drama, entertainment, Philippines, television

Wildflower’s Wildest Finale

‘Wildflower’ is coming to an end.

Friday night will mark the finale of this top-rating ABS-CBN series. In a run that spanned 257 episodes, ‘Wildflower’ became a big hit in more ways than one.

Premiering on February 13, 2017, ‘Wildflower’ became the first ABS-CBN drama to air in the 5:50 p.m. slot since ‘We Will Survive’. From episode one, the series ran roughshod over the competition, constantly earning ratings in the 20s while occasionally hitting the 30s.

As ‘Wildflower’ continued to reign over its timeslot, the confrontations between Ivy Aguas/Lily Cruz (Maja Salvador) and Emilia Ardiente (Aiko Melendez) also became viral on social media. Various news topics were lampooned using screenshots of Ivy/Lily and Emilia either strangling, shouting or slapping each other in the face.

Throughout its run ‘Wildflower’ saw its fair share of cast members arrive and depart. While the core cast features Maja Salvador, Aiko Melendez, Joseph Marco, Tirso Cruz III, Sunshine Cruz, Christian Vasquez and RK Bagatsing, the series also received a few contributions from the likes of Roxanne Barcelo, Dawn Chang and Zsa Zsa Padilla.

Despite its lengthy run and constant ratings success, it was too unfortunate that ‘Wildflower’ will not be able to join the ‘one-year club’ that featured fellow ABS-CBN dramas ‘Ang Probinsyano’ and ‘Doble Kara’. Friday’s ending will put them two episodes short of the anniversary mark.

Even viewers of the series found it hard to accept that ABS-CBN will pull the plug on ‘Wildflower’ after such a long run. In fact, ‘Wildflower”s ‘The End is Near’ teaser last January was trending on social media, with many clamoring for an extension which was never materialized.

Still, ‘Wildflower”s accomplishments were hard to deny. The series’ presence made the early evening slot of Primetime Bida relevant again, and Maja Salvador’s portrayal of Ivy/Lily only enhanced her craft as an actress.

Veterans such as Sunshine Cruz, Tirso Cruz III and Aiko Melendez were also given a second wind in their careers thanks to their portrayals of Camia, Julio and Emilia respectively. Even a cameo appearance by Zsa Zsa Padilla as Red Dragon was good enough to convince viewers that she is still a dependable actress.

Overall, ‘Wildflower’ is such a good series that reliving all 257 episodes on iWant TV would be more than enticing. Indeed, this series typified the ‘wild’ in every sense of the word, one that is unpredictable, moody and crazy to look at.

This Friday should be a wild finale for ‘Wildflower’. Enjoy the show.

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drama, entertainment, Korea, Philippines, television

Love in the Moonlight Rerun Adds to ABS-CBN’s Death Slot Problems

The mess that is ABS-CBN’s 5:00 p.m. weekday slot continues.

Beginning today, the Kapamilya network will re-air the Koreanovela ‘Love in the Moonlight’ in its so-called ‘death slot’. The series originally aired on Primetime Bida from March 6 to May 5, 2017, spanning 43 episodes.

Unlike its original run which was seen in every household in the country, ‘Love in the Moonlight”s rebroadcast will only be seen in Metro Manila, select regional areas and on digital, cable and satellite subscription services. The rest of the country will receive regional versions of ‘TV Patrol’ while the Koreanovela airs at 9:30 a.m. the next day.

The problems surrounding ABS-CBN’s 5:00 p.m. slot has been well-documented in this blog. While ‘TV Patrol”s regional versions are only a part of the issue, there are other concerns that jeopardize this timeslot.

As stated earlier, programs that are affected by the broadcast of regional ‘TV Patrol’ are aired the following morning at around 9:00 or 9:30 a.m. Unfortunately, not all shows were aired in full.

In the last two Junes, both ‘We Will Survive’ and ‘Legend of the Blue Sea’ saw numerous episodes preempted due to the NBA Finals. To make matters worse, those preempted episodes were never aired at all in ABS-CBN’s regional stations, leaving non-iWanTV subscribers perplexed and unsatisfied

If ABS-CBN were smart enough to realize these issues, they would have done these three things:

  1. Air ‘O Shopping’ as permanent filler.
  2. Bring News and Current Affairs shows back to the 5:00 p.m. slot (with a replay after ‘Bandila’ to satisfy the rest of the country).
  3. Produce a Metro Manila version of ‘TV Patrol’.

But as it stands, ABS-CBN is simply too stubborn to resist change in its approach. They somehow rectified that with a rerun of the Koreanovela ‘Love in the Moonlight’ (as reruns are considered filler), but still, it would mean sacrificing success in favor of short-term fixes.

