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FTT Year 2014 in Review: TV5

Another year is about to end. But before the calendar flips to 2015, here is a look back at the year that was in television and radio. This article will focus on TV5, who made the transition from a mainstream to an alternative station this year.

The Positives

2014 was a year of change for TV5. And some changes were for the better.

A heavily-criticized coverage of the previous PBA season led to several tweaks in TV5’s current schedule. Initially made to benefit the NCAA, the FIBA World Cup, the Youth Olympics and the Asian Games, this was then implemented for the PBA, which was welcomed by fans after expressing their disgust with last season’s coverage.

The year also saw TV5 broadcast other major sporting events, such as the Super Bowl, the U.S. NCAA men’s basketball tournament, and the Winter Olympics. Furthermore, they aired the games of the ‘Batang Gilas’ in the 2014 FIBA Under-17 World Championship, keeping in step with the moves made by ABS-CBN Sports.

TV5 viewers also witnessed the premieres of highly-praised weekly series ‘JasMine’ and ‘Trenderas’, as well as a new game show in ‘Quiet Please! Bawal ang Maingay’. TV5 also collaborated with both E! and Wattpad to broadcast ‘It Takes Gutz to Be a Gutierrez’ and ‘Wattpad Presents’, respectively, to good reviews.

And finally, News5 garnered some awards from various bodies, particularly in the programs ‘T3: Enforced’, ‘History with Lourd’, ‘Yaman ng Bayan’ and ‘Bigtime’. ‘It Takes Gutz to Be a Gutierrez’, ‘Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?’ and ‘Celebrity Dance Battle’ were also honored.

The Negatives

The transformation of TV5 was not without some obstacles, however.

When TV5 revealed its programming lineup for 2014, one of the upcoming programs mentioned was a Philippine adaptation of ‘Pretty Little Liars’. Unfortunately for the network, the project never materialized, even as they denied rumors that it was ‘shelved’.

Not all of TV5’s programs under Noel Lorenzana’s new initiative paid off. The programs that were cancelled in his first full year in charge include the likes of ‘SpinNation’, ‘What’s Up, Doods’, ‘The Mega and the Songwriter’, ‘Killer Karaoke Pinoy Naman’, ‘Face the People’ and ‘Let’s Ask Pilipinas’.

TV5’s sports coverage was also not spared. Early this year, the Kapatid network introduced ‘Moneyball: Dribol op da Pipol’ to its PBA and NCAA coverage, much to the dismay of the more informative and knowledgeable viewers; eventually TV5 relented by moving ‘Sports5 Center’ to the livestream format (as ‘Sports 360’).

AksyonTV, TV5’s sister network, was severely crippled by News5’s programming changes, particularly after the cancellation of its original programs and newscasts ‘Andar ng mga Balita’ and ‘Balitang 60’. As a result, the network became overly dependent on TV5’s programming, which is not a good sign for a news/sports channel like AksyonTV.

The sex scandal involving News5 anchor and Rescue5 leader Paolo Bediones in September also demoralized the network. While he left ‘Aksyon Tonite’ in the midst of the controversy (he was later replaced by Ed Lingao), he did return to host ‘Demolition Job’ and Rescue5 short videos once the impact of his scandal dissipated.

But perhaps the biggest news coming out of TV5’s camp was the departure of Sharon Cuneta. A P1 billion signee of the network a few years ago, Sharon joined TV5 with high expectations, but shows such as ‘Sharon: Kasama Mo Kapatid’, ‘The Mega and the Songwriter’ and ‘Madam Chairman’ failed to deliver.

And finally, there is the annual issue of TV5’s overreliance on Tagalized foreign movies, as well as reruns of local programs.

Outlook

TV5 has already unveiled a list of new and returning programs for 2015, which will be discussed in detail very soon.

It was not a bad year for TV5, even with all the changes that took place. With a new year looming, Lorenzana and company now hope to build on these gains even further, though changes are still to be made as the year progresses.

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So Long, ‘Face the People’ and ‘Let’s Ask Pilipinas’

TV5’s ‘Face the People’, along with ‘Let’s Ask Pilipinas’, bid adieu on November 21, 2014. (Photo credit: TV5)

The last remnants of the original ‘Everyday All the Way’ block are gone.

On Friday, November 21, 2014, ‘Face the People’ and ‘Let’s Ask Pilipinas’ aired for the final time on TV5. Three days later, ‘Movie Max 5’ took over the slot vacated by both programs.

And in a related development, both ‘Aksyon sa Tanghali’ and ‘T3: Enforced’ were once again cut to 30 minutes. This was in anticipation of the latter program’s year-end reports that are slated to air during Christmas and New Year’s week.

