entertainment, news, Philippines, public affairs, television

Video on Board: Buses Tune In to ABS-CBN Shows But Avoid Afternoon Koreanovelas

A bus bound for Quiapo showing ABS-CBN’s ‘It’s Showtime’. (Photo courtesy of the author)

Sometimes life is unfair.

Such is the case for airconditioned buses that ply the streets of Metro Manila. These buses offer more than just relief from the sweltering heat, they also provide riders with a show or movie to watch while going from one destination to another.

Most airconditioned buses are equipped with a television set that hangs atop the windshield. At first, the viewing experience was severely limited thanks to poor signal reception (most buses opt to air movies from their USB outlets or pirated DVDs due to these conditions), but the launch of the ABS-CBN TVPlus made it much better for riders to watch a show comfortably.

As a commuter I can attest to the varying trends of television viewership inside airconditioned buses. Prior to the launch of TVPlus, the preferred channel of Metro Manila buses is GMA Network due to its clearer signal and greater reach.

But as TVPlus became readily available to the public, bus companies began to take advantage of it by equipping their sets with these devices. As a result, more and more buses were tuning in to ABS-CBN programs especially  during ‘It’s Showtime’, ‘TV Patrol’ and ‘Ang Probinsyano’, simply because Channel 2 is always the first to open on TVPlus.

However, there is still one GMA show with which these buses would rather tune in to. In one of my more recent in-city trips, I looked at some of the buses that ply the metro during the late afternoon, and surprisingly, these buses were tuning in to ‘Wowowin’ instead of a Koreanovela from ABS-CBN.

Simply put, these bus drivers and conductors are not Koreanovela fans. They would rather tune in to Willie Revillame and his antics with sexy women instead of cheesy love scenes from Korean actors because it seems like they are boring

Not to mention that it is rush hour for people going home. If they are tuning in to a Koreanovela on the way home on a slow-moving afternoon, chances are they could be put to sleep.

While viewership inside buses do not influence ratings performance (at least for now), the general trend is clear. ABS-CBN is the most preferred network among airconditioned buses all-day long, but on the late-afternoon rush hour, GMA’s ‘Wowowin’ is the most preferred show.

Unfair as it sounds, but the best entertainment while inside the bus is when things either become tense and gut-wrenching (as in the case for teleseryes) or humorous and fun (as in the case for variety shows). It is what bus rides are made of, and keeping riders awake and invested in entertainment is a bus company’s way of making themselves comfortable.

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drama, entertainment, Korea, Philippines, television

Legend of the Blue Sea to Reair on ABS-CBN’s Primetime Bida

Another Koreanovela rerun will take place on ABS-CBN this week.

Beginning Monday, ‘Legend of the Blue Sea’ will take over the timeslot of ‘Weightlifting Fairy’ on the network’s Primetime Bida block. The Koreanovela previously aired from May 8 to July 14 on the Kapamilya Gold block.

With this announcement, ABS-CBN’s slate of Koreanovelas now consist entirely of reruns. In an ironic twist of fate, ‘Legend of the Blue Sea’ was succeeded by the rerun of ‘Love in the Moonlight’, and now the two reairing series share the spotlight.

‘Legend of the Blue Sea’ stars Korean pop star Lee Min-ho and Jun Ji-hyun, with a story centering on a con artist and a mermaid who traveled across the ocean to find him. The series earned six SBS Drama Awards, spawned a soundtrack album and aired in various countries around the world.

Although the initial run of ‘Legend of the Blue Sea’ was a success in the ratings, the series faced some obstacles. Since it was assigned to Kapamilya Gold’s 5:00 p.m. ‘death slot’, only a few select areas received the Koreanovela largely due to ABS-CBN Regional’s ‘TV Patrol’.

To make matters worse, the 9:00 a.m. next-day airing of ‘Legend of the Blue Sea’ in these affected areas was often preempted due to the 2017 NBA Playoffs last May and June. The end result were skipped episodes that left some viewers with a bitter taste in their mouths.

For the most part, it was a good thing for ABS-CBN to reair ‘Legend of the Blue Sea’ on primetime to benefit those affected by the preemptions. After all, the series is too popular and too good to be interrupted, and they owed these viewers every single episode of it.

Still, for those who have watched every single episode of ‘Legend of the Blue Sea’, is it worth a second look? Probably, but considering the fervent fanaticism of Filipino Koreanovela fans, ‘Legend of the Blue Sea’ truly deserves another go-round.

