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Sunday, January 15, 2023

Watchful Eyes' 71st Miss Universe 2022 Favorite National Costumes

Last year's 70th Miss Universe 2021 Best In National Costume Winner - Maristella Okpala, Nigeria designed by a young Filipino design student

Last year's Miss Universe 2021 voted as Best in National Costume was Nigeria's Maristella Okpala's national costume which featured an ethnic tribal ensemble of an embroidered leotard and a traditional mask behind. Which of the 71st Miss Universe 2022 national costumes do you think best represents their own country? Watchful Eyes Of A Silhouette pick the countries which definitively portray and tell a beautiful story of their countries or give a powerful statement through a colorful display of costumes and dresses. Here are Watchful Eyes' favorite Miss Universe 2022 national costumes:

Angola - Swelia Silva Antonio 

Angola's fierce and feisty female tribal warrior

Argentina - Barbara Cabrera 

Argentina's sky-high costume and headdress are inspired by the Iguazu Falls, one of the seven natural wonders of the world. Cabrera is wearing a sparkling bodysuit with sheer panels and rainbow details arranged in a design that resembles peacock feathers. She paired the look with white, knee-high boots that matches the fringe cascading around her like Argentina's famous waterfall.
Aruba - Kiara Arends 

Aruba's Kiara Arends' colorful costume was inspired by her nation's return to the Carnival. She is wearing a bright skirt of orange, green, and purple ruffles as well as a blue and orange bikini top decorated with starfish. She finished the look with a large gold sun hat. During the national costume show, the description says that this outfit was made from recycled materials that had been used in Aruba's Grand Carnival Parade.

Belize - Ashley Lightburn 

Belize's costume brought the thick foliage of her nation's rainforest to the universe. Lightburn's national costume paid tribute to the Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary in Belize, which is the first and only jaguar reserve in the world. Her outfit featured a glittering green bodysuit with a flowing jaguar-print train that matched her knee-high jaguar-print boots. Attached to the back of Ashley's feisty ensemble is a beautiful burst of tropical palm fronds and birds of paradise flowers.

Bhutan - Tashi Choden 

Bhutan is a kingdom steeped in history with a gaze fixed on the future - this is Bhutan's moment of evolution. The country sees a bright future and believes in its ability to shine as a beacon of possibility in the world.

Bolivia - Camila Sanabria 

Bolivia's Maria Camila Sanabria sparkled in a costume that was covered in silver and gold. Her costume was made up of a flowing cape decorated with glittering silver coins and embellishments, and a dress that resembled strands of gold. It was inspired by the Bolivian city of Potosi, which is the home to the world's largest silver deposit.

Cambodia - Manita Hang 

Manita Hang's national costume was inspired by a goddess who educates people to love humans, animals, and nature. Hang's ensemble featured a green skirt decorated with the same print that adorned her crop top. She accessorized the look with a crown of flowers and sparkling green and red bangles that covered her arms. Hang's costume was partially inspired by the prehistoric art of the Funan era in Cambodia.

Cameroon - Monalisa Mouketey 

Cameroon's Monalisa Mouketey's national costume is fully packed with special details that paid tribute to her nation. The basket affixed to the back of Cameroon's costume, which was decorated with beads in the red, green, and yellow colors seen on Cameroon's flag - represented her country's agricultural movement. Mouketey also wore a flowing gold skirt and an off-the-shoulder crop top that were both decorated with shells. Her crown featured a map of Cameroon adornment with their nation's flag colors surrounded by a sparkling heart.

Colombia - Maria Fernanda Aritizabal 

Colombia's Maria Fernanda Aristizabal is wearing a Phoenix Queen costume which included a pair of spectacular wings. Colombia's outfit was made up of a fiery red bodysuit, shimmering tights, and dramatic feathered wings in shades of red, orange, yellow, and gold. Aristizabal's ensemble was adorned with 1,100 Swarovski crystals.

