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Them were those ‘lovely’ days!

Nora Aunor & Tirso Cruz III

Back when we were 40-plus years younger, highly impressionable and given to swooning, many of us, so to speak, wet behind the ears, there was Guy & Pip, there was Vi & Bot, there were several other love teams that colored the imagination of teenagers and made their world go ‘round. Those were gullible days and them (the showbiz idols and their avid worshippers) were the days, my friend, that (to borrow a line from the popular song) “we thought would never end…”

In spirit, them never really ended. Guy is now Lola Nora (Aunor) and so would be her ’70s contemporaries Vilma Santos (forever your Ate Vi), Edgar (Bobot) Mortiz and Tirso “Pip” Cruz III (whose nickname was taken by his father from a character in the movie Great Expectations). They were given nicknames, unlike today’s love teams who are known by uni-names (KathNiel, LizQuen, JaDine, et al).

As a nod to this Love Month, let’s take a misty-eyed look at Guy & Pip, Vi & Bot and other such pairings of the “sensational” ‘70s (that adjective being a derivative of the title of Ate Vi’s then Sunday show D’Sensations, remember?) and their movies best described as, “potboilers” (if you know what it means), compiled by Funfare’s “other beauty expert” Celso de Guzman Caparas.

1. Nora Aunor & Tirso Cruz III: 9 Teeners, YeYe Generation, Young Girl, Banda 24, Oh Delilah, Karate Showdown, Drakulita, D’ Musical Teenage Idols!, Fiesta Extravaganza, Teenage Escapades! and Halina, Neneng Ko, all in 1969;…Young Love, Orang, The Young at Heart, Nasaan Ka, Inay? and I Dream of Nora (1970); Always in My Heart, Guy and Pip, and My Blue Hawaii (1971);…A Gift of Love, Kung May Gusot May Lusot, Nora, Mahal Kita, Winter Holiday, And God Smiled at Me and My Little Brown Girl (1972);…Maalaala Mo Kaya? and Hindi Kita Malimot (1973);…Memories of Our Love (1975); Magandang Gabi Sa Inyong Lahat (1976); Pinakasalan Ko Ang Ina ng Aking Kapatid (1977); and Mahal Mo, Mahal Ko and Dash A Lotsa Nonsents! (1978). (Trivia: Pip gifted Guy a doll named Maria Leonora Teresa when she was crowned Muse of Sampaguita Club on Dec. 9, 1969. The doll is missing. The duo waxed two long-playing albums, Dream Come True in 1971 and Mahal in 1978.)

2. Vilma Santos & Edgar Mortiz: My Darling Eddie and Jukebox King (1969); Young Love, The Young Idols, Songs and Lovers, Sweethearts, Sixteen, Love Letters, Love is For the Two of Us, Mga Batang Bangketa, My Pledge of Love, Renee Rose, Baby Vi, Because You Are Mine, Edgar Loves Vilma, From the Bottom of My Heart, I Love You Honey and Love Letters (1970); Angelica, My Love at First Sight, Our Love Affair, Eternally, The Sensations, The World of Music and Young Lovers (1971); Dulce Corazon, Remembrance, Aloha My Love and Don’t Ever Say Goodbye (1972); and Now & Forever (1973).

3. Esperanza “Espie” Fabon & Eddie Peregrina: Halina Neneng Ko, The Jukebox King, My Darling Eddie and Fiesta Extravaganza (1969); Mardy, Songs and Lovers, Memories of Our Dream, I Do Love You Edong, I Adore You and What Am I Living For? (1970); Alaala ng Pag-ibig and Luha Sa Bawat Awit (1971). (Trivia: Espie was also paired with Romy Mallari in From The Bottom of My Heart, I Love You Honey and Love Letters, all topbilled by Vi & Bot. Espie graduated with a degree in Law and is now a judge.)

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4. Perla Adea & Romy Mallari: Memories of Our Dream,  Edong, What Am I Living For? and I Do Love You, all in 1970; and The Sensations (1971). (Note: Perla was introduced in The Jukebox King shown on Dec. 16, 1969. Perla and Romy were married in 1973, the only tandem that ended up for real.)

5. Nora Aunor & Manny de Leon: Nora: Single Girl (1969); Teenage Jamboree, Tell Nora I Love Her, Munting Santa, Three for the Road, The Singer and the Bouncer, Darling, Nora in Wonderland, Hey There, Lonely Girl, The Golden Voice and Around Asia with Nora (1970). (Note: Manny was introduced in Fiesta Extravaganza shown on Sept. 26, 1969. Trivia: Nora and Manny recorded a long-playing album, Pledging My Love, in 1970.)

6. Vilma Santos & Eddie Peregrina: My Darling Eddie (1969); and Mardy and I Do Love You (1970).

7. Nora Aunor & Edgar Mortiz: My Beloved (1970). (Note: Edgar also appeared in Drakulita with Nora and Tirso, and Teenage Jamboree, the Nora-Manny starrer.)

8. Millie Mercado & Manny de Leon: Fiesta Extravaganza and Halina Neneng Ko (1969).

9. Hilda Koronel & Ed Finlan: Haydee (1970) and Happy Hippie Holiday (1970). (Trivia: Hilda was introduced in LEA Productions’ Leslie, starring Boots Anson-Roa and Dante Rivero, in 1969.)

10. Hilda Koronel & Jay Ilagan: Santiago and Tubog sa Ginto (1970); and Crush Ko Si Sir! (1971).

11. Nora Aunor & Victor “Cocoy” Laurel: Lollipops & Roses (1971); Impossible Dream (1973); and Lollipops & Roses and Burong Talangka (1975).

12. Mildred Ortega & Jay Ilagan: Happy Hippie Holiday (1970).

In the early part of the ‘70s, Hilda was also paired with Tirso in Now! (1971), Victor Laurel in Till Death Do Us Part (1972) and Walter Navarro in Villa Miranda and Stardoom (1972), and May Isang Brilyante (1973).

(E-mail reactions at entphilstar@yahoo.com. You may also send your questions to askrickylo@gmail.com. For more updates, photos and videos visit www.philstar.com/funfare or follow me on www.twitter/therealrickylo.)

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