There is still time for ABS-CBN to correct whatever issues they face every weekday afternoon. That said, viewers can only hope for the best, no matter how slim it may be.

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drama, entertainment, game show, Philippines, talent show, television, variety show

Premiere of The Better Half & Wildflower Further Complicates ABS-CBN’s Afternoon Schedule

Seems like ABS-CBN has not learned from its 5:00 p.m. issues.

Several months ago, From the Tube made an article about ABS-CBN’s 5:00 p.m. scheduling problems. Three issues were raised in this topic; namely the presence of the ABS-CBN Regional-produced ‘TV Patrol’, the RNGs’ airing of the affected program at around 9:00 a.m. the next day, and its expected poor performance in the Kantar ratings.

Now, ABS-CBN is once again in a bind thanks to a pair of teleseryes that will premiere today. On Kapamilya Gold, ‘The Better Half’ will replace ‘Doble Kara’, while on Primetime Bida, ‘Wildflower’ will become the first teleserye to air at 5:50 since ‘We Will Survive’.

This leaves the game show ‘Minute to Win It’ in a precarious position. With the premiere of ‘Wildflower’ on Primetime Bida, the former has no choice but to move to 5:00 p.m., leaving themselves vulnerable to not only the regionals’ broadcast of ‘TV Patrol’, but also to rival GMA game show ‘Wowowin’.

That said, only the first 30 minutes of ‘Minute to Win It’ will be preempted, leaving the last 15 or 20 minutes for the viewers in the regions to watch. So where will the regional network viewers go to with regards to this predicament?

The most obvious answer is the iWanTV app, which is readily available and has episodes of a majority of ABS-CBN programs uploaded within hours of original broadcast. The only problem with this app though is that not all people have a mobile device, computer or tablet.

Which leaves ABS-CBN with three options to solve this problem. Either they:

  1. Place the O Shopping or MYX block at 5:00 p.m. and move ‘Minute to Win It’ to before ‘Langit Lupa’
  2. Produce a ‘TV Patrol’ that focuses solely on Mega Manila and move ‘Minute to Win It’ to before ‘Langit Lupa’
  3. Cut ‘It’s Showtime”s last 30 minutes and return to a three-teleserye Kapamilya Gold

For all their dominance in the ratings game, the 5:00 p.m. slot is and will always be ABS-CBN’s weak point (this does not include their early morning programs). Unless they do something about it, the affected program’s viewership will remain compromised.

As for ‘The Better Half’ and ‘Wildflower’, this will be an opportunity to sustain ABS-CBN’s winning ways. It’s a challenge that ‘The Better Half”s Shaina Magdayao, Carlo Aquino, JC de Vera and Denise Laurel, and ‘Wildflower”s Maja Salvador and Joseph Marco should welcome despite the network’s scheduling issues.

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drama, entertainment, game show, Philippines, television

Resolving ABS-CBN’s 5 O’Clock Problem

Weekdays at 5:00 p.m. has spelled trouble for ABS-CBN.

And it has been that way since mid-April, when ‘We Will Survive’ was demoted from Primetime Bida to Kapamilya Gold to make way for ‘My Super D’. Now that both series will end this Friday, ABS-CBN must resolve this ongoing problem that is the 5:00 p.m. slot as soon as possible.

Looking at the root of this situation, it is clear that by the time the clock strikes 5:00 p.m. (17:00 in military terms), not every area in the country will receive the same program. Instead, what most provincial areas receive is their dialect-based version of ‘TV Patrol’, which focuses on news in a particular region or province.

The affected program (currently ‘We Will Survive’) was then aired the next morning at 9:00 a.m. Unfortunately, during the network’s broadcast of the 2016 NBA Finals in June, the series was preempted at times, and those without iWanTV subscription were left scratching their heads wondering why those episodes never aired.

To make matters worse, by the time ‘Magandang Buhay’ was bumped to 8:00 a.m. on June 21, the final 30 minutes of the talk show was preempted just to make way for the said affected program. Something is not quite right.

The end result of this was that ‘We Will Survive’ endured inconsistent ratings since its demotion to Kapamilya Gold. That said, with this timeslot considered a trouble spot, teleseryes should be off-limits going forward.

As of today, ABS-CBN has confirmed that the returning ‘Minute to Win It’, to be hosted by Luis Manzano, will take over the soon-to-be vacated timeslot of ‘My Super D’. Which leaves the 5:00 p.m. slot up for grabs, and for ABS-CBN to resolve this problem, one program would be better off airing.

Enter the ‘O Shopping’ program block. Usually airing during the wee hours of the morning, the said program should pose no threat to ABS-CBN’s overall programming when it airs at 5:00 p.m., simply because it is merely a filler show.

