entertainment, hits, music, Philippines, reality show, songs, talent show, television

Born Out of Desperation: GMA’s The Clash Premieres This Weekend

Desperation has become a theme for GMA in recent years.

Weekend primetime, in particular, is more of a mess for the Kapuso network than a blessing. After all, ABS-CBN’s high-rating franchised talent shows like ‘The Voice’, ‘Your Face Sounds Familiar’ and ‘Pinoy Boyband Superstar’ has left GMA in a wretched state, always one step behind from the other.

And even when GMA tried to produce a talent show, they tend to make some unwise decisions and avoid any sort of competition against ABS-CBN’s own. Remember when they aired ‘Bet ng Bayan’ and ‘To the Top’ on the not-so convenient late-night slots?

Fast forward to now and it looks like GMA has learned its lesson and is finally poised to give ABS-CBN a dose of its own medicine. Starting this weekend the network will introduce ‘The Clash’, an all-new singing competition to be hosted by Regine Velasquez-Alcasid.

A total of 62 aspirants selected from several nationwide auditions will compete in intense one-on-one battles to determine the country’s next singing sensation. Judges Lani Misalucha, Ai-ai delas Alas and Christian Bautista will evaluate the performance of each individual and reveal the verdict in front of the audience.

Also part of ‘The Clash’ are Joyce Pring and Andre Paras. The two will provide some news on the preparations of each aspirant and give updates on their performance.

Having learned from the poor reception that ‘Bet ng Bayan’ and ‘To the Top’ earned, GMA made a smart move with ‘The Clash’. The show would air not only on Saturdays but on Sundays as well, and in a more convenient timeslot.

But that does not mean they will have a fighting chance against ‘Your Face Sounds Familiar Kids’. With the latter show currently earning ratings in the 30s, ‘The Clash’ should have its hands full dealing with this tough opponent.

Still, Kapuso viewers will be more than happy to see GMA produce a singing competition show once more. This is an opportunity that GMA is itching to do, and out of desperation, they delivered.

Now it is up to ‘The Clash’ to make an impact. But will it be more than enough to make the competition more meaningful?

‘The Clash’ airs every Saturday after ‘Pepito Manaloto’ and Sunday after ‘Daig Kayo ng Lola Ko’ on GMA.

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drama, entertainment, Philippines, suspense, television

The Last Stand of La Luna Sangre

The most physically demanding series in the careers of Kathryn Bernardo and Daniel Padilla will come to an end this week.

After 185 episodes, ‘La Luna Sangre’ officially closes its curtain Friday night. The third series in the ‘Lobo’ trilogy, ‘La Luna Sangre’ saw Kathryn and Daniel (as Malia and Tristan respectively) grow up from being mere mortals to full-fledged vampires while enduring some of the toughest challenges that proved their worth.

But KathNiel was not the only main attraction. The series also marked a comeback of sorts for Richard Gutierrez, who as the villainous Sandrino, tried to convince Malia to join the dark side.

The original duo of ‘Imortal’ in Angel Locsin and John Lloyd Cruz likewise made a cameo earlier on as Lia and Mateo respectively, though Angel returned midway through the series as Jacintha. The duo’s presence helped connect the story of ‘La Luna Sangre’ to its predecessor.

Throughout its lengthy run, ‘La Luna Sangre’ provided an avenue for new talent to shine. The series would mark the acting debut of another rising love team in MayWard (Maymay Entrata and Edward Barber), as well as former ‘Pinoy Boyband Superstar’ participant Tony Labrusca.

Not to be outdone are industry veterans who were also part of ‘La Luna Sangre’, namely Randy Santiago, Gelli de Belen, Maricar Reyes and Albert Martinez. Overall, an estimate of over 50 actors, whether in a supporting or cameo role, were included in ‘La Luna Sangre’.

As far as its performance is concerned, ‘La Luna Sangre’ far and away made a huge impression. The series constantly earned ratings in the 30s while it dispatched its GMA rivals in ‘My Love from the Star’, ‘Mulawin vs. Ravena’, ‘Alyas Robin Hood’ season 2 and ‘Kambal Karibal’.

That said, the high ratings and the long run of ‘La Luna Sangre’ are further proof of KathNiel’s wide commercial appeal. But more than just KathNiel’s brilliance is the fact that both Angel Locsin and Richard Gutierrez rekindled some huge memories of past GMA projects, albeit not as a love team of years past.

It will be an interesting final five episodes for this thrilling ABS-CBN primetime series. Best of luck to ‘La Luna Sangre’ on making its last stand.

