action, drama, entertainment, Philippines, television

Asintado’s Final Week

It all comes down to this.

‘Asintado”s final episode is slated to air this Friday. But in many ways, this series turned out to be unpredictable.

First aired on January 15, 2018, ‘Asintado’ was placed in the leadoff slot of ABS-CBN’s Kapamilya Gold. It was to be the comeback series of Julia Montes nearly a year after starring in the long-running afternoon series ‘Doble Kara’.

But unlike ‘Doble Kara’, ‘Asintado’ performed on a relatively quiet scale. Debuting with a 17.7% rating, the series hovered between 14-17% for much of its run.

Despite that, ‘Asintado”s ratings were more than enough to dispatch its rival GMA dramas ‘Impostora’ and ‘The Stepdaughters’. And considering that it now airs at 3:50 p.m. on a regular basis due to the longer-than-usual running time of ‘It’s Showtime’, ‘Asintado”s performance was still impressive at best.

Overall, ‘Asintado’ will have a total of 187 episodes by Friday’s finale. As far as ABS-CBN standards go, this is already a long run.

If there is anything to pick up about ‘Asintado’, it is on how some of the cast members adapt to a role they were not used to. Julia Montes, long known for her dramatic skills regardless of being a villain or a protagonist, became more of an action star in this series as her character Ana sought vengeance on the loved ones she lost.

Shaina Magdayao, as Samantha, embraced the bad girl role particularly well, that is until it was revealed that Samantha and Ana were actually long-lost sisters. Paulo Avelino, as Gael, was no slouch either in working the good and bad side of his character.

In the last few weeks of ‘Asintado’, the focus shifted to Nonie Buencamino’s character Salvador, whom Ana blamed for the murder of her wife (and Salvador’s son) Gael as well as his wife Miranda (Lorna Tolentino). While Nonie”s credits as a villain were few and far between, his portrayal of Salvador may have been his best yet as a heel.

That said, the last week of ‘Asintado’ should be a good one. Whether or not Ana gains her much-needed justice remains to be seen, so stay tuned to find out the ending to this story of revenge and vindication.

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action, drama, entertainment, Philippines, television

Bouncing Back: Julia Montes Returns in Asintado

ABS-CBN’s Kapamilya Gold badly needs a boost.

For months, the block has struggled against a resurgent GMA Afternoon Prime. It was clear that Kapamilya Gold has gone stale with a repetitive ‘kabitserye’ formula, and as a result, viewers tuned away in favor of series that had campy scenes (‘Ika-6 na Utos’), one actress playing two contrasting personalities (‘Impostora’), and allusions to the supernatural (‘Haplos’).

This Monday, Kapamilya Gold will try to return to relevance with a familiar face and a new attitude. Enter ‘Asintado’, the newest afternoon series starring daytime drama’s undisputed queen in Julia Montes.

In ‘Asintado’, Julia is Ana, a member of a rescue team who looks to make her adoptive family proud. After saving Gael (Paulo Avelino) from a mining accident, she became his personal nurse and eventually fell in love with each other.

But just as their relationship blooms, Gael’s ex-girlfriend Samantha (Shaina Magdayao) returns to try to win back his heart, even if it means killing Ana. Fortunately, Ana was saved by Xander (Aljur Abrenica), only to find out later on that Gael and Samantha are about to get married.

Just as Ana is plotting her revenge, she finds out that Samantha was her long-lost sister. Samantha, as it turned out, was lost in the fire that killed their parents.

The search for love and justice in ‘Asintado’ will also involve a veteran supporting cast consisting of Lorna Tolentino, Cherry Pie Picache, Lito Pimentel, Agot Isidro, and Nonie Buencamino. The series will be directed by Onat Diaz and Lino Cayetano.

If Julia’s previous series ‘Doble Kara’ helped Kapamilya Gold reclaim the ratings lead from Afternoon Prime, then ABS-CBN should look for ‘Asintado’ to do the same. Still, the series will be up against a formidable foe in ‘Impostora’, and battling a tested star in Kris Bernal will not be a walk in the park.

But considering Julia Montes’ star power, facing such an obstacle is no big deal. That said, it will be up to her to lead Kapamilya Gold back to where it wants to be.

‘Asintado’ airs weekdays after ‘It’s Showtime’ on ABS-CBN.

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comedy, drama, entertainment, humor, Philippines, television

The Greatest Love’s Last Week, Plus D’Originals’ Premiere Week

For one week only, it will be ‘The Greatest Love’ versus ‘D’Originals’.

This week will mark the last for ‘The Greatest Love’, the top-rating afternoon drama that starred Sylvia Sanchez as a mother suffering from Alzheimer’s disease. The series first premiered on ABS-CBN’s Kapamilya Gold block on September 5, 2016, and will finish its 163-episode run this Friday afternoon.