That said, its presence will mean a lot to ABS-CBN in the long-term. ‘Magandang Buhay’ will now be aired for a full 90 minutes in all areas, while preempting a program for ‘TV Patrol’ in the regions will no longer carry a risk factor ratings-wise.

Still, it is up to ABS-CBN management to convince themselves of a change in strategy. If they decided to once again air a teleserye at 5:00 p.m. (‘The Greatest Love’ is being pegged as a replacement for ‘We Will Survive’), then good luck in trying to be more consistent in the ratings.

Hopefully ABS-CBN does something right here. This is one important issue to address.

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drama, entertainment, game show, movies, Philippines, television

Wowowin Out for Two Weeks

Willie Revillame is on vacation, and so is ‘Wowowin’.

Both the host and the game show will take a two-week break starting today, in order to recharge and plan for ‘Wowowin”s upcoming first anniversary*. The vacated timeslot will be filled by ‘GMA Blockbusters’ until May 13.

In the meantime, ‘Wowowin”s new studio will be used temporarily by GMA News and Public Affairs for its ‘Eleksyon 2016’ coverage, which will kick off on May 9. Afterwards, a refurbished set is expected to be unveiled once ‘Wowowin’ returns on May 16.

The temporary hiatus of ‘Wowowin’ may benefit ABS-CBN in the short term. ‘We Will Survive’, in particular, has been slumping since its demotion to Kapamilya Gold, with ratings in the 10s on most days.

The brief absence of ‘Wowowin’ might put ‘We Will Survive’ back on track. Still, with the series not airing in select areas thanks to regional ‘TV Patrol’, it will not be easy for ‘We Will Survive’ to win without ‘Wowowin’ to oppose them.

The other series opposing ‘Wowowin’, ‘My Super D’, may be winning in the ratings, but the margin remained small. That said, the absence of the former may help ‘My Super D’ pull away, even if it’s only for a short moment.

As for GMA, this is an opportunity for the network to sustain the momentum in ‘Wowowin”s absence. Airing more recent hit movies on ‘GMA Blockbusters’ may do the trick, even as a few of their regional networks continue to air local news in place of the show’s first 45 minutes.

This is going to be an interesting two weeks for both GMA and ABS-CBN. Let’s see how the brief hiatus of ‘Wowowin’ will affect the fortunes of both networks from 5:00-6:30 p.m.

*‘Wowowin”s actual first episode was aired on Sunday, May 10, 2015. The show has been airing on weekdays since February 1, with the first 90-minute episode airing two weeks later.

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drama, entertainment, Philippines, television

We Will Survive’s Ratings on a Tailspin After Change of Timeslot

‘We Will Survive’ found itself in a tough spot upon moving to a new timeslot, thanks in large part to the show’s delayed broadcasts in the regional networks. (Logo courtesy of ABS-CBN)

‘We Will Survive’ is in a crisis.

The ABS-CBN drama series is off to a slow start in its new 5:00 p.m. timeslot, registering ratings of 10.7% (April 18), 10.9% (April 19), 9.8% (April 20) and 9.9% (April 21) during a four-day span. This was in contrast to the show’s 13% average ratings in its original timeslot of 5:45 p.m.

Clearly, ABS-CBN has a lot of explaining to do when it comes to ‘We Will Survive”s low ratings. Regional networks are unable to air the series at the same time as Metro Manila due to the presence of local ‘TV Patrol’, and instead, it is aired the following day at 9:00 a.m. in place of ‘Naruto Shippuden’.

This predicament easily led to ‘We Will Survive’ losing to GMA’s ‘Wowowin’ in a majority of the regional areas. And it didn’t help that the delayed broadcasts are being aired in a timeslot that is also not viable ratings-wise.

It is a painful truth that the regional networks of ABS-CBN have no choice but to commit to 30-45 minutes’ worth of ‘TV Patrol’ in their respective dialects. However, it also hurts that the network decided to place a teleserye in a timeslot that is not expected to draw viewers from the provinces.

Considering ABS-CBN’s reputation for successful teleseryes, this is a strategy that does not work at all. And it is also not good that the network decided to fill almost 2/3s of their lineup with teleseryes; excluding ‘TV Patrol’, ABS-CBN’s lineup from 3:15-10:45 p.m. features a streak of seven teleseryes and an imported series.

That said, for Pokwang, Melai Cantiveros and the show’s braintrust, this is a battle that they cannot survive from. Positive messages notwithstanding, ABS-CBN should consider closing the book on ‘We Will Survive’ as soon as possible, knowing that it would be consequential to viewers in the provinces, as well as viewers who are tired of watching teleseryes for many hours straight.

If not, find a way to get a better timeslot for the show. After all, it is for the network’s own good.

 

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