comedy, entertainment, humor, Philippines, television, variety show

Eat Bulaga Moves to APT Studio This Saturday

‘Eat Bulaga’ is officially on the move.

On Saturday, December 1, ‘Eat Bulaga’ announced that it will move to the new APT Studio in Cainta, Rizal next week. The first episode at the new studio will take place this Saturday, December 8.

Located at Marcos Highway in Cainta, APT Studio is a few minutes’ drive from Robinsons Metro East, Sta. Lucia East Grand Mall, SM City Masinag and Ayala Feliz Mall. The studio is beside the College of San Benildo-Rizal’s elementary and high school departments and is in front of the Town and Country Executive Village gate.

The APT Studio is a brainchild of ‘Eat Bulaga’ producer Tony Tuviera. It was built at a reported cost of over P 1.5 billion.

The studio is expected to hold a larger seating capacity compared to Broadway Centrum; the overall number of seats yet to be determined. It will also feature updated video and audio technology such as high-definition cameras.

Saturday’s episode of ‘Eat Bulaga’ at the new APT Studio will include most of the show’s current hosts. However, there is one notable mainstay that will not be a part of the festivities.

Senate President Tito Sotto, who previously announced his intent to leave ‘Eat Bulaga’ while in his current position, is not expected to attend. Still, even without one of the show’s founding fathers, expect the same old ‘isang libo’t isang tuwa’ at the new studio this Saturday.

In the meantime, ‘Eat Bulaga’ will hold five ‘taped-as-live’ episodes at Broadway Centrum from Monday up until Friday. This arrangement is made in order to allow TAPE Inc. and APT staff to smoothly move their operations to APT Studio within the next few days.

Erratum: The article “In 100 Words: Eat Bulaga Set to Move to a New Studio” erroneously stated that the APT Studio is located in Marikina, when in fact it is within the jurisdiction of Cainta, Rizal. 

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comedy, drama, entertainment, humor, Philippines, television

Not a Good Sign: The Declining Interest of Late-Morning Dramas on Philippine Television

‘Playhouse’ is only averaging around 13% in the ratings, a far cry from past late-morning teleseryes aired on ABS-CBN. (Photo courtesy of ABS-CBN)

There was a time when late-morning teleseryes on television were a thing in this decade.

It started in 2012 when the unlikely pairing of Jodi Sta. Maria and Richard Yap took off with ‘Be Careful with My Heart’. The series became an immediate hit, reaching ratings of as high as 27%, and ran for over two years.

From then on, ABS-CBN kept the wheel rolling, airing either romantic comedies such as ‘Oh My G!’, ‘Be My Lady’ and ‘Sana Dalawa ang Puso’ or kid-oriented tear-jerkers like ‘Ningning’ and ‘Langit Lupa’. ABS-CBN even tried to get serious for once with the triathlon-themed ‘Ikaw Lang ang Iibigin’.

But in the past several months, late-morning dramas began to lose viewer interest. By August, ‘Sana Dalawa ang Puso’ slumped to around 13-15% in the ratings (this despite having Jodi and Richard in the series), and this decline only continued through its successor ‘Playhouse’.

Over on GMA, the network already waved the white flag at the start of the month. Their most recent local late-morning drama, ‘Kapag Nahati ang Puso’, was cancelled last November 2, and after only two weeks, GMA moved the Koreanovela ‘Woman of Dignity’ to an earlier timeslot due to poor ratings.

Prior to that, GMA tried to counter ABS-CBN with their own dramas that were either self-produced or under the TAPE Inc. production team. Unfortunately for GMA, each of their dramas backfired, with the likes of ‘Ang Forever Ko’y Ikaw’ and ‘My Guitar Princess’ ending after only two or three months.

While ABS-CBN continues to claim victory over this timeslot, the declining ratings of ‘Playhouse’ is something that should cause a lot of concern to the network. If the 13% ratings are of any indication, then there must be something wrong.

Either that viewers are getting tired of watching too much of the same thing, that the story in itself lacked substance and originality, that the cast is boring, or that they just can’t wait for ‘It’s Showtime’ to start. Whatever the case, it is up to ABS-CBN to regroup and see what needs to be corrected.

It is too early to tell if this will spell the end for Filipino late-morning dramas. That said, one can only hope that a turnaround in fortune is imminent, but if this spell continues, then a programming reboot is necessary.

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drama, entertainment, Philippines, television

Back to Zero: Kapag Nahati ang Puso Exits with No Replacement in Sight

Consider this yet another epic series of failures for GMA in the late-morning slot.

