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11 Shows GMA News TV Should Have Really Never Aired

NOT BEARING any further grudges, GMA News TV is supposed to be a news channel at par with veteran ANC and the younger CNN Philippines.

However, during the past 6.5 years, our expectations are far from materialization as critics began to see the flaw and became irritated with the inclusion and expansion non-essential programming composition in the middle-aged channel as if they are comparable to a tabloid newspaper than a broadsheet. Some of us called it QTV 2.0, GMA Balitakilya TV or GMA Sari-Sari TV than the current (mislabeled) name.

While most – but not all — newscasts, public affairs programs, and documentaries whether made for that channel or carried over from its older sister channel after original airing are essential, few of the programs and the non-essential genre should be relocated or terminated – at least, gradually.

Aside from the movie blocks, home shopping and Koreanovelas that are finished in Channel 7, here are the 11 specific shows GNTV should have never aired (as of press time).

NOTE: The list is not sorted in a particular order and is excluding programs produced and provided from ZOE/Light Network, as they are contractually committed.

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Is AksyonTV becoming TV5’s News TV and S+A?

AksyonTV turns 6 years old today but quickly erodes its standing purpose.

AksyonTV turns 6 years old today but it quickly erodes its initial purpose.

SIX YEARS ago today, while viewers are awaiting for GMA News TV’s launch, TV5 jumped in unannounced over Channel 41; AksyonTV, the first news channel on free TV, was born.

They used to air round the clock as a slap of Channel 11’s broken promises to live their mantra, “Oras-oras, alam ko” but karma struck back in 2013 due to cost-cutting measures by the management as well as NTC’s rules and regulations for affiliated free-to-air TV stations.

The identity crisis

The era of being a homogeneous news channel began its decline when AKTV on IBC ended on May 31, 2013 by carrying over their committed sportscasts as they also covered the Sochi Winter Olympics a year after.

Recently, News5’s public affairs programs airing on AksyonTV became merely reruns with no motive to create new episodes. Since last year, EZ Shop and Shop Japan joined in the diversification of programming portfolio to lessen their lameness.

During the seven-month-old Duterte administration where long Senate probes and/or Presidential activities (Palace press conferences and speaking engagements) bear weight in shaping the public’s skeptical psyche, the channel didn’t move a muscle and caught the attention of the Turf‘s neighboring blog, From the Tube.

Ralph redressed their grievances and formulated proposals. However, when the priority Congressional hearings resume, they were abruptly cut — much to his ever-growing dismay — due to the simulcast of Raffy Tulfo’s Wanted sa Radyo on 92.3 News FM. Despite the radio show’s demanding popularity, he dubbed the Tulfo brother as the “Kris Aquino of Radio“.

Recently, Supernatural and Arrow reruns from TV5 eventually satisfied one of his demands as their main channel was too irresistible in covering the ongoing PBA’s Philippine Cup playoffs. But then, the PHTV Group forum founded out that move to be a hodgepodge rival to ABS-CBN’s S+A and News TV.

That said, AksyonTV’s initial purpose was defeated and was lopsided, leaving CNN Philippines (if you are in the free-to-air territory) and ABS-CBN News Channel victorious. 

What comes next for AksyonTV is now in Miguel Belmonte’s manual intervention.


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Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons/TV5

#PHTVzg2015: ABS-CBN

[Author’s note: #PHTVzg2015 stands for Philippine Television Zeitgeist 2015, a five-part year-ender series.]

Another year has come and gone, but before we enter the sweet 2016, the Turf looks back on the roller-coaster moments of ABS-CBN.

Star-studded for the Papal Visit (January). Five Kapamilya stars (Lyca Gairanod, Angeline Quinto, Jed Madela, Darren Espanto & Erik Santos) performed in different venues of the itinerary of Pope Francis’ five-day visit. The Voice Kids Season 1 champion, Lyca Gairanod, performed “Tell the World of His Love” before the main program of Encounter with Families at the SM Mall of Asia Arena. Quinto, Madela and Espanto performed during the Encounter with the Youth at the University of Santo Tomas and Erik Santos sang the Responsorial Psalm at the Concluding Mass at Quirino Grandstand in Rizal Park.

