drama, entertainment, Philippines, television

New Challenger for A Love to Last: My Korean Jagiya

‘A Love to Last’ has a new opponent.

Through 158 episodes (as of August 18, 2017), the ABS-CBN primetime series has overcome all challenges thrown at them. Initially pitted against ‘Alyas Robin Hood’ season 1 (10 episodes from January 9-20), ‘A Love to Last’ has since made mincemeat of fellow romantic comedy series ‘Meant to Be’ (108 episodes from January 23-June 23) and ‘I Heart Davao’ (40 episodes from June 27-August 18).

Now they look to claim another victim starting next week. However, their next opponent is no ordinary romantic comedy.

In the past several years, both GMA and ABS-CBN imported several successful Korean dramas to fill in programming hours. Now GMA takes over Korean cultures and landscapes in the form of ‘My Korean Jagiya’.

Leading the way for ‘My Korean Jagiya’ will be Heart Evangelista. Her character Gia is a Korean grade school tutor and a dedicated K-drama fan girl who was nonetheless teased that she is next in her family to become an old maid.

Gia’s dream is to meet her long-time crush and once-famous Korean superstar Kim Jun-ho, portrayed by top Korean star Alexander Lee. At first, Gia searched for Kim in Korea while on a scholarship training, but wound up returning to Manila to find Kim drunk and beaten by gangsters in a bar, beginning a seemingly fruitful friendship.

‘My Korean Jagiya’ will also star Janice de Belen, Ricky Davao, Iya Villania, Edgar Allan Guzman, Valeen Montenegro, Frances Makil Ignacio, Myke Solomon, Jinri Park, Divine Aucina, and Khane dela Cruz. Korean stars David Kim, Michelle Oh, and Jerry Lee will play special roles in the series as well.

Parts of ‘My Korean Jagiya’ were shot in South Korea, and featured several key spots that were made famous by several iconic Koreanovelas such as ‘Jewel in the Palace’, ‘My Name is Kim Sam Soon’, My Love from the Star’ and ‘Winter Sonata’. The Seoul Film Commission and Seoul Metropolitan Government assisted the series’ producers in the production process.

While ‘My Korean Jagiya’ is a uniquely wonderful series for both Filipinos and Koreans to enjoy, their biggest hurdle to success comes in the form of ‘A Love to Last’. Despite being perceived as ‘boring’ in the minds of critics, ‘A Love to Last’ continues to beat all comers, and this is something that should concern ‘My Korean Jagiya’ a lot.

One can only hope that ‘My Korean Jagiya’ will not be the short-lived drama that befell more recent romcoms ‘My Love from the Star’ and ‘I Heart Davao’. If the series can somehow go beyond 80 episodes, then that should be good enough for their morale.

Directed by Mark Reyes, ‘My Korean Jagiya’ airs weekdays after ‘Mulawin vs. Ravena’ on GMA Telebabad.

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entertainment, game show, Philippines, television

GMA Pulls the Plug on People vs. the Stars

‘People vs. the Stars’ is no more.

GMA effectively cancelled the game show after its most recent broadcast last Sunday. It was clear that despite its encouraging use of audience and viewer participation, ‘People vs. the Stars’ never quite clicked with the people.

‘People vs. the Stars’, hosted by Drew Arellano and Iya Villania, first aired on January 15, 2017, and was GMA’s anointed answer to the popular yet controversial ABS-CBN franchised game show ‘Family Feud’. But a shaky premiere (11.5% compared to ‘Family Feud”s 16.9% according to Kantar) soon set the tone for the remainder of ‘People vs. the Stars” run.

On average, the margin between ‘Family Feud’ and ‘People vs. the Stars’ was around 4-5%, with ‘Family Feud’ winning all of their matchups. While ‘People vs. the Stars’ was praised for bringing audience participation back to a game show, viewers doesn’t seem to care about it at all.

What also hindered ‘People vs. the Stars’ was GMA’s questionable decision to air it once a week. It would have made sense for the game show to air every Saturday and Sunday to give ‘Family Feud’ a run for its money, but alas, GMA wanted none of it as they thought their current Saturday afternoon lineup is strong on paper (too bad it’s not).

In the end, ‘People vs. the Stars’ join a select list of GMA game shows that did not quite make it big. With only 14 episodes to its credit, it will surely make the ‘most forgotten game shows in the Philippines’ list if there is one.

So what is the next plan of action for GMA in the game show department? Considering their recent misfortune in the said genre, they may not have the motivation to make another one for a long period of time.

It’s a shame, since GMA prides itself in doing things ‘locally’ for the most part (unlike ABS-CBN which has depended more on franchised programs). With that, viewers can only hope for the best in GMA’s future endeavors.

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entertainment, game show, Philippines, television

People vs. the Stars Tries to Give Family Feud a Run for Its Money

The itch to topple ABS-CBN’s ‘Family Feud’ led GMA to unveil a game show of their own.

After months of witnessing ‘Family Feud”s rise into a popular yet controversial celebrity-exclusive game show, GMA decided to give ABS-CBN a harsh lesson in viewer and audience participation. This led to the network’s newest game show called ‘People vs. the Stars’, which premieres this Sunday.

Hosted by the husband-and-wife tandem of Drew Arellano and Iya Villania, ‘People vs. the Stars’ features a unique strategy. Celebrities have a chance to win P 200,000 by answering eight mind-boggling questions with an allotted value, and if they answer incorrectly, viewers have a chance to steal the prize by answering a ‘People of the Week’ question through text.

With that, ‘People vs. the Stars’ encourages viewer participation through each episode, something that its soon-to-be rival ‘Family Feud’ has not been able to do. Kudos to GMA for being more generous to its viewers.