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comedy, drama, entertainment, hits, humor, music, Philippines, reality show, songs, Sports, talent show, television

FTT Year 2016 in Review: The 20 Stories That Define the Year in Media (Part III)

Another year is about to end. But before the calendar flips to 2017, here is a look back at the year that was in television and radio. This article looks back at the 20 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.

Pinoy Boyband Superstar Answers To the Top

Last year, GMA created its own reality talent show for up-and-coming Filipino boybands, ‘To the Top’. This year, ABS-CBN struck back by bringing the ‘La Banda’ franchise to the Philippines under the name ‘Pinoy Boyband Superstar’.

Unfortunately for GMA, the popularity of ‘Pinoy Boyband Superstar’ far exceeded ‘To the Top’. The former constantly gained ratings of 30% or better while airing at a more convenient timeslot of 6:50 p.m., whereas the latter only mustered around 7-8% ratings while airing at a not-so attractive timeslot of 9:45-10:00 p.m.

Despite the success of ‘Pinoy Boyband Superstar’, it remains to be seen if BoybandPH can become a more popular boyband than Top One Project ever was. That said, the key to both boybands at this point is to outsell each other in order to win the hearts of fans.

Delamar Leaves RX 93.1’s The Morning Rush

‘The Morning Rush’ on Monster RX 93.1 is an institution in Philippine FM radio, having aired continuously for over two decades. So when Delamar Arias decided to leave both the show and the station on July 29, listeners, or ‘rushers’, were stunned.

After all, Delamar, along with long-time partner Chico Garcia and recent addition Gino Quillamor, were instrumental in the show’s success, with the ‘Top 10’ segment becoming the most popular segment. Her departure left a glaring hole on ‘The Morning Rush’, one they have struggled to fill since.

Delamar was not the only high-profile departure from the station. A few weeks later, Bea Fabregas left RX to focus on hosting FOX Sports Philippines’ ‘Fox Sports Minute’ and ‘The GOAT’, while Karen Bordador was arrested for alleged drug possession and was de facto removed from the station.

The Launch of PBA Rush, Plus UFC on TV5 and Olympic Coverage

If Solar Entertainment has NBA Premium TV, then TV5 has its own channel for the PBA in PBA Rush. Launched prior to the 2016 Governors’ Cup, PBA Rush is considered the Filipino version of NBA TV, featuring live and archived PBA games plus special programs dedicated to the league.

The timing of PBA Rush’s launch couldn’t have come at an important time, as that year’s Governors’ Cup saw Barangay Ginebra San Miguel end an eight-year title drought at the expense of the Meralco Bolts. Ginebra’s win would have concluded PBA’s run with TV5, but instead the partnership between the two was renewed in time for the ongoing Philippine Cup.

TV5 also made a high-profile acquisition when it purchased the broadcast rights to the UFC, promising it to air live on its HYPER channel. Unfortunately, TV5’s coverage of the 2016 Rio Olympics was a difficult one, as the network struggles to deal with its decline in programming quality.

Other Sports Stories on TV

ABS-CBN Sports replaced the UFC by focusing on local and regional mixed martial arts, namely the Alvin Aguilar-led URCC, and the Southeast Asia-based One Championship. They also brought in the ASEAN Basketball League (ABL) as part of its continued commitment to local and regional sports.

Solar Sports dabbled into collegiate basketball by airing the NAASCU, while IBC-13 and AksyonTV aired the UCBL and CESAFI tournaments respectively. However, the biggest draws remain the NCAA and the UAAP, where the San Beda Red Lions and the De La Salle Green Archers won their respective championships.

Finally, in women’s volleyball, ABS-CBN Sports acquired the rights to the Shakey’s V-League, beginning a contentious rivalry between the V-League and the TV5-aired Philippine SuperLiga.

Be My Lady Reigns, Ryzza Mae’s Run Ends

‘Be My Lady’, topbilled by real-life couple Erich Gonzales and Daniel Matsunaga,was the top draw at the pre-noontime slot for much of this year. Airing for 221 episodes from January 18 to November 25, the series earned ratings of nearly 20%, besting the competition in the process.

The aforementioned competition included a pair of shows starring Ryzza Mae Dizon: ‘Princess in the Palace’, and ‘Calle Siete’. But with Ryzza already entering the pre-teen stage of her life, it was clear that she was no longer the charmingly cute presence of years past.

In the end, TAPE decided to cease starring her on the pre-noontime slot beginning October 24, and gave the BAES (along with Taki Sato) of ‘Eat Bulaga’ a lead role in ‘TROPS’.

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

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dance show, entertainment, music, Philippines, reality show, songs, talent show, television

Pinoy Boyband Superstar to End This Weekend

It all comes down to the final weekend.

