Oh, Brother! TV quiz can make you laugh — and cry | Inquirer News

Oh, Brother! TV quiz can make you laugh — and cry

/ 05:30 AM April 13, 2022

MANILA, Philippines — A recent episode of the popular reality television show, “Pinoy Big Brother” (PBB), brought amusement to some and dejection to others after teen contestants failed a quiz on certain “basic nuggets” in Philippine history.

The show, which is watched by millions, has become a stepping stone to stardom for some of the most popular names in Philippine show business.

A clip from an episode last weekend featured a history question-and-answer portion where one teenage girl said Majoha and another girl said Marjo in answer to what collective name, or acronym, was given to three Filipino priests who were sentenced to death by the Spanish colonialists.


The correct answer is Gomburza, for Mariano Gomez, Jose Burgos and Jacinto Zamora, who were publicly executed in 1872 at Bagumbayan (now called Luneta or Rizal Park) after they were framed for treason and sedition. They were martyrs to whom national hero Jose Rizal dedicated his second novel “El Filibusterismo.”


J. Rizal instead of Pepe

The girl who answered Majoha also got it wrong when she replied “SLEx” (South Luzon Expressway) when asked for the name of the longest bridge in the country, which connects Samar and Leyte Islands. It is called the San Juanico Bridge.

The girl who gave the answer Marjo also said Rizal’s nickname was “J. Rizal” instead of Pepe.

A teenage boy said Melchora Aquino, the “Mother of the Katipunan,” was also known as “Ninoy Aquino.” Another boy called her “Nanay ng Bansa.” The correct answer is “Tandang Sora.”

The clip from the April 9 episode of “Pinoy Big Brother: Kumunity Season 10 Teen Edition” was posted on the show’s Facebook page the following day and had drawn 191,000 reactions, 22,000 comments, over 49,000 shares and 4.7 million views as of Tuesday.

The wrong answers from the teenage contestants became a trending topic on social media.

Many netizens were aghast at the mistakes by the PBB housemates on what they considered as “elementary” questions, prompting some on Twitter to mock the Department of Education (DepEd) to “open the schools now.”


One Twitter commenter was disheartened “that this very simple yet very important detail of our history didn’t ring any bells” for the PBB teens.

“We have so much work to do. It’s not just Martial Law,” another tweeted, referring to the Marcos dictatorship. “If we let things be with people never making sense of the whys of history, some troll will fill the gap for them.”

Lyqa Maravilla, an online educational content creator, said the low quality of education was not new to her.

Call to restore ‘history’

“I’ve met accountancy graduates who do not know how to divide, BSED English majors who cannot distinguish between your and you’re, and working professional teachers who are fake news spreaders,” she said on Twitter, adding that the “crisis” had been there for so long.

The nonprofit group High School Philippine History Movement said the teen housemates should not be ridiculed but instead helped to learn history.

It called for support in urging the DepEd to bring back Philippine history to the high school curriculum.

In 2014, DepEd issued Order No. 20, which mandated the removal of the dedicated course on Philippine history from the core curriculum instruction of “Araling Panlipunan” (Social Studies) in junior and senior high school.

Four years later, concerned social studies teachers, students, and citizens, along with the High School Philippine History Movement, petitioned for the return of the subject to the secondary education curriculum.

“Philippine History is no longer taught as a dedicated course of critical thinking and analysis in both junior high school and senior high school. (It) is currently solely studied in the elementary level (through Grades 5 and 6) and the collegiate level (through the college course Readings in Philippine History),” the petition said.

“Its removal from the secondary education level obstructs the cohesion of study on Philippine History in basic education,” it said.

No laughing matter

Another group called Philippine Social Conservative Movement in a Facebook post said it was “dejected rather than amused” about what the teen contestants displayed.

“Seeing the ignorance of the youth to the even most basic nuggets of our history as exemplified in this segment could not help but bring to tears the concern of what will the next generation of Filipinos will be?” it said.

Kabataan party list national president and first nominee Raoul Manuel on Tuesday said the absence of Philippine history subjects from the high school curriculum was to blame for the “disappointing” answers of PBB teen housemates.

Manuel pressed for a review and overhaul of the K to 12 program, citing the poor performance of the contestants in a simple history quiz.

“Alarming consequences of our educational system, as exposed in the PBB episode, should encourage public officials to seriously review and overhaul the K-12 program after more than five years since it was introduced,” he said.

PBB host Robi Domingo said the episode was amusing at first “but the longer it gets, it’s not funny anymore.”



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