drama, entertainment, Philippines, television

Kambal Sirena, Dyesebel Won’t Begin Simultaneously

GMA’s Kambal Sirena begins its run a week ahead of ABS-CBN’s Dyesebel. (Photo courtesy of Bida Kapamilya)

The so-called ‘Sirena Wars’ on Philippine television will have to wait for another two weeks, as both GMA and ABS-CBN set their final episode dates for ‘Adarna’ and ‘Honesto’.

‘Adarna’, the fantaserye starring Kylie Padilla, airs its final episode tomorrow. Airing since November 18, 2013, ‘Adarna’ was supposed to revive GMA’s tried and tested fantaserye genre that has worked for them in the mid-2000s. Unfortunately, the show failed to surpass expectations, due to the fact that a rival teleserye is superbly dominant in its timeslot.

That teleserye happened to be ‘Honesto’, which has been consistently atop the primetime ratings since its debut. Its superior ratings also translated into high trending figures in social media, with hashtags related to the show leading Twitter’s trending topics. The Raikko Mateo-starred series first aired on October 28, and will air its final episode on March 14.

The two series will be replaced by ‘Kambal Sirena’ and ‘Dyesebel’ respectively. The former, an original concept of the Kapuso network, will star Louise delos Reyes, while the latter, acquired by the Kapamilya network from Mars Ravelo’s estate, will star Anne Curtis.

Hype between the two series began last December, as both networks revealed the initial teasers for their respective mermaids. But while GMA began to heavily promote ‘Kambal Sirena’ during the months of January and February, ABS-CBN was slow to promote ‘Dyesebel’ as it continued to focus on its highly-rated programs ‘Honesto’ and ‘Got to Believe’. Nevertheless, viewers were salivating at the prospect of two mermaid-based series facing each other on primetime.

Both ‘Kambal Sirena’ and ‘Dyesebel’ will feature an equally stellar supporting cast. In ‘Kambal Sirena’, Aljur Abrenica will star as the leading man, while Wynwyn Marquez serves as the main villain. The series will also star Mickey Ferriols, Angelika dela Cruz, Gladys Reyes, Tessie Tomas, Mike Tan, Pancho Magno, Polo Ravales, Lotlot de Leon, Rich Asuncion, and Chanda Romero.

In ‘Dyesebel’, Sam Milby and Gerald Anderson will play the leading men, while Andi Eigenmann takes on a villainous role. Portraying supporting roles in the series will be Dawn Zulueta, Eula Valdes, Gabby Concepcion, Zsa Zsa Padilla, Bangs Garcia, David Chua, Ai Ai delas Alas, Neil Coleta, Young JV and Ogie Diaz.

While ‘Kambal Sirena’ and ‘Dyesebel’ won’t begin at the same time, the rivalry between the two mermaid-based series will be something to look forward to. And it should add spice to what has been an already heated rivalry between the two major networks.

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drama, entertainment, Philippines, television

‘Carmela’ Meets New Rival

Coco Martin, Kim Chiu, Julia Montes and Jake Cuenca top-bill the upcoming drama series ‘Ikaw Lamang’, which debuts on ABS-CBN’s Primetime Bida on March 10.

The past few weeks have not been good for ‘Carmela’. Rival series ‘Got to Believe’, scheduled to end this March 7, has not only beaten the former in its timeslot, but also out-trended them in social media. In addition, TV5’s PBA Philippine Cup playoff games have leapfrogged past ‘Carmela’ in terms of both ratings and social media impact. And now a new rival program awaits.

Enter ‘Ikaw Lamang’, the upcoming ABS-CBN Primetime Bida series which will replace ‘Got to Believe’ on March 10. The series will feature a powerhouse cast headlined by Kim Chiu, Julia Montes, Coco Martin and Jake Cuenca. Veteran actors Ronaldo Valdez, Tirso Cruz III, Cherry Pie Picache, Cherie Gil and John Estrada will complement the lead cast of characters. 

‘Ikaw Lamang’ will be the first project together for Montes and Martin since their highly-rated series ‘Walang Hanggan’ two years earlier. It will also mark Chiu’s first primetime project since ‘Ina, Kapatid, Anak’, and her second without on-screen partner Xian Lim. Chiu, Martin and Cuenca also previously worked together in ‘Tayong Dalawa’ in 2009.

The upcoming drama series will be a huge test for the four lead stars in terms of on-screen chemistry, familiarity and their acting abilities. But viewers should not worry. ‘Ikaw Lamang’ is a showcase that pits four of the most bankable personalities in the small screen, and when mixed with a well-written script and a highly touted supporting cast, it translates into a potentially high-rated drama series that will attract many viewers.

