entertainment, Philippines, reality show, television

Thoughts on Star Hunt: The Grand Audition Show

A filler show to end all filler shows.

With the 2018 remake of ‘Meteor Garden’ set to air right before ‘TV Patrol’ starting this Monday (more on that later this week), ABS-CBN decided to fill the void with a transitional show on the timeslot normally occupied by its Asianovelas. And this is no ordinary show.

Back in April, ABS-CBN announced a worldwide audition tour called ‘Star Hunt: The Kapamilya Grand Auditions’. The tour began in Manila on the weekend of April 20, after which the network hosted further auditions in both the Philippines and abroad.

Their purpose is to find aspirants that will become part of various ABS-CBN talent and reality shows. Examples include ‘The Voice of the Philippines’, ‘I Can See Your Voice’, ‘Pilipinas Got Talent’, ‘Pinoy Big Brother’, ‘Tawag ng Tanghalan’, ‘Dance Kids’, ‘Little Big Shots’, ‘Maalaala Mo Kaya’ and the soon-to-be-launched ‘World of Dance Philippines’.

Beginning Monday, ABS-CBN will air highlights from these auditions as part of ‘Star Hunt: The Grand Audition Show’. Hosted by former ‘Pinoy Big Brother’ alums Kim Chiu, Robi Domingo, Alex Gonzaga and Melai Cantiveros, the program will take a look at some of the aspirants and their backstories.

This is perhaps a mere short-term solution for ABS-CBN. After all, there are high hopes surrounding the remake of ‘Meteor Garden’ that airing the Asianovela on its normal afternoon timeslot may hinder its viewership due to the ‘TV Patrol’ regional newscasts in the provinces.

Not wanting to risk a loss of viewers, ABS-CBN decided to place ‘Meteor Garden’ on the leadoff slot of Primetime Bida. This leads to ‘Star Hunt: The Grand Audition Show’ taking over the regular Asianovela timeslot of Kapamilya Gold.

Honestly, it makes perfect sense for ABS-CBN to produce a filler show on a timeslot where not all areas will receive it. With regional versions of ‘TV Patrol’ being plugged into this timeslot, ABS-CBN realized that a filler show like ‘Star Hunt’ will be much better than, let’s say a teleserye, because ratings are of no concern to the program and it only serves as a stopgap.

With that, good luck to ABS-CBN for this temporary endeavor. Regardless of how it performed, the most important part is that it served its purpose.

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FTT Year 2017 in Review: The Hot or Not Stories That Define the Year in Media (Part III)

Another year is about to end. But before the calendar flips to 2018, here is a look back at the year that was in television and radio. This article looks back at some of the Hot or Not moments that define the Philippine media this year.

If you missed out on Part I and Part II of this series, click on the highlighted link for more information.

Here is Part III of the four-part series. These stories are arranged in no particular order.

HOT: Ang Probinsyano

Year II of ‘Ang Probinsyano’ was no different from Year I. Despite questions surrounding its quality for a series that has run for two years and counting, ‘Ang Probinsyano’ continued to dominate the primetime landscape, often reaching 40% or better some nights.

Even as the likes of Maja Salvador, Bela Padilla and Albert Martinez depart, ‘Ang Probinsyano’ soldiered on with new additions such as former GMA stars Aljur Abrenica and Louise delos Reyes. The series was also rewarded with yet another extension that will last until an undetermined date in 2018 (barring another extension).

NOT: Ang Probinsyano’s Opponents

Meanwhile, four different opponents from the Kapuso network tried to take down ‘Ang Probinsyano’ and its lengthy run of excellence. Unfortunately, neither ‘Encantadia’, ‘Alyas Robin Hood’, ‘Mulawin vs. Ravena’ nor ‘Super Ma’am’ were able to take Coco Martin and company down.

None of the four teleseryes breached the 20% mark and worse, the disparity between ‘Ang Probinsyano’ and its opponent is around 20% or better. With such a large deficit GMA should start thinking of a new strategy this early or wait for ‘Ang Probinsyano’ to end in order to take advantage of this new opportunity (too bad there’s no end date yet).