‘The Greatest Love’, which also starred Dimples Romana, Andi Eigenmann, Matt Evans, Arron Villaflor, Ellen Adarna and Nonie Buencamino among others, was also a constant trending topic on social media. Its inspiring and tear-jerking storyline gripped the nation and the world, giving them greater awareness to the effects of Alzheimer’s disease.

On the other side of the spectrum, GMA’s Public Affairs team will once again try to salvage whatever shortcomings the Entertainment team has had of late. Their latest project is a sexy comedy drama series, ‘D’Originals’, which will premiere today.

‘D’Originals’ (click its synopsis here) will be the network’s replacement to the short-lived ‘Pinulot Ka Lang sa Lupa’, whose brief 53-episode run concluded last Holy Wednesday. ‘D’Originals’ will also be LJ Reyes’ second project in a row on the afternoon slot after starring as Angeli in ‘Pinulot Ka Lang sa Lupa’.

Also part of ‘D’Originals’ cast are Ms. Jaclyn Jose, Kim Domingo, Katrina Halili, Jestoni Alarcon, Mark Herras, Meg Imperial, Archie Alemania, Lovely Abella, Mikoy Morales, Arny Ross, Elyson De Dios, and Chlaui Malayao. The director of the series is Adolf Alix Jr.

If ‘The Greatest Love”s impressive ratings are of any indication, then ‘D’Originals’ is in for a rude awakening. Recent GMAPA-produced entertainment shows (see ‘Dangwa’, ‘To the Top’, ‘#Like’) have failed to make a desirable impact, thus putting tremendous pressure on ‘D’Originals’ to defy all expectations.

With the dominance of ABS-CBN in the afternoon slot (save for the surprisingly popular ‘Ika-6 na Utos’), this is one battle that ‘D’Originals’ must win. Saving the reputation of both GMA Entertainment and GMA Public Affairs is a must for the series, otherwise the blame game should continue for both departments.

It’s either win or give up for ‘D’Originals’ and GMA Public Affairs. Good luck.

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drama, entertainment, Philippines, television

New Teleserye Alert: The Greatest Love and Someone to Watch Over Me

Two new teleseryes premiere today on ABS-CBN and GMA respectively.

On the former’s Kapamilya Gold, ‘The Greatest Love’ will finally make its long-awaited debut. The series will star veteran actress Sylvia Sanchez in what is perhaps her most definitive starring role yet.

In ‘The Greatest Love’, Sylvia will play the role of Gloria, a mother of four who is determined to have a happy and lovely family. But a terrible secret soon broke the bond between Gloria and her children, and what remained of her are memories of her problematic past.

As the story goes on, Gloria begins to suffer from Alzheimer’s disease, a crippling disorder that could erase her memories. As a result, she must find a way to reunite with her children before her condition proves too much to overcome.

Gloria’s children will be portrayed by Dimples Romana (as Amanda), Matt Evans (as Andrei), Arron Villaflor (as Paeng), and Andi Eigenmann (as Lizelle). The supporting cast of ‘The Greatest Love’ will consist of Joshua Garcia, Nonie Buencamino, Rommel Padilla, Tonton Gutierrez, Ejay Falcon, Ellen Adarna, Junjun Quintana, Aleck Bovick, Luis Alandy, Bobby Andrews, Alex Medina, Mercedes Cabral, and Guji Lorenzana.

It will be interesting to see how ‘The Greatest Love’ fares on its first week. But as far as ABS-CBN is concerned, the recent streak of good fortune on Kapamilya Gold should be more than enough to ease the pressure on the newcomer.

Directed by Jeffrey Jeturian, Mervyn Brondial, and Dado Lomibao, ‘The Greatest Love’ airs weekdays after ‘Doble Kara’ on ABS-CBN’s Kapamilya Gold.

Over on GMA’s Telebabad block, ‘Someone to Watch Over Me’ will mark the full return of more serious dramas on primetime. The series will be headlined by Lovi Poe, Tom Rodriguez and Max Collins.

Like ‘The Greatest Love’, ‘Someone to Watch Over Me’ will explore the harsh effects of Alzheimer’s disease. In the upcoming series, TJ (Tom) is an office worker who is married to his wife Joanna (Lovi), but after TJ begins to suffer from early onset Alzheimer’s disease, Joanna decides to take care of her ailing husband.

Soon after, Irene (Max), TJ’s ex-girlfriend, is allowed by Joanna to enter their home. After that, things begin to change as TJ loses memory of Joanna and instead recognizes Irene as his true love.

‘Someone to Watch Over Me’ will also include Edu Manzano, Jackie Lou Blanco, Isay Alvarez, Ronnie Lazaro, Boy 2 Quizon, Ralph Noriega, and Frances Makil. The series will be directed by Maryo J. delos Reyes.

It will be interesting to see how this upcoming GMA drama will fare against ‘Born for You’. With the latter series on a roll, and with GMA’s talent problems already well-documented, this is going to be a difficult journey for Lovi, Tom, Max and company.