Trashing film tourism (February to May). Success does not need to trash the wondrous creation but the aftermath of such in teleserye “Forevermore” and the film “That Thing Called Tadhana” came with the attention of collateral damage in Cordillera. Located in Tuba, Benguet, the filming location of LizQuen’s primetime drama became a hit tourist destination but its watershed contributed significant damage. The criticism is not noticed until May, just as their program is about to end, a writ of kalikasan was issued from the Court of Appeals and thus, forcing the cancellation of the farewell concert there. On the other hand, Angelica Panganiban and JM De Guzman’s indie flick is located in Sagada. Because of immense popularity, the swarming of tourists there left their trashes behind and netizens made rounds of criticism.

The Declining and the Denial (February-present). ASAP reached 20 this year but the longevity of the institution paid the decline of its domestic base as viewers at home are fed up with repetitive dance movements and its lack of innovation. When its Kamuning neighbor decided to scrap the cowardice Sunday All Stars in favor of the comedic Sunday PinaSaya, they try to compete with the comedic opening but the main host, Martin Nievera, was disappointed with the setup by a tweet. SPS won the ratings game from August and ASAP is decided to shorten their airtime to two hours and again, Nievera remained in denial.

Onward towards DTV. After five years of trial and error, the ABS-CBN TVPlus, nicknamed as the “Mahiwagang Black Box,” is released commercially to selected markets since February 11, with new sub-channels such as Yey! and Cine Mo and existing ones from cable such as Knowledge Channel and DZMM Teleradyo. Nine months later, the high-definition feed of the mainstream channel, ABS CBN HD, is released in selected cable operators (Oct 3).

This Success Sounds Familiar (March to December). Hosted by Billy Crawford, Your Face Sounds Familiar, a new game show franchise, where celebrities impersonates music icons, became a hit for viewers during weekend prime time, not once but twice.

The End of the Buzz (April 5). Easter Sunday this year marked the new life but for Boy Abunda, it marked the death of his showbiz show, The Buzz. Though they would be come back soon, the return is remote from being materialized, thanks to social media. However, the show was posthumously awarded as the Best Showbiz Oriented Talk Show on the 29th PMPC Star Awards.

Duo Dynami-nation (May and August). Primetime Bida for 2015 is mostly significant for the two love teams for social media. KathNiel’s “Pangako Sa ‘Yo” (since May 25) and JaDine’s “On The Wings of Love” (since August 10) hyped up the national Twitter trending list during weekdays.

S+A going full capacity (June 20). From that day, NCAA aired on its new home on ABS-CBN Sports + Action since UAAP was moved to September. The decision of covering the oldest (but not popular) collegiate athletic association would not simply make their Sports Division very busy year-round but astonish their technological advancement to sportscasting.

Pinoy Big Bromance? (June 20). Pinoy Big Brother commemorated its 10th anniversary this year with a new hybrid edition, “PBB 737.” During the early run, when the teens entered the Bahay ni Kuya, the show drew fire over bromance and the action of one housemate, Ryan James Bacalla. Because of this, the 24/7 live cable streaming was pulled out until the teens’ part ended after seven weeks of stay.

It’s Showtime’s immorality segments (August to October). As the Kalyeserye on the Kamuning neighbor became successful, It’s Showtime attempted to counter it with Twerking Girls but it drew fire by a solid Kapamilya netizen. After the controversial celebrity competition, they replaced it with “Nasaan Ka, Mr. Pastillas” featuring Angelica “Pastillas Girl” Yap. However, netizens are unamused by the content as it acts as the antithesis of the norms of traditional Filipino courtship exemplified by its rival. Not only that, the girl herself was also the butt of the joke with one of her old videos posted containing dirty language spreading online with degrading reactions in return. The segment was also compared it to an American reality dating show, “The Bachelorette” and called it “Bugawserye.” Such complaints drew Gabriela Partylist’s attention to call MTRCB and to summon the show’s creators.

