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FTT Year 2013 in Review: GMA

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 the GMA Network, which had a rather abysmal performance this year.

The Positives

There have been a few bright spots for the Kapuso network. ‘Bubble Gang‘, ‘Eat Bulaga‘ and ‘Startalk‘ continued to impress in the ratings on their 18th year. ‘Pepito Manaloto‘ and ‘Kapuso Mo, Jessica Soho‘ became social media stars, and ‘I-Witness’ racked up nominations on various international award-giving bodies. They even gained notoriety by unveiling eight-year-old child star Ryzza Mae Dizon as host of her eponymous talk show.

But perhaps GMA’s most important contribution of the year was ‘My Husband’s Lover’, whose same-sex relationship storyline was both praised and derided by critics during its run. The network also scored big with Megan Young‘s victory at the 2013 Miss World and Manny Pacquiao‘s win over Brandon Rios.

GMA’s other network News TV 11 branched into the teleserye genre with ‘Bayan Ko’ and ‘Titser’, with both series earning critical and commercial acclaim. Despite the fact that both programs were uncharacteristic of a typical all-news network, its political and socially conscious storylines made it an appropriate choice to air on the said network.

The Negatives

Teleseryes like the revived ‘Anna Karenina’, ‘Indio’, ‘Kahit Nasaan Ka Man’ and ‘Love & Lies’ didn’t even last at least six months, and despite the success of ‘My Husband’s Lover’, none of the other teleseryes clicked with viewers. GMA also tried to place a kiligserye (‘With a Smile’) in the morning slot, but it didn’t work out either.

On weekends, ‘Party Pilipinas‘, ‘Extra Challenge‘, ‘Teen Gen‘, ‘Dormitoryo’, ‘Hot TV’, ‘One Day Isang Araw’, and ‘Para Sa ‘Yo Ang Laban Na ‘To’ became victims of GMA’s continued purging of that slot. Eventually GMA resorted to airing four movie blocks on weekends in order to save costs. But the truth is, a majority of GMA programs have been extremely lackluster of late, and as a result of declining ratings and ad sales, its revenue declined from last year.

Worse, GMA programs ‘Bubble Gang’, ‘Unang Hirit’, ‘Party Pilipinas’ and ‘The Ryzza Mae Show’ were summoned by the MTRCB for indecent episodes. Even sister network News TV 11 suffered thanks to repetitive public affairs programs and unconventional movie blocks.

Outlook

So what’s next for GMA? They are expected to unveil a trio of new teleseryes starring Jennylyn Mercado (‘Rhodora X’), Marian Rivera (‘Carmela’) and Louise delos Reyes (‘Kambal Sirena’) in the new year. However, with its rival continuing to push the envelope thanks to its younger roster of stars and newly-acquired television franchises, GMA is again under pressure to improve its lackluster 2013 showing. And with its lack of purpose and ability to adapt and change haunting them, it looks like GMA is poised for another down year.

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drama, entertainment, Philippines, television

‘Adarna’ Bumps ‘Genesis’ Off the Leadoff Spot

GMA’s new teleserye ‘Adarna’ will be Kylie Padilla’s first lead role in a primetime series.

Tonight’s GMA Telebabad lineup will have one change. ‘Adarna’, topbilled by Kylie Padilla and Geoff Eigenmann, will replace the recently concluded ‘Kahit Nasaan Ka Man’. However, the program’s debut will also demote the Dingdong Dantes starrer ‘Genesis’ off the leadoff spot.

As it turned out, ‘Genesis’ was demoted amid its sensitivity towards its ‘end of the world’ storyline and the popularity of ABS-CBN‘s ‘Honesto’. Right now the Philippines is still recovering from the damage of Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda), and it may not be good to follow a news program like ‘24 Oras‘ with a sci-fi Armageddon-based story of ‘Genesis’. The demotion should make sense because a possible public relations disaster would take place had ‘Genesis’ remained as the leadoff program.

In addition, the demotion was also necessary because ‘Genesis’ has been beaten consistently by ‘Honesto’ in the ratings. Whether it’s Nielsen or Kantar, it seems that the latter’s inexperienced lead star Raikko Mateo is outplaying the veteran Dingdong Dantes in terms of television viewership. The unexpected popularity of ‘Honesto’ also spread into social media, helping it become the most-watched program in its timeslot.

