What happened to drunk malays on film?

Watching Keluarga 69 on Astro Prima, and I see a drunk P. Ramlee walking back to face an upset father at home. It's played to comic effect, but the comedy is more in the argument between father and son, rather than a stumbling drunk not being able to make sense of his situation or environment. In other words, the drinking is bad

Could we do a scene like this these days without a character saying "Astarfirllahulazeem..."? Why has a moral imperative seeped into our entertainment?

I glanced over yesterday's headlines on PAS wanting to establish Hudud laws in Terengganu. Maybe I'm just a middle-class urbanite stuck far away from the realities of Kuala Terengganu, but it smacks of politics of the worst sort - we say what we say because it'll win us support.

Is this what has happened to the Malaysian film industry? When maybe a good story was once enough, now we have to incorporate 'good' values into the scripts. Again, we say what we say because it's what we feel people expect.

I want to say, let's remember the story comes first, and let viewers decide on the morality. So there.

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posted on Wednesday, December 24, 2008 - permalink
Yes, let the viewers deal with the story. Our film industries, I am sure we have many talents to advance interesting stories. The facts of life would be interesting.

But then, handling problems has shifted to number two in priority. Top priority has been pointing fingers; the blame game has become the culture of the Malaysian society. Part of that society, the viewers. Blame the movies for the existence of Mat Rempit? The irony, The Fast and Furious still get a place in the Malaysian cinemas.

This affects everything and we can't move forward easily when our own society seems to be conservative. But who can shout this out to be heard?
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Notes for Ghost Episode 1

For those of you who have not seen the program yet, 8TV has been generous enough to put up episodes on their website. This is a Good Thing, and I am grateful to whomever in 8TV it was who came up with this policy. (Incidentally, because I am currently out of the country, even I haven't had a chance to see it on Malaysian TV yet!)

Well, I know there were some people out there who liked reading the notes I did for Realiti, so I'll try to do the same for Ghost. However, because I was not as involved in this show, they'll be a little more sketchy, and more from the point of the viewer - less insight, more outside.

The number one thing I worry about when I first saw the pilot was: Is it clear enough? Is it clear what is happening in the episode, and does it unambiguously set up what is going to happen in the rest of the series? A very clever man once said that if your third act doesn't work, the problem is in the first act. Similarly, if you can't relate what happens in the final episode with what happens in the first... well, damnit, we should have rewrote the first.

Or at least make it clearer. So, the notes below are spoilers which explain what's going on in the episode.

So, I hope you're satisfied with the first episode, and that it sets you up for the rest. I think I've outlined above all the clues in the episode that relate to the murder. Please note that (as far as I'm concerned) this episode already introduces three potential suspects, excluding Eza or the possibility of a suicide/accident.

However (and this is important), Ghost is not one of these shows where all the clues have been laid out before hand and viewers will be able to figure out whodidit straight away. There are a lot of stories to tell, and although there are a few things you can guess at, there are also herrings of the red (or at least pinkish) variety. In fact, anyone who can even guess at the actual murder before episode 7 or 8 is possibly psychic or has inside knowledge of Ping's brain.

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posted on Monday, February 04, 2008 - permalink
"Ghosts actually affect the world around them, but do so unconsciously. It's when they want to deliberately interact with physical objects that things become difficult."

OK. I'll accept that.
One word.

hi!m a big fan of the series.i really love the intro song.plz give me some details.n i cant access to the past there any way i can get the whole series?thnx!
Wow! Huraian yang menarik.

Aku juga sedang membuat ulasan bagi musim ke-2.
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Thoughts on 8TV's new series: Ghost

If Dzof has peeked from under the anonymous bedcovers of the Internet, it must mean that he has something he thinks is important to say. Well, true:

Yes, Popiah Picture's latest production, Ghost, is making its debut this Sunday. As far as involvement goes, I feel I had less of a hand in this one than I did in Realiti, for all sorts of reasons, but mainly because I tried to jam too many things into one day.

The trailer above should give you a good idea what the show is about, but I wanted to write a little about the history of the show, and what guided us through its various machinations and incarnations.

Truth be told, the very initial idea came from Ping, and I never really questioned how it really started, but we seemed to agree that it should be two things: (1) A detective whodunnit - who killed Zack Imran?; and (2) A love story about what happens when want what we can't have.

For the detective part of things, I remember that we used Veronica Mars a lot as an example, and a lot of how clues are revealed as part of the larger story arc is basically either setting up or eliminating suspects. The final solution of how Zack died was settled even before episode two was written. So, no Sashi, it wasn't a case of "the manager in the parking lot with a candlestick".

I personally worry that it may be a little complicated, but we have trust that 8TV viewers are smart enough (and weaned enough) with modern entertainment that they can figure out how things fall into place.

For the love story, this is clearly set up from the very beginning, when Eza is dumped by her boyfriend Adzam in practically the second scene of the show. If you think this is a case of will-they, won't-they, then you're right. I don't know how clearly it's articulated in the final product, but the idea is that Adzam had his own particular reasons for dumping her, and then when those reasons are turned around, he looks for reconcilliation. And, yes, in effect Zack acts as the nth party in all this.

As for the "ghost" bits... well, we didn't delve too much into it. I had an idea that Zack should reveal his powers slowly over the season, much like Clark does in Smallville, but that idea was thrown out in the end. It's a slight shame for me, because I thought it would make for a nice third story arc, jiving nicely with the rise and fall of the other two arcs, but hey... I'm just a writer.

So, although on the surface it looks like we moved away to something more thriller-based, at the end of the day, like for most of life, it's still about love.

(AND, if you should happen to be on facebook, you can join in the fun by adding yourself to the group It's Ghost, not Hantu to keep track of the latest updates.)

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posted on Thursday, January 31, 2008 - permalink
yay veronica mars! looking fwd to the detective side, loved the vmars and the concept.
Ah, so you did read my email. ;)

I know who killed Zack Imran - it was Ping! And you! All of youse! Youse whacked him!

