entertainment, Philippines, reality show, talent show, television

Pinoy Boyband Superstar Premieres Tomorrow

ABS-CBN’s own search for an up-and-coming Filipino boyband gets underway tomorrow.

Boys aged 14 or older, with a knack for good looks, charm and excellent singing and dancing talent, will have the opportunity to become one of the five members of a soon-to-be named boyband. Their journey begins this weekend on ‘Pinoy Boyband Superstar’, the Filipino adaptation of ‘La Banda’.

The original ‘La Banda’ was created by Simon Cowell and former Menudo member Ricky Martin. In order to avoid claims that the show is actually creating a ‘band’ consisting of a vocalist and instrumentalists, ABS-CBN renamed the show as ‘Pinoy Boyband Superstar’ in order to make it clear that they are looking to form a boyband.

The premise of ‘Pinoy Boyband Superstar’ is simple. The boyband aspirants must impress the girls with their looks and talent in order to make it to the next round, after which they face the judges who will evaluate their singing prowess as well as their image.

If one of the aspirants failed to pass the first round, they may be given another chance, provided they show enough potential to convince judges. Eventually, some of the aspirants will be eliminated until there are five left standing.

‘Pinoy Boyband Superstar’ will be hosted by Billy Crawford. The show’s judges will be Yeng Constantino, Vice Ganda, Aga Muhlach, and Sandara Park.

Even before its premiere, comparisons between ‘Pinoy Boyband Superstar’ and rival GMA’s ‘To the Top’ were very evident from the beginning. Both had a similar premise of forming a boyband, not to mention the journey of selecting the members.

The difference, however, lies on the production. Though ‘Pinoy Boyband Superstar’ is more of a franchise than the originally created ‘To the Top’, ABS-CBN did not seek help from its news and current affairs department to produce the former, unlike GMA whose Public Affairs team was responsible for the latter.

And considering that ‘Pinoy Boyband Superstar’ will be aired at a more convenient timeslot (unlike ‘To the Top’ which aired on late nights), the former could become even more successful. Still, it will be up to the audience to see how it all happens.

The journey of the next great Pinoy boyband begins this weekend. Good luck.

‘Pinoy Boyband Superstar’ airs Saturdays after ‘Home Sweetie Home’, and Sundays after ‘Goin’ Bulilit’.

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action, drama, entertainment, Philippines, suspense, talent show, television

GMA’s Unstable Sabado Star Power Continues

Saturdays have been a source of frustration for GMA.

Once again, the Kapuso network decided to make a change in their Sabado Star Power afternoon lineup. Gone was ‘Laff, Camera, Action’, and in came ‘#Like’, the newest reality talent show hosted by Tom Rodriguez and internet sensation Balang.

‘#Like’ is a talent show featuring online sensations battling against each other in a barangay setting. To the surprise of no one, it is just another concept produced by the GMA Public Affairs team, whose penchant for producing non-news shows becomes more infectious and more criticized than ever.

The premiere of ‘#Like’ took place last September 3, but instead of replacing ‘Laff, Camera, Action’ on its 4:30 timeslot, GMA decided to air the said show after ‘Eat Bulaga’. As a result, this is the how the schedule looks like:

  • 2:30 p.m. – #Like
  • 3:00 p.m. – Karelasyon
  • 4:00 p.m. – Wish Ko Lang
  • 5:00 p.m. – Imbestigador

However, the change did little to improve the ratings. All four of GMA’s post-‘Eat Bulaga’ afternoon programs were on the losing end, with ‘Wish Ko Lang’ the least impressive at 9.4%.

Let’s face it, would’ve been better for ‘#Like’ to go up against ‘Mga Kwento ni Marc Logan’ instead of the last half-hour of ‘It’s Showtime’? Probably, given that Marc Logan’s show also features internet sensations and GMA would’ve loved to see that matchup.

Still, GMA had no regrets in making the change once again. However, they would have been better off if ‘Wish Ko Lang’ and ‘Imbestigador’ were to be cancelled, since they are no longer the same programs as they once were.

