drama, entertainment, Philippines, television

Postscript: Hindi Ko Kayang Iwan Ka; Preview: My Special Tatay

From one advoca-serye to another.

Friday marked the final episode of ‘Hindi Ko Kayang Iwan Ka’, an AIDS-themed drama that starred Yasmien Kurdi, Martin del Rosario, Jackie Rice and Mike Tan. The series ran for 132 episodes and posted decent ratings despite airing against ‘Hanggang Saan’ and ‘Araw Gabi’.

Even though ‘Hindi Ko Kayang Iwan Ka’ had a rather up-and-down run, its 132 episodes suggest that it was a success. The show fulfilled its purpose of showing one’s struggles of living with AIDS, a deadly disease that remains virtually incurable.

Still, with that kind of inconsistency in the ratings it is clear that GMA is still finding a cure for its afternoon mood swings. Which leads to the next series that will replace ‘Hindi Ko Kayang Iwan Ka’.

‘My Special Tatay’, to be led by Ken Chan, will focus on mental illnesses. As the intellectually challenged father Boyet, Ken will portray a man who suffers from Mild Intellectual Disability with Mild Autism Spectrum Disorder.

Despite his mental shortcomings and other people’s doubts, Boyet grew up as a kind-hearted man with a positive outlook. However, his life would turn upside down once he finds out that he has a child.

Also part of ‘My Special Tatay’ are Jestoni Alarcon, Teresa Loyzaga, Carmen Soriano, Lilet, Candy Pangilinan, Arra San Agustin, Rita Daniela, Jillian Ward, Bruno Gabriel, and JK Giducos. Initial episodes of the series will feature special guest appearances from Matt Evans, Empress Schuck, Valeen Montenegro, and Ashley Rivera.

Once again, GMA will use the power of advocacy as a weapon to send a message to its viewers. This time, the focus is on mental health problems and ‘My Special Tatay’ will take a look at how a person deals with intellectual disabilities.

However, it remains to be seen if ‘My Special Tatay’ will be more consistent in overcoming ‘Araw Gabi’. While GMA is working on a good cause, high viewer support remains a must and unless ‘My Special Tatay’ proves a point their hard work will go for nothing.

Directed by LA Madridejos and Conrado Peru, ‘My Special Tatay’ airs weekdays after ‘The Stepdaughters’ on GMA Afternoon Prime.

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drama, entertainment, Philippines, television

New Challenger for A Love to Last: My Korean Jagiya

‘A Love to Last’ has a new opponent.

Through 158 episodes (as of August 18, 2017), the ABS-CBN primetime series has overcome all challenges thrown at them. Initially pitted against ‘Alyas Robin Hood’ season 1 (10 episodes from January 9-20), ‘A Love to Last’ has since made mincemeat of fellow romantic comedy series ‘Meant to Be’ (108 episodes from January 23-June 23) and ‘I Heart Davao’ (40 episodes from June 27-August 18).

Now they look to claim another victim starting next week. However, their next opponent is no ordinary romantic comedy.

In the past several years, both GMA and ABS-CBN imported several successful Korean dramas to fill in programming hours. Now GMA takes over Korean cultures and landscapes in the form of ‘My Korean Jagiya’.

Leading the way for ‘My Korean Jagiya’ will be Heart Evangelista. Her character Gia is a Korean grade school tutor and a dedicated K-drama fan girl who was nonetheless teased that she is next in her family to become an old maid.

Gia’s dream is to meet her long-time crush and once-famous Korean superstar Kim Jun-ho, portrayed by top Korean star Alexander Lee. At first, Gia searched for Kim in Korea while on a scholarship training, but wound up returning to Manila to find Kim drunk and beaten by gangsters in a bar, beginning a seemingly fruitful friendship.

‘My Korean Jagiya’ will also star Janice de Belen, Ricky Davao, Iya Villania, Edgar Allan Guzman, Valeen Montenegro, Frances Makil Ignacio, Myke Solomon, Jinri Park, Divine Aucina, and Khane dela Cruz. Korean stars David Kim, Michelle Oh, and Jerry Lee will play special roles in the series as well.

Parts of ‘My Korean Jagiya’ were shot in South Korea, and featured several key spots that were made famous by several iconic Koreanovelas such as ‘Jewel in the Palace’, ‘My Name is Kim Sam Soon’, My Love from the Star’ and ‘Winter Sonata’. The Seoul Film Commission and Seoul Metropolitan Government assisted the series’ producers in the production process.