Cheryl Samad rocks! :P
Boo! U updated!! Congrats!!!

And, I'm very very sorry but I missed the first epi... I had everything planned, staying home to watch it but I kinda got carried away with my little thing on my own page.

Sorry lah kawan! Can you get me a recorded version or something close to it or not?!
i love ghost.. hehehe i mean the series yer. the lead role, cheryl and naz make a perfect combination also all the supporting roles, memang best cos the acting so natural.

credits to sumer2 yang involved in this series.. memang gempak & best :) keep it up the good works.
love the show soooo much. please upload in utube k, as im only depends to my laptops. nice drama. love u bang naz =)
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What's new, procrastinating blogger?

Just a quick glance at the dates, and you will see that I haven't updated this blog for a very long time.

So, the usual list of things done so far will need to suffice for now:
This list may still grow...

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posted on Sunday, June 24, 2007 - permalink

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Contradictheory: Relaks, Brader

Another fortnight, another article. Maybe, perhaps, you may wonder how much of what I write stays in. Well, this week I over-wrote slightly by about 200 words, and they edited accordingly. All the 'smart, funny' comments (read 'what the heck is he trying to say?') were the first to go, but they pretty much kept the essence of it.

This was a strange one to write, because I commented about the Amazing Race Asia, so the first draft I had said, "...the finalists for the race...". Thursday's episode was aired and I hurriedly changed it to "...the winners of the race...", and added another paragraph.

They also like to change the title. Theirs was "Relaxing our way to the top". Mine was "Relaks, Brader". Not a biggie, but I like mine better.
Relaxing our way to the top

CONGRATULATIONS to Joe Jer and Zabrina, the Malaysian pair who recently won the first Asian edition of the Amazing Race. Winning US$100,000 (RM350,000) isn’t something to sneeze at, but more importantly, they managed to overcome tremendous obstacles to grab first place. So, what was their secret? That’s a tough question to answer.

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posted on Tuesday, February 06, 2007 - permalink
you're always so hard on yourself la..
How have you been?
Oh.. I like 'Relaks, Brader' better too...
hi,came across your site on my research on trans siberian. Very impress that a fellow malaysian travelled overland to europe. Haven't met many travellers from Malaysia during my years in europe.. well done! From a fellow malaysian living now in sweden...
dzof, thanks for the open source piece and check out my acknowledgement here.
I wonder if being selamba will also wins the race..
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Now the whole world thinks I'm a thief

The second issue (copy? installment? Me brain works mushy on Sundays) of Contradictheory has appeared today. In it, I talk about how great it is to be able to download TV shows and movies over the Internet. For free. Naturally people will think that I practice what I preach.

Of course, those in the know will recognise Bittorrent. But there are also TV stations that provide their stuff online (did you know that RTM is availabe as online stream?).

And if your IP address says it's from the USA, NBC will make available their shows to your PC, including every episode so far of Heroes.

So, not all stuff online is illegal, and some of the Powers That Be are beginning to see the advantage of making it available on the net. Now if only all the PTBs thought that way. I'm not saying they have to give it away for free, but if you make it easy and make it cheap, then people will come by.

See it first – on the Internet

If you know how, the latest movie, TV series or song is only a download away.

ASK a Malaysian teenager what their current favourite TV shows are, and you might get an answer that includes Heroes, Friday Night Lights and Ugly Betty.

The funny thing about these three shows is that none of them are showing in Malaysia at the moment.

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posted on Sunday, January 21, 2007 - permalink
Congrats on Contradictheory! And I loved your article today. Keep up the awesome work :)
don't you think its like tv then? its free cuz we have to switch channels during the adverts..having said that it is best to let the lawyers of youtube worry the degree of wrongness..even if they get sued it'll only cost like about, maybe, oh my,let me see.. 2 percent of their revenue anyway?
in short i refuse to be called a thief :D
Hi, dzof, came here via Mayakirana. Congrats on your new column in Starmag. How is your name pronounced? Is it like Dissolve or is the D silent?
RTM available as online stream? The question is, "Do we really want to watch RTM channels?"

Blerghhh.. Heh.

P/S: AM suffering from Realiti withdrawal symptoms. Will there be another season, ever?
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Realiti on bittorrent

I've just discovered that Realiti is currently available on bittorrent from It should be of higher quality than what you get off YouTube.

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posted on Wednesday, November 22, 2006 - permalink
i was thinking of not telling you this, i was the one who posted all 10 episodes on the d-addicts. i got the realiti show from my friend who record it directly from the tv. he posted me the show since i am studying overseas, and this is probably the best malaysian TV drama ever i have watched. so i geared up myself and promote to everyone that i know, by posting it up on d-addicts. i hope u dont mind though. i did it because i thought the show is so good. now u even got fans from all over the world. people from Japan and US have asked me when will i post other malaysian TV drama. interesting isnt it? okay, anyhow, keep posting up on your blog. thank you so much for the show and for your creativity.hope to see more of your work!
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Take a bite out of Kitchen Confidential

I told myself: No more posts about TV now that Realiti has ended it's run. And, yet, the debut of Kitchen Confidential on Malaysian TV (NTV7, Wednesdays 10.45pm) forces me to at least say, Watch this show, even though it didn't last for more than 13 episodes, it's pretty tasty. Based on the Anthony Bourdain autobiography of the same name, it's a comedy in the style of Arrested Development set in the sizzling-paced world of haute cuisine.

Never mind the corny description, give the show a nibble. Okay, okay, give it a chance.


posted on Wednesday, November 22, 2006 - permalink
Read the book, was very entertaining. Bourdain's really funny and a good non-fiction writer. Can't say the same for his cheesy fiction though.
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So, Realiti's over. What next?

So, Realiti (season 1) is over and done with - what next? Well, I still don't know if there will be a second season of the show. Usually, if it takes this long for people to decide, it would mean a 'no'. Believe or not, the budget for this was quite high for a Malaysian show, and even then there wasn't enough left over to do any reshoots or rerecordings. On the other hand, if a company stepped forward and said they were willing to sponsor it, I'm sure it's something 8TV would sit up and listen to.

