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HomeEditorialASWANG: Bacolod-based pharmacy giant banners fairness in latest ad

ASWANG: Bacolod-based pharmacy giant banners fairness in latest ad

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BACOLOD CITY, Negros Occidental, Philippines – Budding filmmaker Charlton Jocson has produced an ad for Negros Grace Pharmacy that banners the call for fairness with Jocson using the mythical creature “aswang” to highlight this.

The abridged 41-second video ad features brand ambassador John Arceo, one of the more popular actors from here, as the unflappable pharmacist who caters to beings both normal and strange.

It opens with a night shot showing a well-lighted Negros Grace pharmacy that cuts inside to a woman receiving her order of medicines from John.

John Arceo. | Screencap from Negros Grace Pharmacy ad.
John Arceo. | Screencap from Negros Grace Pharmacy ad.
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Behind the woman is an out-of-focus character that appears to be wearing a black hoodie.

It is later revealed as the camera shifts to the point of view of the woman that she is now facing the aswang who was sniffling and suddenly sneezes.

Seeing this, the woman faints and, after leaning over the counter to look at the woman on the floor, John the pharmacist looks at the aswang and asks: ano imo, sir (what do you want, sir)?

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The aswang replies: isa lang ka ceterizine (just one ceterizine).

Ceterizine is an antihistamine, a type of drug used to treat allergies.

The scene cuts to a shot of John and the aswang as light music plays and a voice over of “Negros Grace, serbisyo nga wala pili (Negros Grace, we serve everyone).”

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Jocson, a college student, is founder of Charlolo and is one of the local and award-winning filmmaker based in Bacolod.

Screencap from Negros Grace Pharmacy ad.

Jocson told DNX he used the aswang character as the familiar peg in the commercial, it being an integral part of Negrense culture.

The aswang, oftentimes translated to “witch” in English, is the mythical creature that actually has shapeshifting abilities and kills and eats humans.

To Jocson, it serves to “exaggerate the message that (Negros Grace Pharmacy) serves each and every unique Negrosanon.”

“The style of the advertisement aims to catch the attention of social media users while also promoting the strong features of NGP,” he added.

Negros Grace Pharmacy owned by the Lo family is the largest pharmacy chain based here and was founded in the 1960s by the late physician Manuel Lo.

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Julius D. Mariveles
Julius D. Mariveles
An amateur cook who has a mean version of humba, the author has recently tried to make mole negra, the Mexican sauce he learned by watching shows of master chef Rick Bayless. A journalist since 19, he has worked in the newsrooms of radio, local papers, and Manila-based news organizations. A stroke survivor, he now serves as executive editor of DNX.


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