‘Someone to Watch Over Me’ airs weeknights after ‘Descendants of the Sun’.

 

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drama, entertainment, talk show, television

Ningning Premiere Kicks Off the Battle of the Child Stars

Jana Agoncillo (center) will star in an upcoming series ‘Ningning’, which will be placed in the pre-noontime slot opposite fellow child star Ryzza Mae Dizon. (Photo credit: ABS-CBN)

Two of the country’s most recognizable child stars today will face off this Monday.

In the red corner is GMA/TAPE’s own Ryzza Mae Dizon, formerly the 2012 Little Miss Philippines grand winner. ‘The Ryzza Mae Show’ is her first television project outside of ‘Eat Bulaga’, and it ushered Ryzza into the role of the country’s youngest talk show host.

In the blue corner is ABS-CBN’s own Jana Agoncillo, formerly known as ‘Baby’ in the hit primetime series ‘Dream Dad’. ‘Ningning’ will be her second starring role in a drama series, and her first in the pre-noontime slot.

‘The Ryzza Mae Show’ may be considered a ‘show within a show’ as part of ‘Eat Bulaga’, but on its own right, it was a decent and entertaining talk show, with the titular 10-year-old host proving to be a kid of many talents. Now Ryzza’s standing as one of the country’s top child stars will be put to the test as Jana Agoncillo comes into play.

In ‘Ningning’, Jana plays the titular character who is cheerful, hopeful and lovely. Set in San Vicente, Palawan, ‘Ningning”s jovial nature will be put to the test through a variety of obstacles that her family and her community faces.

Joining Jana in breathing life out of ‘Ningning’ will be Beauty Gonzales, Ketchup Eusebio, Sylvia Sanchez, Vandolph Quizon, Nyoy Volante, Rommel Padilla, Mercedes Cabral, Pooh, and John Steven de Guzman. Nonie Buencamino and Franco Daza will appear in a special participation.

Before ‘Ningning’ was officially announced as the replacement for the departing ‘Oh My G’, two other upcoming dramas were also considered. There is ‘On the Wings of Love’, starring the love team of James Reid and Nadine Lustre, and there is ‘Be My Lady’, starring Erich Gonzales and Daniel Matsunaga.

However, when news of an upcoming GMA/TAPE drama series starring Ryzza Mae Dizon and Aiza Seguerra came to light, ABS-CBN chose ‘Ningning’ instead. And it couldn’t have come at a better time, since ‘The Ryzza Mae Show”s days are being numbered.

By all indications, this should be an interesting battle. While Ryzza has more mileage in terms of exposure, Jana is not far behind, and based on her success in ‘Dream Dad’, expect her to be as effective in ‘Ningning’.

‘Ningning’ premieres this Monday, July 27, before ‘It’s Showtime’ on ABS-CBN’s Primetanghali.

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drama, entertainment, Philippines, television, United States

Honesto Debuts, The Gift Still Uncertain, NBA Season Begins

ABS-CBN will have a new teleserye debuting tonight. The drama series ‘Honesto’ focuses on a child named Honesto, whose recurring nasal allergies were a result of telling lies to others. The lead character’s willingness to remain honest and truthful amid the lies and conflicts surrounding his friends and family will be the main theme of the series, which airs tonight after ‘TV Patrol‘.

‘Honesto’ will be topbilled by young child actor Raikko Mateo, and playing supporting roles are Paulo Avelino, Maricar Reyes, Eddie Garcia, Janice de Belen, Melai Cantiveros, Jason Francisco, Angel Aquino, Nonie Buencamino, Joel Torre, Joseph Marco and Melissa Ricks. The series replaces the highly-rated Coco Martin starrer ‘Juan Dela Cruz’ which ended last Friday.

Meanwhile, the airing date of TV5’s ‘The Gift’ is still being determined. The series was supposed to start last October 14, but due to the then-ongoing PBA Governors’ Cup Finals, it was rescheduled for a future air date. The shelving of ‘The Gift’ forced the reshuffling of the network’s ‘Everyday All the Way’ primetime lineup, with ‘Let’s Ask Pilipinas’ airing at 7:00 p.m. followed by ‘Madam Chairman’ at 7:30 p.m. As of today TV5 management have yet to make an announcement regarding ‘The Gift’.

And for basketball fans in the Philippines, the 2013-14 NBA season gets underway this Wednesday morning. The Orlando Magic and the Indiana Pacers square off to begin the NBA season at 7:00 a.m. on Basketball TV. Over at Studio 23, the defending champion Miami Heat will raise their banner and begin their quest for a third straight title against the returning Derrick Rose and the Chicago Bulls at 8:00 a.m. And at BTV, the Hallway Series between the Los Angeles Clippers and the Los Angeles Lakers concludes opening night at 10:40 a.m. Both the Heat-Bulls and Clippers-Lakers matchups will also be aired live on NBA Premium TV.

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