ANYWAY, that still hasn't stopped us discussing privately what we could do in a second season. Admittedly, they're short four or five sentence conversations, and I can confidently say that a second season may or may not include the following:

As you can see, Ping and I are great about planning ahead.

Nevertheless, there is another new Popiah Pictures production on the horizon. This is not Realiti. This is a completely different show. We're not even sure about the title yet. I'm currently going for Dwi Dunia or Hidup Kembar, but a good title should tell you what the show's about in an instant, and neither of these do.

The show will be similar to Realiti in a few ways:

The show will be different in a few ways too:

I'm sure the last point may have made people sit up. Hmm. That's all I can tell you now, simply because the rest we haven't really decided yet. Probably due out sometime mid/late 2007.

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posted on Sunday, November 12, 2006 - permalink
all the best then!
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Things I learnt from Realiti

Whew. Realiti has been a bit of a roller-coaster ride. For my own good, I should do some sort of 'lessons learnt' post. Because it's always good to relook over what you've done and cringe at your mistakes. And if I do it as a post, I can get some of you to shout at me if I've missed anything out, or got anything wrong. Anyway, this is what I know, now that I've done the show:

There's probably a few more things I can write about, but I'm geting hungry, and I need to eat. Man cannot live on words alone, you understand.

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posted on Thursday, November 09, 2006 - permalink
it hasn't been a week and i already miss realiti....please make a season 2 wif the same cast. without them, the show will just be different....well, the things i learnt from realiti is to never underestimate a local show coz it is just as good as the others !

p.s. i wasn't able to catch the first episode so i scanned through the whole You Tube but failed to find it....could u pleaseee...upload it..
You can actually find links to all the YouTube vids at
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Realiti - Episode 10 notes

So, the final episode of Realiti, with a grand final and a whole slew of stories being wrapped up. What's surprising is that everyone thinks it ends on a cliff-hanger, but we didn't really mean to design this with a second season in mind - it should be watchable on its own.

Personally, I'm a little disappointed with this episode. It's okay, I guess, but for a season finale, it should be more than okay. Several things work against it: the season storylines seem to trot down to a gentle amble, the performances in the finale aren't the best, and some of the acting and writing feels a little rushed.

On the other hand, there are some pretty awesome shots (particularly in the Burn story) and it does end with a bang.

Nevertheless, I've said it before, and I'll say it now. Notwithstanding my bias, I think that Realiti is the best Malaysian show on television this year. If you agree with me, you should drop 8TV a line and thank them for it.

Missed it? YouTube it: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5

Realiti. 10pm Sundays on 8TV, starring Azizan Nin, Ashraf Sinclair, Melissa Maureen, Alvin Wong, Chelsia Ng, Radhi Khalid. With Nazrudin Rahman, Juliana Ibrahim, Kee Thuan Chye, Reefa, Lydia Ibtisam, Nell Ng, Cheyenne Stutzriem, Aishah Sinclair. Special appearances by Fat Fabes, Carmen Soo and Fly Guy. What would you do to become a star?

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posted on Tuesday, November 07, 2006 - permalink
heya, i too thought it was a cliff hanger. but it really doesn't matter cuz i want a season two and more! i even send a message to 8tv pleading for them to bring back Realiti. it's been an amazing show and such superb storyline boosted with fantabulous production.

and btw, thanks for uploading the song sung by chelsia ng, it's my favourite yet!
overall, good show. but i do think the storyline is so rushed, especially ep 10 coz i think u guys were trying to tie up all the stories. wished it was longer la... but then, maybe u guys put too much drama on one contestant. banyak sgt drama until kinda missed out on the main plot - the competition. but if the series was longer and u had more time to develop each stories, i think it would have been great. not that it isn't great now! and mac and wahida - dah agak mesti got something between them. right from the beginning, there was some tension between the 2.

ps: which building did u guys film all the roof top scenes? me and my bro are trying to figure out... we're thinking somewhere in city, near OCBC bank/Bank Bumi.
Al: The building in question is Bangunan Ming in Bukit Nenas. Take a look on the map, and see if you can identify the landmarks you see off the rooftop!
i love love joe and burn's phone conversation.. keep repeating the scene over n over again..super kudos to reefa's acting..
and their fighting scene before too.. the best la..
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Best of Them All - Cast of Realiti

So I said I wouldn't upload any mp3s, but I kinda really like this song, so I decided to YouTube the sucker. Nice song, all the kids sound okay - what more do you want?

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posted on Monday, November 06, 2006 - permalink
thankz for uploading the video.. i love it sooo much and its so sweet.. but then aite, when will the realiti of episode 10 will be upload..?i m from s'pore so can't get the channel of 8tv so i just depend on the youtube itself..can upload a bit faster? can't wait fer the episode.. thank u very much!!
Aww, thanks for the vid!

And the final episode was awesome!! It's too short la, the show! I want more!!

There really should be a season 2, BUT with the same casts please! It wouldn't be the same without the same casts!

p/s: The last part was a good cliffhanger but when there's a cliffhanger, there SHOULD be a sequel! ;) Also, please don't tell me Burn died!!!
good show. great effort. too bad melissa (baby) cant sing
dzof, i emailed izham but he said they're looking at the DVD, but he said it's tough to come out with the soundtrack. i really want the soundtrack :P
Isaac: Wow. That's the first I've heard of the DVD. I'm not entirely surprised about the soundtrack (since the songs are pretty short as they are recorded now, and there probably needs to be heavy re-recording for some of them). But DVD? Hmm...
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One Step by Chelsia Ng

The voters have spoken: If it's Melody Yeoh you want, it's Chelsia Ng you'll get!

Get the Flash Player to see this player.

One Step by Melody, from the first episode of Realiti.

