business, entertainment, fantasy, news, Philippines, public affairs, television

How Did Encantadia and Other Fantaseryes Hurt GMA in the Long Term?

GMA’s big investment on fantaseryes took its toll on the network’s long-term plans. (Photo credit: GMA Network)

The upcoming requel of ‘Encantadia’ is worth watching, that is, if you’re really a die-hard Kapuso fan.

But while anticipation is high on the new ‘Encantadia’, the broadcasting and financial aspect of GMA leaves a lot to be desired. It’s already 2016, and yet GMA is still way behind its competitors as far as their broadcast standards are concerned.

Much of the blame was due to the numerous big-budget primetime fantaseryes that GMA produced in the mid to late 2000s. With so much money invested on these projects, their ability to spend on updated equipment, facilities and other production and talent matters was compromised in the long term.

From 2004 to 2011, GMA produced big-budget fantaseryes such as ‘Mulawin’, ‘Darna’, the ‘Encantadia’ trilogy, ‘Captain Barbell’ and ‘Dyesebel’, among others. They were able to succeed in the ratings, but the high costs of making these series soon took its toll on GMA.

Looking at how GMA currently stacks up with ABS-CBN and TV5, it is clear that they have a lot of catching up to do. In fact, there were some key factors present on ABS-CBN and TV5 that were absent on GMA, such as:

  • An independent sports division (Shakey’s V-League and Manny Pacquiao fights, among others, were co-produced by other outfits)
  • Experimental 16:9 HD broadcasts (GMA still airs its programs in 4:3 standard definition, save for recent imported programs and TAPE-produced ‘Princess in the Palace; GMA also lacks an HD channel of its own)
  • Sister digital TV channels (ABS-CBN has CineMo and Yey!, while TV5 has Catsup)
  • Cable and satellite TV subscription service (ABS-CBN has SkyCable, while TV5 has Cignal)
  • Video-on-demand, livestream and digital-exclusive online service (ABS-CBN has iWanTV, while TV5 has News5Everywhere and Digital5)

Factor in the ongoing problems within the Artist Center, GMA’s regional networks, sister station GMA News TV, GMA Films and the public relationship department, and you have a network that is now standing on just one leg. Poor GMA.

It’s a pity to see GMA struggle at almost everything in recent years, and now that they’ll produce a requel of ‘Encantadia’, more problems lie ahead. That said, if GMA continues its ongoing slide, they will be in for a rude awakening.

Philippines, Sports, television

The Lack of PBA D-League TV Coverage

The new PBA D-League season is underway, but the league started off without a television broadcast partner. The D-League is now in its fourth season, with 14 teams currently competing in the first conference Aspirants’ Cup. And with the recent PBA Rookie Draft attracting 79 prospects, interest in the PBA’s farm league is starting to pick up.

That newfound interest did not translate to television coverage, however. The league’s erstwhile partner in Sports5 decided to back out, as their commitments to the NCAA, the PBA, the United Football League, and other sports events made it impossible to add the D-League to their schedule. At the same time, the D-League started to negotiate with GMA for game coverage, according to sources. But as of today, GMA and the D-League have yet to agree on a television deal.

The addition of the D-League on GMA should be a welcome boost to the network, whose sports coverage have been few and far between. GMA’s recent sports resume only includes Manny Pacquiao fights, Shakey’s V-League matches and other minor events, a resume that does not equal that of ABS-CBN Sports or Sports5. If the Kapuso network agrees to air the D-League it will definitely increase its opportunity of acquiring the rights for PBA games soon, in the process adding its own reputation as a force in the sportscasting department.

Meanwhile, airing the D-League on GMA News TV should only boost the league’s exposure. With the talent pool growing, the league needs a broadcast partner to showcase some of the players’ skills, and introduce lesser-known basketball players to the audience. Imagine if the league failed to find a broadcast partner throughout the season, then no one will pay witness to see the likes of Chris Banchero or Bobby Ray Parks play against fellow Fil-foreigners and provincial talents. So the D-League needs that kind of exposure to help the fans memorize these up-and-coming players.

The PBA D-League is currently ongoing, and if GMA is able to pick up its games, it should help the league in the long-term.