action, comedy, dance show, drama, entertainment, game show, humor, news, Philippines, public affairs, radio, reality show, Sports, suspense, talent show, talk show, television

FTT Year 2014 in Review: TV5

Another year is about to end. But before the calendar flips to 2015, here is a look back at the year that was in television and radio. This article will focus on TV5, who made the transition from a mainstream to an alternative station this year.

The Positives

2014 was a year of change for TV5. And some changes were for the better.

A heavily-criticized coverage of the previous PBA season led to several tweaks in TV5’s current schedule. Initially made to benefit the NCAA, the FIBA World Cup, the Youth Olympics and the Asian Games, this was then implemented for the PBA, which was welcomed by fans after expressing their disgust with last season’s coverage.

The year also saw TV5 broadcast other major sporting events, such as the Super Bowl, the U.S. NCAA men’s basketball tournament, and the Winter Olympics. Furthermore, they aired the games of the ‘Batang Gilas’ in the 2014 FIBA Under-17 World Championship, keeping in step with the moves made by ABS-CBN Sports.

TV5 viewers also witnessed the premieres of highly-praised weekly series ‘JasMine’ and ‘Trenderas’, as well as a new game show in ‘Quiet Please! Bawal ang Maingay’. TV5 also collaborated with both E! and Wattpad to broadcast ‘It Takes Gutz to Be a Gutierrez’ and ‘Wattpad Presents’, respectively, to good reviews.

And finally, News5 garnered some awards from various bodies, particularly in the programs ‘T3: Enforced’, ‘History with Lourd’, ‘Yaman ng Bayan’ and ‘Bigtime’. ‘It Takes Gutz to Be a Gutierrez’, ‘Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?’ and ‘Celebrity Dance Battle’ were also honored.

The Negatives

The transformation of TV5 was not without some obstacles, however.

When TV5 revealed its programming lineup for 2014, one of the upcoming programs mentioned was a Philippine adaptation of ‘Pretty Little Liars’. Unfortunately for the network, the project never materialized, even as they denied rumors that it was ‘shelved’.

Not all of TV5’s programs under Noel Lorenzana’s new initiative paid off. The programs that were cancelled in his first full year in charge include the likes of ‘SpinNation’, ‘What’s Up, Doods’, ‘The Mega and the Songwriter’, ‘Killer Karaoke Pinoy Naman’, ‘Face the People’ and ‘Let’s Ask Pilipinas’.

TV5’s sports coverage was also not spared. Early this year, the Kapatid network introduced ‘Moneyball: Dribol op da Pipol’ to its PBA and NCAA coverage, much to the dismay of the more informative and knowledgeable viewers; eventually TV5 relented by moving ‘Sports5 Center’ to the livestream format (as ‘Sports 360’).

AksyonTV, TV5’s sister network, was severely crippled by News5’s programming changes, particularly after the cancellation of its original programs and newscasts ‘Andar ng mga Balita’ and ‘Balitang 60’. As a result, the network became overly dependent on TV5’s programming, which is not a good sign for a news/sports channel like AksyonTV.

The sex scandal involving News5 anchor and Rescue5 leader Paolo Bediones in September also demoralized the network. While he left ‘Aksyon Tonite’ in the midst of the controversy (he was later replaced by Ed Lingao), he did return to host ‘Demolition Job’ and Rescue5 short videos once the impact of his scandal dissipated.

But perhaps the biggest news coming out of TV5’s camp was the departure of Sharon Cuneta. A P1 billion signee of the network a few years ago, Sharon joined TV5 with high expectations, but shows such as ‘Sharon: Kasama Mo Kapatid’, ‘The Mega and the Songwriter’ and ‘Madam Chairman’ failed to deliver.

And finally, there is the annual issue of TV5’s overreliance on Tagalized foreign movies, as well as reruns of local programs.

Outlook

TV5 has already unveiled a list of new and returning programs for 2015, which will be discussed in detail very soon.

It was not a bad year for TV5, even with all the changes that took place. With a new year looming, Lorenzana and company now hope to build on these gains even further, though changes are still to be made as the year progresses.

Standard
drama, entertainment, movies, news, Philippines, Sports, television

TV5’s Busy February

TV5’s February highlight will be the historic first broadcast of the Winter Olympics, which will be held at Sochi, Russia this month.

