news, Philippines, politics, public affairs, television

Around the AM Band: Mike Enriquez Returns to DZBB and 24 Oras, Plus DZMM’s Election Special

The legend has returned.

On DZBB Monday morning, listeners were greeted to a familiar voice as Mike Enriquez returns to the booth to anchor ‘Super Balita sa Umaga Nationwide’ with Joel Reyes Zobel. The long-time GMA News veteran made his first on-air appearance after a lengthy and curious absence due to heart and kidney surgery.

But while Mike made his return to the microphone, he was only restricted to working ‘Super Balita sa Umaga Nationwide’ by orders of GMA management in light of his recovery. As a result, ‘Saksi sa Dobol B’ and ‘Sino?’ will continue with the likes of Joel Reyes Zobel sitting in on an interim basis.

Hours later, Mike also resumed his duties anchoring ’24 Oras’. Prior to that, he made his first public appearance since the surgery last October when he attended the signing of a memorandum of agreement for GMA News’ Eleksyon 2019 coverage.

That said, his presence heading into GMA’s 2019 election coverage will be very crucial given his recent health battles. If Mike will be able to stay healthy come May 2019, it should help GMA News’ cause.

Over on DZMM, their Halalan 2019 coverage got underway Tuesday with the ‘Ikaw na Ba?’ series. The maiden episode of ‘Ikaw na Ba?’ featured senatorial aspirants Samira Gutoc, Sergio Osmeña III and Juan Ponce Enrile in a question-and-answer format that looks at their platforms heading into the election.

‘Ikaw na Ba?: The DZMM Senatorial Candidates Interview’ is moderated by DZMM anchors Peter Musñgi, Pat-P Daza, Gerry Baja and Anthony Taberna and is aired commercial-free from 4:30-6:30 p.m. The series is expected to invite more senatorial aspirants in the coming days, so stay tuned.

In the meantime, here is the full episode from last Tuesday.

Bonus: DZMM also debuted a new program last Saturday afternoon with ‘Haybol Pinoy’. Hosted by Tina Marasigan and Atty. Terry Ridon, the show takes a look at real estate and property news, as well as tips on managing a well-balanced household.

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news, Philippines, politics, public affairs, Sports, television

Rudely Interrupted: T5N Does a Heidi Anew for the NFL and U.S. NCAA

Remember the infamous ‘Heidi Game’ in American football?

Back on November 17, 1968, an American Football League (AFL) game between the New York Jets and Oakland Raiders was rudely cut on NBC during the fourth quarter in order to air the program ‘Heidi’ on time. The incident caused viewers to miss out on the game’s final minutes, which saw the Jets kick a field goal only to see Oakland win the game on two touchdowns.

This incident led to the NFL requiring its television partners to air the games in its entirety. Unfortunately, one Filipino television network appears to ignore this rule.

In 2014, TV5 gave NCAA fans no favors when it interrupted two of its live games in favor of news coverage. The first instance, Lyceum vs. Mapua, was cut short in favor of then-President Noynoy Aquino’s impromptu speech, while the second instance, EAC vs. Mapua, featured a bench-clearing brawl and was consequently cut in favor of ‘Aksyon Prime’.

As a result, the NCAA decided not to re-sign with TV5 and chose ABS-CBN Sports as its broadcast partner instead. But this is not the last time The 5 Network became embroiled in such controversy.

September’s NFL Kickoff Game between the Philadelphia Eagles and Atlanta Falcons was delayed by over an hour due to inclement weather. Consequently, T5N did another ‘Heidi’ and started ‘Aksyon sa Tanghali’ on time, although they still inserted the live feed of the NFL game during the Raffy Tulfo in Action segment.

T5N also did the same thing Wednesday afternoon when they aired a U.S. NCAA men’s basketball game between Duke and Kentucky. While they still complied in both of these cases, the fact that they pushed through with ‘Aksyon sa Tanghali’ didn’t sit well with some viewers.

Then again, neither the NFL nor the U.S. NCAA basketball were popular with Filipino sports fans. At this point, ESPN5 is questioning the viability of both sports, especially when the country’s pastimes now are local basketball, volleyball and to a lesser extent soccer.

Also, there is a concern regarding T5N’s insistence on a noontime newscast at the expense of live sports. For all intents and purposes, ‘Aksyon sa Tanghali’ is now more of a ‘Wanted sa Radyo’ spinoff, with less emphasis on news and more on citizen complaints.

If Chot Reyes were to be approached, he might as well convince Luchi Cruz-Valdes to cancel ‘Aksyon sa Tanghali’ and proceed with a taped-as-live TV revival of ‘Wanted’. Because who needs a noontime newscast anyway when the news gets thrown out the window.