HOT: 2016 Miss Universe

The 2016 Miss Universe was held in the Philippines last January 30 and was simulcast on ABS-CBN, TV5, GMA and Solar Entertainment channels. The collaboration marked just the second time that an event of national interest was aired in unison among the country’s broadcast giants; the last being the Manny Pacquiao vs. Floyd Mayweather boxing fight two years ago.

France’s Iris Mittenaere was crowned the 2016 Miss Universe while the host’s representative Maxine Medina finished among the top 6. However, she was unable to complete an entire year’s reign as this year’s Miss Universe was held last November 26 with South Africa’s Demi-Leigh Nel-Peters winning the said pageant.

NOT: Pacquiao vs. Horn and the sport of boxing

The declining interest in Manny Pacquiao continued as he fought Jeff Horn in July. The end result was a unanimous decision victory for Horn, some bloodshot eyes from Pacquiao and lukewarm reception from boxing fans in the country.

It was a poor year overall for boxing on Philippine television. Despite the efforts of ALA Promotions to promote the sport via its Pinoy Pride series, the year saw the end of ABS-CBN Sports’ partnership with Top Rank Boxing (coinciding with Nonito Donaire ending ties with Bob Arum’s promotion) and the expected cancellation of ‘Blow by Blow’ on TV5.

HOT: Magandang Buhay

2017 proved to be a coming-out party of sorts for ‘Magandang Buhay’ as the show became a ratings hit each and every morning. The news is an encouraging one for ABS-CBN despite the fact that the show airs at 8:00 a.m., which is typically ‘dead’ time for viewership.

With the trio of Melai Cantiveros, Jolina Magdangal and Karla Estrada, plus some impressive selection of guests, it is no secret that this talk show has become the talk of the town. With all due respect to Kris Aquino, the trio of Melai, Jolina and Karla should now inherit the ‘queens of talk’ mantra considering ‘Magandang Buhay”s success.

NOT: GMA’s Animes and The Lolas’ Beautiful Show

The traditional morning powerhouse that is GMA’s Astig Authority suddenly became vulnerable with the rise of ‘Magandang Buhay’. Even though the network redubbed ‘Voltes V’ and ‘Daimos’ this year with a host of celebrities from their stable, it failed to prevent the inevitable.

One talk show that would have helped is ‘The Lolas’ Beautiful Show’, hosted by Wally Bayola, Jose Manalo and Paolo Ballesteros in their alter-egos as Nidora, Tinidora and Tidora. However, the show’s status as a TAPE-produced show (TAPE programs are only allowed an 11:30-2:30 timeslot on GMA most afternoons) prevented it from seriously challenging ‘Magandang Buhay’.

It also didn’t help that ‘The Lolas’ Beautiful Show’ is losing to the morning drama ‘Ikaw Lang ang Iibigin’ on a regular basis. Perhaps GMA should loosen the reins a bit to give the lolas of ‘Eat Bulaga’ a chance to go up against the momshies of ‘Magandang Buhay’.

HOT: ABS-CBN Reality/Talent Shows

Reality and talent shows continue to give ABS-CBN plenty of reasons to celebrate. This year’s winners are:

Pinoy Big Brother Lucky 7 – Maymay Entrata

Your Face Sounds Familiar Kids – Awra Briguela

I Can Do That – Wacky Kiray

The Voice Teens Philippines – Jona Soquite

Currently on the network’s weekend primetime menu are ‘Little Big Shots’ and ‘I Can See Your Voice’, both of which continue to excel and trend among viewers. If 2018 is of any indication, then even more excitement awaits ABS-CBN as it introduces either new seasons of existing reality/talent shows or new programs.

NOT: All-Star Videoke

A poor man’s version of the popular ‘All-Star K’ was introduced to GMA last September. Unfortunately, ‘All-Star Videoke’ failed to live up to the standards of its more successful sibling.