On All Souls’ Day, ‘Kapag Nahati ang Puso’ will air its final episode. But without a replacement in sight, all signs point to ‘Kapuso Movie Festival’ taking over its soon-to-be-vacated timeslot.

‘Kapag Nahati ang Puso’, which starred Bea Binene, Benjamin Alves, Sunshine Cruz, Zoren Legaspi and Bing Loyzaga, first premiered on July 16, 2018. Unlike its predecessors ‘Ang Forever Ko’y Ikaw’ and ‘My Guitar Princess’, ‘Kapag Nahati ang Puso’ had a more serious and darker tone.

While it enjoyed a decent 80-episode run, ‘Kapag Nahati ang Puso”s overall performance did not inspire confidence from its audience. ‘Kapag Nahati ang Puso’ averaged a mere 10% in the ratings, even though it came close on a few occasions to beat ‘Sana Dalawa ang Puso’ and ‘Playhouse’.

Suffice to say, the change of strategy did not affect GMA’s fortunes in the late-morning slot. Once again, GMA management has to wonder why this timeslot continues to frustrate them at every turn.

Looking back at the three previous attempts at unseating the likes of ‘Sana Dalawa ang Puso’ and ‘Playhouse’, it was clear that GMA was scared to compete from the start. Let’s face it, both ‘Ang Forever Ko’y Ikaw’ and ‘My Guitar Princess’ were epic failures just by looking at its respective number of episodes.

If a drama series only finished at 38 and 50 episodes, then it is obvious that something is wrong. Either that GMA is not convinced enough that both are compelling or is not satisfied with the production.

Then again both series were produced by GMA Public Affairs which is infamous for short-run dramas. Still, its intent to air for a brief period is inexcusable considering the circumstances.

In fairness, ‘Kapag Nahati ang Puso’ ended with 80 episodes which is a slight improvement. Then again, its ratings were not that impressive and GMA realized that late-morning dramas are not their bread and butter.

Perhaps GMA should just stop this charade and go back to airing ‘Kapuso Movie Festival’ in that timeslot. The network simply had no chance there; not even blocktimer TAPE can help them.

This Friday, ‘Kapag Nahati ang Puso’ will conclude its run. But don’t expect GMA to give it a proper farewell because they are in no mood to do so.

Update: The Koreanovela ‘Woman of Dignity’ will replace ‘Kapag Nahati ang Puso’ starting Monday. Still, this is a clear sign of GMA once again conceding to ABS-CBN when it comes to the late-morning slot.

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comedy, entertainment, humor, Philippines, television, variety show

Eat Bulaga’s Suffer Sireyna Problem

Super Sireyna and Suffer Sireyna will forever be synonymous to one another.

Super Sireyna had been a recurring segment of ‘Eat Bulaga’ for the past several years. The segment invites transgender men to compete in a beauty pageant akin to the more prestigious Binibining Pilipinas contest, and each contestant had to assume the persona of a particular female celebrity, whether local or foreign.

Suffer Sireyna, on the other hand, was introduced as a response to Super Sireyna by host Joey de Leon. First held in 2014, the segment involves ordinary but mostly ugly men dressed in drag (with a corresponding pseudonym to mock a particular celebrity) that were forced to compete in ridiculous challenges (hence the word ‘suffer’).

While the Suffer Sireyna segment had been mostly entertaining, not all were pleased by its mocking depiction of ordinary men with obvious physical flaws. Nearly four years ago, John Ryan Mendoza of Outrage Magazine criticized Suffer Sireyna for parading the candidates as ‘freaks for the whole country to laugh at’.

When Suffer Sireyna returned earlier this year, another critic stepped in and picked up from where Mendoza left off. Facebook user Alwyn Ignacio commented on the matter, saying that it is not funny and is disrespectful to the LGBT community.

TAPE Inc., the producers of ‘Eat Bulaga’, have not responded in kind to either Mendoza’s or Ignacio’s post. Regardless, it is one thing to take pride towards the LGBT community, but it is another thing to degrade and make fools out of them for the sake of entertainment.

For a noontime show that has nothing left to prove after nearly 39 years of unparalleled success, Suffer Sireyna may probably go down as one of its weakest points. No matter how entertaining and engaging this segment is, it is clear that the LGBT community is not happy with what Suffer Sireyna is doing (unless you’re Allan K or Paolo Ballesteros).

