Conclusion tops worldwide trends on Twitter
MANILA - "Mirabella," the launching series of Julia Barretto, concluded Friday with the breaking of the curse that set off the misfortunes -- and journey of revenge -- of the titular characters portrayed by the neophyte actress.
In the primetime series' final episode, Mira agreed to donate her kidney to her half-sister Iris (Mika dela Cruz), who had ridiculed and bullied her over her wood-like complexion. Iris was accidentally shot by her mom, Olive (Mylene Dizon), who had intended to kill Mira.
Despite her bitter history with the two, Mira pushed through with the operation, bearing in mind that it was her sister's life on the line.
Meanwhile, Mira forgave her father, Alfred (James Blanco), after he doubted several times that he is his daughter with Daisy (Dimples Romana). Together with Mira's adoptive parents, Osang (Pokwang) and Paeng (John Lapus), Alfred stayed by her side as she struggled to recover from the operation.
Moved by Mira's decision to help Iris, Olive, escorted by police officers, asked for forgiveness for pouring her anger with Daisy on her and unwittingly wishing the curse on her at birth.
The apology set off the breaking of the curse, with Mira, in her sleep, reuniting with her mother at the tree where the spell originated. This prompted Mira to finally wake up, this time with her cursed complexion vanishing completely.
With the passing of years, Mira and Iris developed a close relationship as sisters. Terrence (Sam Concepcion), who had fooled Mira into thinking he was in love with her, also reached out to make amends.
On her 18th birthday, Mira gathered all those dear to her and set her mind to starting anew, this time without the bitter heart of Bella -- the alter ego through whom she acted out her revenge.
The celebration also proved to be a memorable night for Jeremy (Enrique Gil), as he finally got Mira to agree to being his girlfriend.
STRONG RATINGS, CONTROVERSY
As the final episode of "Mirabella" aired Friday night, its official hashtag, "#MirabellaTheBeautifulEnding," zoomed up as the No. 1 trending topic on micro-blogging site Twitter worldwide.
The strong buzz surrounding the series online was also reflected in its viewership over the last three months since it premiered in March.
In June, "Mirabella" averaged a national TV rating of 19.6%, according to multi-national market research group Kantar Media, ranking it the 11th most watched TV program in the Philippines for the month.
It was also consistently the No. 1 show in its time slot.
Even before it debuted on primetime, "Mirabella" was already fraught with controversy as it was originally announced to be an adaptation of "Cofradia," a Dominador Ad Castillo novel which had film versions in 1953 and 1973.
In "Cofradia," the central character is afraid to fall in love because of her dark complexion, and only gets the courage to interact with people when she transforms into a beautiful lady with the help of a magic candle.
Due to criticisms over the supposed "racist" nature of the material, the series was re-launched in July 2013 as "Mirabella," only two months after Barretto was introduced as Cofradia.
"Mirabella," which featured the first team-up of Gil and Barretto, was under the direction of Erick Salud, Jerome Pobocan, Jojo Saguin, and Tots Mariscal.