Krissy decides to tone down (August-September). (Soon-to-be-outgoing) Presidential sister and veteran Kapamilya, Kris Aquino, narrowly escapes stroke after filming “Etiquette for Mistresses.” Because of the traumatic health effect, she decided to leave “Aquino and Abunda Tonight” and decided to remain only on KrisTV in order to achieve a “healthy work and life balance.”

Hisses from the two entities (August and September). During the Iglesia ni Cristo rally in EDSA in late August, social media blared up messages of the network’s bias against the Church. Few members of INC made a rash payback by mauling one of its camera operators covering the situation. Two weeks later, during a students’ forum in UP Los Banos with Vice President Jejomar Binay, a news writer mistakenly heard the crowd shouting “trapo” (traditional politician) instead of “sample.” Despite of netizens’ praise for the student body’s fearless inquiry over current issues thrown against him (i.e. overpricing infrastructures and making under-the-table deals in Makati City as mayor), the student council demanded the broadcaster’s apology.

Big shot coming from a single bullet (September 28). After Coco Martin’s portrayal as a commando of PNP Special Action Force that was part of the Fallen 44 tribute on MMK, he became the lead role of the TV drama adaptation of the 1997 action film, FPJ’s Ang Probinsyano.

ANC prepares for APEC. As the Philippines hosted APEC 2015, cable news channel ANC decided to reinstate Cathy Yang as the business news anchor. On October 26, ANC freshened up their identity.

Advertising jealousy (November). With AlDub’s* exponential success, it stripped their endorsers from the last Kapamilya talents (such as McDonalds’ chicken meals from Toni Gonzaga and Nino Muhlach, Hapee toothpaste from Angel Locsin and Rejoice shampoo from Kim Chiu). Because of that phenomenon, according to an insider, some advertisers decided not to renew their contract with ABS-CBN. Hence, the network issued a memo to advertisers that they have a right not to air any commercials that is associated with the rival’s programs, indirectly or directly. Hence, their intentional acts of not airing it, reducing it, splitting Maine Mendoza and Alden Richards apart or omitting Maine whatever possible. Kapamilya fans, belonging to the AlDub* nation, sees it as a form of bitterness (jealousy) and endorsement protectionism, calling both as unfair, as KathNiel and JaDine’s commercials on GMA were aired in full.

Gone from the news, stay for Sunday nights. Despite of departure on TV Patrol and DZMM for her news delivery, Korina Sanchez still maintains Rated K every Sunday night. The said program and the presenter won the Best Magazine Show and Host respectively on the Star Awards.

Talent Newsmakers of 2015

New and shining talents

  • Jana Agoncillo of Dream Dad and Ningning
  • Marco Masa of Nathaniel
  • Elha Mae Nympha of the Voice Kids 2
  • Bailey May and Ylona Garcia (BaiLona) of PBB 737 Teens
  • Tommy Esguerra and Miho Nishida (ToMiho) of PBB 737 Regulars
  • Xymon Ezekiel Pineda (Onyok) of Ang Probinsyano

Migrants from other networks:

  • From GMA: Sarah Lahbati and Elmo Magalona
  • From TV5: Wendell Ramos and Vin Abrenica

Outlook for 2016

Financial and operation wise, the corporation will remain profitable and the transition for digital television as feasible for 2016.

However, the Turf issues a RED ALERT for Mother Ignacia for the New Year.

Despite the revenues of political advertisement making up less percentage of their consolidated revenue, they will go in hot water for favoring former DILG Secretary Mar Roxas, the second Aquino administration’s anointed successor, over their flagship news programs and its senatorial lineup would be promoted through their life stories on MMK.

*The AlDub phenomenon will be discussed continuously in the next Zeitgeist (GMA 7).

Addendum: UFC will no longer be under ABS-CBN Sports’ hands this 2016.

Tito Sotto walks out of Senate hearing, attends Eat Bulaga

[Author’s note: The following post may provoke individual political warfare. Read at your own risk!]

