On June 30, Esquire Philippines published an article at their website titled Alden Richards is Definitely Not Thor in His Next TV Series.
The article points out the similarities between GMA Network’s Victor Magtanggol, who is played by Alden Richards, and Marvel’s Thor, who is played by Chris Hemsworth.
They also advised Alden to “maybe pick better projects next time—projects like Alaala.”
On the other hand, GMA Network’s executive Annette Gozon-Valdes posted a comment on the article on Facebook saying that it lacks research and should’ve waited for the show to air to find out what it’s about.
Your article lacks research. Even before Thor was a comic book character…he already existed in mythology. Thor is a Norse God…part of Norse mythology. They belong to the public domain. Dont you even wonder why so many movies and shows have been made in the past with Thor in it? Because anybody can make it without violating copyright laws for as long as their factual basis is the original mythology. Maybe you should have waited for the show to launch so you would understand what the show is about. Yes, the show has allusions to the Norse mythology, but Alden’s character is not Thor. However, the hammer he has IS the hammer of Norse mythology called the Mjolnir. How he is able to get it is part of what will be revealed in the show Victor Magtanggol.
On a message sent to entertainment website Pep.ph, Esquire Philippines editor-in-chief Kristine Fonacier declared that they stand by their opinions that are stated on the article.
She also said that yes, they do know that Thor is from the Norse pantheon, but it still does not make it original.
“Of course, we’re aware that Thor is a god from the Norse pantheon, and of course the character belongs to the public domain. That fact makes it legal to rip off the character, but it does not make it original. Ms. Gozon is right—many movies and other works of art have been based on Thor. Maybe the truly original move would’ve been to find a character in mythology that hasn’t been so deeply associated with such a big pop culture phenomenon as Marvel’s Thor.
If people see the similarities between their character and the Thor of the MCU, then that’s the risk they run for basing it off the same source material.”
Fonacier also said that to see if Victor Magtanggol is a fresher take on the character, they wait and see what the whole show is all about.
Despite the amount of negative feedback from netizens about the similarity of Victor Magtanggol to Marvel’s Thor, GMA executive Joey Abacan remains optimistic about the show’s outcome.
In a Facebook post of GMA Films’ president Annette Gozon, Joey commented that their previous series, Alyas Robin Hood (starring Dingdong Dantes), also received the same criticisms but it turned out to be a strong show.
“sana successful din ang Victor – ganyang ganyan ang nangyari sa Alyas”
In fact, Alyas Robin Hood’s publicity reached the Hollywood as Arrow star Stephen Amell shared the trailer on his official Facebook page with the flush-faced emoji. When a fan asked the actor about what he thought of the show, he replied “I mean, I have no idea what it is and frankly, I don’t care – at all. But boy, oh boy does it look familiar.”
Although neither Marvel or the cast of Thor has yet to react to Victor Magtanggol, the scenario seemed familiar to the executives.
In spite of the negative feedback, Alyas Robin Hood became ABS-CBN’s Ang Probinsyano’s biggest competitor out of all the shows that had the same timeslot as the series. As a result, they are hoping for the same positive outcome with Victor Magtanggol.
In Annette’s original post, she also slammed the article written by Esquire Magazine regarding Alden Richard’s role in the upcoming show.
“Your article lacks research. Even before Thor was a comic book character…he already existed in mythology. Thor is a Norse God…part of Norse mythology. They belong to the public domain. Dont you even wonder why so many movies and shows have been made in the past with Thor in it? Because anybody can make it without violating copyright laws for as long as their factual basis is the original mythology. Maybe you should have waited for the show to launch so you would understand what the show is about. Yes, the show has allusions to the Norse mythology, but Alden’s character is not Thor. However, the hammer he has IS the hammer of Norse mythology called the Mjolnir. How he is able to get it is part of what will be revealed in the show Victor Magtanggol.”
A lot of people have been pointing out the similarities between GMA Network’s “Victor Magtanggol” and Marvel’s “Thor,” but one netizen took it to the extent of sending a message to a page called Marvel Philippines.
A Twitter user named Earl Andersen posted screenshots of a message to Marvel Philippines informing them about the GMA Network show’s alleged copied version of Thor.
I just want to let you know that one of the major tv network (GMA Network) in the Philippines copied the story and concept of Thor. I want you to file a case against GMA Network. The title of GMA Network upcoming series is Victor Magtanggol.
Do some actions right now and consult your lawyers about it. Copyright is a form of intellectual property, your property stolen by GMA Network.
Hoping your kind consideration
The page replied that they will take note of the matter. The netizen sent screenshots of the said similarities as the page responded that they will get back to the message soon.
Thanks for messaging us. We try to be as responsive as possible. We’ll get back to you soon.
As a result of the screenshots spreading all over the internet, there have been speculations that Marvel will file a lawsuit against GMA Network.
However, Marvel Philippines recently posted a statement regarding a “fake news” written by someone named Nica Borja. The news stated that it may be possible for the franchise to file a case as they have responded to the messages, which the page immediately denied. Marvel Philippines clarified that they are not affiliated with Marvel.
PUBLIC STATEMENT on this FAKE NEWS:
Hello, True Believers!
It has been brought to our attention that a screenshot of our conversation with a fan has been circulating over social media. It was about a fan’s plea for Marvel to take action against a Philippine television network over a potential dispute on intellectual property over an upcoming show.
We’d like to reiterate and emphasize that our page is NOT owned NOR affiliated with Marvel, its entertainment division, and the like. The page was created to build an avenue for Filipino Marvel fans to interact with each other. The page is also NON-PROFIT — and we’d like to keep it that way, forever.
In line with this, we are NOT suing anyone, and we have no future intentions to do so. This is FAKE NEWS.
Fellow Marvel fans, help us spread the REAL story. Our fandom is at stake. We’ve united as one two months ago — surely we can do it once more.
[The Alpha | Agent E | Witch Maximoff]
Despite the allegations, GMA Network is still continuing the production of “Victor Magtanggol.”
‘Pambansang Bae’ Alden Richards is set to star in GMA Network’s upcoming series “Victor Magtanggol.”
According to the reports from 24 Oras, this show will showcase a different side of Alden as an actor. The story revolves aroun Victor Magtanggol who is a simple person but was given an extraordinary mission that will mark as a challenge in aspects of his life like his role in his family, his role as a brother, as a friend, and so much more.
Alden mentioned that he’s really looking forward to acting as Victor because he felt the instant connection between him and the character as soon as he read the script. He also said that he’s very involved with the creative team of the story and is continuously giving his input and insights regarding the flow of the drama.
It was mentioned that the goal of the series is not only to be a story that the audience will get hooked to but also a story that will give lessons and values to those who will watch. It is made to deliver messages that are timely and inspirational.
Alden added that the Filipino community will definitely relate to the storyline as the life of Victor is surrounded by drama and action that mirrors the life of every Filipino.
Alden Richards is known as the actor behind various characters such as Benjie from Destined To Be Yours, Lakan from Encantadia, and Bonifacio Ilagan from Alaala: A Martial Law Special, which won won the silver medal at the New York Festivals television and film award for TV docudrama.
Victor Magtanggol is said to premiere this July 2018 on GMA’s Telebabad line up.