy ending

MANILA, Philippines – After almost 10 months on air, the ABS-CBN soap opera starring Kathryn Bernardo as a lost princess came to an end with the revelation of the second character in the series' title “Princess and I”.

In the final scenes of the top-rating series aired Friday night, Dasho Jao (Enrique Gil) is seen retelling his journey of love and redemption to a group of children, after he recovers from an accidental gunshot by his own mother, Ashi Behati (Gretchen Barretto).

"Tinuruan niya ang puso ko na mahalin ang aking sarili, na hanapin ang aking kalalagyan sa mundo, humingi ng tawad at magpatawad," he said.

"Minahal niya ako, at mulang binuksan ang puso ko para tumanggap ng pag-ibig. Yes, she taught me how to love unconditionally. And that's the story of the 'Princess and I," Jao said.

Jao's turn as an apparent monk comes after he decides to spare Princess Areeyah/Mikay (Bernardo) from being forced into marrying him, in the hope of uniting the warring kingdoms of Yangdon.

Enraged by Jao's decision, Behati attempts to kill Mikay with a gun, only to hit her own son. Behati is later seen behind bars, on the verge of insanity.

Mikay and Gino (Daniel Padilla), meanwhile, happily profess their love for each other, as the kingdoms of Yangdon grow in reconciliation at the will of the princess and her father King Anand (Albert Martinez).

Having started as a tale among friends -- Mikay, Gino, Jao and Kiko (Khalil Ramos) -- "Princess and I" amassed strong nationwide viewership as the royal twists in its story unfolded.

‘Royal ending’

It became the No. 1 most watched series on primetime for a time, having hit the 40% mark in nationwide ratings based on data from multinational market research group Kantar Media.

The show's massive success also translated to a release of an album of love songs featured in the series. Several "Grand Fans' Day" were also held, culminating in a "Royal Fair" that pitted "Team Jao" and "Team Gino" against each other in a well-attended basketball game in January.

On social networking sites, Mikay's journey to finding her real identity has been a staple presence in trending topics locally and world-wide. Leading up to its "royal ending," hashtags and terms related to "Princess and I" were among the trending topics on Twitter on a daily basis.

On Friday night, several terms made it to the top trending topics on the popular micro-blogging site. Locally, the hashtags "#MIGIKahitNaAtKahitPa," "#MIGITillTheEnd," "#MIGIForever" were in 2nd, 3rd and 4th place, respectively.

"MIGI" refers to the first syllables of the names of Bernardo and Padilla's characters on "Princess and I".

"The Royal Ending" ranked 8th in the same list, moments before the show ended.

World-wide, the same terms also figured in Twitter's most talked about topics -- "#MIGIKahitNaAtKahitPa" was 3rd; "#MIGIForever", 5th; and "#MIGIEndGameHasBeenWorthTheFight," 6th.

The series was directed by Dado Lumibao, Francis Xavier Pasion and Rory Quintos.

It also starred Dominic Ochoa, Art Acuna, Sharmaine Suarez, Nina Dolino, Karen Timbol, Yayo Aguila, Beverly Salviejo, Frances Ignacio, Marina Benipayo, Jong Cuenco, Bianca Casado, Sofia Andres, Shey Bustamante, Leo Rialp, Ketchup Eusebio and Allen Dizon.