This Saturday and Sunday night, ‘Pinoy Boyband Superstar’ will reveal the five aspirants who will compose the next great Pinoy boyband. The seven remaining heartthrobs will have a chance to impress the judges and viewers one last time, with the opportunity to either take the first spot on Saturday, or earn the other four spots on Sunday.

The seven singing heartthrobs of ‘Pinoy Boyband Superstar’ are as follows:

  • Ford Valencia, 21, the Hunky Haratista of Valenzuela City
  • Joao Constancia, 19, the Party Prince of Macau
  • Mark Oblea, 21, the Kwelang Bad Boy of Bacoor
  • Niel Murillo, 17, the Kanto Boy Next Door of Cebu
  • Russell Reyes, 18, the Fil-Am-azing Boy of Illinois
  • Tony Labrusca, 21, the Bad Boy of Vancouver
  • Tristan Ramirez, 23, the Buff Balladeer of Bulacan

The five winners of ‘Pinoy Boyband Superstar’ will earn exclusive Star Magic contracts, One Music recording contracts, Yamaha motorcycles, and P5 million in cash. Not only that, the name of the boyband will be revealed, along with their first single.

Since its premiere on September 10, ‘Pinoy Boyband Superstar’ has constantly ranked among ABS-CBN’s most-watched weekend shows. The reality/talent show averaged better than 30% (according to Kantar) during its four-month run, easily outperforming GMA’s counterpart shows.

The ratings performance of ‘Pinoy Boyband Superstar’ is also miles better than GMA’s own boyband search show ‘To the Top’, But considering that the latter aired on a different timeslot than the former, it could be unfair to judge ‘To the Top’ just by comparing it to ‘Pinoy Boyband Superstar’.

Still, it remains to be seen if the new boyband from ‘Pinoy Boyband Superstar’ will outperform ‘To the Top”s Top One Project. This up-and-coming boyband from ABS-CBN’s star-making factory should have high expectations on their shoulders, and for good reason, since Star Magic has had a reputation for churning successful talent.

Come this weekend, five will be left standing. Find out who among the seven singing heartthrobs will take their place as the Philippines’ next great boyband.

‘Pinoy Boyband Superstar: The Grand Reveal’ airs this Saturday after ‘Home Sweetie Home’, and this Sunday after ‘Goin’ Bulilit’, on ABS-CBN.

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entertainment, Philippines, reality show, talent show, television

Pinoy Boyband Superstar Premieres Tomorrow

ABS-CBN’s own search for an up-and-coming Filipino boyband gets underway tomorrow.

Boys aged 14 or older, with a knack for good looks, charm and excellent singing and dancing talent, will have the opportunity to become one of the five members of a soon-to-be named boyband. Their journey begins this weekend on ‘Pinoy Boyband Superstar’, the Filipino adaptation of ‘La Banda’.

The original ‘La Banda’ was created by Simon Cowell and former Menudo member Ricky Martin. In order to avoid claims that the show is actually creating a ‘band’ consisting of a vocalist and instrumentalists, ABS-CBN renamed the show as ‘Pinoy Boyband Superstar’ in order to make it clear that they are looking to form a boyband.

The premise of ‘Pinoy Boyband Superstar’ is simple. The boyband aspirants must impress the girls with their looks and talent in order to make it to the next round, after which they face the judges who will evaluate their singing prowess as well as their image.

If one of the aspirants failed to pass the first round, they may be given another chance, provided they show enough potential to convince judges. Eventually, some of the aspirants will be eliminated until there are five left standing.

‘Pinoy Boyband Superstar’ will be hosted by Billy Crawford. The show’s judges will be Yeng Constantino, Vice Ganda, Aga Muhlach, and Sandara Park.

Even before its premiere, comparisons between ‘Pinoy Boyband Superstar’ and rival GMA’s ‘To the Top’ were very evident from the beginning. Both had a similar premise of forming a boyband, not to mention the journey of selecting the members.

The difference, however, lies on the production. Though ‘Pinoy Boyband Superstar’ is more of a franchise than the originally created ‘To the Top’, ABS-CBN did not seek help from its news and current affairs department to produce the former, unlike GMA whose Public Affairs team was responsible for the latter.

And considering that ‘Pinoy Boyband Superstar’ will be aired at a more convenient timeslot (unlike ‘To the Top’ which aired on late nights), the former could become even more successful. Still, it will be up to the audience to see how it all happens.

The journey of the next great Pinoy boyband begins this weekend. Good luck.

‘Pinoy Boyband Superstar’ airs Saturdays after ‘Home Sweetie Home’, and Sundays after ‘Goin’ Bulilit’.

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