Baste Duterte is back in the spotlight

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Baste Duterte
PHOTO BY MICAH SEBASTIAN

This time sans Ellen Adarna, but as travel show host

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Sebastian “Baste” Duterte no doubt became an accidental and instant celebrity when his father, Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte, became President. Nevertheless with his bemuscled physique, lip ring and wavy hair, the youngest son of the country’s Chief Executive also has the makings of a celebrity.

Duterte became a star on social media after he appeared in several election sorties leading to the May 2016 elections. Since then, both women and gay men have been swooning over the 29-year-old surfer whose good yet rugged looks fits perfectly with his much talked about laid back and easygoing lifestyle.

However, to be the President’s son comes with a cost. As a public figure, the youngest Duterte has also become a hot topic on several issues involving his private life, specifically his relationships with women.

The Ellen issue
Duterte is known to have a two-year-old son with Davao-based model Kate Necesario and a daughter with an ex-girlfriend. However, what caught the interest of the public as of late are his trysts with ABS-CBN actress and sexy star Ellen Adarna.

Rumors of their relationship first spread as early as summer last year when Adarna posted photos of them during on vacation in Siargao, Surigao. The two insisted they were friends, despite a photo of them kissing, which circulated online in November 2016. In January, Adarna admitted they were indeed in a relationship but it lasted for just a few months after Duterte broke up with her via text message.

Although their relationship is over, the issue persisted as the President himself used media coverage to reach out his son whom he had trouble contacting. The President openly expressed annoyance at his son several times explaining he had not seen the young Duterte when he would go home to Davao, which meant the latter had very little time for his children.

The senior Duterte also publicly related that he spoke to one of his grandchildren and said it was a “tragedy” to hear the little one talk bitterly about his father.

“I asked the kid, who do you love more, papa or your mama? His answer, ‘Mama lang.’ See it’s a tragedy,” the President was quoted.

The messages reached the young Duterte who eventually chose to respond via Facebook.

(From left) Andres Apostol, Bogart The Explorer, Duterte, and Sboi Malicay

“Good morning, Pa. Nasa kabilang bahay lang ako noong February 1 pa. Huwag ka nang ma-stress. Love you mwah,” he cheekily posted.

Hosting stint
Even as a TV career will continue to put him under public scrutiny, it seems Baste Duterte is up for whatever may come his way again as the social media rock star will finally pursue show business—something he said he would do soon after his father moved in to Malacanang.

As such, for the first time ever, viewers will get to discover the adventurous side of Duterte themselves as well as aspects of his personality when he makes his debut as host of a reality adventure show titled “Lakbai” on TV5.

Lakbai [short for "Lakaw ta, bai!” which in Cebuano translates to"Lakad na, kaibigan]will take viewers on a tour of some of the most picturesque spots in the Philippines with Duterte and a gang as companions—these are internet sensation Bogart the Explorer, known for his hilarious adventures on his viral videos; Alexis Lumbatan, a lawyer by profession and a jokester at heart; Sboi Malicay, the “cool bro” who keeps the mood light; and Andrei Apostol, a creatives guy and designated videographer.

At the show’s press conference on May 10, Duterte was asked whether any member of his family convinced him to join show business.

“No, they did not convince me. It’s just unavoidable so I decided to try showbiz. Sayang naman ang sweldo, he quipped. “But if it doesn’t work out, I can always go back to Davao.”

Meanwhile, many wondered how he handled himself in front of the camera during the show’s first taping days. Did he have any of his showbiz friends give him tips on what to do?

“Sino ba showbiz friends ko? It’s only … you guys know who. But this is only a reality show. I’m being myself so it’s not really a big adjustment [on [on my part] he replied both casually and meaningfully.

With hosting as his first stint on television, is there a likelihood he will also go into movies or a teleserye too?

“I don’t have any talent in acting. I am doing this [sho[show]use I love traveling. That’s why I also suggested tobe with my friends in this show because I’m a camera shy guy. I want to be comfortable. Good thing, TV5 agreed with what I want,” he explained.

Much like his father, Duterte tries to maintain a low profile. But what is it really like to be the President’s son.

“That’s the hardest question I’ve had today,” Duterte joked.

“Let your father run and be president para malaman n’yo. But my life then and now is still the same. I don’t live in Malacañang [Pal[Palace]I’m still Davao-based. It’s just now, maraming nagpapa-picture, maraming libre at maraming sponsors. Kaya yung mga gustong mag-offer sa akin huwag na kayo mahiya,” he added in jest.

Finally, to react to being labeled one of the day’s hottest bachelors, he replied laughing, “Talaga? Nasaan sila? Saan yung mga babae kung totoo ‘yun?”

Lakbai will air beginning May 21 on TV5 after the PBA games.

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