This Saturday, ‘Eat Bulaga’ will hold the next stage of Suffer Sireyna competition under the name Suffer Sireyna Intergalactic (a mock response to Super Sireyna Worldwide). If this is the ‘end’ as Joey de Leon claims for the segment, then one can hope for a good riddance.

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comedy, drama, entertainment, Philippines, television

No Match: Ang Forever Ko’y Ikaw Ends Short Run This Friday

Not even close.

After only 38 episodes and nearly two months on the air, GMA decided to pull the plug on ‘Ang Forever Ko’y Ikaw’, the late-morning romantic comedy starring Camille Prats, Neil Ryan Sese, Ayra Mariano and Bruno Gabriel. And its performance was never strong to begin with.

Matched up against the ABS-CBN late-morning series ‘Sana Dalawa ang Puso’, ‘Ang Forever Ko’y Ikaw’ failed to catch up with the viewing public. The series premiere of ‘Ang Forever Ko’y Ikaw’ only scored 8.8% against ‘Sana Dalawa ang Puso”s 17.1%, setting the tone for the rest of its run.

Overall, ‘Ang Forever Ko’y Ikaw’ managed a paltry 9% per episode. On the other hand, ‘Sana Dalawa ang Puso’ averaged 17%.

Even the total number of episodes was lower than the TAPE-produced blocktimers that formerly occupied the late-morning slot. That said, it was a shame for GMA to not even try to keep up with JoChard (the love team of Jodi Sta. Maria and Richard Yap) and Robin Padilla despite the insurmountable odds.

But to each network’s credit, both shows engaged a friendly rivalry even if ‘Ang Forever Ko’y Ikaw’ was cut short. In the lead-up to its premiere, Camille Prats and Jodi Sta. Maria wished good luck to each other on social media, clearly indicating that there are no hard feelings between them as far as competition goes.

Still, it would have been better if GMA kept on going with ‘Ang Forever Ko’y Ikaw’. Such a low number of episodes is considered a huge letdown by GMA’s standards and for a network with so many high expectations, it is very frustrating to see that happen.

Now that ‘Ang Forever Ko’y Ikaw’ is about to end, one can only hope that the series will end on a positive note. The least they can do now is salvage some measure of pride and make the most out of these last few episodes.

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comedy, drama, entertainment, Philippines, television

GMA’s New Rival to Sana Dalawa ang Puso Premieres Monday

GMA has a new series coming up to counter ‘Sana Dalawa ang Puso’.

After over a month of staying away from the dreaded love team that is Jodi Sta. Maria and Richard Yap (with some sprinkling of Robin Padilla in between), GMA will once again look to defeat the popular tandem. This time, however, they will not have the benefit of TAPE Inc. as a blocktimer and production partner.

Instead, the new series ‘Ang Forever Ko’y Ikaw’ will be self-produced by the network, the first time they have done that in a pre-noontime show since ‘Cielo de Angelina’ in 2012. But unlike the latter which is more of a tear-jerker, ‘Ang Forever Ko’y Ikaw’ will be done in the same way as ‘Sana Dalawa ang Puso’: a romantic comedy.

‘Ang Forever Ko’y Ikaw’ will be headlined by Camille Prats, Neil Ryan Sese, Ayra Mariano and Bruno Gabriel. Camille (as Ginny) and Neil (as Lance) are single parents still attached to their past, but with some common ground between them (e.g. living in the same condo, enjoy the same brand of coffee), it seems like a relationship is about to bloom.

Their lives will also intertwine with that of their children. Ginny’s daughter Marione (Ayra) and Lance’s son Benjie (Bruno) are also on the verge of falling in love, but it remains to be seen if either or both of their relationships will flourish.

GMA is no stranger to morning romantic series, having aired ‘With a Smile’ and ‘Dangwa’ in years past. Unfortunately, the presence of TAPE’s pre-noontime shows prevented GMA from seriously challenging ABS-CBN’s popular late-morning dramas, which led to both shows’ failure to make an impact.

The curse of ‘JoChard’ has become a long-standing dilemma for GMA ever since ‘Be Careful with My Heart’ premiered in 2012. That said, GMA can only hope for the best with ‘Ang Forever Ko’y Ikaw’, as this could be their last-ditch attempt to overcome the problem.

If they fail on this objective, it will not be a surprise to see the network return to a pupal state and fill the airtime with ‘Kapuso Movie Festival’. It is either all-out or stay out as far as GMA is concerned.

Directed by Tata Betita and Jojo Nones, ‘Ang Forever Ko’y Ikaw’ airs weekdays before ‘Eat Bulaga’ on GMA.

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