Either way the never-ending problems within T5N are once again prevalent. Let’s face it, with such an incompetent personnel it’s no wonder they have a disorganized schedule.

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news, Philippines, politics, public affairs, radio, television

Around DZMM: Pasada 630’s New Hosts, Plus Where’s Ted Failon?

DZMM’s ‘Pasada 630’ has found a new tandem.

For the past few weeks, the ‘Teka Muna’ team of Peter Musñgi and Pat-P Daza were asked to take over ‘Pasada 630’ in lieu of longtime host Vic de Leon-Lima. But after a two-week trial run (which was well-received by the way) DZMM decided to keep the change permanent starting last Monday.

In the past, ‘Pasada 630’ was hosted by the aforementioned Vic de Leon-Lima and Karen Davila. The duo were once the faces of the program for many years.

However, Karen decided to leave the show earlier this year for health reasons while Vic went solo. ‘Pasada 630’ continued with Vic as the man on the microphone until late October when Peter and Pat took over.

While ‘Pasada 630’ will soldier on with a new tandem, Vic will continue to appear on ‘On the Spot’ and ‘Tandem: Lima and Oro’ while making select appearances on the microphone for breaking news stories. In short, listeners will still hear Vic’s ageless baritone on the air.

Meanwhile, listeners of ‘Failon Ngayon sa DZMM’ are still perplexed over the absence of Ted Failon on the program. For those who may not know, Ted’s last appearance on his show came on August 31, 2018.

Since early September, however, a number of substitute hosts took over ‘Failon Ngayon’. These include DZMM reporters Ricky Rosales and Johnson Manabat, as well as occasional co-hosts Alvin Elchico and Jing Castañeda.

Yet despite his absence on radio, Ted continues to appear on ‘TV Patrol’ and ‘Failon Ngayon’ on ABS-CBN. It really doesn’t make sense for Ted not to show up on the DZMM booth while still working ‘TV Patrol’ and ‘Failon Ngayon’ on television considering that he is in good health.

Anyway, comments are welcome on this article as we debate over Ted Failon’s absences on DZMM. Listeners can only hope that this iconic news anchor will once again grace the DZMM booth in the near future.

Bonus: Kim Atienza replaced Marc Logan as Amy Perez’s co-host on ‘Sakto’ effective October 15. No explanation was given regarding the change.

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Pissed Off: TV Patrol Unhappy About Late Start

The ‘It’s Showtime’ effect of going overtime has had plenty of repercussions.

For the most part, it affected the start times of succeeding ABS-CBN programs. But none felt the sting of starting late more than ‘TV Patrol’, the flagship primetime newscast of the network.

‘TV Patrol’ usually airs at around 6:30 p.m. and is simulcast on both ABS-CBN and DZMM. However, the DZMM portion gets a little tricky; ‘Dos Por Dos’ anchors Gerry Baja and Anthony Taberna usually end their show just before 6:30, but in recent episodes they either stick around for a little while or leave and allow DZMM to play a long commercial break.

In certain instances where ‘TV Patrol’ begins later than its usual 6:30 p.m. start, the ‘Headlines’ portion was omitted in favor of a shortened opening billboard. Peter Musñgi’s introduction of “Live mula sa ABS-CBN News Center Manila, Ito ang TV Patrol”, accompanied with an airborne shot of the ABS-CBN Broadcast Center, was also removed at times.

Even the newscast’s anchors were starting to feel unhappy with the late start. During one recent episode, anchor Noli de Castro berated one of the teleprompter operators a few minutes into the newscast for not opening the teleprompter on short notice (a moment that was later cut from iWant TV uploads of the show).

There were also times when Star Patrol, the newscast’s entertainment news segment, was reduced to just two or three news items. And finally, a few recent episodes saw an unusual closing segment in which the anchors bid farewell and then walk out of the set immediately while still on camera.

Despite the late starts, ‘TV Patrol’ continued to be the newscast of choice for the common Filipino as it scores over 30%. However, it was clear that the show and its anchors were not happy with the late starts.

Perhaps ABS-CBN management should call an emergency meeting to solve this brewing issue once and for all. They can call out both the hosts of ‘It’s Showtime’ and the anchors of ‘TV Patrol’, their respective production teams, and both the head of integrated news Ging Reyes and corporate communications Kane Errol Choa to end this impasse.

One can only hope that ABS-CBN will do the right thing and go back to what it was useful in the past. After all ‘TV Patrol’ does not deserve to be put in a bad light because of ‘It’s Showtime”s string of poor time management.

