Therese Reyes


Therese is a writer-editor with a strong background in digital media.

She is currently the culture editor of VICE Asia. Previously, she was the Manila managing editor for Coconuts Media. She also contributed to Quartz, was a branded content producer for Rappler, and an associate editor for lifestyle website and zine

She is a graduate of The University of Hong Kong's Master of Journalism program, New York University's Summer Publishing Institute, and De La Salle University-Manila, where she earned an honorable mention for a degree in Communication Arts.



K-Pop Is Redefining Fame, and What It Takes to Get There

Shin Seung-ho photographed by Chanhee Kim Teens around the world are dreaming of becoming K-pop idols, even as former trainees share their experiences of overwork. This is part of a special series, The Future of Fame Is the Fan , which dissects how celebrity became so slippery.

BIBI Is Following K-Pop's Success, but Charting Her Own Path

BIBI. Photo: Courtesy of Feel Ghood Music and 88Rising The South Korean singer-songwriter is living the best of both the underground and pop scenes. VICE K-Pop: Music, fandom, celebrity, and all things K-pop. This month, VICE is doubling down on all things K-pop and Korean music, featuring articles and videos on music, fandom, and celebrity.

LeeHi on Her Retro Influences, Current Passions, and Future Plans

LeeHi. Photo: Courtesy of AOMG Ltd. "All the songs in my albums, whether I've written or picked up, are true representations of how I've lived and how I feel." "Singers singing on stage come across as special and seem far away, but in fact, they're just like ordinary people."

How a Song From the 90s Became the Philippines' Unofficial Christmas Anthem

Photo edit by VICE. Screencap from 'Christmas in Our Hearts' music video on UniversalRecPH YouTube channel. While snowfall or stockings on display mark the holiday season for other countries, in tropical Philippines, it's a song by veteran singer Jose Mari Chan that takes over homes, malls, and parties.

What Ever Happened to Imelda Marcos' 3,000 Pairs of Shoes?

What Ever Happened to...? is an investigation into the whereabouts of former pop culture icons, political figures, and urban legends. This week, we're diving into former Philippine First Lady Imelda Marcos' 3,000-pair shoe collection. As a girl growing up in the Philippines, the first thing I knew about our infamous First Lady Imelda Marcos, is that she owned 3,000 pairs of shoes.

I Gave Myself Two Weeks to Get Famous on TikTok

I can't dance. I don't think I'm particularly funny, and I can't make my dog jump over a stack of toilet paper. And yet I thought, how hard can it be? But the attempt quickly became a rude awakening - or confirmation - of my lack of coordination.

How To Learn To Ride a Bike as an Adult

A First-Timer's Guide to the World is our bid to make life in quarantine a little less monotonous. Here, VICE Asia Editor Therese Reyes tries random challenges for the sake of content. Bikes demand from their riders a set of attitudes that make me deeply uncomfortable.

I'm a Queer Asian Woman Director. Here's Why Films Matter.

Samantha Lee is a Filipino writer-director. Her films Baka Bukas (Maybe Tomorrow) and Billie and Emma received various awards in the Philippines and have been screened in a number of international film festivals like the Osaka Asian Film Festival and the Frameline Film Festival in San Francisco.

Eat, Pray, Shop: How mall culture moved to the center of Philippine life

It's the second Saturday of December, just two weeks before Christmas, and shoppers are already in a long line outside Quezon City's Ali Mall, impatiently waiting for the doors to open. People quickly make their way inside once the guard finally unlocks the entrance at 11am, and in a matter of minutes, the lights are ...

Mind the gap: In the Philippines, language isn't about words, it's about class

The Learning Library is different from other tutorial centers in Manila. This isn't immediately obvious upon entering its branch in Quezon City, an intimate space that includes students from nearby Ateneo de Manila University among it's mostly upper middle class clientele. But a quick glance at the titles on the brightly painted shelves that frame ...

PHOTOS: PH's National Museum of Natural History finally opens, long queues commence

Friday's International Museum Day was extra special for Filipinos - the National Museum of Natural History finally opened to the public after months of anticipation. Not even Manila's unbearable summer heat stopped people from standing in line outside the building just to be among the first to snap a photo from inside.

