Jerry Donato – The Philippine Star

February 19, 2022 | 12:00am

Mikael Daez is taking a breather from small-screen acting as he steps into the main host role of The Best Ka!, which premieres tomorrow at 3:50 p.m. on GMA 7. It’s his first time to host a full TV show, although Mikael shows his gift for gab in news segments and in the podcast, Behind Relationship Goals, with wife Megan Young (Miss World 2013).

His charisma and confidence as an actor, shown in previous works like in the comedy Alex and Amie and family drama Love of my Life, will help him find his foothold or niche in TV hosting.

“I have done a lot of teleseryes. I enjoy acting, I really do,” replied Mikael when asked about this welcome change and manna from showbiz heaven in a virtual press conference. “The previous teleserye, Love of my Love was very enjoyable for me to do and memorable. But I really also enjoy hosting, especially when I’m with my wife. During the pandemic and the lockdowns, me and my wife were hosting a lot virtually and we were recording a lot. So, I guess our experiences together (ay) mailalabas na rin namin sa GMA, in a TV show. I’m really, really excited. If you’ve seen the trailer, you’re going to see snippets of me and my wife interacting and I’m excited for the Kapuso to see our interactions.”

For the pilot episode, Mikael will be joined by Megan as his guest co-host. Working within the infotainment genre, the young couple will present different Guinness World Records from the Philippines and the world. This boils down to one thing: Featuring record-breaking, awe-inspiring and mind-blowing content. Thus, the title is The Best Ka!.

“We’re featuring world records, which is the best of the best and I guess yung awe factor, the excitement factor, the aliw factor of knowing ‘OK, what is the best in the world,” said he, who also described the show a comedy infotainment, based on the introduction done during the media call, ‘then dinadagdagan pa natin ng konting pagiging bibo ng hosts, pagsasayaw ng hosts, I guess it’s a confluence of all these things.”

The Best Ka! has given Mikael the chance to work with Dear Uge director Tata Betita, and the team behind one of his early shows, Ismol Family. “I worked with them for two and a half years. I know them well and they know me well as well,” said he.

As for the fine details of his work, Mikael shared: “Kami yung bubwelo dun sa audience, papunta mismo dun sa feature (Me and my wife will hype up their interest leading to the feature). I guess yung ginawa nung writers, si direk Ta and the whole staff was yung pagbwelo na yun in-inject-an nila ng creativity, comedy, good vibes, fun vibes (The writers, the director and the whole staff put creativity, comedy, good and fun vibes in it).” One can compare it to a pre-chorus that prepares the listeners to the song’s chorus and in some extent builds up its main energy.

“Natuwa ako dun ‘coz it allows me to enjoy and play, our hope is ma-enjoy at ma-enganyo rin yung Kapuso audience natin ‘pag nakita nila,” added he, who could also attest to the fun the creative and production people had while taping for The Best Ka! and everyone’s openness for collaboration, among the host, the writers and the director, for instance.

“You can see people experimenting,” shared he. “For me, as a creative, yun yung pinakamasaya, sobrang collaboration lang, nanduon kami on set about to tape a certain scene or a certain sketch or a certain part and I’m like ‘Alam mo direk, subukan natin ito,’ and (he tells me), ‘Miks, subukan mo rin ito.’ So, parang (there’s) a lot of creativity and collaboration going on and I couldn’t ask for more.”

Being the face of an infotainment show reminds Mikael of his understanding about hosting, in which he learned from director Freddie Santos.

“Ikaw yung naghahatid ng main part ng program to the audience,” said he, “As a host, you’re the presenter and the bridge, tulay ka para swabe yung paghatid ng impormasyon dun sa audience and nakakatuwa dahil suportado yung konsepto na yun ng buong team (what’s good about it is, the entire team supports the concept)… I think that you’ll find a different side of me. Dun sa trailer pa lang, you can see me dancing and people know that I don’t dance that well… They’ll find out different quirks about me.”

For sure, Mikael’s cool, calm, collected side, plus the fun, smart persona will be seen in the show, as being previewed in his content on social media like vlogs and TikToks.

“First time yata na lalabas yung side na ‘to dun sa isang hosting show,” said the host. “Siyempre, they’ve seen snippets of it as a character in Ismol Family, as a character in Bubble Gang. Pero dito sa The Best Ka!, I’m coming in as me, as Mikael. So, I guess ibang side naman ang makikilala ng Kapuso natin… Definitely, I’m having a lot of fun.”

Acting project-wise, Mikael was also inquired about the TV series, to be headlined by him and Megan, that Kapuso audiences can add to their “entertainment fare.” The actor-host gave everyone an update by saying that “there was something lined up for us. But the thing is, I think with all the external factors, ang daming na-shu-shuffle. So, right now, we really just wait for the call. If there’s a text (saying) ‘OK, mag-start na tayo,’ then we’ll start na. It just so happens na ito pa yung nauna, yung The Best Ka!… we just wait.”

For now, viewers get to enjoy the husband-and-wife tandem of Mikael and Megan in the premiere of The Best Ka! as well as the TV host in Mikael.

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