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FTT Year 2015 in Review: Television’s Best

Another year is about to end. But before the calendar flips to 2016, here is a look back at the year that was in television and radio. This article looks back at the 10 best moments in Philippine television this year.

AlDub Invades Eat Bulaga and the World

The now-popular Kalyeserye segment of ‘Eat Bulaga’ began on July 16, as a then-unknown Maine Mendoza (under the Yaya Dub character) caught the eye of rising Kapuso star Alden Richards. Since then, AlDub grew into a social media phenomenon, and it culminated into a slew of advertisements, magazine covers, a supporting role in ‘My Bebe Love: #KiligPaMore’, and a sold-out ‘Sa Tamang Panahon’ live episode at the Philippine Arena.

While the popularity of AlDub had some negative effects on GMA and its rivals, there is no denying that the duo became the key ingredient that introduced ‘Eat Bulaga’ into a new generation. The 36-year-old variety show is now enjoying its best ratings in years, thanks largely to AlDub.

LizQuen, KathNiel and JaDine Dominate Primetime Ratings

While AlDub dominated noontime, primetime belonged to ABS-CBN’s three hottest love teams.  The year began with LizQuen (Liza Soberano and Enrique Gil) of ‘Forevermore’ continuing their winning run, before handing it over to KathNiel (Kathryn Bernardo and Daniel Padilla) of ‘Pangako Sa ‘Yo’, and JaDine (James Reid and Nadine Lustre) of ‘On the Wings of Love’.

The success of LizQuen, KathNiel and JaDine were crucial in Primetime Bida’s thorough domination of Telebabad in the national ratings. Although GMA responded with BiGuel (Bianca Umali and Miguel Tanfelix) in ‘Once Upon a Kiss’, and GabRu (Gabbi Garcia and Ruru Madrid) of ‘Let the Love Begin’, they were unable to make an impact.

A New Sunday Afternoon Habit

August 9 saw a new rival for the 20-year-old ‘ASAP’, but they did not expect it to be different. In came ‘Sunday PinaSaya’, GMA’s newest variety show that emphasized more on comedy than musical performances.

The presence of ‘Eat Bulaga’ hosts Jose Manalo, Wally Bayola and Alden RicRhards (with Maine Mendoza later added) helped ‘Sunday PinaSaya’ defeat ‘ASAP’ on a consistent basis. In response, ABS-CBN moved ‘Banana Split: Extra Scoop’ to Sunday afternoons as ‘Banana Sundae’, but it still failed to reverse the trend.

Willie Revillame Returns 

Speaking of Sunday afternoons, May 10 saw the return of Willie Revillame to the small screen with ‘Wowowin’. Initially airing every mid-Sunday afternoons, it later moved to an earlier timeslot after ‘Sunday PinaSaya’, where it has since flourished.

Even though Willie faced an arrest warrant over the ‘Willing Willie’ macho dancer kid case, this didn’t stop him from receiving accolades for ‘Wowowin’. The rebirth of the controversial host was capped off with a pair of awards for best game show and host in the PMPC Star Awards.

Wattpad Presents Turns 1

The teleserye dominance of ABS-CBN and GMA did not deter TV5. Following the cancellation of ‘Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?’ in early November, ‘Wattpad Presents’ became the network’s longest-running active entertainment program, having been on the air for over a year.

Under-appreciated by most television viewers, ‘Wattpad Presents’ was able to make it over a year thanks to an endless supply of new stories and a dedicated fanbase. It is considered a perfect alternative to the long and dragging storylines that a teleserye usually provides.

ABS-CBN Goes Digital and HD

February 11 saw the much-awaited launch of ABS-CBN TVPlus, the first-ever digital terrestrial television service in the country. The so-called ‘mahiwagang black box’ quickly became popular, selling nearly a million units.

Then on October 3, ABS-CBN HD was launched, bringing virtually every program on Channel 2 into crystal clear high definition. And finally, ABS-CBN announced that they will replace Balls HD with ABS-CBN Sports+Action HD starting January 1, ending a six-year run for the network’s first-ever HD channel.

Kapamilya Gold Reloaded

Teleseryes made their return to Kapamilya Gold on January 13, as ‘Flordeliza’ and ‘Nasaan Ka Nang Kailangan Kita’ premiered on the afternoon block. This was followed by four other series: ‘Doble Kara’, ‘All of Me’, ‘Walang Iwanan’ and ‘And I Love You So’.

Since then, the battle between Kapamilya Gold and Afternoon Prime dramas became a tight one, both in ratings and momentum. However, it didn’t stop ‘The Half-Sisters’ from achieving the one-year milestone in June.