However, if there is one thing that holds ‘People vs. the Stars’ back, it is its schedule. While ‘Family Feud’ airs every Saturday and Sunday afternoon, ‘People vs. the Stars’ was only given a Sunday afternoon slot as GMA continues to air ‘Imbestigador’ opposite ‘Family Feud’ on Saturdays.

The unusual weekend afternoon schedule will not help ‘People vs. the Stars’ at all. That said, if GMA were smart enough to compete with ‘Family Feud’, they would have been better off if they move ‘Imbestigador’ to an earlier timeslot (against ‘SOCO’, of all shows) and cancel the more dramatized and irrelevant ‘Wish Ko Lang’, in order to give way to ‘People vs. the Stars’.

Regardless of this situation, viewers who were fed up by ‘Family Feud”s celebrities-only approach should look at ‘People vs. the Stars’ and see why this game show is worth watching. After all, everyone is welcome to earn the big bucks just by watching and participating on this game show.

‘People vs. the Stars’ airs every Sunday at 5:00 p.m. on GMA.

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entertainment, Philippines, reality show, talent show, television

GMA Brings Lip-Sync Battle to the Philippines

One of America’s surprise viral hits is coming to the Philippines.

‘Lip-Sync Battle’, the popular American reality TV program, will have a Filipino franchise that will air on GMA starting this Saturday. Titled ‘Lip-Sync Battle Philippines’, the show will be hosted by Michael V and Iya Villania, and will pit GMA’s top celebrities against each other in hopes of impressing the audience with their lip-synching skills.

The upcoming show will mark the first time since ‘Don’t Lose the Money’ that GMA has a franchised program on their lineup. It will also be Iya’s first full-time program on Channel 7 since ‘Sunday All-Stars’ (not including her role as Chika Minute reporter on ’24 Oras’).

‘Lip-Sync Battle Philippines’ will have two rounds of competition: Strip Down and Full-Blown Concert. Celebrities can lip-sync any song of their choosing, and after two rounds, the crowd will determine the winner, who will receive a championship belt.

While GMA is usually reluctant to acquire foreign media franchises, they decided to take a risk on ‘Lip-Sync Battle’. Realizing how much of a hit the American version was, they now hope that the show’s success in America will carry over to the Philippines.

However, in the weeks leading up to its premiere, the timeslot of ‘Lip-Sync Battle Philippines’ became a big issue for the network. Initially, the show was slated to air after ‘Magpakailanman’, but in the end, GMA decided to place ‘Lip-Sync Battle Philippines’ after ‘Pepito Manaloto: Ang Tunay na Kwento’.

One possible reason for the last-minute change is that GMA wanted to see how can ‘Lip-Sync Battle Philippines’ match up with ‘Pilipinas Got Talent’. The latter show had been a high-rating show on ABS-CBN, and if the former can overcome PGT, it should boost GMA’s morale.

The problem with this change, however, is that Michael V is also a regular cast member on ‘Pepito Manaloto’, and giving him back-to-back shows is a bad case of overexposure. Just ask Billy Crawford, who had to give up hosting duties on ‘Celebrity Playtime’ (during its short-lived late-evening stint) in favor of the recently-concluded ‘Your Face Sounds Familiar’.

That said, GMA needs to figure out a way to fit ‘Lip-Sync Battle Philippines’ into their scheme of things. The concept may be engaging, but unless it has a good timeslot to thrive on, things may turn ugly quick.

‘Lip-Sync Battle Philippines’ premieres this Saturday on GMA.

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drama, entertainment, Philippines, television

Because of You Premieres Monday, To Face On the Wings of Love

‘On the Wings of Love’ will have a third rival in a span of 17 days.

Its original rival, ‘My Faithful Husband’, ended with a whimper last November 13. Its next opponent, ‘Beautiful Strangers’, is also expected to bow out quietly tomorrow night.

After failing to beat ‘On the Wings of Love’ with a pair of heavy dramas, GMA decided to make things a little lighter. But instead of pitting up-and-coming stars against one another, they opted for a tried and tested formula: putting veterans on the spotlight anew.

‘Because of You’ is the network’s latest attempt in trying to curb the JaDine phenomenon. The series will be led by Carla Abellana and Gabby Concepcion, with Rafael Rosell acting as the third wheel.

The story will revolve around the three actors, in which Andrea (Carla) will try to deny her true feelings towards her ex-boyfriend Oliver (Rafael). Eventually she found Jaime (Gabby), whom she fell in love in an unlikely setting.

‘Because of You’ will also include the likes of Valerie Concepcion, Celia Rodriguez, Iya Villania, Joyce Ching, Enzo Pineda, Kuh Ledesma, Vaness Del Moral and Bettina Carlos in supporting roles. Mark Reyes will be at the helm of this light-hearted series.

For Carla, it will be her first series without her usual on-screen and off-screen partner Tom Rodriguez, who is currently paired with Megan Young on the second remake of ‘MariMar’. It is also Gabby’s first project with the Kapuso network, after making a comeback several years ago with ABS-CBN.

Still, the odds are not in favor of the Kapuso series heading into Monday’s premiere. ‘On the Wings of Love’ continued to exceed expectations, and the duo of James Reid and Nadine Lustre are fast becoming bankable stars, something GMA couldn’t manage with their younger talent.

That said, ‘Because of You’ will have its work cut out for them. For Carla and Gabby, they hope to remain relevant even in the midst of an ongoing youth movement that is giving GMA a lot of problems.

‘Because of You’ premieres this Monday after ‘Little Nanay’ on GMA Telebabad.

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