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Rocco Nacino’s Elias lives on in Maria Clara at Ibarra’s ‘El Filibusterismo’ chapters

Although Rocco Nacino’s Elias seemingly died during the “Noli Me Tangere” chapters of “Maria Clara at Ibarra,” the sequel proved that he is still alive and fighting.

On Aubrey Carampel’s “24 Oras” report Wednesday, Rocco gave a glimpse of what his character now looks like: with longer hair, a beard, and a different look.

“Surprise, mga Kapuso! Nagbago lang ang itsura pero buhay na buhay pala,” he said.

This plot twist comes despite the fact that Elias really did die in Jose Rizal's novel “Noli Me Tangere.”

“Matagal din namin napag-usapan ‘to eh. Alam ko si Ms. Suzette [Doctolero], may nilabas siya o may twineet siya na photo tungkol sa comments ni Rizal na sana daw binuhay niya si Elias,” Rocco said.

“May article eh so sa tingin ko dito nila ginawan ng gano’ng arc para kay Elias,” he added.

According to a 1961 article of The Manila Times, Rizal told his roommate General Jose Alejandrino that he regretted killing Elias instead of Crisostomo Ibarra in the novel.

It added that Rizal got sick and thought he wouldn’t be able to write “El Filibusterismo.” He realized that Elias’ traits are more fit to lead a revolution, which the novel is about.

In a previous online interview with the press, creative consultant Doctolero already teased that they did something grand that’d reflect in the following episodes.

“May major kaming ginawa. Isang sobrang major na itinawid namin hanggang ‘El Fili’ na hindi sinulat ni Rizal pero kaya naming panindigan na ipagpapasalamat ni Rizal na ginawa namin,” she said.

She and director Zig Dulay said, however, that “Maria Clara at Ibarra” will still give justice to Rizal’s novels and that it will receive the same treatment as the “Noli Me Tangere” chapters.

Starring Barbie Forteza, Dennis Trillo, and Julie Anne San Jose, “Maria Clara at Ibarra” airs weekdays after “24 Oras.” You may also catch past episodes on the GMA Network website. — Franchesca Viernes/BM, GMA Integrated News