drama, entertainment, Korea, Philippines, Taiwan, television

The Demise of Asianovelas on ABS-CBN

Once known for introducing F4 (above) and ‘Meteor Garden’ to Filipino audiences, ABS-CBN has effectively ceased its importation of Asianovelas since the middle of this year. (Photo credit: Meteor Garden ABS-CBN Official Facebook)

Asianovelas on ABS-CBN are now a thing of the past.

The premiere of the teleserye ‘You’re My Home’ last November 9 signaled the end of an era. Gone are the days when ABS-CBN usually reserves the final spot of their weekday afternoon and evening blocks for Asianovelas.

Now they are leaning more towards local programming in an effort to make use of their deep roster of talents. This makes sense, considering that ABS-CBN has the resources and the technology to produce their own programs.

The last Asianovelas aired on ABS-CBN were ‘Let’s Get Married’ and ‘My Lovely Girl’, whose final episodes were aired on June 19 of this year. When the recently-concluded ‘Pinoy Big Brother: 737’ premiered on the weekday slots three days later, many thought this was only a temporary break for Asianovelas on the network.

As it turned out, ABS-CBN has bigger plans in mind. With so many programs currently kept under wraps, management thought it was best to finally devote more time to locally-produced shows.

This led to the entry of more recent teleseryes such as ‘Ningning’, ‘Doble Kara’, ‘All of Me’, ‘Walang Iwanan’, and the aforementioned ‘You’re My Home’. A few other programs are still being planned, with a target date set for early next year.

Today, the Prime Tanghali, Kapamilya Gold and Primetime Bida blocks air a combined total of nine teleseryes. More than half of the network’s roster of contract artists are currently utilized in these teleseryes, ranging from child stars like ‘Ningning”s Jana Agoncillo to forty-somethings like ‘You’re My Home”s Richard Gomez and Dawn Zulueta.

ABS-CBN’s new path should benefit the network in the years to come. Having recently launched ABS-CBN HD, they now strive to take advantage of this new technology by committing more towards local programs, with the intent of broadcasting a purely Filipino programming lineup in the near future.

As for Asianovelas, it’s now GMA’s responsibility to continue airing them. After all, they still have Heart of Asia mornings to keep fans company.

Note: ‘Angel Wings’ is excluded here as it is considered a spiritual successor of the long-running anthology series ‘Chinese Variety Show’. Asianovelas only refer to imported series from Eastern Asian countries that air on weekdays.

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drama, entertainment, Philippines, television

Nasaan Ka Ends Tomorrow; Walang Iwanan to Premiere This Monday

‘Nasaan Ka Nang Kailangan Kita’ officially bids farewell.

The series will come to a close tomorrow afternoon following its 193rd episode. Starring Jane Oineza, Loisa Andalo and Joshua Garcia, alongside Vina Morales, Denise Laurel, Christian Vasquez, and Jerome Ponce, ‘Nasaan Ka Nang Kailangan Kita’ told the story of a daughter who searched for her lost father, and was based from the 1986 film of the same name.

‘Nasaan Ka Nang Kailangan Kita’ premiered on January 19 alongside ‘Flordeliza’, as part of ABS-CBN’s attempt to rejuvenate Kapamilya Gold. The series initially had a slow start, but soon gained momentum and won the ratings battle consistently against GMA’s ‘Yagit’, ‘Healing Hearts’ and ‘Buena Familia’.

Come this Friday, expect the finale of ‘Nasaan Ka Nang Kailangan Kita’ to be as intense and as epic, not to mention inspiring. It will be the viewers’ last chance to see how love conquers all regardless of the challenges.

In the meantime, a replacement for ‘Nasaan Ka Nang Kailangan Kita’ has been confirmed. Titled ‘Walang Iwanan’, the series will take over the former’s timeslot.

‘Walang Iwanan’ features the network’s five rising child stars: Louise Abuel, Micko Laurente, Jon Michael, Raikko Mateo and Karla Cruz. They will be joined by Roxanne Guinoo, Jhong Hilario, John Estrada, Beauty Gonzales, and Nicco Manalo.

The series is based from a real-life survival story of Jose Bautista and his seven siblings, which was retold on ‘Maalaala Mo Kaya’. The story focuses on five siblings who will try to survive on their own after the disappearance of their parents.

With momentum on Kapamilya Gold’s side, it will be a huge task for ‘Walang Iwanan’ to make an immediate impact. But based on ABS-CBN’s recent success with child talent, it should not be a problem.

‘Walang Iwanan’ should be a very inspiring series, much like its predecessor, and viewers should look forward to it. The series airs weekdays after ‘All for Me’ starting this Monday.

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drama, entertainment, Philippines, television

Julia Montes vs. The Half-Sisters Starting Today

‘The Half-Sisters’ now finds itself facing a more formidable rival.

The long-running GMA afternoon teleserye, now over a year on the air, will face ‘Doble Kara’ starting today. The upcoming episode of ‘Doble Kara’ will mark the series debut of Julia Montes, after the teleserye’s first week saw young actress Avery Balasbas play the younger versions of Julia’s twin characters Sarah and Kara.