‘Legend of the Blue Sea’ airs after ‘A Love to Last’ on ABS-CBN Primetime Bida.

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drama, entertainment, Korea, Philippines, television

Love in the Moonlight Rerun Adds to ABS-CBN’s Death Slot Problems

The mess that is ABS-CBN’s 5:00 p.m. weekday slot continues.

Beginning today, the Kapamilya network will re-air the Koreanovela ‘Love in the Moonlight’ in its so-called ‘death slot’. The series originally aired on Primetime Bida from March 6 to May 5, 2017, spanning 43 episodes.

Unlike its original run which was seen in every household in the country, ‘Love in the Moonlight”s rebroadcast will only be seen in Metro Manila, select regional areas and on digital, cable and satellite subscription services. The rest of the country will receive regional versions of ‘TV Patrol’ while the Koreanovela airs at 9:30 a.m. the next day.

The problems surrounding ABS-CBN’s 5:00 p.m. slot has been well-documented in this blog. While ‘TV Patrol”s regional versions are only a part of the issue, there are other concerns that jeopardize this timeslot.

As stated earlier, programs that are affected by the broadcast of regional ‘TV Patrol’ are aired the following morning at around 9:00 or 9:30 a.m. Unfortunately, not all shows were aired in full.

In the last two Junes, both ‘We Will Survive’ and ‘Legend of the Blue Sea’ saw numerous episodes preempted due to the NBA Finals. To make matters worse, those preempted episodes were never aired at all in ABS-CBN’s regional stations, leaving non-iWanTV subscribers perplexed and unsatisfied

If ABS-CBN were smart enough to realize these issues, they would have done these three things:

  1. Air ‘O Shopping’ as permanent filler.
  2. Bring News and Current Affairs shows back to the 5:00 p.m. slot (with a replay after ‘Bandila’ to satisfy the rest of the country).
  3. Produce a Metro Manila version of ‘TV Patrol’.

But as it stands, ABS-CBN is simply too stubborn to resist change in its approach. They somehow rectified that with a rerun of the Koreanovela ‘Love in the Moonlight’ (as reruns are considered filler), but still, it would mean sacrificing success in favor of short-term fixes.

There is still time for ABS-CBN to correct whatever issues they face every weekday afternoon. That said, viewers can only hope for the best, no matter how slim it may be.

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drama, entertainment, Korea, Philippines, television

Asianovelas Goblin and Legend of the Blue Sea to Premiere Monday on ABS-CBN

The revenge of the Kapamilya Asianovela continues.

On Monday, ABS-CBN will premiere not one, but two Asianovelas on the same day. The two series are as follows:

Legend of the Blue Sea

Starring Lee Min-ho and Jun Ji-hyun, ‘Legend of the Blue Sea’ tells the love story of a con-artist and a mermaid who travels across the ocean to find him. The series aired in its native Korea from November 2016 to January 2017 and earned six SBS Drama Awards.

‘Legend of the Blue Sea’ also spawned a soundtrack album starring some of Korea’s top artists. More importantly, the series is aired in syndication in select Asian countries, the United States, and Canada.

Goblin

Best known in its native Korea as ‘Guardian: The Lonely and Great God’ and known internationally as ‘Goblin’, this drama tells the story of an immortal goblin who, along with an amnesiac grim reaper, takes care of the afterlife and evaluates all souls who pass here. However, a woman with an innate ability to see ghosts soon falls in love with the goblin and ended up becoming engaged with him.

The series stars Gong Yoo, Kim Go-eun, Lee Dong-wook, Yoo In-na, and Yook Sung-jae. It ran from December 2016 to January 2017 and was popular (though controversial at times) in both Korea and international markets.

‘Legend of the Blue Sea’ will be assigned to the Kapamilya Gold block replacing ‘Minute to Win It’, while ‘Goblin’ will be placed on Primetime Bida’s final slot to replace ‘Love in the Moonlight’. While ‘Goblin’ will have no problems filling in on primetime, ‘Legend of the Blue Sea’ will have their hands full considering that not all areas will receive the Koreanovela at the same time.

Nevertheless, the premiere of two Kapamilya Asianovelas this Monday should add more excitement to KDrama fans. After several years of on-and-off Koreanovelas, all signs indicate that ABS-CBN’s FTHA (First and True Home of Asianovelas) slate is back in business.

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drama, entertainment, Korea, Philippines, television

Dangwa Concludes; Heart of Asia Mornings Extended

The drama series ‘Dangwa’ is currently on its final week.