GMA could have used this opportunity to bring back ‘Lip-Sync Battle Philippines’ or acquire ‘Killer Karaoke’. Instead, they rehashed an original Filipino concept that did not work out, and with all due respect to Betong Sumaya and Solenn Heussaff, they are no Allan K and Jaya in that regard.

Part IV of this four-part series is coming up tomorrow. Stay tuned.

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Celebrity Kids to Take Over New Season of Your Face Sounds Familiar

The kids are coming to ‘Your Face Sounds Familiar’ this weekend.

Season 3 of the ABS-CBN reality talent show will have a new twist, as the child stars of the Kapamilya network take center stage in one of the cutest and most entertaining seasons yet. The eight kids who will be part of ‘Your Face Sounds Familiar: Kids’ are:

  • AC Bonifacio – the ‘Dance Sweetheart’
  • Alonzo Muhlach – the ‘Bibong Child Wonder’
  • Awra Briguela – the ‘Breakout Child Star’
  • Elha Nympha – the ‘Big Shot Belter’
  • Justin Alva – the ‘Musikerong Charmer’
  • Lyca Gairanod – the ‘Young Diva ng Masa’
  • Sam Shoaf – the ‘Talented Cutie’
  • Xia Vigor – the ‘Daytime Princess’

Each of these young stars will undergo serious vocal, acting and dance training, as well as a makeup transformation, in order to perform like the idol that they will imitate. Every episode will see a winner crowned via a point tally, and he/she will earn a specific cash prize, half of which goes to the charity of their choosing.

By the end of this season, the grand winner will join Melai Cantiveros and Denise Laurel in the winner’s circle. Overall, the format of ‘Your Face Sounds Familiar’ remains the same, save for the ages of the contestants.

The new season of ‘Your Face Sounds Familiar’ will also have a new face in the panel of judges. Enter Ogie Alcasid, the recently-acquired Kapamilya talent who has long been renowned for his musical prowess.

Ogie will join holdovers Sharon Cuneta and Gary Valenciano in the judges’ table. As for the presenter of ‘Your Face Sounds Familiar’, it will still be Billy Crawford.

The first two seasons of ‘Your Face Sounds Familiar’ proved to be runaway hits thanks to the unique approach that the show took. As the kids take center stage this weekend, one can only hope that the third season will be just as exciting and entertaining as the first two.

‘Your Face Sounds Familiar: Kids’ airs every Saturday after ‘Home Sweetie Home’, and every Sunday after ‘Goin’ Bulilit’.

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We Will Survive’s Ratings on a Tailspin After Change of Timeslot

‘We Will Survive’ found itself in a tough spot upon moving to a new timeslot, thanks in large part to the show’s delayed broadcasts in the regional networks. (Logo courtesy of ABS-CBN)

‘We Will Survive’ is in a crisis.

The ABS-CBN drama series is off to a slow start in its new 5:00 p.m. timeslot, registering ratings of 10.7% (April 18), 10.9% (April 19), 9.8% (April 20) and 9.9% (April 21) during a four-day span. This was in contrast to the show’s 13% average ratings in its original timeslot of 5:45 p.m.

Clearly, ABS-CBN has a lot of explaining to do when it comes to ‘We Will Survive”s low ratings. Regional networks are unable to air the series at the same time as Metro Manila due to the presence of local ‘TV Patrol’, and instead, it is aired the following day at 9:00 a.m. in place of ‘Naruto Shippuden’.

This predicament easily led to ‘We Will Survive’ losing to GMA’s ‘Wowowin’ in a majority of the regional areas. And it didn’t help that the delayed broadcasts are being aired in a timeslot that is also not viable ratings-wise.

It is a painful truth that the regional networks of ABS-CBN have no choice but to commit to 30-45 minutes’ worth of ‘TV Patrol’ in their respective dialects. However, it also hurts that the network decided to place a teleserye in a timeslot that is not expected to draw viewers from the provinces.

Considering ABS-CBN’s reputation for successful teleseryes, this is a strategy that does not work at all. And it is also not good that the network decided to fill almost 2/3s of their lineup with teleseryes; excluding ‘TV Patrol’, ABS-CBN’s lineup from 3:15-10:45 p.m. features a streak of seven teleseryes and an imported series.

