Linlang 2023 / Unsatisfying Filipino telenovela insanity that makes a big deal of everything


Many telenovelas and soap operas make a bid for the ridiculous, and in general the world is better off for it. But if a soap can’t stick the landing when it tries to manufacture conflict, it just ends up becoming infuriating to watch. Such is the case with Linlang, a Filipino drama that already sets itself up weakly from the outset through the idea of cheating as a plot device, and fails to give us anything crazy enough to earn its sudden bursts of action and perpetually intrusive score. It’s almost impressive how none of these characters seem to be capable of communicating with each other like adults—which can be fun in small doses, as these people leap to conclusions with full aggression at the drop of a hat. But these misunderstandings also just stretch out plot points unnecessarily, ultimately reinforcing very tired, very traditional family values.

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