‘Face the People’ and ‘Let’s Ask Pilipinas’ returned with a second season on July 7, albeit on the late morning slot rather than the afternoon and early evening slots, respectively. The move to new timeslots paved the way for TV5 to air two PBA games on weekdays beginning in mid-October.

As a result, ‘Face the People’ and ‘Let’s Ask Pilipinas’ served as an appetizer to TV5’s noontime newscast ‘Aksyon sa Tanghali’, which debuted the following week.

The two shows also carried new hosts; ‘Face the People’ mainstays Gelli de Belen and Tintin Bersola-Babao were joined by Edu Manzano, while Ogie Alcasid replaced Aga Muhlach on ‘Let’s Ask Pilipinas’.

In all, 100 episodes were aired on both ‘Face the People’ and ‘Let’s Ask Pilipinas’ during their second seasons, which was not a bad run.

‘Face the People’ marked the swan song of Edu Manzano on the Kapatid network. On September 14, it was announced that Manzano will rejoin ABS-CBN following the completion of his obligations with TV5.

Meanwhile, Gelli de Belen and Ogie Alcasid will have new projects come next year, as TV5 recently announced its upcoming slate of programs for 2015. As for Tintin Bersola-Babao, it is unclear if she will stick with TV5 or move to another network.

With the cancellation of both ‘Face the People’ and ‘Let’s Ask Pilipinas’, TV5 now has an opening for any of their upcoming programs. For now, though, the same ol’ boring Tagalized movies on ‘Movie Max 5’ will take over the slot, albeit temporarily.

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Two Asianovelas Debut on TV5; Pure Love Premieres on ABS-CBN

The season premieres of ‘Face the People’ and ‘Let’s Ask Pilipinas’ begin today, but these are not the only shows that Kapatid fans look forward to.

TV5 has announced that ‘Bride of the Century’ and ‘Two Guys, Hot Ramen’ will also premiere today. The two Asianovelas were slated to air at 9:00 p.m., but due to the PBA Governors’ Cup Finals being extended to another game, they will be aired at 7:00 p.m.

‘Bride of the Century’ and ‘Two Guys, Hot Ramen’ will be the first Asianovelas aired on TV5 since ‘Likeable or Not’ early this year. The two shows’ premieres are part of the Kapatid network’s ‘Signal No. 5: Umuulan ng Saya’ campaign for the third quarter of 2014, which included both upcoming and returning shows.

Pure Love Premieres Today

Former Kapatid star Alex Gonzaga makes her debut as a leading protagonist on an ABS-CBN teleserye with ‘Pure Love’. The Filipino adaptation of the Koreanovela ’49 Days’ will replace ‘Mirabella’ starting today.

The original Koreanovela series first aired on the Kapamilya network in 2011, and received decently high ratings throughout its run.

Also starring in the remake are Arjo Atayde, Yam Concepcion, Yen Santos, Arron Villaflor, Joseph Marco, Matt Evans, and Anna Luna. Providing supporting roles in the series are Sunshine Cruz, John Arcilla, Anna Capri, Bart Guingona, Dante Ponce and Shey Bustamante.

The younger sister of Toni Gonzaga recently left ‘Pinoy Big Brother: All In’ to concentrate on her role in ‘Pure Love’, as well as one of the co-hosts of ‘The Voice Kids’. Prior to ‘Pure Love’, her previous acting experience on the Kapamilya network were on ‘Gokada Go’, ‘Pangarap ng Bituin’ and ‘My Girl’.

‘Pure Love’ premieres tonight before ‘TV Patrol’. The teaser to the upcoming series can be viewed below.

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Face the People, Let’s Ask Pilipinas Return

Ogie Alcasid replaces Aga Muhlach as host of ‘Let’s Ask Pilipinas’. (Photo credit: Ogie Alcasid’s Instagram account)

TV5’s two standout programs are back, with new hosts eager to make a mark.

It was announced that ‘Face the People’ and ‘Let’s Ask Pilipinas’ will return for another season this Monday. The former will now air at 10:15 a.m., followed by the latter.

In addition, both programs will receive new hosts. Edu Manzano will now join Gelli de Belen and Tintin Bersola-Babao as the third host on ‘Face the People’, while Ogie Alcasid will replace Aga Muhlach for ‘Let’s Ask Pilipinas’.

Edu was last seen regularly as host of ‘What’s Up, Doods’, which ceased production in December 2013, while Ogie will return to weekday programming three weeks after his tawaserye ‘Confessions of a Torpe’ ended on June 20.

Both programs were once aired as part of the now-defunct ‘Everyday All the Way’ afternoon to evening block. ‘Let’s Ask Pilipinas’ was last seen on March 28, before it was replaced by ‘Beki Boxer’, while ‘Face the People’ aired its last episode on June 6, before it gave way to a re-run of ‘Star Confessions’.