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posted on Saturday, November 04, 2006 - permalink
Great song and she sounds great! :) But I do want songs by Amir!! Esp that english song he sang (NOT "Knocking On Heaven's Door" lol)!

Hmm, I'll go pester 8tv for the OST to be released la! :D
great song.. great voice!
where I can pimp the song? Mind sending me a copy? :P hehehe
a bit out of she has a sweet voice. =)
bongkersz: To be honest, I'm not even sure if I should be putting the song up, but I just wanted to share what I had. I hope you don't mind that I don't put a direct link to the song.
dzof.. hahahha...
post more songs :P :P :P
Thanks for the song. Put up more =)
hey dzof, wonder if people start writing to 8tv requesting to have a soundtrack. will they ever consider coming out one?
revolution, eve: Sorry... don't think I'll be posting more mp3s for the time being. Already somebody-whose-name-I-won't-mention-but-let's-call-her-Melissa merungut because she thinks I'm out to embarrass her or something.

isaac: What I think is that if somebody somewhere sees an opportunity to make money, then they will. And enough demand = opportunity. (Same applies for DVDs, naturally.)
i love this song.. the first time i heard chels singing it i was like.. ooohhhhh.. melted like butter.. :) thanks dzof for putting this up!! :)
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Realiti - Episode 9 notes

Which contestant would you like me to upload a song from?
Free polls from

We're now one step away from the last episode of Realiti, and personally, I honestly don't know if the next is the last ever episode or not. 8TV haven't said whether they want a second season. If you are curious (or you really want to watch a second season of Mac trying to be tough, yet nice, to a bunch of good looking people), drop them a note at their website. Actually, if you want a soundtrack of their songs, or merchandise (they have a notebook with the five kids on the cover), then you can ask them for that as well.

Talking about the soundtrack, I have managed to get hold of the first cuts of the kids singing songs. These are recordings of Ashraf, Zizan, Mel, Chelsia and Alvin warbling, before final post-production, so it's all a little raw and... er... not as in tune as we would like. I want to put a track or two up, but I shall leave it to you all to decide which of the five get the priveliege. Vote in the poll in this post, and if you want one song in particular, tell me in the comments below.

So, as usual, don't read these notes if you haven't seen the episode. You can watch them on YouTube: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5.

Realiti. 10pm Sundays on 8TV, starring Azizan Nin, Ashraf Sinclair, Melissa Maureen, Alvin Wong, Chelsia Ng, Radhi Khalid. With Nazrudin Rahman, Juliana Ibrahim, Kee Thuan Chye, Reefa, Lydia Ibtisam, Nell Ng, Aishah Sinclair. Special appearances by Fat Fabes, Carmen Soo and Fly Guy. What would you do to become a star?

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posted on Wednesday, November 01, 2006 - permalink
I noticed that the comments from the judges are sometimes pretty "soft".It's unlike the biting comments dished out by Roslan Aziz and Paul Moss.

Btw,are there going to be any reruns of Realiti?
Hmm, yah. Figuring out the judges comments didn't really keep us up all night. In hindsight, we could have used more acid, but the judges were half-ad libbing as well during the shoot.

I don't know about the reruns - Popiah Pictures has no say in that at all. You'll have to grill 8TV for that.
Hmm, what happen to the Baby's photoshoot? The magazine cover? What happen? And the part where Dayang was talking to her collegue in the 'makan room' ... She wasn't actually saying anything LOL! She's like mumbling then laugh for nothing... Alvin always use his lines right? Hahaha...
I'm not writer, but, whats so interesting about the Amir and Baby's story to keep them to the end? Personally, I think baby's story is so dragged out, its starting to get boring.
revolution: What happened was that the photographer promised Baby the cover, but he reneged on his part of the deal. You're meant to think this when Mac tells the other kids that the photographer tells them they all have a chance to be on the cover too. Not obvious, I know.

Anonymous: Yes, I don't completely disagree with you. The problem with the Amir/Baby story is that the stakes don't keep building up - neither doesn't have more to lose in ep9, as compared in ep7. But, the plan was to have Amir in until ep10 from the beginning ('popular kampung boy' phenomena). And his core story is whether to throw the competition or not.

Baby's core story is her relationship with Fazrina. It could have quite easily been swapped with Nickson's story (i.e. in ep8 instead of 10), but I liked the Nickson story so much, that I selfishly wanted to tell it by itself in ep8. Baby's story is more Ping's baby (pun semi-intended), so he addressed it in 9 and 10. I know, writer's ego gets in the way, but if I really believed it would make a big difference, I would have wrapped up Baby's story earlier, and Nickson's later.
i dont really feel so much for the competition. The storylines focused on external factors like family and friends. This rarely happens on real competitions because contestants gets temporary isolation from the world and its problems.

But the problems are the ones that we can really relate to. The competition is only a side-dish. I like.
how dare you post an unedited version of my singing? you know how bad it is already. AFTER editing. there goes my dignity...
Hey Mel, if people want to hear your melliferous voice, who am I to deny them? Power to the people! (Anyway, Chelsia/Melody beat you out on that one. Jangan jealous!)
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Realiti's Nickson: How his story came about

"Why was Nickson kicked out? To prove the point that gays can't be on reality TV? That's tragic isn't it?"

That's what Karin wrote below, as a comment to episode 8 of Realiti. And yes, I agree that if that was the point, then it would be extremely tragic. But, of course, that wasn't really the point we were trying to make.

(I was going to reply to this in a comment, but then realised that it would have taken up a little bit too much space. And everything I write below is from my vague and fuzzy memory. Ping might contradict what I have here, and if he does, I'll edit this post to accommodate his comments.)

First of all, the idea of Nickson as an effeminate character was Ping's from the very beginning. He felt that people would like watching him, and I think the original preview audience feedback supported it. People like a campish character who bitches about everything and generally acts silly.