Airing since October 26, 2015, the story of ‘Dangwa’ has been focused on Rosa (Janine Gutierrez), the flower vendor who gave roses to men who hope to find their true love. At the same time, her own love story took hold, thanks to two men, Baste (Mark Herras) and Lorenzo (Aljur Abrenica), who try to gain her attention.

While ‘Dangwa’ has featured guest appearances from Kapuso artists each week, the finale solely focused on the conclusion of the love triangle between Rosa, Baste and Lorenzo. That said, viewers will have to tune in to see what fate awaits the threesome.

‘Dangwa’ had been well-hyped to begin with, thanks to a series of viral videos that revealed Janine Gutierrez as the so-called ‘Dangwa Girl’. However, ratings for the series proved to be unimpressive, as ‘Dangwa’ can only muster national ratings of 7-8% , whereas ‘Kapamilya Blockbusters’ average 2% percent higher.

With the not-so successful returns from its morning drama, GMA has decided to once again extend its Heart of Asia Mornings starting this Monday. The newest Koreanovela, ‘Carmina’, will be added to the block.

‘Carmina’ stars Kim So-yeon, Jung Kyung-ho and Yoon Hyun-min. The story of the Koreanovela will involve Carmina (Kim) as a secretary of a big company, Derek (Jung) as her fiance, and James (Yoon) as her boss.

Fate soon intervened in Derek’s life when he died, and his heart was removed and placed into James’ chest during his heart transplant. The once-strict James soon had a change of heart, and eventually fell in love with Carmina.

‘Carmina’ will take over the 11:00 a.m. timeslot of ‘Dangwa’. This means that the Heart of Asia Mornings block will once again have three Koreanovelas: ‘Someone Like You’, ‘Ice Adonis’, and ‘Carmina’.

As GMA reverts back to Koreanovela mode just before noontime, the question is, will they ever be able to produce another local morning drama? Considering their lack of success, it is unlikely that the network will make another one, and Koreanovelas will be here to stay.

Tomorrow is ‘Dangwa”s last, and after that, ‘Carmina’ takes over. Good luck.

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drama, entertainment, Philippines, television

That’s My Amboy Premieres Tonight

The AnBie love team takes its act to primetime.

Fresh from a successful run on ‘The Half-Sisters’, Andre Paras and Barbie Forteza now gear themselves up for their first lead role in a primetime series. The duo star in ‘That’s My Amboy’, a light-hearted series that airs starting tonight.

‘That’s My Amboy’ tells the story of Maru (Barbie), a young but determined girl, and Bryan (Andre), a rising actor. Their story began when Bryan was blamed for the accident that involved Maru’s stepfather, and in order to pay for the damages, Maru was hired as his personal assistant.

At first, Maru and Bryan’s relationship was tense and jittery. But an incident that affected Bryan soon brought the two together, and the once distant relationship turned into a friendly, and eventually, lovely one.

Also starring in the series are Tonton Gutierrez, John Arcilla, Donita Rose, Kiko Estrada, Jazz Ocampo, Matet de Leon, Meryll Soriano, Maritoni Fernandez, Jerald Napoles, Pam Prinster, Jan Manual, Philip Lazaro, Pauline Mendoza, Kryshee Grengia, and Rob Walcher. It will be directed by Bb. Joyce Bernal, with the help of Dominic Zapata.

‘That’s My Amboy’ was slated to replace ‘MariMar’ in the network’s Telebabad block (the latter ended January 8). However, the series premiere was delayed for two weeks due to a conflict of interest, since ‘The Half-Sisters’ was still ongoing at the time.

That led to a rather unusual programming lineup on Telebabad, where the block only had two teleseryes, a movie block, and a two Koreanovelas. This week, Telebabad will go back to its usual lineup of three teleseryes and two Koreanovelas, and thus, changes in schedule will be utilized.

‘That’s My Amboy’ will be placed opposite ABS-CBN’s ‘Pangako Sa ‘Yo’, which means that the KathNiel-starred series will have faced all three ongoing Telebabad dramas in a three-week span. Although ‘Pangako Sa ‘Yo’ will only have two more weeks in its run, it remains an imposing challenge to ‘That’s My Amboy’, considering the series has beaten ‘Little Nanay’ and ‘Because of You’ in those three weeks.

That said, the AnBie love team will have its work cut out for them. Although they’ve been successful in the afternoon, primetime is a very different animal, which only adds pressure to the duo.

‘That’s My Amboy’ premieres later tonight after ‘Little Nanay’ on GMA Telebabad.

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