NCAA Returns to Channel 23; UAAP Extended

After a fruitless three-year tenure with Sports5, the NCAA returned to ABS-CBN Sports in late June. The renewed partnership featured new innovations, such as social media interaction and high-definition broadcasts.

ABS-CBN Sports also signed a fresh five-year deal with the UAAP, following another successful season. The network now plans to extend its coverage to other UAAP tournaments, in addition to full coverage of men’s basketball and women’s volleyball.

The Big Two-0

November 27 saw ‘Bubble Gang’ celebrate its 20th anniversary with a documentary special. The 20-year-old gag show continues to defy time, maintaining its status as a Friday night habit despite an evolving cast of talents and advancements in technology.

Also reaching its 20th year is ‘Saksi’, the second longest-running active free TV newscast in the country. So is ‘ASAP’, who despite fading ratings with the entry of ‘Sunday PinaSaya’, remains a fixture on Sunday noontime.

Janella, Jana Shine on Lunchtime

Following up the success of ‘Be Careful with My Heart’ was a difficult task, but Janella Salvador and Jana Agoncillo proved that they were able to thrive with this challenge. Janella’s ‘Oh My G’ and Jana’s ‘Ningning’ flourished as one the country’s top-rated programs on weekdays, despite a stiff competitor in ‘The Ryzza Mae Show’.

In response, the TAPE-produced talk show starring Ryzza Mae Dizon was rebooted into a drama series as ‘Princess in the Palace’. However, the reformat did not produce the desired results.

2015 was another year to remember for television viewers. Although ABS-CBN continued to reign this year, GMA and TV5 enjoyed their own share of moments as well, and with digitization now underway, the preparation for a full-digitized television signal in the Philippines is on.

So what is in store for 2016? Find out as From the Tube continues to look at events and changes that shape Philippine media.

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Walang Iwanan Ends Friday; And I Love You So to Take Over

This Friday marks a rather short conclusion to ‘Walang Iwanan’.

Premiering on October 19, ‘Walang Iwanan’ managed to air just 35 episodes, which is shorter than a typical ABS-CBN teleserye. No one expected this to happen, considering the Kapamilya network’s high standards when it comes to their teleseryes.

But there are some reasons why ‘Walang Iwanan’ had to end sooner. Beauty Gonzales is due to give birth either within this month or early next year, while Jhong Hilario will be busy running for public office next year.

As for ‘Walang Iwanan”s ratings, the series averaged a 10% rating throughout its run. On the other hand, GMA’s ‘Destiny Rose’ managed a 14% rating per episode according to the Kantar national ratings.

The same goes to AGB Nielsen’s Mega Manila ratings, where ‘Destiny Rose’ performed better than ‘Walang Iwanan’. Overall, ‘Walang Iwanan”s ratings was a letdown from its predecessor ‘Nasaan Ka Nang Kailangan Kita’.

Still, it was not an excuse for them to have a short run. After all, there are other circumstances that led to its tenure of over two months.

Next up for ABS-CBN will be Julia Barretto’s first teleserye since 2013’s ‘Mirabella’. Julia’s new series, ‘And I Love You So’, will feature her and Miles Ocampo as stepsisters turned archrivals, all for the love of one man, portrayed by Inigo Pascual.

The story of ‘And I Love You So’ will revolve around the rivalry between the characters of Julia and Miles, who soon found out they were stepsisters. Their lives would change, however, when their parents, portrayed by Dimples Romana and Tonton Gutierrez, reunite and become engaged.

But just as they begin living a normal life, the latter’s first wife, portrayed by Angel Aquino, returns after years of estrangement and seek revenge on his new fiancée. With it comes a series of events that will test the family’s determination to stay together and mend some old wounds.

‘And I Love You So’ will be the latest collaboration between ABS-CBN and Dreamscape Entertainment, whose track record of producing successful teleseryes has been well-documented. But for Julia Barretto, it is about redemption, especially after an inauspicious debut as a lead star in ‘Mirabella’.

That said, ABS-CBN hopes that ‘And I Love You So’ will help bring the best out of Julia. But whether or not it will translate to better ratings remains to be seen, so good luck.

‘And I Love You So’ premieres this Monday after ‘All of Me’ on ABS-CBN’s Kapamilya Gold.

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Nasaan Ka Ends Tomorrow; Walang Iwanan to Premiere This Monday

‘Nasaan Ka Nang Kailangan Kita’ officially bids farewell.

The series will come to a close tomorrow afternoon following its 193rd episode. Starring Jane Oineza, Loisa Andalo and Joshua Garcia, alongside Vina Morales, Denise Laurel, Christian Vasquez, and Jerome Ponce, ‘Nasaan Ka Nang Kailangan Kita’ told the story of a daughter who searched for her lost father, and was based from the 1986 film of the same name.