EARLY THIS MORNING, two simultaneous Senate committee hearings were convened: the first is on the Bangsamoro Basic Law (under the Senate Committee on Local Government, chaired by Sen. Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos, Jr.) and the other, on Vice President Binay’s dirty deals (under the Blue Ribbon Committee, chaired by Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV).

On the TV coverage tally, four channels were covering the Bangsamoro Basic Law “BBL” hearing (namely: People’s Television, Aksyon TV, CNN Philippines and ABS-CBN News Channel) while two were covering on Binay (namely: GMA News TV and DZMM Teleradyo). (more…)

CNN Philippines launch set, faces new competitor

THE GRAPHIC TRANSITION proved it. The launch date has been settled. The long wait is finally over.

Next Monday, March 16, CNN Philippines will succeed 9TV after five months of negotiations and preparations.

About a month after the deal with the U.S.-based cable news network, Hollywood Express became the first CNN program to be exported to Channel 9. Last mid-January, CNN’s corporate colors of red, black and white dominated the graphics in time for the Papal Visit. After the visit, the programming identities on the lower thirds have been sacrificed in favor of the name of the program in white text on a red square background.

ONE MAN DOWN. As 9TV will be CNN Philippines next Monday, Atty. Rod Nepomuceno will fade away back to TV5 with their new joint media venture.

ONE MAN DOWN. As 9TV will be CNN Philippines next Monday, Atty. Rod Nepomuceno will go back to TV5 with their new joint media venture.

However, the official launch paid a significant price. One of the mainstays of Channel 9 will leave back to the old, green pastures. Atty. Rod Nepomuceno, the moderator of Legal Help Desk and Opposing Views, will depart after a bit more than two years for an announced joint media venture. (more…)

Reviewing the Papal Visit coverage

AS MANY FAITHFUL go back to their normal routines after four days since Pope Francis departed the country, the effect of the visit remains stuck in their minds, mouths and hearts. Not only the faithful got the “Papa Mania” but also the networks. Let’s look back at the five days on how all VHF networks fared in covering the five significant days. (more…)

Pope Francis in the Philippines: Of free TV’s preparations and the itinerary’s response

[This post marks the second part of the Papal Visit special. ]

The official logo of the Papal Visit with the theme.

The official logo of the Papal Visit with the theme.

WITH THE GAUDY announcement of the visit of Pope Francis from the national Catholic hierarchy, anticipation incites not just the public and the Government, but also of the media — particularly, on national television.

The two remaining questions the Turf asked on the first part of the Papal Visit special will be unraveled.

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If the Binay-Trillanes debate would’ve continued…

[DISCLAIMER: This post may not please any readers who are not interested at national politics. Timow’s Turf apologized in advance.]

BIRTHDAY BOY'S BRISK. Vice President Jejomar Binay joined with the Marines in the Philippine Navy for the walkathon on his 72nd birthday. He announced the back-out of the debate scheduled Nov. 27.

BIRTHDAY BOY’S BRISK. Vice President Jejomar Binay joined with the Marines in the Philippine Navy for the walkathon on his 72nd birthday. He announced the back-out of the debate scheduled Nov. 27.

VICE PRESIDENT Jejomar Binay turns 72 today and makes a stunning announcement during his birthday celebration at the Navy Headquarters: he backed out the debate against Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV.

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Solar News Channel: The Snoring News Channel?

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Solar News Channel is accoladed by “thinking” Filipinos for its no-nonsense news. However, the channel snores during weekends with IBC 13.

MOVED SINCE DECEMBER 1, 2013, Solar News Channel 9 leaves a little patch of “thinking” Filipinos alleviated and relieved from the bustling, polluting and sensational mediocrity brought by big commercial TV newscasts. The news channel lives up to its name than his neighbor, GMA “News” TV. SNC 9 is dubbed for most TV critics, although Timow’s Blog would coin for the first time, as the “ANC (ABS-CBN News Channel) of free TV.”
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