Despite not featuring Julia in its opening week, ‘Doble Kara’ managed to beat the competition from the moment it debuted on ABS-CBN. Last Monday’s premiere episode scored a 16.9% rating (based on Kantar’s figures), besting rival show ‘Buena Familia’s 13.1%, and continued its momentum throughout the week.

It became clear, however, that ‘Doble Kara’ needed worthier competition. This is where ‘The Half-Sisters’ come to the picture.

For most of this year, ‘The Half-Sisters’ has been afternoon’s top teleserye, winning in both Kantar and AGB Nielsen on a consistent basis. While the series is being led by underrated GMA talents in Barbie Forteza and Thea Tolentino, a strong supporting cast and an unpredictable storyline has kept viewers glued to this series regularly.

‘The Half-Sisters’ proved too much for ‘Flordeliza’ to overcome, even though the latter managed to gain some momentum in its final few weeks. Still, ABS-CBN was not satisfied with how the series fared, despite the fact that it was hyped as the comeback series of returning Kapamilyas Jolina Magdangal and Marvin Agustin.

‘Flordeliza’ was supposed to be replaced by ‘Doble Kara’, but the latter’s premiere date was moved a week earlier than expected. The declining ratings of ‘Pinoy Big Brother: 737 Gold’ forced ABS-CBN to cancel the show in order to make way for ‘Doble Kara’, which first premiered opposite ‘Buena Familia’.

Following the conclusion of ‘Flordeliza’, ABS-CBN initially advertised ‘All of Me’ as the former’s replacement. But instead, the itch to beat ‘The Half-Sisters’ can no longer be tolerated, and they finally decided to move ‘Doble Kara’ to the leadoff spot in the network’s Kapamilya Gold block.

It does make sense for ABS-CBN to pit ‘Doble Kara’ against ‘The Half-Sisters’. After all, they have a proven performer in Julia Montes, who has been successful in the Primetime Bida block through starring roles in ‘Mara Clara’, ‘Walang Hanggan’, ‘Muling Buksan ang Puso’, and more recently ‘Ikaw Lamang’.

Now the sole lead star and playing two characters at once, it’s up to Julia to continue her momentum. But whether or not her presence will lift ‘Doble Kara’ past an afternoon power in ‘The Half-Sisters’ remains to be seen.

Still, it’s a good test for Julia and her expanding range of skills. Good luck.

‘Doble Kara’ airs weekdays after ‘It’s Showtime’ on ABS-CBN’s Kapamilya Gold.

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drama, entertainment, Philippines, reality show, television

PBB: 737 Gold Cancelled; All of Me Replaces Flordeliza

Turns out there won’t be any congestion on Kapamilya Gold after all.

‘Pinoy Big Brother: 737 Gold’ was cancelled following last Friday’s episode. The cancellation gave way to the premiere of ‘Doble Kara’, starring Julia Montes.

The afternoon edition of the ongoing ‘Pinoy Big Brother: 737’ has been under hot water from the beginning, receiving an SPG warning from the MTRCB after the infamous ‘bromance’ issue between Bailey May and Kenzo Gutierrez. Though it was later removed, ABS-CBN eventually decided to cancel PBB: 737 Gold out of respect to younger viewers.

Thus, for the first time in the reality series’ history, only one edition of PBB will be seen on free TV on a daily basis. Past seasons of ‘Pinoy Big Brother’ had an afternoon and evening (sometimes late night) edition on weekdays, and in the early years of the franchise, sister station Studio 23 even aired a supplementary broadcast of the series.

Meanwhile, ‘Flordeliza’ is down to its final week. The comeback series of Jolina Magdangal and Marvin Agustin has been on the air for eight months now, but despite its surprisingly long run, it failed to dampen the success of afternoon’s top drama, GMA’s ‘The Half-Sisters’.

Now it’s up to another comebacking Kapamilya, JM de Guzman, to give ‘The Half-Sisters’ a much-needed challenge. After returning to the limelight with the movie ‘That Thing Called Tadhana’, JM returns to the small screen via ‘All of Me’.

In ‘All of Me’, JM and veteran actor Albert Martinez will share the role of Manuel, whose near-death experience led to his transformation back to his younger self. Older Manuel, a widowed doctor, settled with his new love interest Lena (Yen Santos), and after transforming into his younger self and traveling into the future, was faced with seeking revenge on Lena’s husband Dr. Henry Nieves (Arron Villaflor), or moving on to a new life.

The upcoming series will also star Angel Aquino, Ina Raymundo, Neri Naig, Ana Capri, Micah Munoz, Jordan Herrera, Sue Ann Ramirez, and Akira Morishita. Dondon Santos will be the director.

One can only hope that JM will rekindle the success that he had on ‘Angelito: Batang Ama’. It won’t be easy though, given that ‘The Half-Sisters’ has been on fire in the afternoon for months now.

Still, it’s worth a challenge, and an opportunity to revive his showbiz career further. Good luck.

‘All of Me’ premieres this Monday, August 31, after ‘It’s Showtime’ on Kapamilya Gold.

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