Richard Gutierrez, in a dick move, recently filed a P25-million libel case against showbiz blog Philippine Entertainment Portal for some bit of gossip about an alleged confrontation between him and Michael Flores (who is probably also famous) where he supposedly pulled out a gun.
Which is fine. The law, in all its majesty, allows the richest of us to seek redress from those who have injured us.
It does not, however, allow us to use the court system as some sort of avenue for an inquisition (not expressly, anyway.) Which is what this seems to be, considering what he had to say about it:
“We just want to get to the bottom of this and we want to find out the truth kung sino’ng tao ang nasa likod nito [who were the people behind this]”
In court, it’s generally a matter of proving something, and not, as we sometimes see in the movies, randomly asking questions until the witness breaks down to either reveal that he is the real killer, or that the defense attorney is an asshole for badgering the victim about whether she enjoyed being raped or not.
Perhaps in lieu of a preliminary investigation or even a proper cross-examination, the editorial staff of PEP will face off with Zorro, or any of a number of action heroes that Gutierrez plays. After much OA dialogue and choreographed fight scenes, the bloggers will tearily confess that they were paid P25 million as part of a conspiracy between ABS-CBN and TV5 to maliciously blacken his name.
This is the only way for this thing to play out without him looking like a crybaby, and the only thing that would justify milking a blogger for P25 million pesos. I mean, otherwise, it’s pretty much just extortion if it isn’t already.
Gutierrez says that the alleged incident might ruin his reputation, which is pretty much the flimsiest excuse ever in a country where on-camera appearances are taken for reality.
Gladys Reyes could build a thousand hospitals, and people would still expect her to be the sort of person who mistreats adopted children for laughs. Meanwhile, Kim Chiu could buy mini dachshunds for the express purpose of torturing them with surgical equipment (she doesn’t,) and everyone would still love her.
If anything, the alleged incident only ups Gutierrez’s action star image, much like similar (but real) incidents made Robin Padilla the Bad Boy of the ’90s. Except, I guess, crying to the courts about how a rumor could ruin his career (somehow) makes him look more like a Mama’s than a Bad Boy.