Hello, Billy (partially found Filipino TV commercial series, 2000-2001)

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Hello billy joey screenshot.png

A screenshot of Joey talking to the main character, Billy, by using a telephone.

Status: Partially Found

In 2000, the telecommunications company PLDT collaborated with Ace Saatchi & Saatchi, a marketing firm to help create Hello, Billy. The advertising campaign was conceived to increase the number of international direct dial (IDD) calls in the Phillippines. The series is about a mother who is concerned about her son, Billy, who lives somewhere far away and is lonely. However, Billy has a girlfriend. The name of Billy's girlfriend is Gracia.[1]

The advertising campaign was a great success, prompting PLDT to produce more commercials. The commercials doubled how many times subscribers called overseas and increased the number of minutes by 50%.[2]

Controversies[edit | edit source]

During the campaign, Filipinos were speculating over what does Gracia looks like and if Billy is gay. Multiple different discussions were archived during the advertising campaign and are still available today. [3] [4] However, it sparked controversy over its portrayal of gay people. In one commercial, "Rumors", Billy calls his gay friend Joey about the scandalous rumors surrounding his marriage to Gracia. The commercial then cuts to Joey acting clueless and it's revealed that Joey was the one spreading the rumors. [5] In protest of this commercial, the Lesbian and Gay Legislative Advocacy Network (Lagablab), boycotted PLDT.[6]

Videos[edit | edit source]

This is the "Rumors" commercial.

Another commercial, this time titled "Best Man".

References[edit | edit source]