Meanwhile, another new program premiered last Saturday on the said network. The new show, ‘Superstar Duets’, replaced ‘Lip-Sync Battle Philippines’, whose run finally ended after seven months.

Based on the format alone, ‘Superstar Duets’ appears to be the second coming of ‘Celebrity Duets’, except that the celebrities in the show were paired alongside impersonators of foreign singers. The show is currently hosted by Jennylyn Mercado, with Allan K, Aicelle Santos and Christian Bautista serving as judges.

The premiere of ‘Superstar Duets’ didn’t quite impress many, as it earned a 13.2% rating. On the other hand, ‘Pinoy Big Brother Lucky Season 7’ fared much better with a 16.4% rating.

This is going to be a tough battle as far as ‘Superstar Duets’ were concerned. Though it has the potential to run just as long as ‘Lip-Sync Battle Philippines’ did, the possibility of winning remains tricky at best.

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drama, entertainment, Korea, news, Philippines, politics, public affairs, television

Koreanovelas Add to GMA News TV’s Woes

GMA News TV added Koreanovelas to its ever-confusing lineup. (Promotional photo courtesy of GMA Network)

It is hard to tell what kind of network GMA News TV is right now.

In the last three years, From the Tube has been able to dissect the programming issues that surround the sister channel of GMA Network. Whether it is movies, drama series, reruns of public affairs shows, boxing matches or even TV shopping blocks, the true identity of GMA News TV continues to be a question mark.

Now add another wrinkle to this ongoing dilemma. Enter Koreanovelas on GMA News TV.

It all started on July 11, when News TV began to air reruns of three Koreanovelas, namely ‘Empress Ki’, ‘Pinocchio’, and ‘The Producers’. All three were broadcast on GMA’s Telebabad block a few years ago, each with varying degrees of success.

By re-airing Koreanovelas from the parent network, GMA News TV is once again defying the notion that they are indeed a news channel. To make matters worse, the management made the network look as if they are a mirror image of Channel 7, or perhaps the second coming of the old QTV.

What happened to the slogans ‘Oras-oras, Alam Ko’ and ‘Serbisyong Totoo’? It doesn’t make any sense.

The issues surrounding GMA News TV have been well-documented since their 2011 rebrand. As far as the most critical viewers are concerned, News TV is ill-equipped to be a news channel based on content alone.

Let’s face it, a revamp should have been in the works for this channel at this point. Even rival AksyonTV, a one-time news channel, is gradually morphing into a sports channel in the mold of ABS-CBN Sports+Action.

That said, it is never too late for Bro. Eddie Villanueva and Nessa Valdellon to finally give up on this venture. GMA News TV is going nowhere fast, and adding Koreanovelas only made things worse.

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entertainment, Philippines, reality show, talent show, television, United States

La Banda: ABS-CBN’s Answer to To the Top

‘To the Top’, you’ve got company.

Just recently, ABS-CBN announced audition dates for the upcoming boyband search show ‘La Banda’. The auditions will take place on the following dates:

  • June 10: Robinsons Place Pangasinan
  • June 11-12: Starmall San Jose del Monte Bulacan
  • June 15-16: Centrio Mall Cagayan de Oro
  • June 17-18: KCC Mall Zamboanga
  • June 18-19: Starmall Alabang
  • June 22: KCC Mall General Santos
  • June 24-25: Pacific Mall Legazpi

The auditions will begin at 7:00 a.m. Boys aged 14-25 years old and with the ability to both dance and sing are welcome in this competition.

The latest international franchise acquired by ABS-CBN, ‘La Banda’ was created by Simon Cowell and was produced by Univision. The original show, which emphasized on the formation of a Latin American boyband, was aired on Univision in late 2015.

However, this is not the first time that a boyband talent search show will air on Philippine television. Nearly a year ago, GMA did the same thing when they produced ‘To the Top’ in conjunction with GMA Public Affairs.

Unlike GMA, however, ABS-CBN News and Current Affairs will have no involvement in the making of ‘La Banda’. Considering how poorly-received ‘To the Top’ was when it aired, it was only appropriate for ABS-CBN to let the ever-strong entertainment group do the talking rather than share the blame with its news department.