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news, Philippines, politics, public affairs, television

Of CNNPH’s Newsroom Junior Edition and Other News Programs for Teens

News reporting is not always exclusive to adults.

When CNN Philippines announced that ‘Newsroom Junior Edition’ will air starting this Saturday, it reminded this writer of the day when Philippine television used to have news programs hosted by underage boys and girls. While these shows were few and far between, they have at least made some valuable contributions to the world of media.

One most notable example was ‘5 and Up’. The Probe Productions-produced show ran for 10 years and was one of the standout shows of GMA Network during the ‘Rainbow Satellite’ era.

‘5 and Up’ was responsible for launching the careers of brothers Rodjun and Rayver Cruz, Chynna Ortaleza, Maxene Magalona and Atom Araullo. Of the five, Atom was the only one who continued his career as a journalist, although he did have a directorial credit in the film ‘Citizen Jake’.

But before ‘5 and Up’ became a cult favorite among the youth in the 90s, ABS-CBN once had its own kids’ version of ‘TV Patrol’. While ‘Junior Patrol’ ran for only two years, it did produce current ABS-CBN News reporter Doland Castro, who now serves on the news division’s police beat.

The most recent attempt at a kids’ news program came from CNN Philippines’ mother network RPN-9. ‘Newswatch Junior Edition’ may have only lasted a few episodes in the late 2000s, but this show did manage to launch the career of blogger, model and TV host Janeena Chan.

Now it is CNN Philippines’ turn to try this seldom-used trick of using kids as news anchors. In ‘Newsroom Junior Edition’ the network will have six teenage individuals who will tackle the world of news reporting.

The hosts are:

  • Dana Villano, 16
  • Emman Rivera, 16
  • Gabby Sandejas, 16
  • Isaac Dantes, 13
  • Janella Renner, 15
  • Nate Lopez, 14

Guided by the CNN Philippines’ team of anchors and reporters, these young boys and girls will have an opportunity to deliver the week’s latest local and international news, as well as sports, entertainment, weather, technology and lifestyle news. ‘Newsroom Junior Edition’ will air on weekends at 8:00 a.m.

At the end of the day, they are still kids (or in the case of ‘Newsroom Junior Edition’, teens). But at least they should gain some first-hand experience at what it is really like in the cutthroat world of journalism (or showbiz for that matter).

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Revisiting GMA News TV and Its Epic Failures on SONA Day

This is already becoming a habit.

For GMA News TV, their perceived indifference in important news coverage is undeniable. This was none more apparent than on the day the President of the Philippines delivers his State of the Nation Address.

In almost every year since the network rebranded from QTV in 2011, the tendency for GMA News TV is that they don’t always get involved in the SONA in more ways than one. Whenever the fourth Monday of July comes, all the network does is to air regular programming as if nothing important happens.

For instance, President Rodrigo Duterte’s speech this year started at 5:17 p.m. In the meantime, GMA News TV aired ‘Quick Response Team’ in the midst of the SONA (see video below).

It is understandable that GMA management wants to focus more on Channel 7 when it comes to live coverage of the SONA. But what the management do not realize is the overall purpose of GMA News TV (and of GMA News for that matter), which in the years since its launch has been largely neglected due to extracurricular activities not related to news coverage.

Considering that its rivals from Mother Ignacia (ANC/DZMM TeleRadyo), Shaw Boulevard (CNN Philippines) and Reliance (One News) worked a more extensive analysis on the day of the SONA, it is disgraceful to see GMA News TV stand pat and do almost nothing. It is as if they never wanted to be a news channel in the first place.

Perhaps if GMA News TV becomes a cable channel instead of going to free TV like they do now, such issues would have been mitigated. Such an arrangement would have allowed the channel to go 24/7, use English as the main language and cater to upper class audiences.

Unfortunately, the station is stuck on VHF channel 11 and can only play second banana to channel 7, another VHF station. And to make matters worse, GMA doesn’t even own the former due to broadcast restrictions; ZOE continues to own the channel while GMA only leases airtime.

If they are really that disinterested to remain a news channel, they can just rebrand back to QTV or become GMA+, a secondary entertainment channel of the mother network. Or GMA can just break their lease on Channel 11 and allow ZOE to move Light back to its original channel.

In many ways, GMA News TV is an undependable channel for all things news. What GMA did to this channel is so unglorifying that their boasting as the ‘no. 1 news channel’ does not make sense at all.

And on this SONA day, this channel simply failed to deliver when it mattered most. Shame on them.

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