entertainment, Philippines, television

In 100 Words: Post-Wowowillie TV5

The Delta Theater, where Wowowillie used to tape live episodes, lay quiet. Only the logos and images of Willie Revillame were still intact, a stark reminder of how Willie helmed the program through its most controversial and memorable moments. It’s been nearly a month since Wowowillie left the air, and TV5 has yet to fill in the void.

The timeslot vacated by Wowowillie is currently used to air Tagalized foreign films as part of the ‘Sine Ko Singko’ block. After the program’s departure, TV5 has shifted its attention to late afternoon and evening programming, which they think is more attractive to viewers. In addition, the upcoming PBA season now gives TV5 the opportunity to tinker with their programs to fit in with the league’s games.

news, Philippines, politics, television

Leila de Lima’s Announcement and Subsequent TV Coverage

It only took around 45 minutes, but Department of Justice secretary Leila de Lima swiftly announced the filing of plunder, malversation of public funds, bribery, and graft and corruption charges against Pork Barrel mastermind Janet Napoles, senators Juan Ponce Enrile, Jinggoy Estrada and Bong Revilla, and 34 others. Seconds after the charges were filed, media reporters rush in to grab documents of the said cases.

Even before the announcement was made, Senator Enrile had been rushed to the hospital after complaining of difficulty in urinating. It was also reported that once the charges against him were announced, he immediately proclaimed his innocence. Let’s face it, Enrile is an ailing 89-year old man, and accusing him of plunder at his advanced age is not what I want to see. The accusations against him would only hasten his already failing health, and may lead to his eventual death.

Senator Estrada had been accused of plunder before, when he and his father, former President and Manila mayor Joseph Estrada, were both charged relating to the Jose Velarde scandal twelve years earlier. Senator Revilla had also been involved in prior legal cases, both during his acting and ongoing political career. While both denied the accusations, Senator Estrada has said he is prepared to face the charges, while Senator Revilla said that the people should not judge him and his co-accusers this early in their ordeal.

In terms of television coverage, all of the major networks aired the live press conference of de Lima’s announcement. While GMA News TV, DZMM Teleradyo and the ABS-CBN News Channel were able to carry the live press conference, TV5 was forced to carry the announcement as sister station AksyonTV carried the live NCAA games. TV5’s live coverage of the announcement affected their programming; their ‘Sine Ko Singko’ program was delayed for several minutes, while another rerun of ‘Face to Face’ significantly cut the airtime allotted for the public service program ‘T3: Reload’. The Tulfo brothers’ program was reduced to 10 minutes rather than the standard 30, and time constraints prevented any complainants from voicing some of their complaints on national TV. If I were News5 head Luchi Cruz-Valdes, I would tell TV5 president Noel Lorenzana to stop airing reruns of ‘Face to Face’ and instead replace it with any of News5’s public affairs programs, or the live simulcast of Radyo5 92.3 News FM‘s ‘Cristy FerMinute’, because it is becoming too annoying.

Meanwhile, the trial for the plunder case against Napoles and 37 other co-conspirators will be announced soon, and is expected to be carried live by all of the major networks.

entertainment, Philippines, television

Tagalization of Foreign Films

I was tuning in to both ABS-CBN and GMA late Sunday night, and it was obvious that I didn’t like the way GMA dubbed its movie. GMA’s ‘Sunday Night Box Office‘ aired the James Bond film ‘Casino Royale‘, while ABS-CBN’s ‘Sunday’s Best‘ aired ‘Resident Evil: Afterlife’. I commend ABS-CBN for not dubbing ‘Resident Evil’, in the process keeping its integrity intact. Unfortunately I have to criticize GMA for dubbing ‘Casino Royale’.

In the last decade or so, there were attempts by the big networks to ‘Tagalize’ foreign films, particularly those produced in the United States. The problem is, the dubbing work of the voice actors were not at par with the original actors of the film. No one will accept a ‘Tagalized’ film if the dubber’s work of art is poor, especially if the accent is not consistent with the original. However, there is a reason why they keep on doing this: to gain viewers from the lowest of classes, and to familiarize them.

In the past, GMA’s ‘Sunday Night Box Office’ aired such films in English. However, as the network shifted its focus to the lower classes, they ‘Tagalized’ the films. This was another attempt by the network to regain its viewership, which is now being dominated on all classes by ABS-CBN. In addition, GMA airs three more movies during that day to fill programming hours, something they haven’t been able to replace.

Films are only aired on ABS-CBN’s ‘Sunday’s Best’ whenever there was no special event to air. However, with the Kapamilya network’s growing list of special events to cover, films on this block were getting rarer on a weekly basis. Nevertheless, if an opportunity arises, films on ABS-CBN’s ‘Sunday’s Best’ are aired without any dubbing excess, which is better for the casual viewer. In addition, they also air movies on the ‘Kapamilya Blockbusters’ block every Sunday morning, whenever there is no sports event to cover.

Perhaps the king of movie blocks has to be TV5. Because of its thin lineup of programs, they resort to airing movies at least twice a day, all of which are ‘Tagalized’. Despite the deep pockets of Manny Pangilinan, the network has not been able to decrease this habit.

For the last time I never like films that are ‘Tagalized’, even as television viewing now shifts to a lower class society. I think foreign films should maintain its character and decency, without the excesses of shortcuts and dubbing to a different language. That way it can be enjoyed and seen by everyone. Sorry, but I will never watch a foreign film on GMA and TV5, because what they did destroys the integrity and completeness of a film.