The State and the Future of Franchised Programs in the Philippines

[Requested by JC Domondon with slight modification]

ON the Quarterly Open Pit (QuOP) a bit more than a week ago, I whimsically tinkered about the fate of five international franchised programs that had a run here in the Philippines.

Of the five TV show franchises I selected, three were on the recent hands of ABS-CBN and one each that used to be on GMA and on TV5.

In the past 10 years, the most-talked media conglomerate had the virtual monopoly on these specific types of programs because they have the money to afford it and in return, make better yields.

The library of program franchises that Mother Ignacia had in the past decade is split into two: the game show group and the reality/competition show (R/CS) group.

The GS group contains Bet on Your Baby, Deal or No Deal, Family Feud, and Minute to Win It.

This particular cluster, save Bet on Your Baby, was mired with criticism for having their non-committed stars playing as contestants while barring ordinary folks for the same opportunity. As they knew the scheme, this group of shows was ditched before the decade ended in favor of the next group.

The R/CS group contains the likes of Pilipinas Got Talent, World of Dance and Your Face Sounds Familiar.

On that group, some of them made an offshoot from the regular editions like having teens’ and kids’ versions; such offshoots are counted as official versions.

Some of them were memorable (Pinoy Big Brother‘s live weekly eviction nights) and few would just be forgettable (Idol Philippines and their selection of judges).

In both groups, the most irksome of these is the eliciting humor for at least a few moments every episode from any of the hosting trinity (e.g. Billy Crawford, Luis Manzano and Robi Domingo).

I Can See Your Voice (season 2) and The Voice (Teens 2) were the last franchised programs that aired on free-to-air Channel 2 before getting interrupted by both the COVID-19 pandemic and the broadcast license denial. The latter was able to finish through the Kapamilya Channel with four co-champions (one for each coach); for the former is now in limbo after realizing how their first season lasted more than a year.

 

Who will get the ‘buried treasure’?

Now that Channel 2 is no more, it could mean the division of spoils — for that matter, the unfinished and yet-to-be-started contracts between the elephant in the room and the respective production companies — between the remaining, qualified rivals (TV5 and GMA.)

Although there are online platforms like Kapamilya Online Live to utilize as their digital TV broadcasting project is prohibited, the production companies of franchised programs USUALLY PREFER free-to-air coverage, as far as the Turf is concerned.

Why? The primary reason for that is to get the maximum, possible reach; second is for copyright issues.

Anyway, what would be the pros and cons of Kamuning and Reliance on getting that precious booty?

GMA

Logically speaking, the sole TV giant from Timog Avenue is next in line since they have an equal reach as its former competitor. The track record there was conservative. With the declaration of the corporation’s operation “debt-free,” it should be another logical parameter that this network should get that treasure.

There are obvious setbacks:

  • As they are not a KBP member for a bit more than 17 years now, this would turn off viewers as the network accept unlimited ad loads without regard to the attention span of the viewers. (No wonder, KMJS viewers keep complaining over this.)
  • Entertainment executives in Kamuning seem to be contented with what they have (i.e. resting on their laurels) and are hesitant to take the risks.
  • The reality shows they desperately pitted against the former rival tend to be “original” — like Centerstage and The Clash. With the tables turned and they are given the offer, will Direk Louie Ignacio decide to give in?

In case you don’t know, before the quarantine period, the network acquired the franchise rights to have our version of South Korea’s famous Sunday variety show Running Man.

Regardless, placing in their own hands would incite an online dumpster fire between staunch Kapuso loyalists and displaced solid Kapamilya viewers blending in.

TV5

TV5, which gained programming momentum since last month, could continue where Dos left off since they would reach out their hands for displaced talents and personalities like a Good Samaritan. There’s a solid nutcase who presented a strong case of the network to be the new home for Big Brother with improvements and rectification of the errors of the ways the previous network has done for 15 years.

One big challenge: When PBA resumes action at least this October, such shows would have to wait until at least 9:00 p.m. on the affected game days.

When it comes to blending in, they wouldn’t mind unlike in the case of GMA.

Another Option and Afterthought

In both cases, this may not be materialized for now because of the prevailing prohibition of gathering a live audience and/or walk-in auditions.

If some learners who are not ready in adapting to the new normal in education called for an “academic freeze,” then why not have a “programming freeze” for this specific genre?

That being said, if someone would ask if we will have our local version of The Masked Singer, then the answer to this question, for now, is we just don’t know and shrug. (But I heard PEP.ph last Thursday that TV5 secure the rights in partnership with VIVA and air it next month. Anyway, best of luck.)


NOTE: This is the third and last post of the very dense week of post-mortem thoughts on the post-Kapamilya Philippine television. In fact, it filled up all the slots that are calculated for the whole month and the next scheduled post would be published in October. Urgent topic proposals that happened or will happen for the rest of the month will depend on our discretion.


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2 comments

  1. Did that nutcase realize that the format the new season of Big Brother Australia aired this year was like the US edition but pre-taped and no live feeds available to watch anywhere, and the only live episode was the finale by public vote?

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