Life on the drip: Tapping into a country's color obsession | Coconuts Manila

Sitting in a mall in southern Metro Manila, budding YouTube star Raf Juane - he now has more than 36,000 subscribers - holds up a phone showing a picture of his younger self. The boy staring back from the smartphone screen looks like any other emo kid in the early 2000s: purple hair dye, smudged ...

Filipinos are defending Alex Tizon from Western backlash to his story "My Family's Slave"

The Atlantic's latest cover story, "My Family's Slave," has the Philippines talking. An emotional first-hand account of modern-day slavery, the author Alex Tizon revealed how his family had kept a slave, Eudocia Tomas Pulido, affectionately known as Lola, for more than 50 years. When Tizon's family moved from the Philippines to the US in the 1960s,...

The iconic Philippines jeepney could be in trouble

Filipinos are fearful they may soon have to say goodbye to the iconic jeepneys millions of commuters ride every day. The Philippines' transportation department is working on a modernization plan that is expected to replace all jeepneys 15 years and older with electric vehicles, a step towards decreasing the country's carbon emissions.


Inside Zero Waste Efforts in Countries Overwhelmed With Trash

"Some people think zero waste means no trash. Actually, for me, the meaning of zero waste is no excess," one environmentalist said. Buzzing black flies and rows of trays full of maggots filled a small warehouse in the city of Bandung in West Java, Indonesia.

What You Need to Know About Metro Manila's Coronavirus Lockdown

(L) Filipinos in face masks on February 26, 2020. Photo by TED ALJIBE / AFP. (R) A government worker disinfects a high school, amid concerns about the spread of the COVID-19 novel coronavirus, in Manila on March 9, 2020. Photo by Maria TAN / AFP. Metro Manila, the Philippines' capital region, is officially on lockdown.

Calling Duterte Crazy on Social Media Can Now Land You in Jail

Despite ordinary Filipinos and human rights groups calling such an arrest a violation of freedom of expression, the national police force backed up the cops who arrested Orcullo. "There could have been other statements that became the reason for the police to take this person into custody," Philippine National Police (PNP) spokesperson Brigadier General Bernard Banac told CNN Philippines on Friday, May 15.

Stop Blaming Developing Countries for the World's Plastic Problem

For many, the topic of plastic pollution conjures up images of dirty rivers and massive landfills in developing countries. It's hard not to think this when the idea is supported by official studies. In 2015, a report on Science revealed that the leading sources of plastic waste in oceans were in Asia, with China, Indonesia, and the Philippines in the top three spots.

Planet Plastic: The undying plastic problem on Manila's Baseco Beach (Video)

It was a perfect day for somersaults at the beach. Three teenagers took turns showing off their acrobatic skills, each impressively sticking their landings after taking running leaps into the waist-deep water. The carefree Sunday we visited Baseco Beach, in Manila's Tondo neighborhood, the teens were joined by hundreds of local residents, many of whom ...

It's a Small World: Living sustainably in the Philippines' sachet economy

Walking along Roxas Boulevard's Baywalk, one is presented with two sides of Manila: the city that is and the city that could have been. On a recent Saturday morning, we got a taste of both. It was 7am and the road wasn't yet drowning in the bumper-to-bumper traffic that would fill it by afternoon.

Boracay by the numbers: 6 months, 30,000 jobs, 1 very uncertain future | Coconuts Manila

They talked about closing Boracay for months. On Wednesday, the talk became reality. President Rodrigo Duterte's spokesperson, Harry Roque, told reporters that the president had ordered a 6-month total closure of the Philippines' most popular island destination, following a proposal from the departments of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), Tourism (DOT), and Interior and Local ...

Manny Pacquiao is the Philippines' staunchest advocate for reinstating the death penalty

The Philippines is inching closer to reinstating the death penalty, which it abolished in 2006 (it was also the first country in the region to ratify a United Nations protocol against capital punishment), and the process is pitting a Bible-thumping boxer against the Catholic Church. With a new death-penalty bill overwhelmingly passing the House of...

Rodrigo Duterte wants to remove the safeguards meant to prevent another dictator like Ferdinand...