Their transfer to the morning slot is intended towards the accommodation of upcoming sports events on the Kapatid network. TV5 is slated to air the Gilas Pilipinas matches in the FIBA Asia Cup, the FIBA World Cup, and the Asian Games, along with the Nanjing Youth Olympic Games.

The return of both programs is just one of several programming changes that TV5 will implement this month. More on the other changes in future articles.

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‘It Takes Gutz to be a Gutierrez’ Heads to TV5

A ratings hit on E!, ‘It Takes Gutz to be a Gutierrez’ will now cross over to free TV, as TV5 picked up the series starting this July.

The highly-rated E! reality show ‘It Takes Gutz to be a Gutierrez’ is now headed to a bigger audience.

TV5 has announced that the series starring the Gutierrez family will premiere this July 5. ‘It Takes Gutz to be a Gutierrez’ will replace ‘Celebrity Dance Battle’, whose final episode will air tomorrow.

The series will showcase the personal, business and family lives of siblings Richard, Raymond and Ruffa Gutierrez, along with their parents Eddie Gutierrez and Annabelle Rama. It will also feature guest appearances from the other members of the Gutierrez family, as well as celebrity friends and staff.

‘It Takes Gutz to be a Gutierrez’ has been a ratings hit for E!. The reality series broke the network’s ratings records, not only in the Philippines, but also in Southeast Asia. It was also a hit in social media, particularly when Richard introduced audiences to Zion, his son with girlfriend Sarah Lahbati.

The free TV premiere of ‘It Takes Gutz to be a Gutierrez’ is only one of several programming changes that TV5 will implement this July. New seasons of ‘Face the People’, ‘Let’s Ask Pilipinas’ and ‘Talentadong Pinoy’ will also premiere, albeit with new hosts, while new programs ‘Trenderas’ and ‘Quiet Please’ will also join the network’s revamped lineup.

It should be an interesting quarter of change for the Kapatid network, beginning with the clan dubbed as the ‘Asian Kardashians’.

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Struggling and Controversial Celebrities on ‘Face the People’

The appearance of Freddie Aguilar on ‘Face the People’ set the table for more embattled celebrities to appear on the program in order to explain their issues. (Courtesy of TV5)

Several weeks ago, the appearance of embattled singer Freddie Aguilar on ‘Face the People’ caught the attention of many netizens. And while the program’s focus is on normal citizens settling their differences with the help of the audience, Aguilar’s appearance led to several other celebrities sitting down on ‘Face the People”s infamous ‘silya de konsensya’ (chair of conscience) to explain their issues.

Two weeks after Aguilar made his highly-anticipated appearance on ‘Face the People’, controversial lawyer Atty. Lorna Kapunan sat down to explain the reason behind her withdrawal of legal support from Pork Barrel whistleblower Janet Lim-Napoles. Throughout the episode NBN-ZTE scam whistleblower Jun Lozada and activist Krissy Conti provided explanation on why Kapunan should have not left Napoles, while Atty. Ferdinand Topacio defended Kapunan’s decision to withdraw. The audience eventually agreed on Kapunan’s decision to withdraw.

And last Friday, diminutive actress Mahal sat down to explain her thoughts on quitting showbiz. The rumors stemmed from an argument between her and Kissybabes members Kisses Castillano and Em-Em Basa, saying that Mahal is ‘too old and obsolescent’ to be an artist and that her face is only good for Halloween. During the episode both Kissybabes members and talent manager Jethro Carrey tried to explain why Mahal was not given a chance to shine, while Mahal’s best friend Julie Ann defended her attempt to come back. In the end, the audience convinced Mahal to give showbiz another shot.

Today’s episode of ‘Face the People’ will have Tiya Pusit sitting on the ‘silya de konsensya’. Like Freddie Aguilar’s appearance a few weeks ago, Tiya Pusit will try to explain her relationship with a younger person. This time her beau would be a 27-year-old man named Nathan Villa. Throughout the episode fellow actress and friend Vangie Labalan will appear to oppose her friend’s relationship, while gay comedian Inday Garutay come in to defend.

The celebrity appearances on ‘Face the People’ gave the program a new wrinkle. While it is primarily used to settle issues between ordinary people, the program now encourages celebrity appearances in order to provide a deeper and more contentious insight on the issues surrounding them. It may be a harsher route, but ‘Face the People”s concept really helps in building drama behind these issues.

Expect more celebrities to appear on ‘Face the People’, even if they only come once a week. Unlike ‘Startalk‘ and ‘Buzz ng Bayan’, this program is always willing to push the boundaries, regardless of how harsh it can be. And its tabloid-based approach always helps.

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