by Nickie Wang
The audience will always have the final say whether a program is good or otherwise. Their verdict instantly reflects on the performance of every program in the ratings game. So, does viewership determine a show’s value or worth?
Poor ratings, however does not necessarily mean a series or a variety show is of poor quality, it so happen that viewers prefer a different kind of entertainment. This same thing goes with programs that consistently top the numbers game, they are not the best shows television produces, so to speak.
Some television programs debut strongly but viewers’ interest gradually wanes as they get disappointed due to mediocre story or inconsistent production. Whether TV stations admit it or not, majority of the programs shown on local channels are crappy if not something that insult the public’s intelligence.
In some way, rubbish television shows are perceived acceptable because people do not have any basis to compare them since they are exposed to the same kind of shows over and over, year after year. So apart from discussing why they didn’t fair in the number –driven race, it’s also the perfect time for television stations and program producers to take a whole new direction. Try giving us something unique, original, and visually impressive shows that educate, inform, and empower viewers at the same time. But of course, everything becomes different when TV stations put this into context. For now, let’s have a backward glance at some shows that failed to impress TV viewers, so those who are concerned wouldn’t be doing the same mistake again.
Claudine Drama Anthology
This weekly drama anthology named after its lead star, Claudine Barretto, already started a little off. First, its original airing was moved to a different date and it only happened five months after Claudine left ABS-CBN (the should’ve stricken the iron while it’s blazing hot).
The Saturday evening drama was beleaguered from the time it debuted until its final episode. Constant threat for a premature termination was the item of every news story related to it. But it’s not generally the whole production itself that we have to blame, Claudine had several episodes that are worth mentioning. Claudine was fit for all the roles she portrayed in the anthology but the program was shown in a time when viewers were looking for fresh talents that can give justice to the same roles she played.
If everyone thinks Sarah Geronimo is the next superstar, better think again. She may have received recognition for platinum records and blockbuster films but the performance of iDol says that there’s still someone, yet to be discovered, that can claim that title.
The musical comedy-drama TV series that she starred in was simulcasted live on three different channels (Studio 23, Cinema One, and ABS-CBN). But grand pilot was not enough to keep it afloat in a dog-eat-dog world of primetime competition. It aired only for seven weeks, a month short from its original contract.
There’s no point of blaming the pop princess for the unlucky fate of iDol. It’s just the series was a complete opposite of how it was publicized. It’s not even close to its obvious inspiration, Glee. Lesson learned, if you can’t create something original, make sure that you will appear better than what you copied.
Banking on the popularity of jejemon (do we have to define this?), GMA Network came up with a situational comedy featuring one of the country’s highest paid comic artist, Eugene Domingo. It premiered on Aug. 14 replacing Claudine’s timeslot. It must have inherited the bane of its predecessor because it was also a flop amid the help of newcomers Jennica Garcia, Carl Guevarra, Barbie Forteza.
Like any other fad, the jejemon fever waned after it became the talk of the town (more of a flash in the pan). It was entertaining as it was irritating. Unfortunately, JejeMom came in at the time when jejebet (jejemon alphabet) was already passé. This should serve a warning to those who plan to ride the bandwagon (apparently Dolphy’s Father Jejemon didn’t listen).
Malay Mo Ma-develop
Or simply as M3, was billed a romantic comedy-drama series starring Aga Muhlach and AiAi delas Alas. It only ran for four months, a far cry to Aga’s previous sitcoms that lasted for years. AiAi can’t get away with the misfortune of this sitcom but Aga must have another project that could rekindle his fading star. And Aga being paired with younger sexy starlets only meant he needed someone to boost his appeal. It’s something that the audience noticed and eventually ignored.
M3 didn’t produce any significant numbers in the ratings game. It could be that it’s pitted against strong programs, with much better content on the weekends but the truth is Aga and AiAi were odd onscreen couple. They didn’t have the chemistry found in Michael V. and Manilyn Reynes perhaps.
An enticing P500,000 was the grand prize for this reality-dance search hosted by Sexbomb Dancers and Mark Herras. But underneath this cash prize was a massive insecurity that GMA network felt because a better show was being watched on a different channel. Prior to this program another dance talent search called This Iz It had given up to its much stronger rival. It was said that the dance search replaced the Daisy Siete series but it actually created to be pitted against Showtime. In the end, Danz Showdown became just a Showtime alternative (being watched only during the latter’s commercial break).
Like other dance groups, Sexbomb Dancers already had its time. The demise of Daisy Siete and Danz Showdown was an indication that its members need to find an alternative livelihood.
Pilipinas Win na Win
Among the shows that experience major drawback, this game show tries to create an illusion that it can withstand stiff competition. That’s why it is still on air.
When it premiered in July, Robin Padilla and Kris Aquino were introduced as main hosts. A week later after the premiere, Padilla took an indefinite leave and its ratings went downhill. More co-hosts were introduced later, but low ratings still plague the show up to the time Kris left. On Oct. 2, ABS-CBN officially announced four new hosts and two new co-hosts. The four hosts tagged as the “hitmakers” include Rico J. Puno, Rey Valera, Marco Sison, and Nonoy Zuñiga. Since then, the now afternoon show has taken three different timeslots and fired/hired new co-hosts. However, its average ratings falls under 4 percent in Mega Manila compared to that of Showtime and Eat Bulaga.
As for TV5’s programs, all we have to say is that the station created big waves but they were not enough to make it a major player. And that saves its programs from being tagged major flops.