‘Nasaan Ka Nang Kailangan Kita’ premiered on January 19 alongside ‘Flordeliza’, as part of ABS-CBN’s attempt to rejuvenate Kapamilya Gold. The series initially had a slow start, but soon gained momentum and won the ratings battle consistently against GMA’s ‘Yagit’, ‘Healing Hearts’ and ‘Buena Familia’.

Come this Friday, expect the finale of ‘Nasaan Ka Nang Kailangan Kita’ to be as intense and as epic, not to mention inspiring. It will be the viewers’ last chance to see how love conquers all regardless of the challenges.

In the meantime, a replacement for ‘Nasaan Ka Nang Kailangan Kita’ has been confirmed. Titled ‘Walang Iwanan’, the series will take over the former’s timeslot.

‘Walang Iwanan’ features the network’s five rising child stars: Louise Abuel, Micko Laurente, Jon Michael, Raikko Mateo and Karla Cruz. They will be joined by Roxanne Guinoo, Jhong Hilario, John Estrada, Beauty Gonzales, and Nicco Manalo.

The series is based from a real-life survival story of Jose Bautista and his seven siblings, which was retold on ‘Maalaala Mo Kaya’. The story focuses on five siblings who will try to survive on their own after the disappearance of their parents.

With momentum on Kapamilya Gold’s side, it will be a huge task for ‘Walang Iwanan’ to make an immediate impact. But based on ABS-CBN’s recent success with child talent, it should not be a problem.

‘Walang Iwanan’ should be a very inspiring series, much like its predecessor, and viewers should look forward to it. The series airs weekdays after ‘All for Me’ starting this Monday.

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A Congested Schedule Coming Up for Kapamilya Gold

An extremely congested schedule looms on Kapamilya Gold next week.

From August 24-28, a total of six programs will be seen on Kapamilya Gold from 2:30 to 5:50 p.m. This is due to the hasty premiere of ‘Doble Kara’, an upcoming teleserye starring Julia Montes.

‘Doble Kara’ was supposed to replace ‘Flordeliza’ once the latter finishes on August 28. But due to the continuous success of GMA’s ‘The Half-Sisters’ (who are airing for over a year now), the former is now scheduled to air after ‘Flordeliza’ instead, after which it will air once ‘It’s Showtime’ concludes.

As a result, at least for next week, three local teleseryes will be bunched together on Kapamilya Gold for the first time in nearly two years. After which, though, the said block will revert back to airing two local dramas every weekday afternoon.

‘Doble Kara’ stars Julia Montes as twins Sarah and Kara, who were separated by their mother after Kara was diagnosed with leukemia. Both twins went on to enjoy different lives, but fate soon intervened that will eventually bring them back together.

The series also stars Edgar Allan Guzman, Anjo Damiles, Carmina Villarroel, Ariel Rivera, Mylene Dizon, Gloria Sevilla, John Lapus, Allen Dizon, and Alora Sasam, with a special appearance from Alicia Alonzo. Emmanuel Palo and Jon Villarin will serve as the series’ directors.

With ‘Doble Kara’ premiering next week, here is how Kapamilya Gold’s schedule will look like from August 24-28:

2:30 p.m. – Flordeliza

3:05 p.m. – Doble Kara

3:40 p.m. – Nasaan Ka Nang Kailangan Kita

4:15 p.m. – Pinoy Big Brother: 737 Gold

4:50 p.m. – News and Current Affairs Block (Mission Possible, My Puhunan, Red Alert, Sports U, Tapatan ni Tunying)

5:15 p.m. – Kapamilya Deal or No Deal

Waiting for ‘Flordeliza’ to end would have served ABS-CBN and ‘Doble Kara’ well. Instead, they are now forced to compensate for airing six programs in nearly 3 1/2 hours (commercial breaks included).

A risky programming decision is uncharacteristic of ABS-CBN’s well-planned programming schemes. But who knows? Perhaps beating ‘The Half-Sisters’ with a proven Julia Montes in ‘Doble Kara’ may be a blessing in disguise after all.

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Overview of PNoy’s Final SONA Coverage

Eyes will be on President Noynoy Aquino as he makes his final State of the Nation Address. (Photo credit: Philstar.com)

Welcome to SONA Monday.

Held every fourth Monday of July, the State of the Nation Address is an annual event where the President of the Philippines addresses the public of his accomplishments and plans for the nation. While the SONA is not a national holiday, it remains an important political event in the country, ranking just above the presidential inauguration and the national elections.

This year’s SONA will be the last for President Noynoy Aquino, and it will be interesting to see how he will respond to the recent string events that have plagued his administration. As always, it will be greeted by protests from those against his administration.

Television and radio coverage will once again be at the forefront of this annual event, so without further ado, here are the plans for some of the stations covering the SONA.