While ‘My Korean Jagiya’ is a uniquely wonderful series for both Filipinos and Koreans to enjoy, their biggest hurdle to success comes in the form of ‘A Love to Last’. Despite being perceived as ‘boring’ in the minds of critics, ‘A Love to Last’ continues to beat all comers, and this is something that should concern ‘My Korean Jagiya’ a lot.

One can only hope that ‘My Korean Jagiya’ will not be the short-lived drama that befell more recent romcoms ‘My Love from the Star’ and ‘I Heart Davao’. If the series can somehow go beyond 80 episodes, then that should be good enough for their morale.

Directed by Mark Reyes, ‘My Korean Jagiya’ airs weekdays after ‘Mulawin vs. Ravena’ on GMA Telebabad.

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comedy, entertainment, humor, Philippines, television

In 100 Words: Bubble Gang’s 21-Gang Salute Special

All hail ‘Bubble Gang’!

On November 25 and December 2, the Philippines’ longest-running gag show will celebrate its 21st year on air with a two-part special. Titled ‘Bubble Gang: 21-Gang Salute’, the episodes will feature skits that will pay tribute to the country’s greatest comedians of all time.

‘Bubble Gang’ has been on the air since October 20, 1995, with Michael V and Antonio Aquitania the only remaining holdovers from the show’s first episode. Last year saw the departures of Sam Pinto, Max Collins, Rufa Mae Quinto, Gwen Zamora and Joyce Ching, and the promotions of Kim Domingo, Valeen Montenegro, Arra San Agustin, Jak Roberto and Arianne Bautista to the main cast.

A new ‘Bubble Gang’ opening billboard will also premiere within the special. That said, tune in this and next Friday for another unforgettable anniversary presentation of ‘Bubble Gang’, only on GMA.

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action, drama, entertainment, Philippines, television

Poor Señorita to Challenge Ang Probinsyano Starting Tonight

Regine Velasquez-Alcasid, meet Coco Martin.

After easily disposing both ‘MariMar’ and ‘Little Nanay’, ‘FPJ’s Ang Probinsyano’ now awaits a new opponent. This time, young stars will not be the focus of this new GMA teleserye, but rather, a still-relevant 40-year-old Asia’s Songbird

Yes, Regine Velasquez-Alcasid remains a visible figure after nearly three decades in the industry. Although she earned her stripes as a singer, she also had major success as an actress, and starting tonight, the latter aspect of her talents will be shown on the upcoming series ‘Poor Señorita’.

In ‘Poor Señorita’, Regine plays Rita, a successful yet obsessive-compulsive owner of a perfume company. After suddenly losing her wealth, she stumbled upon five children who would try to help her get back on her feet, and in the process, show her the true meaning of love and happiness.

Joining Regine on ‘Poor Señorita’ are Mikael Daez, Sheena Halili, Kevin Santos, Valeen Montenegro, Jaya, Ervic Vijandre, Jillian Ward, Miggs Cuaderno, Zymic Jaranilla, Caprice Cayetano, Ralph Noriega, Snooky Serna, Ayra Mariano and Elyson de Dios. For Ayra and Elyson, it will be their first project after winning ‘StarStruck’ season 6.

Playing special roles on ‘Poor Señorita’ are Ricky Davao and Dingdong Dantes. Dominic Zapata will be the series’ director.

‘Poor Señorita’ is the latest in a series of attempts by GMA Telebabad to make their dramas lighter and more family-friendly. Unfortunately, it hasn’t worked out, and the fact that ABS-CBN (with the help of Dreamscape and Star Creatives) succeeded with dramas that appeal to the everyday Filipino made it more difficult for GMA to thrive.

That said, a daunting challenge awaits ‘Poor Señorita’ on its very first week. With ‘FPJ’s Ang Probinsyano’ on a roll, the former needs to prove that they can also keep up and make lighter series just as appealing to viewers.

‘Poor Señorita’ airs starting tonight after ’24 Oras’ on GMA Telebabad.

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comedy, concerts, entertainment, Philippines, television, variety show

A New Breed of Sunday Noontime Show

‘ASAP’ finds itself with a different kind of opponent.

Last Sunday, GMA and APT Entertainment launched ‘Sunday PinaSaya’, a new variety show that features mostly comedy skits with a few hints of musical performances. The new Sunday noontime show is hosted by Marian Rivera, Ai Ai Delas Alas, Jose Manalo, Wally Bayola, Alden Richards, Julie Anne San Jose, Barbie Forteza, Valeen Montenegro, and Jerald Napoles.

‘Sunday PinaSaya’ marked the first time that GMA did not play a key role in producing a Sunday noontime show. The said program is produced by APT, whose founder, Tony Tuviera, is the director of ‘Eat Bulaga’.

