High Five Best Highlights of GMA’s Maria Clara at Ibarra

by Dianne Curray
Maria Clara at Ibarra Dennis Trillo Julie Anne San Jose Barbie Forteza
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As the Philippines’ prominent historical drama comes to an end, Filipinos will surely miss tuning in every night to watch GMA’s “Maria Clara at Ibarra”, inspired by Jose Rizal’s novels.

The impact that this show has on many Filipinos is truly remarkable, as it made its audiences of all ages hooked with Jose Rizal’s history, telling important lessons that most Filipinos still need to learn or remember today.

With this, here are our High Five best highlights of the show!

High Five best highlights from GMA’s “Maria Clara at Ibarra”

The Cry of San Diego’s Townspeople (Episode 70)

Maria Clara at Ibarra - Dennis Trillo The Cry of San Diego’s Townspeople

Photo from GMA Network

In this episode, Ibarra makes a powerful statement against ignoring the wrongs committed against the Filipino people by the colonizers.

His nearly four-minute address, which was laced with fury and desperation, was a heartrending appeal to his fellow Filipinos to wake up and express their feelings. Ibarra referred to the Philippines of his time as having cancer and urged his fellow Filipinos to heed his call to defend themselves.

The episode succeeded in touching the soul of a hero who desired reform for his homeland. It’s also about holding onto hope and rebelling against despair, not just highlighting the misery and internalizing it as “The Reality.”

We’re pretty sure that this scene will go down as one of the most iconic scenes in Philippine TV history.


Basilio Meets Ibarra Again as Simoun (Episode 89)

Maria Clara at Ibarra - Dennis Trillo Basilio Meets Ibarra Again as Simoun

Photo from GMA Network

This scene from Episode 89 has probably one of the most striking lines in this show. As Basilio meets Simoun, and they talk about Simoun starting a revolution.

As Basilio talks about schools planning to teach the Spanish language to Filipinos, Simoun utters the words “Ang mga mamamayan na hindi marunong magmahal sa sariling wika ay tinutulungang wasakin ang kanyang sariling pagkakakilanlan.” Which, in English, roughly translates to “Citizens who do not know how to love their own language helps one to destroy their own identity.”

The depth of their dialogue, the sharp contrast between innocence and corruption, and the coming together of two generations—one just beginning to rise, still hoping to see the best of their world, and the other beginning to collapse, having already witnessed the worst—were all striking. You can clearly see every characteristic of Khalil Ramos’ portrayal of the mature Basilio in the manner he delivered his words.


Sisa Lost Her Sanity (Episode 23)

Maria Clara at Ibarra - Andrea Torres Sisa Lost Her Sanity

Photo from GMA Network

Definitely one of the best scenes in the series, Andrea Torres deserves a Best Supporting Actress Award for portraying the role of Sisa and giving justice to the character’s depth.

In this episode, Sisa slowly loses her sanity due to the disappearance of her children, Crispin and Basilio. The injustices that the Filipino people experienced during this time in their history are embodied in this moment and Sisa’s character. Her sufferings stemming from the loss of her children served as a metaphor for the mistreatment and injustice Filipinos endured at the hands of their colonizer.


Fidel’s Stolen Kiss from Klay (Episode 60)

Maria Clara at Ibarra - David Licauco Barbie Forteza Fidel’s Stolen Kiss from Klay

Photo from GMA Network

We’re adding this one to our list since it is a fan-favorite scene from FiLay fans! Although originally not part of any of the novels by Jose Rizal, this light and exhilarating scene made the series a well-balanced type of historical drama.

In this episode, Fidel offers roses to Klay. But since Klay is allergic to roses, she sneezes once smelling them. This leads to Fidel getting confused at the word “allergic” by Klay, and thinking that Klay was rejecting his gesture. The funny interaction between the two leads to an accidental kiss on the cheek. The chemistry is real!


Rizal’s Importance in the Country (Episode 01)

Maria Clara at Ibarra - Barbie Forteza Rizal’s Importance in the Country

Photo from GMA Network

Last but definitely not least, we choose this scene from the very first episode as one of the show’s highlights for good reasons.

As Klay gets busted for plagiarizing her paper, she complains that the subject about Rizal has nothing to do with her college course, which is nursing. She said that studying about will not teach her how to become skillful to operate and work around health concerns, to which her professor – Mr. Torres – disagreed.

Mr. Torres then said a very important line, “The book gave a significant contribution on the struggles of Filipinos. This is why there are a lot of hopeless Filipinos because they do not care about history.”

Albeit harsh, the line strikes through the reflection of some of the Filipinos today. It is very important to remember that no matter what race or country you are from, we must all learn our history – to avoid making the same mistakes, going through the same circles, and progress as better citizens and as a better nation.

Maria Clara at Ibarra is indeed one of the greatest shows in Philippine TV history! Out of all the episodes, which scenes do you think are the best? Share with us in the comments!

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