Over the next several weeks, ABS-CBN will have the responsibility of picking the best young boys who will have what it takes to be in a boyband. In the meantime, wait for further updates regarding the hosts and judges of ‘La Banda’.

‘La Banda: the Making of the Pinoy Boyband’ is expected to premiere during the third quarter of this year. Date and time will be determined soon.

For more information on the auditions, go to ABS-CBN’s official website or on their social media accounts for details.

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entertainment, fantasy, Philippines, television

Alamat Returns for Season 2

Six new stories highlight ‘Alamat”s second season, which premieres this Sunday. (Photo credit: GMA Network)

The critically-acclaimed Filipino animated fantasy anthology ‘Alamat’ has a new season.

Premiering this Sunday on GMA, the second season of ‘Alamat’ will spotlight not only new stories, but also a new approach to storytelling. While Season 1 of ‘Alamat’ featured purely animation, Season 2 will now feature a mix of both animation and live-action.

The first season of ‘Alamat’ ran from July 12 to August 26, 2015, and introduced viewers to six different stories with a moral lesson. It earned an Anak TV Seal award earlier this year.

For the show’s second season, six new stories will be introduced, and these are:

  • Ang Bakunawa at ang Pitong Buwan
  • Alamat ng Gagamba
  • Alamat ng Dama de Noche
  • Alamat ng Saging
  • Alamat ng Sampaloc
  • Alamat ng Matsing

This season’s cast for ‘Alamat’ include Benjamin Alves, LJ Reyes, Bianca Umali, Franceska Farr, Rafa Siguion-Reyna, Leo Martinez, Tonipet Gaba, Love Anover, John Feir, Zymic Jaranilla and Miggs Cuaderno. All are expected to play either a voice-only role, a live action role, or both.

With the critical success of Season 1, the pressure is on for ‘Alamat’ Season 2 to deliver the same, if not improved results. That said, expect ‘Alamat’ to provide not only entertainment, but also inspiration and positivity to not only kids, but also people of all ages.

‘Alamat’ Season 2 airs Sundays at 5:15 p.m. on GMA. It is produced by the GMA Public Affairs group.

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drama, entertainment, game show, movies, Philippines, television

Wowowin Out for Two Weeks

Willie Revillame is on vacation, and so is ‘Wowowin’.

Both the host and the game show will take a two-week break starting today, in order to recharge and plan for ‘Wowowin”s upcoming first anniversary*. The vacated timeslot will be filled by ‘GMA Blockbusters’ until May 13.

In the meantime, ‘Wowowin”s new studio will be used temporarily by GMA News and Public Affairs for its ‘Eleksyon 2016’ coverage, which will kick off on May 9. Afterwards, a refurbished set is expected to be unveiled once ‘Wowowin’ returns on May 16.

The temporary hiatus of ‘Wowowin’ may benefit ABS-CBN in the short term. ‘We Will Survive’, in particular, has been slumping since its demotion to Kapamilya Gold, with ratings in the 10s on most days.

The brief absence of ‘Wowowin’ might put ‘We Will Survive’ back on track. Still, with the series not airing in select areas thanks to regional ‘TV Patrol’, it will not be easy for ‘We Will Survive’ to win without ‘Wowowin’ to oppose them.

The other series opposing ‘Wowowin’, ‘My Super D’, may be winning in the ratings, but the margin remained small. That said, the absence of the former may help ‘My Super D’ pull away, even if it’s only for a short moment.

As for GMA, this is an opportunity for the network to sustain the momentum in ‘Wowowin”s absence. Airing more recent hit movies on ‘GMA Blockbusters’ may do the trick, even as a few of their regional networks continue to air local news in place of the show’s first 45 minutes.

This is going to be an interesting two weeks for both GMA and ABS-CBN. Let’s see how the brief hiatus of ‘Wowowin’ will affect the fortunes of both networks from 5:00-6:30 p.m.

*‘Wowowin”s actual first episode was aired on Sunday, May 10, 2015. The show has been airing on weekdays since February 1, with the first 90-minute episode airing two weeks later.

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