Filipino TV primetime

The Filipino TV has become very disappointing nowadays, or since about a decade ago. Primetime, particularly, is now smudged with mockery - a rundown of boring, no-brainer, dull teleseryes. Isn’t that a great disappointment to those of us who grew up in the 80’s and early 90’s and watched primetime with weekly programs - one-hour shows with substance?

I do not only miss those days. I am truly devastated with what happened to local TV today. TV stations are trying so hard to make money they forgot about their responsibilities as information medium. Sure, we sit in front of the TV to be entertained. But it sure wouldn’t hurt if we nurture some education while entertaining, would it?

TV is one medium that is powerful enough to reach almost the entire archipelago. Why is it so hard for TV stations to provide shows that matter; shows that not only entertain but also keep the Filipino mind thinking? Sure, there are a few shows that inform. But teleseryes ??? Afternoon Dramas? Sure we need some time to emote, to maintain sanity; perhaps, to still feel human. But, what’s happening now is these dull programs are ruining the thinking of most Filipinos! They are making their audience learn nothing!

Back in the 80’s and early 90’s, the TV people were more concerned on fine-tuning plots of one-hour, weekly programs so to earn good ratings. Nowadays, plots of daily TV programs, particularly teleseryes and afternoon drama series, are filled with junk to stretch them and make five 30-minute episodes equal to a one-hour show. Storylines have become ridiculous, and the Filipino is buying it!

I remember one TV station reporting in primetime news talking about a hip, 40-something lady who wears hip hop clothes and accessories. I like the idea of empowering women, but when the reporter said “She is the Missy Elliot of the Philippines”, I was furious. The media is actually misinforming its audience! The lady may be good at other aspects of life, but it wasn’t included in the report that she does what Missy Elliot does. And so, the audience, who has not heard of Missy Elliot or her works, could easily assume that Missy Elliot is just some lady who wears baggy jeans and huge silver jewelries.

It is freaking unfair! How can TV be allowed to give out information that isn’t helping the society! For a third-world country like ours, we don’t need crappy information. We need education to truly understand our country and help ourselves. If we continue to be dumb-and-dumbers, how can our country make it through these hard times?

I truly believe that TV or media in general, has a huge responsibility to the country. I truly believe that TV stations should provide programs that not only entertain its audience but also help sharpen the viewer’s thinking skills. Most of our TV commercials are made dumb. To our great, talented, creative copy writers – are you doing these dumb TV commercials to stoop down to the level of the dumbest TV viewer? Don’t you also plan to educate and help your viewer think harder (read: write witty plots)? It is better to make the dumb laugh? Or amaze the smart? I presume that deep in your very creative hearts, you wanted to do the latter. But, that’s just another related issue.

And to those who work in producing TELESERYES, please make a difference. The time is now.