Kylie & Andrea share lessons on love, heartbreak

Nathalie Tomada - The Philippine Star
Kylie & Andrea share lessons on love, heartbreak
In the WeTV romantic-comedy GL series BetCin, Kylie Padilla and Andrea Torres are Beth and Cindy, a popular infl uencer couple living a perfect relationship — well, at least online.
STAR / File

Kylie Padilla and Andrea Torres recently talked about their “effortless chemistry” as they’re paired in the LGBT-themed WeTV romantic-comedy series BetCin.

Described as a drama about a relationship on the rocks but balanced out by punches of humor, BetCin is directed by Shugo Praico (Bagman) and written by Fatrick Tabada (Patay Na Si Hesus) with John Carlo Pacala (Paano Na Ang Pasko?).

In the eight-episode Girls’ Love (GL) series, Kylie and Andrea are Beth and Cindy, a popular influencer couple living a perfect relationship — well, at least online. There are cracks in their romance, which are getting wider as their number of followers, also called Umamis, goes higher.

While trying to figure out the future of “BetCin,” they are chosen as finalist for #RelationshipGoals contest. Will they fake it until they make it to the end for the likes and the cash prize? Or will they find the “perfect recipe” to make things work? The new WeTV Original just premiered with new episodes dropped every Friday night at 8.

When Kylie and Andrea were offered the project, it was an immediate yes.

“I just had to say yes, and I love my character so much,” Kylie said. “I didn’t know I was hungry for this kind of character, and I just had so much empathy for what she was going through. I understood her choices, needs and wants. I just knew that I can give the character justice.”

She went all in for the project, even acting out her character in public.

“I would go to the mall and just try walking like Beth, talking like Beth, eating like Beth. Everything I practiced so (the character) won’t appear like an act or fake,” she said. “At saka bumili ako ng mga damit na susuutin niya, sapatos.”

She really went all the way, including chopping off her long locks. “I was ready for a makeover, and I would rather do a makeover for a project than to do it for myself.”

In the end, playing Beth was therapy for Kylie.

“I was at a time in my life na medyo challenging ang mga nangyayari, it was a good break for me,” she said. “It was therapy because I got to step out of my own life.”

As for Andrea, it was also a “sobrang mabilis and excited yes” because Cindy was a role “not expected of me.”

Andrea said viewers will see the “wacky” and “super kikay” sides of her in the series. “She’s (Cindy) loud but has depth. Parang mararamdaman mo siya dito, saan siya nanggagaling, and I think that’s important. We see a lot of people on social media, na hindi natin alam what really goes on sa kalooban nila. I feel that na-explain ito ng mabuti ni Cindy that not all people who look super happy and lively, yun talaga sila. Sometimes, there are really layers.”

It was challenging for Andrea to bring out the emotions that would match those that her character was experiencing. She had to dig into her past, particularly her high school life, where she felt most insecure about herself.

“My interpretation of Cindy, she’s a pleaser, pero pagka-kasama niya si Beth, dun lumalabas yung pagka-childlike (attitude) na pwede siya mag-kamali and everything,” Andrea said.

“And I feel that she’s a pleaser because she wants to prove something. Humalukay lang ako nung time na yun, kasi nung high school ako, I felt bad na nag-stop ako mag-(regular) school. I was homeschooled and parang lahat sila, nakapag-prom, nakapag-graduation and I felt so insecure. Dun kinuha yung pagiging pleaser because that’s what I felt then — that I had to do something so I wouldn’t feel like I was being left behind.”

No awkwardness

Part of the preparation for their characters was talking to people in similar relationships.

Andrea explained, “Para lahat ng kilos namin tama. So that when they see this (series), proud sila and they feel good na maganda namin sila na-represent.”

Kylie, who has lesbian best friends, expressed, “It’s a nice thing to be part of something like this because it’s inclusive and it’s about time to give this spotlight. I just want people from the LGBT community to feel that they have a safe place to go… They can watch themselves on screen and say, kami ‘to, this is our story.”

The stars, who first worked together on GMA 7’s Blusang Itim where they played adversaries, said they never experienced awkwardness on the set of their first-ever GL series.

“I could not have asked for a better leading lady, to be honest,” said Kylie. “I’m so thankful that the Universe made it happen that si Andrea naging Cindy ko.”

