Grounded, realistic BL in ‘Ben X Jim’

STAR CIRCUIT - Ricky L. Calderon (The Freeman) - February 26, 2021 - 12:00am

Film director Easy Ferrer did not expect a positive reception for his BL film “Ben X Jim” for Regal Entertainment which stars Jerome Ponce and Teejay Marquez.

“Initially I had anxieties weeks before our airing,” Direk Easy told Star Circuit thru FB messenger. “It’s caused by the fact that a lot of successful BLs already aired and there were a lot more airing that time. We actually picked up after episodes 2 and 3 and I was overwhelmed when I saw and heard the hype about it. We felt so relieved and happy. All the effort and energy were worth it.”

He believes the main reasons for the good feedback are the simplicity and relatability of the story, plus the good visuals. Direk Easy was surprised when he got messages from those outside the LGBTQI community saying that they are fans of the show. These are mothers, straight men and single women who related to the kilig of “Ben X Jim,” which is streaming worldwide in Upstream.ph.

They are now exploring new story arcs to make Season 2 different. “Season 2 will be a more grounded, bittersweet reality of love and the consequences of fighting for your love. It will have more diverse subplots from other characters like workplace discrimination, sexual exploration and positivity, gender reassignment and self-validation, May-December love affair and maturity issues, cat fishing, social media toxicity and cancel culture. There will be in-depth political discussions, but still all the stories are relatable,” he shared.

Direk Easy found it difficult to fine-tune the characters to make them unique from each other, and making sure the stories are coherent. It also had to follow one universal theme for the series, which is time. The easy part was becoming close to everyone on set. “Everyone is happy, plus all the actors delivered with precision and clarity,” he said.

How does “Ben X Jim” differ from other Pinoy BL series? “It’s more of an overall experience. There are diverse characters with unique stories. It’s an expanded BL genre. It’s relatable to the masses, does not alienate by being too preachy, and takes care of the audience experience with its grounded and realistic storytelling.”


The serene life and blissful romance of Jasmine Curtis-Smith and JC De Vera’s roles will turn upside down because of a controversy in their careers.

Katja Majarais (Jasmine) is a member of popular all-female dance group on television. Carlito Sicat (JC) is a former child actor who wants to make a showbiz comeback.

The story starts with Carlito and Katya already an item. But their happy relationship goes haywire when Katya was exposed in an unguarded situation while dancing on TV. Carlito was dragged into Katya’s controversy when his past scandal before leaving showbiz was unearthed, adding more fuel to the fire.

Because of their desire for media exposure aimed to clear their names and earn them a shot at fame anew, it only ruined their reputation and nearly shattered their relationship – ending in a shocking tragedy.

Titled “General Admission” and set to stream next month, this is interesting viewing fare as it mirrors the lives of people destroyed by social media. Directed by singer Jeffrey Hidalgo for Oxxipital Films, it also stars Rossana Roces, Nanette Inventor, and Archie Adamos.


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