Which means that more problems lay ahead for viewers of ‘Carmela’. Despite debuting strongly last January, ‘Carmela’ has suffered of late thanks to the lack of social media presence and declining ratings. The lack of interest and viewership surrounding ‘Carmela’ should be a cause of concern to GMA management, who will now pressure the writers to improve the script and develop the characters further. And when up against a star-studded cast in ‘Ikaw Lamang’, they are at a disadvantage.

With that, good luck to the writers of ‘Carmela’. I hope you improve its storyline in order to impress and attract viewers, otherwise ‘Ikaw Lamang’ will continue to overwhelm the show just like what ‘Got to Believe’ did.

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drama, entertainment, Philippines, reality show, television

The Biggest Loser Returns to ABS-CBN

‘The Biggest Loser Pinoy Edition: Doubles’ airs every weeknights on ABS-CBN, and will feature 14 pairs with a chance to lose the most weight through various tasks.

After three years, ‘The Biggest Loser Pinoy Edition’ returns to ABS-CBN. And this time, the lost poundage is about to get even bigger, literally.

The long-awaited second season will be titled ‘The Biggest Loser Pinoy Edition: Doubles’, and will pit 14 pairs of overweight contestants. The premise of the new ‘Doubles’ season is that the pair with the highest percentage of weight loss will be the winner. The new season will now feature a ‘pre-camp’ where contestants must lose weight on their own. The pairs with the biggest weight loss will advance through the next round, where trainers will have the opportunity to push the pairs to their limits through various physical tasks.

The hype to ‘The Biggest Loser Pinoy Edition: Doubles’ started last Saturday with an episode of ‘Maalaala Mo Kaya’, where Iza Calzado (portrayed by Empress Schuck) struggled with her weight problems before overcoming it. The MMK episode was followed by a primer of ‘Doubles’, where the 14 pairs were revealed to a national audience and highlights of the 30-day ‘pre-camp’ were aired.

The season premiere of ‘The Biggest Loser Pinoy Edition: Doubles’ will be aired tonight after ‘The Legal Wife’, and will air every Monday to Saturday night. The reality program will be hosted by Iza Calzado, Mateo Guidicelli, and Robi Domingo, with Jim and Toni Saret as the trainers.

This is the first ABS-CBN reality series to air on the late weeknight slot since Season 4 of ‘Pinoy Big Brother Teen Edition’ two years earlier. But despite its placement in the 10 p.m. slot,  expect the new season of ‘The Biggest Loser’ to be another ratings winner for the Kapamilya network, especially with the momentum being generated on its teleseryes ‘Honesto’, ‘Got to Believe’, and ‘The Legal Wife’.

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drama, entertainment, Philippines, television

Carmela Replay Will Fail Against The Singing Bee

Looks like GMA is poised to lose another ratings war on Saturday afternoons, an alarmingly frequent occurrence for the once-mighty network.

GMA will re-air the pilot week of the Marian Rivera comeback series ‘Carmela’ tomorrow on the slot normally occupied by ‘GMA Blockbusters’. Unfortunately, the re-run will be up against the ABS-CBN game show ‘The Singing Bee’, which has toppled erstwhile occupant ‘Startalk’ and forced the show’s return to the Sunday slot.

If the first week returns are of any indication, it is clear that viewers still prefer the love team of Kathryn Bernardo and Daniel Padilla in ‘Got to Believe’ over the comeback of Marian Rivera. Re-airing ‘Carmela’ was meant to be GMA’s last resort at convincing viewers that Marian still has it. However, Marian’s best days were well behind her, and despite all the recent accolades that she earned over the past year, her career as a GMA contract artist will only be a mere afterthought, unless the Kapuso braintrust revamps their creative unit and search for new ownership.

The re-air of ‘Carmela’ will definitely be a dud for GMA, no question. Unless they decided to put a game show (preferably ‘Celebrity Bluff’) to go up against ‘The Singing Bee’ rather than air old movies on that timeslot, it will be another devastating defeat for the Kapuso network.

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drama, entertainment, Philippines, television

New Shows, Same Result for GMA Telebabad

Both ‘Got to Believe’ and ‘The Legal Wife’ defeated ‘Carmela’ and ‘Rhodora X’, while ‘Annaliza’ dismantled ‘Paraiso Ko’y Ikaw’. Ratings courtesy of Kantar.

