But who exactly is this self-dubbed Le Superstar Fabuleux that he not just truly glitters with star status—the New York Post named him one of the 9 hottest celebrities on the web—but people all over the world hang on his every word and make sure he knows it?
Sure, BryanBoy blogs about his passion for high fashion, among other things. Yet it's the way he does it—“irreverent, cheeky, annoying, strangle-worthy, cuss-worthy”, describes blogsearchengine.com—that earns him mass readership appeal. According to asianoffbeat.com, the former freelance web designer's site attracts up to 100,000 visitors a day. It has even been hailed by style.com as “a cult read in fashion circles."
Indeed, BryanBoy's blog is full not only of his colorful commentary (“Vulgarity is the new discreet. Trash is the new exclusivity,” according to him). It also displays postcards adoring fans from all over the globe have sent of themselves brandishing “I <3 BryanBoy” signs. One sidebar details every single piece of praise the Filipino has gotten from big-named publications and personalities around the globe.
One of BryanBoy's fans, no less than celebrated designer Marc Jacobs, so loved him that Jacobs named an ostrich bag in his 2008 collection “The BB bag” after the blogger. “Love your passion for fashion,” Jacobs, whose shows at the New York Fashion Week are considered must-sees, is quoted as saying on bryanboy.com. “After all, where would designers be without enthusiasm like yours?”
Where would BryanBoy now be too without his enthusiasm, one may ask. According to philippinenews.com, Bryanboy only started blogging in October 2004 to update his friends on his globe-trotting and thoughts on the Manila, US and Europe fashion scene. “Since then, it evolved to an enormous, narcissistic shrine dedicated to my glorious, pretentious, third world, nouveau-rich parrot self,” philippinenews.com quotes BryanBoy as relating. “Don't blame me—I believe in debauchery and hedonism. I'm an advocate for excess.”
And excessive is just what others think of his free-wheeling, no-holds-barred style. Some of his posts have sparked nothing less than outrage from groups and individual bloggers alike. One post—showing photos of a man approximating BryanBoy's famous pose beside a crucifix from which dangles a bag, making it seem as if Christ were holding it—sent Catholics petitioning against BryanBoy for “making a joke out of Jesus.” Another post, featuring photos of BryanBoy's friends showing him a sexually-laced message in Tagalog as a joke had Bong Austero crying out on his blog: “We're supposed to find that cute and funny?”
BryanBoy's other posts suggest he's aware that not everyone on the blogosphere is ooh-ing and aah-ing over him. “I'm sure there's a fuming parent somewhere, waiting to report me to the police for my crimes against humanity,” he writes candidly in one entry. “Thanks to the power of the internet, I've corrupted the minds of today's youth.”
But BryanBoy also takes a more serious perspective on the “career” that has made his innumerable dreams possible.
“I really love what I’m doing right now. It’s given me so many opportunities, traveling and meeting so many people,” BryanBoy tells lifestyle.hk. “Blogging has been great for me so far but it takes extreme dedication. Every time you say something online, it’s there forever, and people will sometimes use that against you.”
Even those who chastise BryanBoy also know how to take his self-proclaimed “faggotry” in stride.
Austero, despite his criticism, points out on his blog that BryanBoy is best appreciated within a specific context. “His humor is something that needs to be taken with a certain degree of tolerance—if you want political correctness, BryanBoy is not for you,” he writes. “But beneath all the gross exteriors of furs and designer labels and shameless self-promotion... I have no doubt that there is something more about BryanBoy than meets the eye.”