I personally didn't like that we had to resort to that kind of humour to reach an audience. It's a cheap shot, and because we're doing it over and over again, it's a bucket-load of cheap shots. Like buckshot made of rock salt or something. Not difficult to get hold of, and leaves a funny taste in the mouth. On the other hand, there were real-life people who fitted the mould (Adam of Malaysian Idol 2, for example; or Bob from Akademi Fantasia), so it wasn't really that far of a stretch to put them in.

Never mind, I said. What's the story? What is it about them that will change throughout the series? I don't remember there being any doubt that we would be tackling Nickson's effeminity (is there such a word), one way or the other. Exactly what, we debated upon that.

One choice would be to have people insisting that he be more manly, that he stop being so soft. This is exactly what happened to Adam of MI2. Judges kept telling him to firm up, add a little masculinity to his performance. I always wondered, "Why?". The core of every performance is honesty, and if somebody feels a fake in what they do, then I don't think they do so well. So, I thought this would be an interesting dilemma.

The other choice was to actually step up and make Nickson gay. If we did that, the dilemma would be different. He would have had more to lose. Can an openly gay character win votes on a reality show? Maybe, maybe not. There certainly would be controversy, but I think there have been plenty of Malaysian artists who have that implicit lifestyle. So being gay, in itself, may not cause that many problems.

But what if his fanbase were primarily young, teenage girls? How would that play out? As I asked, what if Daniel of MI2 had told all his teeny-bopping pink-clad hyperactive female fans, "sorry girls, I'm more interested in guys". I think he would alienate his core base, and lose votes.

Of course, it doesn't have to be sexual orientation. In fact, we put Amir through a similar sort of wringer with all the accusations of him being involved with Baby. But the big difference is, Amir doesn't choose which way to go. With Nickson, we tried to put it at his feet. Make a choice: Deny your close relationship with Calvin, or lose your chance to win Malaysian Star.

(Incidentally, Karin, it is this element of choice that is important in storytelling. Remember, Raz or David said that you shouldn't have an Act of God as a key plot element? It should be a choice. And it can't be an easy choice. That's what I like about the Burn/Melody storyline in episode 7. After Mac discovers the drugs, everything that happens to them is a result of choices made. I think that the Nickson story in episode 8 lacks that build-up.)

Despite what you may read into what I've said above, I need to make one thing clear: We were NOT trying to tackle homosexuality as an issue. We were trying to tell a story, and those issues happened to be the mechanisms to tell that story. We were certainly not trying to say whether it's right or wrong.

If we had Nickson admit his relationship with Calvin, and then carry on to get the votes, then there wouldn't be a dilemma. He wouldn't have lost anything. It would have been a bad story.

(Myself, I feel that a personal lifestyle choice is... well, personal. As in, not anybody elses business.)

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posted on Tuesday, October 24, 2006 - permalink
yeah. totally agree with you! artists are also human and they have thier own privacy. didnt know why the public is making a big fuss about their personal life. :)
just wanted to let alvin know votes doesnt mean nobody likes you. ;)
you act reaaaally well...and youre singing is about the best among the lot!
dzof: 1 thing about malaysian mini-drama series.... tooooo short!!! 10 episodes oni?
Hey, thanks for your kind words fashionasia. da poll doesn't do anything to me. as long as people laugh at my super lame jokes and nonsensical adlibs, i'm happy. by da way, i think i sound best singing Hokkien songs. Chelsia should know.
so er... ya wanna do dinner sometime? you can choose to date Alvin or Nickson, or both if dat's your thang...
Trust Alvin to organise a threesome with himself.
Hie Dzof! Lol, cheap shot or not, it works! I love Alvin's acting and Nickson's character! I think without him, the show would have been a lil dull! :)

P/S: 2 more episodes!! :(
Hey, thanks for your kind words Cherz... so er, ya wanna do dinner sometime?... but seriously, dat's too much credit for me to digest. typically, a character like Nickson's is pretty much pre-designed for a certain degree of, well, tickles. a character like dat will always lighten up the mood of da show. except this time Nickson da drama queen did have some dramatic moments, with Nickson and da mom getting slapped and abused by da dad and all.
So what's your schedule like?...
too bad nickson was voted out. he's my favourite character.i agree that alvin act very of the best actors from the i feel like watching all over again from epi 1. nickson is soooo funny. wahahaahaha.

p/s:alvin, i saw you in the curve some time back.if i ever see you again, can i take a picture with you?LOL.i dare not approach you tat day.respect your privacy ma hahaha
okay, here it goes again... Hey, thanks for your kind words jade_butterfly... so er... nevermind. next time you see me, run!!! there's no tellin' when i'm gonna break wind. ask Chelsia and Melissa, they KNOW.
anyway, i'm not sure if it's fair to say this but, in my opinion, Naz, or rather Jay, was da best among all of us. no traces of ACTING at all... he's got a great future ahead. fellas like Farid Kamil, Rosyam Nor, Jehan (sorry man) dun even come close... plus Naz is a newcomer. he should bloody well be pelakun baru terbaik...
Wow!I am flabbergasted.I didn't realised my comment would provoke such a response.But thanks Dzof for clarifying your stand on the issue.

Initially when I wrote that comment I wanted to know why Nickson had to be the one to be kicked out and what was the rationale behind it.Was it because he was gay?Was it becos of his singing or was it simply the fact that female teenyboppers are more inclined to vote for someone who is 'straight'?I personally don't think the issues surrounding his sexual orientation is less controversial than that of Amir and Baby's saga.But I suppose you do have a point when you said it would have been a bad story had Nickson continued getting votes despite admitting to his relationship with Calvin.What's TV without a little bit of drama huh? :)

On a personal note,I would like to say to hardcore fans of Alvin Wong that I have absolutely nothing against gays and I certainly have no interest to know if Alvin Wong is gay or otherwise.If my comment have implied that I am butting into their personal lives or their privacy then I apologise.