The month of February will be TV5’s busiest month so far. And it does not include the ongoing PBA Philippine Cup playoffs and other current programs.

Yesterday morning, the Super Bowl was aired on the Kapatid network. The championship game between the Seattle Seahawks and Denver Broncos, along with the halftime performance of Bruno Mars and the Red Hot Chili Peppers, were a social media hit during and after the event. The game was carried by TV5 and sister stations AksyonTV and Hyper, and was also shown on PLDT’s Home Fibr TVolution subscription service.

TV5 will also present the Studio5 Original Movies this month. For its first offering tonight, Alice Dixson and Mark Neumann will join forces in ‘Lady Next Door’. Afterwards, the tandem ‘Guy and Pip’ (Nora Aunor and Tirso Cruz III) will reunite on the shortie ‘When I Fall in Love’, followed by Jasmine Curtis-Smith and Daniel Matsunaga in ‘The Replacement Bride’, before finishing the mini-series with ‘Bawat Sandali’, featuring an all-star cast consisting of Derek Ramsey, Angel Aquino, Yul Servo, Mylene Dizon, and Philip Salvador. Studio5 Original Movies air on each Tuesday of the month after ‘Madam Chairman’.

TV5 will also make history by airing the Winter Olympics for the first time. This year’s event will be in Sochi, Russia, and will attract over 2,500 athletes, including the lone Philippine representative in figure skater Michael Christian Martinez. The event will be held from February 8 to 24 (Manila time), and will be seen on TV5 and sister stations AksyonTV and Hyper. In addition, PLDT’s broadband internet service will bring extended coverage to the event.

TV5’s other major sports event for the month will be the ‘Ronda Pilipinas’. The event began last February 1, and highlights of the race will be seen on a daily basis until February 16. And finally, the NCAA volleyball tournament reaches its conclusion this week with the airing of the finals of the men’s and women’s event.

This is definitely one hectic month for TV5 management. Now if they can start sorting out the mess that is the programming schedules, then the viewers will be happy and interested.

Standard
Philippines, Sports, television

No NFL on Solar Sports Again

The recent Super Bowl was aired on Solar Sports last February, but despite the opening of the new NFL season, no live games were being aired on the said network.

If you were a fan of the National Football League, you may remember that Solar Sports aired both the conference championship games and the Super Bowl early this year. However, as the new NFL season got underway this week, there was no sign of NFL programming on the Solar Sports channel.

As many of you know, the NFL has been aired exclusively in the Philippines via the All Sports Network (ASN), which unfortunately is exclusive through SkyCable and can only be unlocked if subscribers are able to afford more expensive packages. With American football fans craving and asking for a more affordable viewing choice, the Solar Entertainment management caved in to their demands and aired the final three NFL games of the 2012 season through Solar Sports. I thought they were on their way to airing NFL games for the 2013 season. However, they decided that these will be the last NFL games ever seen on a more affordable channel for the forseeable future, owing to the lucrative costs and low viewership numbers.

If low viewership numbers were to be considered, then the Solar management were pretty much correct in deferring themselves from airing the NFL. However, Fox Sports Asia continues to air Major League Baseball games despite the fact that a few people watch baseball in the Philippines. If Fox had their way, they would have stopped airing baseball games in favor of a more exclusive cable network. At the moment the most popular team sports in the Philippines are basketball, volleyball and soccer, owing to the recent success of the Gilas and Azkals national teams, as well as the local leagues established in Metro Manila (e.g. PBA, UAAP, NCAA). The popularity and loyal fanbase of these sports are the reasons why the likes of Solar, ABS-CBN, and TV5 continue to air these sports on a frequent basis.

The NFL is undoubtedly the most-watched league in the United States after the MLB. However its global popularity is limited due to the sport’s physical nature, lack of foreign players and high expenses of funding an American football team, which is why the NFL is taking baby steps in extending its fanbase beyond the United States. Despite their efforts, it may take a while before they can finally establish a foothold in the world of sports. Meanwhile only a few viewers can afford watching the NFL on the All Sports Network, hence the future of the sport on a more affordable outfit remains uncertain.

Standard