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Series / Got to Believe

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"Believe in the magic of love."

Got to Believe is a Philippine romantic comedy series starring Kathryn Bernardo as Cristina Carlota "Chichay" Tampipi, whose family struggles financially following the forced shutdown of their carnival due to an abundance of debts. To help them, she finds herself working as the nanny of Joaquin Manansala (Daniel Padilla). Drama ensues after she is given a scholarship in Malaya University (his school) and they fall in love, just as his mother discovers that Chichay's is her husband's ex-girlfriend.


This series contains examples of the following tropes:

  • Artists Are Attractive: Chichay is a skilled artist and the golden girl of her family and their friends. Her beauty is noted by people from in and outside their inner circle.
  • Aww, Look! They Really Do Love Each Other: Juliana and her son spend much of Got to Believe quarreling. However, in "By Your Side", Joaquin temporarily drops all else in his life to console the former, who's heartbroken because of Jaime leaving her.
  • Betty and Veronica: Pedro is Betty for Chichay (Archie), who expectedly ends up with Joaquin (Veronica). Alternatively, Alex can be seen as Joaquin's Veronica, and Chichay his Betty.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: Chichay (not as much as her parents, however).
  • Boy Meets Girl
  • Break-Up Bonfire: Of a sort in Patricia's case – she burns her pictures of Dominic because she’d grown tired of waiting for him to make the first move, an idea that appeals to Chichay (whose situation is also a slight variation as she and Joaquin had never been officially together).
  • But for Me, It Was Tuesday: A non-villainous variation with Chichay. She barely remembers accidentally bumping into Joaquin at the carnival, which is understandable. She was insensitive and careless, but this is hardly a misdeed of such magnitude that one would agonize over it. For Joaquin, however, it kicked off a deeply distressing chain of events that led to his only consistently decent parental figures getting forced out of his life. He thus develops a grudge against Chichay.
  • Cassandra Truth: Lolo Isko bears witness to a man paid off by Matilda reconfiguring the carousel horses to malfunction. Isko being a dementia-afflicted Scatterbrained Senior, Betchay and the rest know that people unfortunately wouldn't take his testimony seriously.
  • Chastity Couple: This being a Philippine series, it's hardly surprising that Joaquin and Chichay are one.
  • Cheerful Child: The younger Chichay manages to stay optimistic despite the problems she faces (which isn't to say she's the resident Pollyanna).
  • Chocolate of Romance: Tatay Poro’s recommended weapon for wooing. He also expands on it by saying any sweet food is great, really, although chocolates were what secured his wife’s affections for him.
  • Ditzy Genius: Joaquin is this as a result of Juliana's (guilt-wreaked) overprotectiveness. (She is revealed to be the one who'd accidentally shot him in the head as a child.)
  • Faux Affably Evil: The Pantojas sometimes try to act nice, but everybody sees through it.
  • Feminine Women Can Cook: Betchay, arguably the most feminine of the characters, is also the most adept cook.
  • Flowers of Romance: Jaime’s recommended weapon for wooing. Tatay Poro thinks it’s impractical.
  • Genre Savvy: Tarantina. For instance, she's upset by Joaquin and his mother planning to head for the United States despite him promising that it'll only be for a while, knowing Juliana has different intentions.
  • The Glasses Gotta Go: The person helping Miley doll up for the Crillon Ball thinks so, at least. She's Blind Without 'Em, so it's Played for Laughs.
  • Hate Sink: The Pantojas. Their daughter Didith is a bully, while the parents are greedy monsters who Would Hurt a Child just to pressure the Tampipis into letting them run a gambling operation.
  • Honorary Uncle: Nanoy and Whitey to Chichay.
  • He Cleans Up Nicely: Although she’s attracted to Joaquin even before the Crillon Ball, the sight of him all dressed to the nines elicits this reaction in Chichay. It also kickstarts her deciding to really fight for their Interclass Romance.
  • Insecure Love Interest: Joaquin's background and the classism Chichay becomes the target of thanks to hers lead to the girl fearing she isn't worthy of his attention.
  • Love-Obstructing Parents: There are two pairs of them, in fact, although Jaime and Betchay are often much more permissive than their respective partners.
  • Loving Bully: Subverted. Joaquin doesn't fall for Chichay until after he stops picking on her and vice versa, and the girl certainly didn't neglect to call him out on it beforehand.
  • Maybe Magic, Maybe Mundane: The series is set in a fictional version of real-world Philippines, one with Contrived Coincidences that are fantastical in nature. The flirtations with Magic Realism are confirmed when Lolo Isko returns, post-death, to guide Chichay to Joaquin; the show actually suggests it's more likely to be a real apparition than a mere figment of Chichay's imagination. They don't ask audiences to believe in magic for nothing.
  • Pair the Spares: In the last episode, Romantic Runner-Ups Alex and Dominic are implied to be a developing example of this.
  • Parental Substitute: Joaquin treats Poro and Puring like his parents, as Juliana and Jaime are pretty negligent. This is a source of irrational jealousy on Juliana's part.
  • Parents as People: Jaime is a pretty squarely terrible husband to Juliana, although he gets over his initial resentment over time. Although he and Juliana still have a dysfunctional and cold relationship by the time Joaquin’s a teenager, he’s also become much fairer to her and a considerably more reasonable parent to Joaquin than Juliana is — unless Betchay is involved, then Love Makes You Dumb kicks in.
  • Working with the Ex: The amnesiac Joaquin ("Ryan"), having forgotten who Chichay is, has no idea how uncomfortable having to paint for his project is for her.
  • Would Hurt a Child: Matilda pays off someone to make the carousel malfunction, knowing damn well that children love such rides. Indeed, the ensuing accident leaves many innocent people grievously injured, including children bleeding.


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