As a matter of fact,I happen to think Alvin Wong is one of the better actors Malaysia has seen in recent years.He has long earned brownie points in my own hall of fame ever since his days in Each Other
been following the show. but it sucks how it's only 10 episodes - missing one is like missing everything.
i'm glad something like this is finally pushing the envelope and setting a whole new benchmark for local tv. the cast, storyline, direction, production quality etc... awesome, awesome, awesome.

and Alvin like totally rocks my socks.
haha...alvin....see u have alot of fans!..u should star in hokkien series.
keke....agree about Naz as Jay. he's acting terror merror......and to think that we were coursemates...studying a NERDY course!! slipping off frm my anonymicity(correct spelling or not?)better shuddap now. Gotta download episode9. Missed it...
okay, this is me, as much as i'm having fireworks in my stomach getting compliments, at da same time i have a problem dealing with them. i get restless for some twisted reason. especially when it comes to acting. saying "thanks" is da best i can do. seriously guys, i dun know what to say, i'm speechless. i can't begin to describe da way i feel about all this...
however, i'm constantly trying to improve my acting. believe me, i'm annoyingly critical with myself. but working with Ping is always very assuring cuz you know you've nailed it when he proceeds to shoot da following scene. just leave it all to him to judge. it's da kind of trust dat's rarely seen between a director and an actor.
hey lifeluvliberty, i swear to god i ain't fishin' for compliments but Each Other? i felt like bending over whipping da crap out of myself when i was evaluating my own performance in Each Other. *cringe* In fact Table For Two was my chance at redeeming myself for my bad performances in Each Other.
hi alvin, im watching realiti over youtube here in new york after a colleague of mine couldn't stop talking about it and this morning, i almost missed my meeting because i went to bed really late trying to finish all the ten episodes. it was a very good drama series, especially on the issue of sexual preference. there was certainly higher degree of exposure of the issue in that series as compared to any other series with related issues. im impressed with you, for taking up on that role, and of course the writers. (btw, i think calvin is hot)...
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Realiti - Episode 8 notes

Who would you have voted for after the second showdown?
Amir (Venusia)
Baby (Meant To Be)
Burn (Khayalan)
Nickson (Katakan Saja)
Carmen Soo. Her sweet criticisms are music to my ears.
Free polls from
We're heading to the final stretch now. My feeling is that the fan-base is growing, which is good but it's unfortunate there's only two episodes left after this. I have no idea if there will be a second season, you have to ask 8TV about that.
If you missed it on Sunday, say thanks to YouTube: YouTube: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5

Realiti. 10pm Sundays on 8TV, starring Azizan Nin, Ashraf Sinclair, Melissa Maureen, Alvin Wong, Chelsia Ng, Radhi Khalid. With Nazrudin Rahman, Juliana Ibrahim, Kee Thuan Chye, Gambit, Reefa, Ian Ng, Wong Yok Kim, Lydia Ibtisam, Nell Ng, Cheyenne Stutzriem, Aishah Sinclair. Special appearances by Fat Fabes, Carmen Soo and Fly Guy. What would you do to become a star?

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posted on Monday, October 23, 2006 - permalink
It's so sad to see Nickson leaves! Esp after that performance.

Oh and I love Naz as Jay! :)
i love realiti! for someone who don't watch malaysian production much, realiti is really a great show!

one question tho:
when nick is singing, the ppl behind his mom is booing, but THEn after that one of them was showing the big cardboard TMNet hands with NICKSON's name on it..didn't she just booed?

the show's becoming better and better! sad only 2 episodes left. and good thing 8tv didnt reveal much on what's coming next week. i was almost too scared to watch! :D
Hmm...Why was Nickson kicked out?To prove the point that gays can't be on reality TV?That's tragic isn't it?

PS:I enjoyed your frank comments and discussion on scriptwriting last Wednesday with Raz.Hope to catch up with you soon.
Cherz: You can actually hear Alvin holding back the tears when he sings that song. Great acting. Or perhaps by the two hundredth time of recording that song, you might want to cry as well.

Rebekah: When you see something like that happening, just lean your head back, stare at the ceiling, and hum, "the magic of television, the magic of television".

Karin: Read the post above about Nickson's story.
i'm really enjoying 'realiti'. good work, u and all involved.

btw, the link to ur version of nickson's confrontation with his father doesn't seem to work.
only 2 eps left...really? tat's pretty short for such a good show. Neway, i really lurve the insert song, may i know who sang that song? douglas lim or disgree? mind to tell? thanx!!
dat means realiti will onli last till episode 10?! *sad sad* i dun reali like episode 8.kinda boring.well, its kinda weird 2 hv a 2nd season.does that mean that there will be new contestants 4 Malaysian Star or will it be d same ppl? hmm...
i'm totally, helplessly addicted to this show rite now..

-Ppl have been commenting on baby's singing, and sorry, i have to agree to all. But melissa's acting has improved so,so much. impressed me.

-alvin can sing quite good,eh? pity he got eliminated.based on singing, i'll vote baby or burn out, for sure, man. how come burn got 1st place?... well, tv shows..

really, if they compete in the real world, i'm telling you, amir is gonna win. m'sians will easily love him..

-nway, Naz is really good. I didnt expect he'd act so well. But, boy, was i wrong.