Philippine president Rodrigo Duterte wants to amend the process to declare martial law, further emboldening the strongman amid his controversial war on drugs that has killed more than 6,000 people. In a speech addressed to female volunteers on Dec. 22, Duterte criticized the process required for the president to declare martial law, which requires approval from other branches...

Making sense of why Filipinos fear Duterte's war on drugs but approve of him so highly

The majority of Filipinos are worried a family member will be a victim in Rodrigo Duterte's war on drugs, but still, many say they're satisfied with how the government is handling things, a recent survey revealed. These contradicting feelings about the crackdown that has killed close to 6,000 people are in the latest report released by Social Weather Stations, a...

Rodrigo Duterte skipped parts of the APEC summit just to avoid Barack Obama

Rodrigo Duterte has shown he's unafraid of lashing out at world leaders in his speeches. But he does fear awkward moments, apparently. The Philippine president admitted that he pretended to be sick during parts of an international conference last month just to avoid an awkward encounter with Barack Obama, who has criticized Duterte's bloody war on drugs....

Unicef calls the Philippines the "global epicenter" of live-streamed child pornography

One in four young Filipinos have been sexually violated, according to a report released this week by the UN children's agency Unicef and the Philippine government. Based on a survey of 13- to 24-year-olds conducted last year, the report found (pdf) that most of the violations happen in the children's homes, communities, or during dates; that boys are more at...

The woman who could take down Rodrigo Duterte: his soft-spoken, even-tempered vice president

For all the controversy he's generated since taking office a little over five months ago, Philippines president Rodrigo Duterte has-so far-remained a popular leader among Filipinos. That makes challenging him difficult, but the political opposition is gathering strength, led by a charismatic but fundamentally different kind of politician: his vice president, Leni Robredo.

Rodrigo Duterte's next war is a growing HIV epidemic in the Philippines

Philippines president Rodrigo Duterte is best known for his violent crackdown on drugs, but a new program from his administration shows that his iron fist could be beneficial for his more progressive policies. Next year, the Department of Health (DOH) will begin to distribute condoms and hold counseling session in schools all over the Philippines, the department secretary...


These Filipino Women Have Never Had Boyfriends and They Couldn't Be Happier

Illustration by Bobby Satya Ramadhan Singledom has become so popular in the Philippines that women are now reclaiming the term "No Boyfriend Since Birth." This story is part of a wider editorial series. Coming Out and Falling In Love is about the queering of our relationships with others, and the self.

Forget Live Music, Movies, or Dates: All I Miss Is Korean BBQ

I think about this a lot. Me and five friends huddled around a long table, warmed by sweaters, steam, and soju. We're in Baguio, one of the few places in the Philippines where the temperature drops below 10 degrees. Surrounded by mountains and pine trees, we plan our next trips for the year.

Elephant Grounds: Cult favorite HK cafe brings specialty coffee, artisanal ice cream, and...

Bonifacio Global City has become the go-to location for international brands coming to Manila for the first time, and the latest to set up shop in the business district is Hong Kong's Elephant Grounds. Filipinos who frequent Hong Kong are all too familiar with the cafe's cozy-but-modern interiors and offerings like single origin coffee, artisanal ...

Modern Merienda: Manam Cafe recreates classic Filipino snacks

In the Philippines, merienda is a light snack that's just as important as any other meal. Usually consumed once in the morning and another in the afternoon, they're meant to satisfy carvings before lunch and dinner. Merienda fare isn't showcased much in Filipino restaurants abroad or in the Philippines, which is why Coconuts Manila was excited to try ...

What's good at The Grid, Rockwell's new curated, minimalist chic food hall

Food parks and food halls don't usually go for that minimalist chic look - it's usually multi-colored LED lighting, bold colors, and a converted shipping container or two at these kinds of trendy communal food centers. The Grid, newly opened in the new wing of the posh Power Plant mall in Makati, however, is in many ways an ...

In search of halal food in Manila | Coconuts Manila

It had been two months since 19-year-old Nurrol Izzah Mala got a taste of badak. She only eats her favorite meal - made from jackfruit, coconut milk, rice, and fish - a couple of times a year, whenever she goes home to the Muslim-majority city of Marawi in the southern Philippines.