Curacao - Gabriëla Dos Santos 

Curacao's Gabriëla Dos Santos celebrated the wives of fishermen with this sparkling blue costume. Dos Santos wore a blue catsuit adorned with sheer panels and plenty of fringes. Her ensemble features a dramatic train with ruffles in different shades of blue to represent the ocean, and she carried a basket filled with glittering fish symbolizing the fresh catch of the day. The fishermen's wives play a key role in Curacao's fishing industry. The wives help prepare the fishing nets, clean the catch, and help sell the fish as well.

El Salvador - Alejandra Guajardo 

Alejandra Guajardo's gold outfit embodies the history of her nation's currency. Guajardo's backpiece was designed to look like her country's old currency, the colon, and it was framed by cocoa beans, which is an even more ancient currency. Alejandra's gold bodysuit and boots matched the back piece. She also carried a scepter with a B inscribed on it to signify Bitcoin, as El Salvador is the first country in the world to make Bitcoin a legal currency.

Greece - Korina Emmanouilidou 

Greece's Korina Emmanouilidou dressed as the Greek goddess Hera, with her bodice glowing to depict Hera's otherworldliness. Emmanouilidou carried a staff and had a faux peacock resting on her shoulder, as the birds were the goddess' sacred animal.

Guatemala - Ivana Batchelor 

Guatemala's Ivana Batchelor showcased her own interpretation of the pyramid Tikal also known as the Temple of the Jaguar. Batchelor honors Guatemalan culture with her dazzling bodysuit, crown, and elaborate accessories which included a Mayan calendar. The back of the outfit also features a jaguar's face which is meant to symbolize the Mayan culture.

Honduras - Rebeca Rodriguez 

This costume is an ode to Francisco Marazan in the 1800s whose objective was to keep all Central American countries united. This suit represents strength and empowerment.

Indonesia - Laksmi De-Neefe Suardana 

Laksmi De Neefe Suardana's costume was designed to look like a ship. Suardana paired a shiny, gold bodysuit with an oversized backpiece that looks like a sailboat. A pale blue train extended from the outfit completing the illusion of a boat at sea that nodded to the Indonesians as the world's first sailors.

Italy - Virginia Stablum 

Italy's Virginia Stablum wore a costume for the Carnival of Venice. Stablum's look honors the mask event, which allows the people to be whoever they want to be for an evening with no judgment. She paired a red jacket and pants with a sailor's hat and a gold mask.

Kosovo - Roksana Ibrahimi 

This costume is called the Red Kerchief. In Kosovan culture when a woman gets married a sad house is left behind. No food is prepared for three days, sad songs are being played and a red handkerchief is placed on the daughter's face.

Laos - Payengxa Lor 

Payengxa Lor's ensemble popped with pink tassels, a pink headdress, and a bamboo backpiece. Lor's outfit was specifically designed to represent the blending of different cultures in Laos, creating unity among the country's people. The Laos flag was embroidered into the center of the outfit, which also featured tribal fabrics from the country.

Mexico - Irma Miranda 

Irma Miranda's black dress was embroidered with statement buttons and bright florals, which coordinated with her wide-brimmed hat and covered in sequins. Serenada Mexicana was inspired by the Jaro suit a style of dress that originates in Mexico. The costume is a mermaid cut made of Chantilly black embroidered sequins a wide-rimmed hat called a sombrero and a short jacket to complete the look.

Nepal - Sophiya Bhujel 

Sophiya Bhujel personified the divine feminine principle Shakti. Bhujel is wearing a gold top with a red skirt and scarf. She carried a large, gold trident, and an eye was painted onto her forehead.

Netherlands - Ona Moody 

Netherlands' Ona Moody became the stroopwafel for the national costume show. This cookie with caramel is very popular in the Netherlands. The hat is a cup of tea which helps the Stroop waffle melt making it even more delicious and the cookies on her waist becomes her skirt.

Nicaragua - Norma Huembes 

Nicaragua is garbed in a crystal-covered pantsuit and floral headdress. The blue shade of her outfit matched the color of the Nicaraguan flag, while the floral adornments represented Nicaragua's national flower: the sacuanjoche. Her bodysuit, which was a semi-sheer with a long train, was also designed to represent womanhood and female empowerment.