note: that guy who played the guard outside the show who didnt let Calvin in, was also the guy who was the head of amir's supporters from the kampung, rite? haha..
DAMN, i really hate it... WHY MUST NICKSON LEAVE? I really hope the next episode Nickson come back... why not? First, you can't judge the book by it's cover. Although Nickson IS gay, so? He has a GREAT VOICE indeed! OMG, i feel like send letter to 8tv to tell them to return Nickson! NICKSON!
Spookedfroggy: The link seems to work fine for me. Try again.
calystarr: If you're talking about the theme tune played in the introduction, it's Scarecrow Adams by Disagree. Incidental music during the show comes from many sources (but practically all of them by Malaysian artists).
just two episodes left? sigh...
anyway, does anyone know what was the song played when nickson was kicked out of the show? the one with "i dont believe in second best, bla bla bla"..and where can i get douglas lim's music in mp3 files maybe?? i lovee his tunes..
da song dat was originally played while shooting dat scene was even better. it was "here comes the flood" by Peter Gabriel. Ping Ho used dat song to set da mood for us, to achieve the ultimate tear jerking effect... it worked for all the actors, especially Melissa who was on da verge of sobbing then... then of course, copyright is way too expensive for a foreign song...
i love the scene where Mac and Burn was talking in the hospital.
"anak dia coma, dia tak mampu nak bayar bill hospital, whats his problem,I dont know Burn, you tell me"
hahaha love this part
Hey Lynn, if u happen to find any douglas lim's song, do tell me... gosh, me lurve his songs!... i oni hav his "one n only" album collaborated with chelsia (good vocal) DOUGLAS... HOW 'BOUT COMING OUT WITH AN ALBUM?!?!?!
Dzof: thanks... i do hav disagree album btw... but me actually referring the same song mentioned by lynn.
Realiti is the BOMB! honestly i've never expected much of malaysian tv series but this one has got me hooked even while i'm wayyyy down south! no 8tv but luckily for me there's youtube(thank you yatiehanny)! i think generally the acting's great, dialogues are believable and storylines gripping. oh yes... and the soundtrack superb! like the others, i'm curious what's the last song in episode 8. sounds good.

oh last thing... i like that different languages are used in the show(ie. english, malay and hokkien). it makes it all the more real. what's more malaysian than mixing our languages right? it's my 40-mins of home.
Thanks cj, for the comments. Now that you've mentioned it, it'd be really nice if Singapore would deign to pick this up. I've seen some Singapore drama, and I reckon Realiti can easily match the best of them, so there's no reason why it wouldn't find an audience. It certainly seems to be more popular with the urban audience.

Anyway, now we're talking about this, hmm... MTV Asia...
anybody knows the english song Amir sang in episode 5? it is from John's Mistress...but i dont know what is the name.

Maybe Flower & Bees....

how can i have that song...anyone can help me? in japan....
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New and good stuff on TV these days

That time of the year again when I talk about new television shows. What's interesting is that every year, the way I source these shows gets a little more sophisticated. At this point in time, practically all the television I watch (including Malaysian shows) comes across the Internet.

What's changed this year is that it's even easier than before to do this. It's now possible to set up your PC to automagically download shows as soon as they are available, and you can watch it at your leisure, whenever you want, (and if you're using a laptop) wherever you want. It's kind of like Astro Max except... better.

Even if you don't want to do this, you can pretty much watch everything directly off the net. The first three shows listed below have the latest episodes available on the official websites, Battlestar Galactica can be bought off iTunes (if you can get a bloomin' account with them!), and the last one has episodes on YouTube.

Let's face it, TV won't be TV anymore. It'll be anytime, anywhere via the 'net.

Anyway, what's on that's new and good these days?


posted on Sunday, October 22, 2006 - permalink
Realiti is probably the best production locally by far. It's giving Kopitiam a run for it's money.
Television, no matter how flat they've become, I'll still prefer watching downloaded shows or Syoktv from the comfort of my laptop. Anytime and Anywhere.
As much as I love Gol&Gincu, I honestly feel "Realiti" tops the Malaysia's Best Tv Shows chart! :)
"Heroes" is good stuff! Thanks for the tip, dzof.

Can someone put "Realiti" up on the torrentsphere, to satiate my curiosity spurred by you all?
If you're looking for it on the Internet, Realiti is actually most easily accessible from YouTube. See to get started, or search for the actors' names (don't search for just 'realiti' on it's own - you get too many hits).
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Realiti - Episode 7 notes

Who would you have voted for after the first showdown?
Amir (Venusia)
Baby (Baby)
Burn (Tiada Lagi Cinta)
Melody (Ratu Hati)
Nickson (Detik Bersamamu)
Can I vote for Carmen Soo?
Free polls from

So, finally, the first elimination episode. This episode is special because I wrote it, and because it aired so close to my birthday - and because it's actually pretty good. Or at least, I think so. Of course, I am biased and am watching it with a very refracted sense of criticality, but I really do think it works as an episode. Of course, anybody out there who watched it and thought it sucked, I apologise profusely. But if any of you liked it - cool.

Missed it? Don't fret, say thanks to You Tube: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5

Realiti. 10pm Sundays on 8TV, starring Azizan Nin, Ashraf Sinclair, Melissa Maureen, Alvin Wong, Chelsia Ng, Radhi Khalid. With Nazrudin Rahman, Juliana Ibrahim, Lydia Ibtisam, Nell Ng, Kee Thuan Chye, Cheyenne Stutzriem, Aishah Sinclair. Special appearances by Fat Fabes, Carmen Soo and Fly Guy. What would you do to become a star?

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posted on Monday, October 16, 2006 - permalink
what happened to Baby's "abductor"? did he get the money? or was the money still in the bag when Mac found her in the car boot? what was their connection?

maybe 8tv should stop showing spoilers.... potong stim only... :)
The money is gone, the abductor is gone, and you're not meant to know who the abductor is yet (as in why he's after Baby, etc.). Sorry that wasn't made clear in the episode. I didn't really do very much on the Baby storyline, so it was a low priority for me in the script.
ya agreed with ladida..

erm 1 question....why dont u get baby to lip-sync??(sorry mel)

love aishah sinclair. dont like the other girl who interviews everybody sorry but abit too overdone

overall i kinda like this episode.
the show keeps getting better by the week....i was pretty sad that Burn was eliminated but it kinda makes the story more interesting!

well, this episode is great but i was kinda confused bout what actually happened to Baby?
fashionasia: Technically everybody is lip-synching, if only to their own voices. The decision as to whether to dub or to use the actor's original voice was at Douglas Lim's feet. He said that if they used other vocals, there would have been a problem matching it up with their practice voices, or something like that. I not technical audio guy, don't understand this much-much.

blushpal: Last episode, Baby was going to pay off the ransom, and the police were ready to jump the bad guy. Unfortunately, he got away with the money. Baby was rescued, and despite Mac's advice to take it easy, she insisted on carrying on with the show. She's a real trooper, that girl.
One of the best episodes so far (I love 2 & 3 and this one).