This week GMA unveiled three new series in its Telebabad block: ‘Paraiso Ko’y Ikaw’, ‘Carmela’ and ‘Rhodora X’. However, the end results remained the same.

Monday’s AGB Nielsen ratings showed that ‘Got to Believe’ registered a 28% rating in Metro Manila, and a 29.8% rating nationwide. ‘Carmela’ meanwhile only got 18.1% and 14.9% respectively. ABS-CBN’s own newcomer ‘The Legal Wife’ likewise defeated ‘Rhodora X’ with 23.9% and 21% figures compared to the latter’s 15.8% and 11%.

The same can be said in Kantar’s total ratings. Monday’s figures saw ‘Got to Believe’ beat ‘Carmela’ 29.8% to 14.4%, and ‘The Legal Wife’ overwhelm ‘Rhodora X’ 21% to 11%. ‘Got to Believe’ also finished as the top trending topic on Twitter, with ‘The Legal Wife’ a close second. Meanwhile, ‘Rhodora X’ and ‘Carmela’ also trended well on Twitter, a rarity for GMA’s drama series in recent years.

On the other hand, ‘Paraiso Ko’y Ikaw”s debut failed to beat ‘Annaliza’ in its timeslot. The now long-running ABS-CBN series earned a 23.7% rating in Kantar compared to the former’s paltry 9.6% rating. Since debuting in May 2013, ‘Annaliza’ has defeated three other GMA drama series in ‘Home Sweet Home’, ‘Binoy Henyo’ and ‘Prinsesa ng Buhay Ko’ in its 5:45 p.m. timeslot.

Based on these early figures, it looks like all three GMA drama series are on pace for another shorter-than-expected run, similar to what happened to ‘Genesis’ and ‘Akin Pa Rin ang Bukas’. Then again this is just the pilot week for each series, so it is still subject to change. But right now, it is a demolition job for ABS-CBN’s ‘Primetime Bida’ over its counterpart.

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drama, entertainment, Philippines, television

Marian Rivera Won’t Face Angel Locsin in Primetime

Instead of facing Angel Locsin, Marian Rivera will face Kathryn Bernardo as ‘Carmela’ debuts this Monday opposite ‘Got to Believe’.

GMA has announced the airing schedule for the upcoming series ‘Carmela’ and ‘Rhodora X’. And as expected, Marian Rivera will not face Angel Locsin in the same timeslot, even as fans of both camps clamor for the two ex-Darna stars to clash at the same time.

‘Carmela’ will face ‘Got to Believe’ on its timeslot. The latter series, starring Kathryn Bernardo and Daniel Padilla, have been on a roll of late thanks to high ratings and social media returns, and the entry of ‘Carmela’ gives them the opportunity to battle another veteran star in Marian Rivera. Previously, ‘Got to Believe’ toppled the Dingdong Dantes-starrer ‘Genesis’, leading to its rather premature finish before the end of 2013.

On the other hand, Angel Locsin’s new teleserye ‘The Legal Wife’ will be up against Jennylyn Mercado’s series ‘Rhodora X’. In a lead-up to their upcoming primetime face-off, Mercado made it clear that she wanted no part in her ex-boyfriend Luis Manzano’s reconciliation with Locsin, and she wished them good luck in their romance. Mercado last appeared on the GMA Network via the reality competition series ‘Anak Ko Yan’, which once faced ‘Minute to Win It’ hosted by Luis Manzano. Meanwhile this is Locsin’s first teleserye since ‘Imortal’ in 2010, and during that span, she co-starred in the sitcom ‘Toda Max’ and made several movies.

In addition to ‘Carmela’ and ‘Rhodora X’, GMA will roll out another teleserye in its ‘Telebabad’ block. ‘Paraiso Ko’y Ikaw’ will replace ‘Prinsesa ng Buhay Ko’ in the sunset slot. The new teleserye, starring Kim Rodriguez and Kristoffer Martin, will be the latest in a series of attempts to topple the long-running ABS-CBN series ‘Annaliza’, which has defeated both ‘Home Sweet Home’ and ‘Prinsesa ng Buhay Ko’ since debuting in May 2013. And like Julie Vega in the original series, Andrea Brillantes has been splendid in playing the titular character, leading to its consistently high ratings.

Even as GMA tries to counter ABS-CBN with their new primetime offerings, I expect another ratings beatdown from the Kapamilya network. Simply put, GMA cannot beat ABS-CBN anymore, and I have made it clear that the race has already been conceded.

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