Panama - Solaris Barba 

Solaris Barba's outfit called "Bridge of the World, Heart of the Universe" puts up a sparkling twist on the indigenous practice of body painting. It is covered in intricate beads and rhinestones that look like traditional art, with a metallic headpiece and gloves that match. When she turned around, there was also a giant heart attached to her back, which represents her love for people who visit her home country.

Paraguay - Lia Ashmore 

Lia Ashmore sported a blue bra with cutouts, sparkling underwear, an attached train, and strappy heels that almost reached her knees. Her ensemble is so designed to reflect the Paraguayan flag, with a star in front to represent hope and a lion's head in the back to symbolize bravery.

Peru - Alessia Rovegno 

Peru's red outfit was inspired by the sunrises over the Amazon. Alessia Rovegno's outfit, which included a bejeweled bra, miniskirt, and cape-style backpiece also honored the beauty and brightness of women. It is also made from recycled materials.

Philippines - Celeste Cortesi 

Celeste Cortesi pays homage to the famous Filipino pop culture icon - Darna. In the Filipino version of Wonder Woman which first appeared in Filipino comics in 1950, Darna transforms from being a simple, innocent, vulnerable, and feeble young woman named Narda into a feisty combative woman with superpower and great strength by just swallowing a small special stone shouting the name "DARNA". Her red and gold look featured a sparkling bra, matching gloves, and knee-high boots. She also wore a gold wing headpiece or crown that matches the stars and sun rays on her back symbols which can be found on the Philippine flag. The concept represents her mission of defending people in need and also the dramatic transformations in her life.

Puerto Rico - Ashley Cariño 

Puerto Rico's Ashley Cariño wore a futuristic two-piece ensemble inspired by a satellite and telescope in Arecibo observatory and also her interest in outer space. In the front, she is wearing a white crop top, cutout pants, and body sparkle while her backpiece is a monitor screen displaying a montage of inspirational videos which celebrate Puerto Rico's achievements in various fields including the Miss Universe beauty pageant by showing their winners' crowning moments reactions.

Russia - Anna Linnikova 

Russia's Anna Linnikova portrays the royal members of her country's history with a minidress covered in precious stones and pearls. Atop the white garment, she also wore a red velvet gown with short balloon sleeves. For accessories, she chose matching red heels and a crown from the Russian empire. It was created with the help of the State Hermitage Museum in Saint Petersburg, Russia.

South Africa - Ndavi Nokeri 

Ndavi Nokeri wore a colorful dress with a floral print and two cutouts of the African continent on her back with flags of African countries in front and back side of his backpiece. Her outfit focuses on her heritage, South Africa's vibrancy, and the rest rise of African women across the world.

Saint Lucia - Sheris Paul 

We are witnessing a modern-day Queen of the Margaret Flower Festival. This costume made of pellet and sparkly sheer has beadwork throughout a modern corset and a bag decorated with flowers completes the look.

Switzerland - Alia Guindi 

Alia Guindi's train was decorated with embellishments designed to look like chocolates. Guindi's outfit paid tribute to chocolate in so many ways. In addition to the train, the outfit's colorful skirt and top were made to look like fruit, while its off-the-shoulder sleeves nodded to cacao leaves. Her backpiece also looked like a cacao leaf.

Trinidad and Tobago - Tya Jane Ramey 

Trinidad and Tobago's giant puppet costume pays homage to the rich history of Carnival in her country. A dress made of strips of gold fabric with rainbow polka dots acted as the base of Ramey's outfit but the showstopping part of her costume is the oversized headdress which looks like a giant-size puppet. It was designed to look like a Carnival jester and it was dressed in the same dress as Ramey.

