It's a Pop Culture Moment: Maalaala Mo Kaya Is Ending After 31 Years on Television


Maalaala Mo Kaya, the Philippines' longest-running drama anthology, will air its final episode after more than three decades on television, marking the end of an era for many Filipino millennials who grew up watching real-life stories about hardships, determination, and success.

ABS-CBN boss lady Charo Santos-Concio, who has hosted MMK for the past 31 years, shared the news about the show's finale on Monday, November 21, as she looked back at the stories that made a mark on Filipino audiences. Before the dawn of e-mail, she was reading handwritten confessionals on yellow pad paper.

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"Hindi na po mabilang ang naisalaysay nating kuwento dito sa MMK. Mga kwentong totoo. Mga salamin sa sarili ninyong buhay na nagbigay ng aral at panibagong pag-asa," Santos-Concio said in a report aired on TV Patrol.

"Kami po ay tagapaghatid lamang ng mga kuwento. Kung mauulit man ang lahat, hindi po ako magdadalawang isip na piliing muli ang role na ito," she added.

Why the end of MMK matters

Since airing its first episode on May 15, 1991, MMK has become a weekly viewing habit for Philippine households as they watched Santos-Concio narrate stories of ordinary Filipinos and even famous personalities from letters sent to her.

The show has also earned its place in Filipino popular culture as Santos-Concio's opening line, "Dear Charo", became one of the most iconic lines on Philippine television.

MMK's eponymous theme song, sung by Dulce and later by Carol Banawa, has had an enduring effect on the Filipino society that it was played on many special occasions, including weddings and funerals.


In 1994, Maalaala Mo Kaya: The Movie, directed by Olivia Lamasan, was released and earned Aiko Melendez the Best Actress award in that year's Metro Manila Film Festival.

Santos-Concio's soothing voice and effective storytelling also made her a household name during the show's run, so popular that many celebrities have parodied her iconic character, the most recent of which was eventual Drag Race Philippines winner Precious Paula Nicole during the "Snatch Game" episode.

Where to rewatch the most memorable MMK episodes

Before MMK airs its three-part finale on November 26, December 3, and December 10, rewatch some of the most memorable episodes of the show over the past three decades here:


The 15th anniversary offering of MMK, "Regalo" tells the story of Daisy Hernandez (played by Vilma Santos) and the sacrifices she made to help her daughter April (played by Maja Salvador) live a long life despite her degenerative illness.


The 15th anniversary offering of MMK, "Regalo" tells the story of Daisy Hernandez (played by Vilma Santos) and the sacrifices she made to help her daughter April (played by Maja Salvador) live a long life despite her degenerative illness.


Aired in 2007, this episode features the story of Remedios (played by Gina Pareño) who had to endure life's greatest challenges after her three children fell into insanity. This episode earned MMK the Special Award in Drama at the 2007 Seoul Drama Awards.


Starring Piolo Pascual, this is the story of a young and hardworking teacher who suffered from a mental illness after figuring in an accident, causing those who used to admire him to ridicule him.

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"Manika" tells the story of a beautiful girl named Nene (played by Jane Oineza) who at a young age of 15 suffered sexual abuse from her stepfather. Making matters worse, Nene's own mother, Cora, even assisted her live-in partner in the assault.


Starring Angel Locsin and Dimples Romana, "Kotse-Kotsehan" is a two-part episode aired in 2017 telling the story of a lost child from the perspective of two mothers.


"Passport" tells the story of Nena (played by Irma Adlawan), who flew all the way to the U.S. to work as a househelper, only to suffer at the hands of her boss who is also a Filipino (played by Agot Isidro).


"Lobo" features the story of a man who fell in love with a mentally-ill woman, and how they fought for their love despite the disapproval of their families. Starring Piolo Pascual and Regine Velasquez, it was the highest-rated episode of MMK.

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