The argument scene btwn Jay, mac ngn bapak Melody I rasa macam bukan menonton drama local. HAts off to you guys.
Thanks artyfeelhome. That scene's is pretty much Ping's baby, and there was a lot of growth (read: editing) to it. He'll be happy you liked it - he's proud of it too!
I loved Realiti!! Really enjoyed watching it... :)

When I know that Amir is still in the competition despite his poor performance, I kinda feel that he might win the Malaysian Star.. hmm..
'relaiti' is actually my 1st malaysian tv series i've watch =p.& i kinda like it.even my frens love anyways.i juz wanna request u guyz 2 upload 'realiti episode 1' in you tube. pls? i wanna c how it y do dey need 2 find a 5th contestant & blah blah blah..oh yea, im reali upset dat Burn was voted off d competition.reali wasn't expectin dat 2 happened.well, i juz wan 2 say dat dis is a great show & i hope it gets more interesting.cheers.
i understand the reason to use the actors real voices, but baby really cannot sing to save her life. wasn't that aspect taken into consideration during the casting sessions? to at least put some realism in the show when some of the judges actually praised baby for her singing..
fur.: You can actually find the first part of episode 1 here, and I'll trust you'll know how to find the rest (it's all on my Realiti page on this site anyway).

anon: Not trying to defend Baby, but I hope you noticed that the judges were saying she moved well, not that she sang well. And based on the (admittedly unscientific) poll above, Baby would have been voted in to the next round.
baby REALLY can't sing to save her life! ha ha ha ha! and i know it. ya la, all ping's fault. blame ping. ha ha ha!
actually....the only person who can sing is melody=chels (they kept calling her mel and i just got confused with the real mel=baby)
dont be sad peeps....burn will still be there...the next episode trailer gave it away....:)
Thanks for the insight info dzof! *clap clap*
Oh and also kudos to Ping. Love em all (his shows) ever since the good ol' kopitiam days.
Dat nervous laughter of yours sounded, or rather seemed quite disturbing Mel. it sounded like you're holding a screw driver, with eyes wide open and saying "ha ha ha, yeah, i can't sing to save my life, *stab* *stab* ha ha ha ha yeah, i can't sing *stab* *stab* *stab* ha ha *stab* *stab* *stab* *stab* anyway, dat "ikan kat pasar tu kan? dia orang potong dengan laser tau?" line actually came out? i missed dat episode lah! ha ha ha ha, i'm jumping with joy! ha ha ha ha! i can't believe it actually got through! woo hoo! *pats my own back*
Hi Alvin, long time no talk one. Yah-loh, hentam your own lines only. Actually you did something similar in episode 1. Cheh. Remind me to give you very complicated dialogue next time.

As for Mel stabbing... don't you get that feeling anyway when she a little kooky on set? Why do you think I never sit so close to her?
actually kan, should be our show la. i mean yeah yeah, melody can sing, bla bla bla, la di da....but we...aha. we're ENTERTAINING. appparenly ping didn't think it should be an ENTERTAINING show so he left out our ENTERTAINING bits and concentrated on melody's drug-induced singing. ha ha ha! *stab*
lol...alvin u're so funny about what mel said.. hahaha *stab* *stab*

"ikan kat pasar tu kan? dia orang potong dengan laser tau?"

LOL...which part.. i'm gonna watch some repeats now...hahaha
hahah the first episode one is about... "Nampaknya Lembu tu ditelan oleh burung hantu!"
now still search for the ikan dipasar mereka potong dgn laser!
I absolutely love Mac and Jay's face off. really cool. both good actors. this is by far the best episode. fast paced and lots of drama. ;) nickson's character is starting to shine a bit more. and i'm finding him quite likeable. ;D
ya lah Mel, our brilliant ideas all buried in Gag Cemetery by Ping... sigh. Da deadliest rejection by him by far was when i asked him what he thought of the idea and he pulled a seemingly acknowledging smile and said " think leh??" dun even get me started on what Mel and I wrote on da prop whiteboard in da background of da rehearsal hall.
anyway, in da undercover reporter episode, when we all walked to da lift and Burn wanted to explain to Melody what really happened in dat room, without anyone's anticipation and out of da blue, i said "...itu kambing kan? kalau tak mengandung pun boleh keluar susu..." then i heard Ashraf chuckled through his nose and gave me da most puzzled "what da hell?" look. we couldn't continue dat scene of course. we had to do it again, with me maintaining da same kambing story... hahahah!!!
i know this has nothing to do with realiti. but since i've got alvin's attention...have you read the nonsense that douglas writes in the frankenstein in love blog? god, i miss you guys. we're reduced to chatting in posts on DZOF's page. mamak time!
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Realiti - Episode 6 notes

Sorry this has taken some time, but I shall put the blame squarely on Raz (who had written the episode) because I only got her notes from her today.

Watch before you read, courtest of YouTube: 1, 2, 3, 4

Photos courtesy of Popiah Pictures and Chelsia Ng
Fazrina and Constance in happier timesWho will you vote for?What Ping does to difficult actorsSome guys can pull off a pink shirt

Notes are by Razlina Ramli. Notes in green by me.

By the way, Raz's employers, 95% Trainings, have a writing workshop this Sunday (15 October 2006) - get in touch with them if you want to know more.

Realiti. 10pm Sundays on 8TV, starring Azizan Nin, Ashraf Sinclair, Melissa Maureen, Alvin Wong, Chelsia Ng, Radhi Khalid. With Nazrudin Rahman, Juliana Ibrahim, Maria Farida, Lydia Ibtisam, Nell Ng, Reefa, Mazin Siraj. What would you do to become a star?

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posted on Wednesday, October 11, 2006 - permalink
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