MANILA – Exactly one week after the nation was rocked by the news of a search for the first KFC Filipino colonel, a choice was made. Between comedian Leo Martinez, theater veteran Pen Medina, and character actor Ronaldo Valdez, three different yet equally qualified gentlemen were prepared to don the legendary white suit of the late Col. Harland Sanders. In the end, however, there could be only one.

The latest ad from Ogilvy & Mather Philippines presented a gathered throng, not much different from a political rally or perhaps a crowd greeting the pope. As we first see the back of the man’s feet as he climbs onto the stage, we see the crowd waving. A woman is then shown with a bucket of that famous fried chicken with its secret formula of 11 herbs and spices. 

As the man’s left hand is placed over the bucket, we finally see the chosen one… Ronaldo Valdez. The new Colonel then promptly takes his oath to take on this most solemn task. The viewers of the momentous event are not limited to those in attendance as people are also shown watching the ceremony in both homes and workspaces. 

The culmination of the oath-taking sees Valdez promising to protect the KFC formula while pushing the boundaries of innovation for this nation of fried chicken lovers. Of course, his two defeated foes have no choice but to chow down on KFC as well as they begrudgingly accept the choice of the new Colonel. With 6.8 million views on Facebook in the span of just one week, there was no shortage of anticipation in finding out who the winner among the three would be.

Clearly the person who resembled Col. Sanders the most, at least physically, Valdez’s matinee idol good looks have helped him transition into a character actor for the past four decades. Yet this might just be the greatest challenge he has faced in his storied acting career. For now, though, we join the nation in welcoming our new Colonel!

Click here for the story announcing the search for KFC’s first Filipino colonel.