The new offering did give ‘ASAP’ a run for its money, scoring a 21.4% rating over the latter’s 16.8% in the AGB Nielsen NUTAM figures. In the Kantar ratings, however, ‘ASAP’ still emerged the winner, but just barely (17.1% over ‘Sunday PinaSaya”s 16.1%).

Judging from the first week, it is safe to say that ‘Sunday PinaSaya’ is still a work in progress. Their ratings in the first week are purely based on the viewers’ curiosity, so it remains to be seen whether or not the show’s second week will have the same kind of performance.

 

‘Sunday PinaSaya’ is not the only Sunday noontime show that is offering something different, however. Just ask TV5’s ‘Happy Truck ng Bayan’.

The two-month-old program employs a more unconventional approach, as they hold shows in various barangays. It is essentially a modern-day ‘Kwarta o Kahon’, albeit outdoors, with various games and segments to entertain the audience.

Though ‘Happy Truck ng Bayan’ airs an hour earlier, it is still considered a noontime variety show for all intents and purposes. The show is hosted by Ogie Alcasid, Janno Gibbs, Derek Ramsay, Gelli de Belen, Mariel Rodriguez-Padilla, Jasmine Curtis-Smith, and various other Kapatid stars.

While its ratings pale in comparison to ‘ASAP’ and ‘Sunday PinaSaya’, TV5 seems unconcerned about its performance. After all, the Kapatid network values alternative programming, and ‘Happy Truck ng Bayan’ exemplifies that.

Gone are the days where musical performances dominate every viewer’s Sunday noontime habits. A new dawn in Sunday noontime programming has indeed arrived, with skits and games to keep people entertained.

The Sunday noontime slot is definitely back in business.

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comedy, education, entertainment, humor, Philippines, Sports, television

TV5’s New Shows to Watch This Second Half of 2015

‘Happy Truck ng Bayan’ is one of several new shows that are on TV5’s pipeline this second half of 2015. (Photo credit: TV5/Happy Truck ng Bayan Official Facebook)

TV5’s push for happiness continues.

The Kapatid network recently unveiled a set of new shows in the ‘Hi-Way to Happy’ trade launch at the Metrowalk Tent last June 12. The new shows were a part of TV5’s ongoing pursuit of spreading love and joy to its viewers, not to mention providing something different for people to watch.

Currently ongoing are two programs that premiered within days of the trade launch. They are:

Happy Truck ng Bayan

This variety show is held in various barangays, using a truck that is transformed into a stage. Hosted by Ogie Alcasid, Janno Gibbs, Derek Ramsey, Gelli de Belen, Mariel Rodriguez, Jasmine Curtis-Smith, Empoy Marquez, Tuesday Vargas, Mark Neumann, Shaira Mae dela Cruz, Akihiro Blanco, Chanel Morales, Sophie Albert, Vin Abrenica, Kim Idol and Tom Taus, it premiered last June 14 and airs every Sunday at 11:00 a.m.

Hi-5 Philippines

The local franchise of ‘Hi-5’ from Australia features virtually the same basic elements as the original, with a Filipino spin of course. Hosted by Rissey Reyes, Gerard Pagunsan, Alex Reyes, Fred Lo, and Aira Binas, the show airs twice every weekday, at 8:30 a.m. and at 3:45 p.m.

A few other shows are expected to premiere this July. They are:

KISPinoy

This talent search show features aspiring singers who aim to become the next K-Pop stars. Hosted by Richard Gutierrez and Jinri Park, and features judges Rico Blanco, Gelli de Belen and various K-Pop experts, ‘KISPinoy’ premieres on July 11 at 9:00 p.m..

LolaBasyang.com

Starring Boots Anson-Roa, the series will feature the retelling of Lola Basyang’s tales with the use of modern gadgets. ‘LolaBasyang.com’ premieres on July 11.

#ParangNormal Activity

The horror/comedy sitcom will star Ella Cruz as the pretty ghost, starring alongside a trio of nerds played by Shaun Salvador, Ryle Paolo Santiago and Andrei Garcia. ‘#ParangNormal Activity’ premieres on July 11.

No Harm, No Foul

The new sports-themed sitcom will feature Ogie Alcasid, Randy Santiago, Tuesday Vargas, Long Mejia, Eula Caballero, Valeen Montenegro and Sophie Albert, alongside basketball stars Willie Miller, Gary David, Beau Belga, Kiefer Ravena, and Yoyong Martirez. ‘No Harm, No Foul’ premieres on July 5 at 8:00 p.m.

TV5’s new offerings should once again serve up a smile in the viewers’ faces. With that, best of luck to them.

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