When Samantha Bernardo duplicated her 2nd Runner-Up finish in 2018 during last night’s finals of Bb. Pilipinas 2019, many pageant fans and supporters felt bad for this Palaweña beauty who is aggressively aiming for one of the six crowns to extend her 18-month contract with BPCI as a titleholder and not as a pageant bridesmaid so to speak. After all, she had dutifully served her runner-up status for almost a year. She is ripe for a good crown. But what happened? Was her trending 30-second freespeak clip to be blamed for not rising above her previous 8th-ranked placement?
Or was it the above combined with her Q&A performance in the Top 15 that sealed the deal for a consecutive 2nd Runner-Up nod? Her answer about the question on rape jokes sounded passable at first. But when her thoughts went beyond sexual harassment to include the safe spaces bill, she needed to connect it with the original query, babbled a bit then went on to close her statements beyond the time limit (I’m not sure if the judges were instructed to deduct points when a candidate would “persist” in finishing her reply after the bell sounded).
Honestly, I don’t want to overthink the situation anymore. Last night, Sam was perhaps graded by the judges with a cumulative score that was only good enough to squeak in to the Top 8. Could this mean that she is being “encouraged” to give it a third and final try in 2020? Or was it an indication that she needs to accept her fate and quietly move on with life?
What are your thoughts, dear readers?