Ukraine - Viktoria Apanasenko 

Ukraine's Viktoria Apanasenko's "Warrior of Light" costume was inspired by Archangel Michael, who conquers evil. It consisted of a white dress with a gold bodice and a blue backpiece with feathers designed to look like wings that extended during her time on the catwalk. She made the concept for the costume as she personally witnessed the war in Ukraine and it was made over the course of four months with limited supplies and candlelight. The statue of Archangel Michael is prominently found in the center of Independence Square in the nation's capital Kyiv as Saint Michael is the patron saint of Kyiv. Apanasenko said the following to Insider.com "I see a lot of broken lives. Some people lose their homes. Some people lost their land. Some people lost their parents or children," she said of Ukraine. "But every time I see strong power inside of people. That's why I choose a warrior because it shows how Ukrainians fight right now for the future, for their freedom, for their independence, for every inch of our land, and for our history."

Uruguay - Carla Romero 

Uruguay's sparkling two-piece costume was inspired by Candombe, an Uruguayan style of music and dance. Romero's two-piece had shoulder pads and a bikini-style top, as well as tassels flowing out from the top and the bottoms. Her intricate headpiece stole the show, as it features oversized crystals and large feathers.

USA - R'Bonney Gabriel

R'Bonney Gabriel pays tribute to the 1969 lunar landing with her star-studded ensemble. Her outfit consists of a silver bodysuit adorned with glowing red and blue accents, coordinating silver boots, and an over-the-top backpiece. Large, silver stars jutted out from the backpiece, as did a recreation of the moon. She is also carrying an American flag to complete the look.

Venezuela - Amanda Dudamel 

Amanda Dudamel took inspiration from her country's athletic teams, elevating them with her bodysuit. Dudamel is wearing a burgundy bodysuit to represent the Venezuelan sports teams who wear the color when they compete. She took the costume to another level with gold adornments and a gold cape, as well as a gold soccer ball she carried to define her costume.

Vietnam - Nguyen Thi Ngoc Chau 

Vietnam's entire dress and intricate back piece were made with environmentally-friendly fabric. Nguyen took inspiration from a handicraft village in Vietnam. The entire outfit was embroidered with delicate sparkles, including the elaborate back piece.


Photo Source:

Benjamin Askinas
Josh Brasted/Getty Images

Saturday, January 14, 2023

Watchful Eyes' 71st Miss Universe 2022 Final Picks

Who will succeed Miss Universe 2021 India's Harnaaz Sandhu and wear the new Mouawad crown? Watch the live telecast today Saturday, January 14, 2023, at 7 pm (EST) LIVE from Ernest N. Morial Convention Center. Meanwhile after watching the preliminary competition, here are my FINAL TOP 21 PICKS for the 71st Miss Universe 2022:


Sunday, January 8, 2023

The Worst Of Famas Awards - Best Actress

Charito Solis

Marlene Dauden

Susan Roces

Vilma Santos

Nora Aunor

Maricel Soriano

Judy Ann Santos

Below is the list of winners who I think stole the award from a more deserving nominee and/or unnominated actress(es) or were consolation prizes for previous losses or neglect.

Note: In some cases where there is more than one deserving film portrayal, I noted with equally outstanding performance means the winner deserves its award while the others as suggested alternatives in Should Have Won.


Best Actress
The Worst of the Awards
'Worst' Best Actress
Oscar Winners
Should Have Won
Alicia Vergel in Basahang Ginto (1952)Equally Notable:

Anita Linda in Sawa Sa Lumang Simboryo
Carmen Rosales in Inspirasyon (1953)Gloria Romero (unnominated) in Cofradia
Rosa Rosal in Sonny Boy (1955)Charito Solis in Niña Bonita
Charito Solis in Kundiman Ng Lahi (1959)Rosa Rosal in Biyaya Ng Lupa
Charito Solis in Emily (1960)Marlene Dauden in Gumuhong Bantayog
Rosa Mia (unnominated) in Ginang Hukom
Tessie Quintana in Alaala Kita (1961)A weak year for nominees
Perla Bautista in Markang Rehas (1962)Lilia Dizon in Sakdalista
Amalia Fuentes in Tulisan
Charito Solis in Angustia (1963)Equally Notable:

Lolita Rodriguez in Sapagkat Kami'y Tao Lamang
Barbara Perez in Ang Daigdig Ng Mga Api (1965)Daisy Avellana in A Portrait of the Artist as Filipino
Gloria Romero in Iginuhit Ng Tadhana: The Ferdinand E. Marcos Story
Marlene Dauden in Mila Rosa
A weak set of nominees (1966)Gloria Romero, Lolita Rodriguez, Marlene Dauden or Paraluman in Bakit Pa Ako Isinilang?
Lolita Rodriguez and Marlene Dauden in Hindi Nahahati Ang Langit
Rita Gomez in Makasalanan
Marlene Dauden in Kapag Puso'y Sinugatan (1967)Charito Solis in Dahil Sa Isang Bulaklak
Rita Gomez in Bakit Ako Pa (1970)Lolita Rodriguez in Tubog Sa Ginto
Charito Solis in Pipo
Elizabeth Oropesa in Lumapit, Lumayo Ang Umaga (1975)Nora Aunor in Banaue: Stairway to the Sky
Nora Aunor in  Tatlong Taong Walang Diyos (1976)Hilda Koronel in Insiang
Alma Moreno in Mrs. Eva Fonda, 16
Charo Santos (unnominated) in Itim
Nora Aunor (unnominated) in Minsa'y Isang Gamu-Gamo
Susan Roces in Maligno (1977)Vilma Santos in Burlesk Queen
Susan Henson in Ginauhaw Ako, Ginagutom Ako
Susan Roces in Gumising Ka, Maruja (1978)Nora Aunor in Atsay
Nora Aunor in Bakekang
Chanda Romero in Mananayaw
Vilma Santos (unnominated) in Rubia Servios
Amy Austria in Brutal (1980)Equally notable:

Nora Aunor in Bona
Alma Moreno in City After Dark
Vilma Santos in Pakawalan Mo Ako (1981)Gina Alajar in Salome
Nora Aunor in Bakit Bughaw Ang Langit
Vivian Velez in Ang Babaeng Hinugot Sa Aking Tadyang
Vilma Santos in Relasyon (1982)Nora Aunor (unnominated) in Himala
Charito Solis in Don't Cry for Me, Papa! (1983)Cecille Castillo in Karnal
Lorna Tolentino (unnominated) in Init Sa Magdamag
Vilma Santos in Tagos Ng Dugo (1987)Equally notable:

Lorna Tolentino in Maging Akin Ka Lamang
Maricel Soriano in Pinulot Ka Lang Sa Lupa
Sharon Cuneta in Pasan Ko Ang Daigdig
Dina Bonnevie (unnominated) in Alabok Sa Ulap
Vilma Santos in Ibulong Mo Sa Diyos (1988)Equally notable:

Dina Bonnevie in Paano Tatakasan Ang Bukas?
Jaclyn Jose in Itanong Mo Sa Buwan
Lorna Tolentino in Nagbabagang Luha
Maricel Soriano in Babaeng Hampaslupa
Dina Bonnevie (unnominated) in Ang Babaeng Nawawala Sa Sarili 

Lorna Tolentino in Narito Ang Puso Ko (1992)Maricel Soriano in Ikaw Pa Lang Ang Minahal
Dawn Zulueta in Kung Mawawala Ka Pa (1993)Vilma Santos in Dahil Mahal Kita: The Dolzura Cortez Story
Kris Aquino in The Vizconde Massacre: God, Help Us!

