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FTT Year 2013 in Review: ABS-CBN

Another year is about to end. But before the calendar flips to 2014, here is a look back at the year that was in television and radio. This article will focus on ABS-CBN, who dominated television ratings all year.

The Positives

Everything went right for ABS-CBN. And it showed in its weekday offerings. Primetime Bida teleseryes dominated the Kantar ratings, led by the year’s top-rated series ‘Juan dela Cruz’. ‘TV Patrol’ remains the most preferred evening newscast, while ‘Showtime’ introduced the most talked-about ‘That’s My Tomboy’ and ‘Kalokalike’ segments that propelled them atop the noontime pyramid. And thanks to the highly-anticipated November wedding between Maya (Jodi Sta. Maria) and Richard ‘Ser Chief’ (Richard Yap), ‘Be Careful with My Heart’ continued to lord over the late morning slot.

The Kapamilya network continued to rack up ratings victories on weekends, aided by its reality competition shows ‘The Voice of the Philippines’, ‘Masterchef Pinoy Edition’, and ‘Pilipinas Got Talent’. Also helping their cause were the long-running anthology ‘Maalaala Mo Kaya’ and game shows such as ‘Bet on Your Baby’ and ‘Kapamilya Deal or No Deal‘. ‘Gandang Gabi Vice‘ and ‘ASAP’ remain the most talked-about shows on social media.

Even its sports offerings beat the competition. The Miami-San Antonio NBA Finals and the La Salle-UST UAAP Men’s Basketball Finals scored big in the ratings and in the hearts of netizens. The network also continued to showcase top-notch boxing matches such as the ‘Pinoy Pride’ series and fights featuring Nonito Donaire.

The Negatives

While they were able to enjoy high ratings on primetime, there were still some shows that ended up lasting less than half a year. Examples include ‘Bukas Na Lang Kita Mamahalin‘, ‘Apoy sa Dagat‘ and ‘Muling Buksan ang Puso’, whose storylines required only at least four months of airing. Also getting the ax were the sitcom ‘Toda Max’, after lead star Robin Padilla reportedly left, and ‘The Buzz’, which was reformatted as ‘Buzz ng Bayan’. ABS-CBN’s programs were likewise not spared from MTRCB’s iron hands, as ‘ASAP’ was reprimanded in February for Anne Curtis’ sensual outfit and performance.

ABS-CBN personalities were also involved in various controversies. ‘Kris TV‘ was nearly cancelled when its host Kris Aquino announced her resignation after getting embroiled in a custody case with then-husband James Yap for their son Bimby. However, a month later, Aquino announced that she would only take a ‘leave of absence’ in June. As of now, ‘Kris TV’ continues to air in the morning slot.

And last November, Korina Sanchez criticized CNN’s Anderson Cooper regarding the latter’s report about the slow delivery of goods to the victims of Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda). As a result of the negative reaction she received from netizens, Sanchez took a ‘leave of absence’ before returning to duty a month later.


ABS-CBN capped off the year by showcasing the love team of Kathryn Bernardo and Daniel Padilla on ‘Got to Believe’, young child star Raikko Mateo on ‘Honesto’, and budding star Jessy Mendiola on ‘Maria Mercedes’. For 2014, they are expected to introduce another potential star in Julia Barretto on ‘Mirabella’. Going forward, ABS-CBN is poised for another banner year, and as long as their products continue to entice audiences, ABS-CBN will remain the country’s top network.

entertainment, Philippines, television

The Phenomenon That is My Husband’s Lover

A month into its run, ‘My Husband’s Lover’ has gained a lot of attention for its gay-centered storyline.

Just a month into its run, ‘My Husband’s Lover’ on GMA 7 has been earning a lot of attention for its storyline centering on a love affair between two men, played by Dennis Trillo and Tom Rodriguez, and the subsequent jealousy of the latter’s wife, played by Carla Abellana. The publicity that ‘My Husband’s Lover’ received throughout its current run made its way into newspapers, social media, and even on television and radio. However, in terms of ratings, the said drama series’ fortunes have been mixed.

In a recent AGB Nielsen report for the week of July 1-7, ‘My Husband’s Lover’ averaged 7% higher than the final week of ABS-CBN‘s ‘Apoy sa Dagat‘, whereas on Kantar’s report for the same week, it was ‘Apoy sa Dagat’ who averaged 10% higher than ‘My Husband’s Lover’. Obviously, Kantar’s figures favor ABS-CBN’s, while Nielsen’s tend to lean on GMA 7’s programs, a figure that has stayed mostly the same since the Kapamilya network’s defection to Kantar.

Notwithstanding the mixed ratings reports, I think GMA 7 found a way to regain the attention of their audience after introducing ‘My Husband’s Lover’. For the past few years, GMA’s primetime fortunes have sunken a bit, in part due to the presence of the Kapamilya network’s highly rated programs such as ‘Walang Hanggan‘ and ‘Ina, Kapatid, Anak‘. During this period the network introduced some of the most poorly written and stale teleseryes after revolutionizing themselves with the fantaserye genre during the latter part of the 2000s. Some attribute to the overemphasis on its veteran talent, others due to lack of creativity.

Eventually GMA decided to tackle homosexuality in their next project, which eventually became ‘My Husband’s Lover’. In the light of recent news involving celebrities coming out of the closet (e.g. Charice), the launch of the program proved to be perfect timing. From then on people continued to talk about it and the program even gained the attention of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines, who told the networks to remain sensitive in the airing of their programs.

The year so far has been good for the LGBT community. And with the airing of ‘My Husband’s Lover’, the issue of homosexuality has found its place on television storylines. It was a brave and calculated risk that people should be proud of.