(UPDATE) This has got to stop.
So said Vice Ganda, who faced his regular noontime show’s audience Wednesday after drawing flak for jokes he made about a top news anchor and rape.
Read related story: Vice Ganda slammed for 'rape' joke
The comedian urged critics, especially those who were not able to watch his concert or the video, to end discussions to incident which he said has been blown out of proportion and has somewhat turned into a "national issue."
“Sana po tapusin na natin ang isyung ito. Kung hindi niyo ako nauunawaan ako ang uunawa sa inyo,” Vice said.
Apology to Soho
“May mga naoffend, may mga binato sa aking issue na meron akong nalampasang linya, may mga sinabi akong hindi maganda, may mga tao akong nasaktan, natapakan,” Vice said on “Showtime.”
Vice Ganda's joke involved GMA news anchor and vice president for news and public affairs Jessica Soho. Vice also mentioned rape.
If he had it his way, Vice would have preferred to keep his apology to GMA news anchor Jessica Soho.
“Buong puso ko pong gustong humingi ng tawad. as much as possible ayokong gawin papubliko kasi ang plastik....kaya tinawagan ko po kanina si Ms. Jessica Soho,” Vice said on Showtime.
The comedian said Jessica answered the phone but told Vice: “Pasensya ka na pero masama ang timpla ko ngayong araw.”
When Vice asked if he can call again another time, Jessica reportedly said: “I don’t think so.”
It was then that Vice decided to air a public apology on “Showtime” not only to Jessica but to all those he may have offended with his jokes, particularly rape victims.
“Sinasadya mo man o hindi mo sinasadya, sabi ng magulang ko humingi ka ng tawad at paumanhin,” Vice said.
“It is a comedy concert, a comedy show, an enlarged comedy bar show,” said Vice, who first gained popularity as a stand-up comedian.
Other personalities he mentioned in his jokes, he added, included his network colleagues Kris Aquino, Boy Abunda and Kim Atienza, as well as senator-elect Grace Poe and Nancy Binay.
He also stressed that he had no intent to make fun of rape victims. Vice, talking about Jessica in his concert, said that if the news anchor were to figure in a rape scene, it would have to be gang rape.
“Hindi ko po kailanman gustuhin na kutyain ang mga rape victims. Hindi ko po ginawang pagtawanan ang rape victims,” Vice said.
Jessica in a statement acknowledged the comedian's apology, even as she noted that she hopes it was "done with the purest intentions and determination to put this issue behind us."
Vice's phone call "came without warning," Jessica added, noting that the comedian's number was not saved in her phone.
"I told him I wasn't feeling well and I wasn't sure I was ready to talk to him. But I clearly remember thanking him for his call," Jessica said.
The broadcast journalist also reiterated that the issue is not about her "but about the issue of rape not being an appropriate subject matter for comedy."
"Rape transcends age, economic class, gender--and even one's weight," she added
Also read: What real success is for Vice Ganda