Snooky Serna in Koronang Itim (1994)Dawn Zulueta in The Cecilia Masagca Story: Antipolo Massacre (Jesus Save Us!)
Maricel Soriano in Separada
Maricel Soriano in Nasaan Ang Puso (1997)Claudine Barretto (unnominated) in Calvento Files: The Movie
Rosanna Roces (unnominated) in Ligaya Ang Itawag Mo Sa Akin 
Nida Blanca in Sana Pag-ibig Na (1998)Rosanna Roces in Ang Lalaki Sa Buhay Ni Selya
Rosanna Roces (unnominated) in Ang Babae Sa Bintana
Chin Chin Gutierrez in Sa Pusod Ng Dagat
Rosanna Roces (unnominated) in Curacha Ang Babaeng Walang Pahinga
Vilma Santos (unnominated) in Bata, Bata Paano Ka Ginawa?
Elizabeth Oropesa in Bulaklak Ng Maynila (1999)Ana Capri in Pila Balde
Maricel Soriano in Soltera
Angelu de Leon (unnominated) in Bulaklak Ng Maynila
Nora Aunor (unnominated) in Sidhi
Gloria Romero in Tanging Yaman (2000)Maricel Soriano in Abandonada
Vilma Santos (unnominated) in Anak
Alessandra de Rossi (unnominated) in Azucena
Aleck Bovick in Tampisaw (2002) Alessandra de Rossi in Mga Munting Tinig
Ara Mina in Ang Huling Birhen Sa Lupa (2003)Maricel Soriano in Filipinas
Katherine Luna (unnominated) in Babae Sa Breakwater
Alessandra de Rossi (unnominated) in Homecoming
Andrea del Rosario (unnominated) in Lupe: A Seaman's Wife
Claudine Barretto in Milan (2004)
Judy Ann Santos in Sabel
Angelica Panganiban in Santa Santita
Nora Aunor (unnominated) in Naglalayag
Iza Calzado (unnominated) in Sigaw
Claudine Barretto in Nasaan Ka Man (2005)A very weak year for nominees
Judy Ann Santos in Kasal, Kasali, Kasalo (2006)Maricel Soriano in Inang Yaya
Gina Pareño in Kubrador
Andrea del Rosario (unnominated) in Rome and Juliet
Lorna Tolentino in Katas ng Saudi (2007)A weak year for nominees
Heart Evangelista in Ay Ayeng (2008)Sharon Cuneta in Caregiver
Judy Ann Santos in Ploning
Anita Linda (unnominated) in Adela
Lovi Poe in Sagrada Familia (2009)A weak year for nominees
Ai-Ai de las Alas in Ang Tanging Ina Mo (Last Mo Na 'To) (2010)Dawn Zulueta in Sigwa
Jennylyn Mercado in Rosario
Eugene Domingo in Ang Babae Sa Septic Tank
Anne Curtis in No Other Woman (2011)A weak year for nominees
Angel Locsin in One More Try (2012)Jodi Sta. Maria in Migrante
Isabelle Huppert in Captive
Nora Aunor (unnominated) in Thy Womb
KC Concepcion in Boy Golden: Shoot to Kill, the Arturo Porcuna Story (2013)Eugene Domingo (unnominated) in Barber's Tales
Alessandra de Rossi (unnominated) in Woman of the Ruins
Toni Gonzaga in Starting Over Again (2014)Nova Villa (unnominated) in 1st ko si 3rd
Nora Aunor (unnominated) in Dementia
Andi Eigenmann in Angela Markado (2015)A weak year for nominees

Angelica Panganiban in The Unmarried Wife (2016)Charo Santos-Concio (unnominated) in Ang Babaeng Humayo
Ai-Ai de las Alas (unnominated) in Area
Mary Joy Apostol (unnominated) in Birdshot
Nora Aunor (unnominated) in Hinulid
Jaclyn Jose (unnominated) in Ma' Rosa
Nora Aunor (unnominated) in Tuos
Agot Isidro in Changing Partners (2017)Joanna Ampil in Ang Larawan
Iza Calzado in Bliss
Gina Alajar (unnominated) in Madilim Ang Gabi
Gina Alajar (unnominated) in Nabubulok
Nadine Lustre in Never Not Love You (2018)Glaiza de Castro in Liway
Gina Pareno (unnominated) in Hintayan ng Langit
Janine Gutierrez in Babae at Baril (2019)Nadine Lustre in Ulan
Pokwang (unnominated) in Oda sa Wala