• Kent Garcia

THIRD GENERAL ELECTION: Will Aly extend her reign?

Aly Padillo (Team NIV)

1st GE rank: 24th | 2nd GE rank: 1st

It's safe to say that 2019 was a breakout year for Aly Padillo.

The Cebuana idol from Team NIV ascended to the pantheon of the group last year as the runaway winner of the Second General Election. Coming as a surprise for a number of observers, Aly barged into the preliminary results as the leader and never looked back en route to getting the center spot.

The reign

Padillo proceeded to lead MNL48 into its second year as the center girl of fourth single "Ikaw Ang Melody". However, the emotional toll of the Second General Election towards the fanbase was still felt and it hampered the progress aimed by the group. Furthermore, the timeline for the single was short compared to other singles as pointed out by fans in social media.

MNL48 fan Arian Yupangco noted that the IAM era was rushed and poorly planned, hampering Padillo's reign in an online interview with PAKSA MNL. Yupangco said that the Center who wins the General Election in a given year should be the main focus of that said year based on the tradition of the AKB48 group. "If you look at the (AKB) 48G tradition, the generation center should be the main focus of the entire year. She should be the most highlighted member," she said. Furthermore, she added that Aly should be a regular fixture of the group in their guestings and other appearances even if she isn't the center of a particular single.

Despite the issues that surrounded the fourth single, Aly nevertheless did her best to lead MNL48 through the tough period. To say it best, Yupangco quoted the Disney movie Mulan to describe Padillo's stint as center, saying that "the flower that blooms in adversity is the most rare and beautiful of all."

The progression

After the IAM era, Padillo proceeded to become part of the senbatsu for the following single "High Tension" proving that she has improved a lot and blossomed into one of the group's prominent members.

Moreover, fans observed her increasing confidence on and off the stage which is far from the "shy" persona that she had in her first year. Yupangco noted this improvement, saying that Padillo found amazing confidence within herself while proving to other fans what a great idol she is. Padillo's improvement in all aspects as an idol, especially when it comes in communicating to both the fans and the media was also pointed out.

The outlook

Heading into the Third General Election, Aly has been predicted to be a sure senbatsu member and a likely Kami-7 ranked idol by most observers in the fanbase.

Yupangco personally wants Aly to be get the center spot again, due to the troubles and issues in the IAM era. But knowing the unpredictability of the GE, she is hoping for her kami-oshi to land inside the Top 10 or in the highest possible rank that she and her fellow fans can manage. "In the end, as long as she gets to continue living her idol dream, we’re happy", she said.

With all the notable progression made by Aly, the upcoming General Election will be an opportunity to cement her spot as a notable part of MNL48 and the votes will determine if she's a fixture in the group's main picture.

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