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Thanks to Ipaglaban Mo, Startalk and Wish Ko Lang Switch Timeslots

The success of the legal drama ‘Ipaglaban Mo’ on ABS-CBN has forced GMA to tweak anew their Saturday lineup, with ‘Wish Ko Lang’ and ‘Startalk’ switching timeslots. (Photo credit: ABS-CBN)

GMA’s weekend programming instability continues.

Last Saturday, the Kapuso network decided to switch the timeslots of ‘Startalk’ and ‘Wish Ko Lang’. As a result, the former now airs at 3:45 p.m. while the latter follows suit.

There is a reason why GMA made another change on Saturday afternoons, and that is the ratings success of ‘Ipaglaban Mo’ on ABS-CBN. Since the legal drama returned to the small screen this past June, it has managed to dominate ‘Startalk’ in both the TNS Kantar and the AGB Nielsen ratings.

This marked ‘Startalk”s third timeslot change this year, compared to only two in their first 18 years. In January, ‘Startalk’ moved to Sunday afternoons in order to compete against ‘Buzz ng Bayan’, only to move back to Saturdays in May following the revival of ‘The Buzz’ and the reunion of Kris Aquino and Boy Abunda.

The latest change now sees ‘Startalk’ airing at a similar timeslot as its rival ‘The Buzz’, only at a different day and on a running time of 45 minutes to an hour. In addition, ‘Startalk’ will now face ‘Failon Ngayon’, another of ABS-CBN’s highly-rated programs.

For ‘Wish Ko Lang’, it marked their third timeslot change in their 12-year history. Typically a late-afternoon program on Saturdays, ‘Wish Ko Lang’ has once moved to early primetime, and now it airs in the mid-afternoon slot.

While ‘Wish Ko Lang’ was a dominant program early in its run, beating similar rivals on ABS-CBN such as ‘Willingly Yours’, ‘Simpleng Hiling’ and ‘Nagmamahal Kapamilya’, the introduction and subsequent success of ‘Failon Ngayon’ saw its viewership numbers gradually decline. Now GMA management can only hope that ‘Wish Ko Lang’ will fare much better against ‘Ipaglaban Mo’.

In all, it was another tweak to GMA’s rather feeble lineup of weekend programs. But it gets even more interesting come this weekend.

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Imbestigador Moves Back to Saturdays; Kap’s Amazing Stories Cancelled

Mike Enriquez’s long-running program ‘Imbestigador’ will now be aired on Saturday afternoons. (Photo credit: GMA Network)

After three years, ‘Imbestigador’ returns to its most comfortable perch, sort of.

GMA has announced that ‘Imbestigador’ will return to the Saturday slot starting July 12. But instead of airing in the evenings, as it has been the case since 2000, it will now be seen in the afternoons.

During its three-year run on Sunday nights, ‘Imbestigador’ saw its ratings sharply decline. This was mainly due to the popularity of opposing program ‘Gandang Gabi Vice’, and its shift from a reality documentation format to a dramatization-based format. It also didn’t help that ‘Kapuso Mo Jessica Soho’, its preceding program for the past several years, was extended from 60 to 90 minutes.

The move to Saturday afternoons should give ‘Imbestigador’ less pressure to perform. Instead of facing Vice Ganda, it will now face ‘SOCO: Scene of the Crime Operatives’, whose format may have inspired ‘Imbestigador”s new approach, and ‘Failon Ngayon’, whose format was similar to the ‘Imbestigador’ of old.

Still, it remains to be seen if the new timeslot will result in better ratings for Mike Enriquez’s long-running program.

Kap’s Amazing Stories Finally Cancelled

With host Bong Revilla still incarcerated for his role in the PDAF scam, GMA has decided to cancel ‘Kap’s Amazing Stories’ after nearly seven years.

The cancellation of ‘Kap’s Amazing Stories’ is intended to avoid any negative publicity in the light of Bong Revilla’s involvement in the PDAF scam. The senator was arrested on June 20, but ‘Kap’s Amazing Stories’ continued to air reruns until July 6.

But instead of creating a similar program on Sundays, GMA decided to add a fourth movie block in its timeslot. This new movie block will feature animated movies, and in typical GMA fashion, it will be dubbed in Filipino.

Clearly, GMA has shown a lack of proper direction in their programming. With five movie blocks and a pair of horror-based series, it is understandable why advertising has sharply declined for the network. And it didn’t help that rival ABS-CBN’s dominant weekend lineup has become a huge burden to GMA’s.

Unless they get rid of these movie blocks one by one, and replace them with more reliable programs, GMA’s programming problems will only continue. And Ramon Ang’s minority ownership won’t help matters.

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