That said, for Pokwang, Melai Cantiveros and the show’s braintrust, this is a battle that they cannot survive from. Positive messages notwithstanding, ABS-CBN should consider closing the book on ‘We Will Survive’ as soon as possible, knowing that it would be consequential to viewers in the provinces, as well as viewers who are tired of watching teleseryes for many hours straight.

If not, find a way to get a better timeslot for the show. After all, it is for the network’s own good.

 

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In 100 Words: Magandang Buhay to Premiere This Monday

It’s going to be a ‘Magandang Buhay’ this coming Monday.

Yes, that’s the name of the new talk show that will be hosted by Karla Estrada, Melai Cantiveros and Jolina Magdangal. And as expected, it will replace ‘Kris TV’ on its old 7:30 a.m. timeslot.

The premiere of ‘Magandang Buhay’ had been long overdue, as ‘Kris TV’ continued to air reruns despite its final broadcast last March 23. Nevertheless, for ABS-CBN and the show’s producers, it was finally worth the wait.

Over the next two weeks, ‘Magandang Buhay’ will be pitted against GMA’s animes. But if GMA decides to pit their own new talk show ‘Yan ang Morning’ opposite ‘Magandang Buhay’, it could make things a little more interesting.

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My Super D Premiere Leads to Late-Afternoon Shakeup

It’s going to be an afternoon of change for ABS-CBN next week.

On Monday, April 18, the superhero drama series ‘My Super D’ will officially premiere on the Primetime Bida block. That was the good news.

The bad news, there are no free slots for ‘My Super D’ on the current Primetime Bida lineup. Its intended replacement, ‘FPJ’s Ang Probinsyano’, has not announced a final episode date due to its impressively high ratings, and ABS-CBN has no intention of replacing it at this point.

So where does ‘My Super D’ end up? Luckily, ABS-CBN freed up one slot for the upcoming series when it announced that ‘Game ng Bayan’ will air its final episode tomorrow afternoon.

The sudden cancellation of ‘Game ng Bayan’ came barely a month after it premiered to replace ‘Kapamilya Deal or No Deal’. Clearly, ABS-CBN knew what was coming, as ‘Game ng Bayan’ not only struggled in the ratings, but also became a logistical nightmare for the network.

With ‘Game ng Bayan”s cancellation now official, its old timeslot will now be filled by ‘We Will Survive’, the drama series starring Melai Cantiveros and Pokwang. It will still face GMA’s ‘Wowowin’, but not all areas will receive ‘We Will Survive’, which is a problem for ABS-CBN’s Regional Network Group.

Whether or not ABS-CBN will keep ‘We Will Survive’ on the Primetime Bida slot or move it to Kapamilya Gold remains to be seen. However, they need to find a way to make the broadcasts of ‘We Will Survive’ as simultaneous as possible, so as not to sacrifice its decently good ratings.

Going back to ‘My Super D’, this superhero drama series follows the footsteps of fellow ABS-CBN original creations such as ‘Super Inggo’, ‘My Little Juan’ and ‘Juan Dela Cruz’. With each of these series becoming successful hits for the network, the pressure is now on ‘My Super D’ to deliver similar results.

In ‘My Super D’, Dominic Ochoa will play the titular superhero role as Super D. He will be supported by Marco Masa and Bianca Manalo, who will play the role of son and wife respectively.

Joining them in the series are Atoy Co, Ryan Rems, Myrtle Sarrosa, Jef Gaitan, Louie Domingo, Marina Benipayo, Bong Regala, Jason Francisco, Marvin Agustin, Noni Buencamino and Ronaldo Valdez. It will be directed by Frasco Mortiz and Lino Cayetano.

With these changes now official, the question is, can ‘My Super D’ fly higher than ‘Wowowin’? And can ‘Wowowin’ be able to stave off this new threat?

We’ll find out.

‘My Super D’ premieres this Monday, and airs weeknights before ‘TV Patrol’.

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