She noted that they had “natural chemistry that came out of nowhere.” “And that’s hard to find, yung trying to spark a fire. This story pa naman, girl on girl, it’s a new concept for me, so to be working with someone whom I have chemistry with, it’s such a blessing.”

Andrea, for her part, was surprised as well at how smooth it was from the get-go. “Yung first time namin na mag-read ng lines, hindi ka pa mag-e-expect masyado. That’s why, nagulat din ako na parang wow, nasa script-reading lang tayo, nag-iiyakan na tayong dalawa.”

Unlike their first project together a decade ago, when they were still newbies and so focused on building their individual careers, here in BetCin, a close friendship was born.

Andrea added, “Sobrang sarap niya (Kylie) kasama sa set, madaling patawanin, ang gaan. Para kaming barkada na naglalaro at natuto din at the same time. Feeling ko makikita din nila yun sa BetCin.”

When it came to their intimate scenes, there was no awkwardness at all, “iyon talaga ang magic,” said Andrea.

Kylie recalled, “We were so invested in our characters and comfortable kami sa isa’t isa. We were not awkward and we just wanted to give what direk (Shugo) wanted and what the script needed.”

“I guess we embraced our characters so much that there was no room for Andrea and Kylie,” Andrea said.

Love advice

Like their characters experiencing the highs and lows of love, Kylie and Andrea, in real life, also went through very public breakups over the pandemic.

During the interview, it was clear that they’re moving forward. The STAR asked the two if they had any lessons to share on how to survive and bounce back from failed relationships.

Kylie, who has since worked out a co-parenting setup following the breakdown of her marriage early this year, said, “Siguro when you’re in that phase of your life, it’s really important that you become patient with yourself. Kailangan mo rin pagdaanan eh. Sometimes, there’s a lot of pressure on us to be OK right away.

“Nandun yung social media. Ayaw natin magmukhang loser or broken or whatever, but kailangan mo talaga siya pagdaanan, for your own growth also. And OK lang yun. It doesn’t mean that you’re weak. You’re growing as a person. Nagmahal ka, nasaktan ka, OK lang umiyak but time will heal you. You will be a better person after that.”

For Andrea, “Lahat ng love, care, attention, pag-spo-spoil na nabigay mo sa partner mo — at yun yung reason na bakit ka na-hu-hurt di ba kasi binigay mo yun sa partner mo — deserve mo rin yun. Deserve mo ibalik sa sarili mo.

“If you’re going through a breakup, spoil yourself, listen to yourself, bigay mo lahat ng bagay na magpapasaya sa ‘yo kasi makakatulong talaga yun. Use this time to discover more about yourself because nothing happens in life na para lang sa walang dahilan. May reason yan lahat, that’s how life works. Lahat tayo may Diyos, so just trust that this is all part of the process.”

She echoed what Kylie said about pressuring oneself. “Kasi minsan pag masyado mong iniisip lahat, lalo kang di umuusad. One day at a time and relax lang. Makakarating ka dun at magugulat ka nalang, ‘Ay OK na ako.’ Parang ang bilis lang.”

In fact, Andrea is open to finding love again. “Open na po ako to meet people. Actually, nakipag-date-date na rin. Pero nagka-ECQ (recently) so parang sabi ko, ‘Ayaw ba ni Lord?’ Hindi, joke lang, hahaha! Naudlot lang because of ECQ but in between commitments, if there’s time, nagbibigay talaga ako ng oras ko for that. Important din yun.”

Kylie, on the other hand, is open but taking her time. “It just comes, you know. I don’t want to look for it. Darating nalang siya. Na-e-enjoy ko pa tong phase ng buhay ko na kaya ko ng manood ng (TV) mag-isa.

“Sobrang hirap sa akin yun dati, hahaha. Hindi ko kaya dati. ‘Ginagawa ko dati kasama ko siya, ngayon gagawin ko mag-isa.’ Now, na-e-enjoy ko siya at na-appreciate ko na ang sarili ko.”

Andrea further shared, “I feel that this is the best time kasi pag sobra kang nag-focus sa self-love, pag-nagkaroon ka ng relasyon, since buo ka, ang sarap pumasok (in a relationship)... You don’t go into a relationship to complete each other. Kailangang dalawang complete person na pagsasamahin mo.”

Kylie agreed, adding: “You don’t complete each other, you just make each other happy.”

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