Because of that, GMA had to place ‘Genesis’ opposite ‘Got to Believe’, which stars the popular teen love team of Kathryn Bernardo and Daniel Padilla. However, ‘Got to Believe’ has also been a consistent top draw in its timeslot, and with the increasingly popular team-up of Bernardo and Padilla proving to be a hit, it would be an even difficult task for veterans like Dantes and on-screen partner Rhian Ramos to overcome the former viewership-wise. Nevertheless, ‘Genesis’ should be a more formidable opponent to ‘Got to Believe’ after the now-concluded ‘Kahit Nasaan Ka Man’ of Julie Anne San Jose and Kristoffer Martin failed to draw viewers.

Which brings us to ‘Adarna’, a modern retelling of the Ibong Adarna epic. This will be the first starring role for Kylie Padilla in a primetime series. Padilla, though a seasoned actress in her own right, has yet to play a major role in the ratings-rich primetime slot, and opposite five-year-old Mateo, expectations are high for the young veteran to make her mark. In ‘Adarna’, Padilla will be joined by leading men Eigenmann, Mikael Daez, fellow young actresses Ryza Cenon, Michelle Madrigal and Chynna Ortaleza, and veterans Jean Garcia and Jestoni Alarcon in helping her fulfill the daunting role of a half-human, half-bird character from a classic Filipino epic.

For Eigenmann, ‘Adarna’ will be his first teleserye after a long showbiz hiatus. As seen in a GMA News report, Eigenmann has slimmed down after battling weight issues prior to his sabbatical. Meanwhile Daez will appear in his first teleserye without on-screen partner Andrea Torres, whom he paired in the afternoon soap ‘Sana ay Ikaw na Nga‘, the morning ‘kiligserye’ ‘With a Smile’, and the gag show ‘Bubble Gang’.

‘Adarna’ makes its highly-anticipated debut tonight after ’24 Oras’ on GMA Telebabad.

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entertainment, Philippines, television

Double Serving of GMA’s New Teleseryes

 

In only three weeks, the GMA Telebabad lineup debuted three new teleseryes. That is a turnover of over a half from its previous lineup.

Just last Friday, two GMA teleseryes aired their series finales. ‘Binoy Henyo’, a story of a wonder kid with an impoverished life, finished its run with the titular character Binoy (David Remo) reuniting with his real parents Agnes (Sheena Halili) and Francis (Luis Alandy), only after Agnes was acquitted of all charges filed against her by Emily (Gwen Zamora). Likewise ‘Anna Karenina‘, a story of three girls trying to solve the mystery of the real Anna Karenina, ended its run after it was revealed that Anna (Barbie Forteza) was the real Anna Karenina.

And yesterday GMA debuted a pair of new teleseryes: the kiligserye ‘Prinsesa ng Buhay Ko’, starring the love team of Aljur Abrenica and Kris Bernal, and ‘Kahit Nasaan Ka Man’, starring Julie Ann San Jose and Kristoffer Martin. The former tells the story of Princess, an orphaned young woman who nevertheless showed determination and hard work. She eventually fell in love with Nick, but only after they cross paths once more after first meeting in an orphanage. The latter tells the story of Leandro and Pauline, born handicapped and out of poverty but eventually fell in love through music, but only after a series of family squabbles threatened their love for each other.

Air times for ‘Prinsesa ng Buhay Ko’ and ‘Kahit Nasaan Ka Man’ are currently sandwiched between GMA’s early evening newscast ’24 Oras’, occupying the slots vacated by ‘Binoy Henyo’ and ‘Anna Karenina’, respectively. GMA’s two new offerings are also aired opposite ABS-CBN’s highly-rated series ‘Annaliza’ and ‘Juan de la Cruz‘, whose ratings have remained highly consistent even as GMA continues to search for answers regarding their low ratings in the late afternoon/early evening timeslot.

After ‘Mundo Mo’y Akin’ ended its run and was replaced by ‘Akin Pa Rin Ang Bukas’, followed by the aforementioned new teleseryes, GMA has turned over half of its ‘Telebabad’ lineup, a sign that the network is still searching for stability on primetime. Nevertheless, Kapuso fans hope that with fresh blood comes a better ratings return for the Kapuso network.

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