Philippines, Sports, television

Philippines-Australia FIBA Basketball Game Earns an SPG Rating

Call it the ‘BasketBrawl in Bocaue’.

The FIBA Asia qualifying game between the Philippines and Australia at the Philippine Arena Monday night was marred by a bench-clearing brawl. The following posts should summarize the series of events that took place.

At the moment, FIBA is still taking a closer look at the incident, with the possibility of sanctions and suspensions to be announced in the coming days. Meanwhile, Basketball Australia and the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas issued an official statement with regards to the brawl, while players expressed remorse on social media over their involvement.

This incident became the talk of the sporting world for all the wrong reasons. And as expected many netizens on social media were not happy about a competitive basketball game turning into a wrestling match.

The Philippines-Australia match was aired live on T5N last night and like all live sporting events on Philippine free TV it earned a Parental Guidance (PG) rating from the MTRCB. However, in subsequent rebroadcasts of the match on T5N and AksyonTV, MTRCB gave it a Strong Parental Guidance (SPG) rating for language and violence in light of the incident.

Never before in Philippine television history has a non-combat sporting event earn an SPG rating due to circumstances beyond its control. While live sports is usually attended and watched to by people of all ages, such incidents are sometimes unavoidable and can also be traumatizing.

Still, such untoward incidents would have been prevented had the referees lay down the law and play the peacemaker role between two sides. Unfortunately for the referees in Bocaue, it’s either they are not competent or strict enough to do their job.

That said, this incident between the Philippines and Australia will forever live on in Philippine television infamy, both for its impact and its consequences in the game of basketball. It will be interesting to see what new narratives will come out of this, so stay tuned for further details.

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comedy, drama, entertainment, humor, news, Philippines, television

The Inconsistency of MTRCB’s SPG Rating

The ‘Strong Parental Guidance’ rating was implemented by the MTRCB on February 9, 2012. However, its usage remains inconsistent.

In the last few episodes, GMA gag show ‘Bubble Gang’ carried the blue PG (Parental Guidance) rating instead of the red SPG rating. Despite the downgrade of its rating, the show continued to feature some instances of serious themes and profanity that are deemed too inappropriate for younger audiences. With that in mind, why is the SPG rating remains underutilized by the MTRCB?

The ‘Strong Parental Guidance’ (‘Striktong Patnubay at Gabay’ in Filipino) rating was first used on February 9, 2012. SPG is implemented to programs which contain the following: strong themes, profane languages, violence, sex, horror and drugs, and as a result, they are forced to air the 30-second SPG advisory twice unlike those rated G (General Patronage) or PG. Initially used on a per-episode basis, SPG’s usage became widely known in programs such as ‘Temptation of Wife’ and ‘My Husband’s Lover’, where its tackling of extremely serious issues led to its full implementation of SPG.

However, its usage remains spotty at best. For example, fellow gag shows ‘Banana Split’ and ‘Tropa Mo Ko Unli’ are currently rated SPG by the MTRCB, while ‘Bubble Gang’ has seen its rating downgraded to PG despite the fact that it continues to tackle serious themes. SPG is also utilized in some episodes of both ‘Magpakailanman’ and ‘Maalaala Mo Kaya’, both of which are predominantly PG-rated. And the now-defunct talk show ‘What’s Up Doods?’ initially carried an SPG rating before it was later downgraded to PG when it started to air reruns.

SPG remains the most underutilized classification rating in Philippine television because of two factors:

1. Only a few programs are willing to push the envelope towards more sensitive topics that may be unsuitable for children

2. Teleseryes have a tendency to feature episodes with more violent scenes, followed by more light-hearted events, and vice versa

If the MTRCB can start using the SPG rating on a per-program basis, then it will benefit both producers and viewers alike in creating new ideas for various programs. The SPG rating is created in order to give producers much-needed input towards creating series with more serious issues, in the process informing the family about the consequences of airing such scenes. Without it, then how will such scenes affect the future of younger individuals?

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entertainment, game show, news, Philippines, television

Killer Karaoke Episode Abruptly Ended

TV5’s ‘Killer Karaoke Pinoy Naman’ was about to air the final round of their second episode when it was abruptly cut off the air in favor of ‘Juan Direction’. And many viewers were shocked about the sudden change of programming.

At around 9:20 p.m., TV5 was on a commercial break when a plug of the succeeding episode of ‘Killer Karaoke Pinoy Naman’ began to air. A few minutes later came the Parental Guidance advisory of the MTRCB, after which a new episode of ‘Juan Direction’ got underway. Following several complaints from netizens, host Michael V then tweeted that ‘technical difficulties’ caused the abrupt ending of ‘Killer Karaoke’, and then promised a re-airing of that episode in full.

The abrupt ending of ‘Killer Karaoke Pinoy Naman’ was just one blunder in an otherwise productive day for the Kapatid network, which began with a live PBA game before wrapping it up with a new music-oriented program called ‘SpinNation’. While TV5 promised a re-air of ‘Killer Karaoke’, it was indeed a learning lesson for the operators on the nuances of running a television program.

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