ABS-CBN

The SONA coverage on Channel 2 will proceed after ‘Flordeliza’. ‘Nasaan Ka Nang Kailangan Kita’, ‘Pinoy Big Brother: 737 Gold’ and ‘Mission Possible’ will be preempted, while ‘Kapamilya: Deal or No Deal’ may be preempted in case the SONA runs overtime.

ABS-CBN will use three different broadcast teams for their coverage. Channel 2 will be led by Ted Failon and Lynda Jumilla, ANC will be led by Tony Velasquez and Karmina Constantino, and DZMM TeleRadyo and Radyo Patrol 630 will be led by Anthony Taberna and Gerry Baja.

A live and uninterrupted feed of the coverage will also be streamed on abs-cbnnews.com. It is unknown if the SONA coverage will also be seen on ABS-CBN Sports+Action, since the NCAA will no longer be in conflict with the SONA.

TV5

The SONA coverage on TV5 will proceed after the Marvel animation block. ‘Hi-5 Philippines’ will be the only show preempted, as ‘Movie Max 5’ only airs as a filler program.

TV5 will utilize a parallel broadcast approach for the coverage. Erwin Tulfo and Cheryl Cosim will anchor TV5’s coverage of the SONA on four different platforms: TV5, AksyonTV, Radyo5 92.3 News FM, and News5Everywhere.

GMA

The SONA coverage on GMA will proceed after ‘The Half-Sisters’. ‘Buena Familia”s premiere will be moved tomorrow, while ‘Healing Hearts’, ‘Alisto’ and possibly ‘Birth of a Beauty’ will be preempted.

The press release of the network only indicated that Mel Tiangco and Mike Enriquez will anchor Channel 7’s coverage. Whether or not it will be a parallel coverage or a separate coverage on Channel 7, GMA News TV, GMA News Online and Super Radyo DZBB 594 remains to be seen.

All AM stations, save for specialty ones, will also pool their resources for the SONA coverage. Updates on the event will also be provided by a few FM stations.

Net 25 will also cover the SONA, but since it takes place on the same day as the Iglesia ni Cristo’s 101st founding anniversary, the primary focus of the station could be on the latter. UNTV will also handle their own coverage of the event.

Finally, the neophyte CNN Philippines (formerly Solar News Channel and 9TV) will join in on the SONA fun for the first time. Their coverage of the SONA will be anchored by Jing Magsaysay and Pia Hontiveros.

Regardless of the station, the entire nation will pay attention to the statements made by President Aquino. His last SONA will be very important, so keep an eye on what he says.

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Kapamilya Gold Reclaims Ratings Supremacy, At Least in Kantar

The recent success of ‘Flordeliza’ and ‘Nasaan Ka Nang Kailangan Kita’ (above) boosted the viewership of Kapamilya Gold. (Photo credit: ABS-CBN)

ABS-CBN’s Kapamilya Gold block is back in business.

The last two months saw Kapamilya Gold regain its footing in the ratings. The block’s two teleseryes in ‘Flordeliza’ and ‘Nasaan Ka Nang Kailangan Kita’ were beginning to win over viewers as their story intensifies, while their two counterparts in ‘The Half-Sisters’ and ‘Yagit’ were losing steam as their stories become even more predictable.

At the moment, both ‘Flordeliza’ and ‘Nasaan Ka Nang Kailangan Kita’ were averaging at least 14% in the ratings (according to Kantar Media), which is a far cry from the single-digit marks they attained in mid-January. And if that’s not enough, both shows were also beating their Kapuso counterparts in most, if not all recent episodes.

With ‘Yagit’ about to be replaced by ‘Buena Familia’ starting July 27, it would be a great opportunity for ‘Nasaan Ka Nang Kailangan Kita’ to take advantage of a new opponent. As for ‘Flordeliza’, their battle with ‘The Half-Sisters’ may be a neck-and-neck struggle, but they are definitely more than happy to earn victory points with each episode.

The recent success of Kapamilya Gold isn’t limited to the two teleseryes alone. The entry of ‘Pinoy Big Brother: 737 Gold’ also boosted its fortunes, even though the MTRCB recently imposed an SPG rating to the show due to its scenes that are strictly inappropriate for children.

And finally, the News and Current Affairs programs and ‘Kapamilya: Deal or No Deal’ continued to dominate their counterparts from GMA. Overall, Kapamilya Gold has turned things around after a slow start this year, with each show registering double figure ratings.

That said, the pressure is now on GMA’s Afternoon Prime to keep up. Having lost some momentum at the midway point, GMA must change it up a bit to maintain interest, otherwise viewer interest will continue to wane.

For now, Kapamilya Gold has won, at least in Kantar. But will they keep it up? We’ll see.

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