Thursday, February 10, 2011

A Repost From Ed Sicam for Yahoo! Southeast Asia

'Happy Yipee Yehey!' challenges 'Eat Bulaga!'

By Ed Sicam, For Yahoo! Southeast Asia Wednesday February 9, 2011 09:35 pm PST

ABS-CBN has been plugging the premiere of its new noontime program called "Happy, Yipee, Yehey!" on Saturday, February 12. Not a very catchy title, I thought.

The newest noontime offering on Philippine TV will be hosted by Randy Santiago, Mariel Rodriguez, Toni Gonzaga, John Estrada, Bianca Manalo, Jobert Austria, Bentong and Melai Cantiveros. In short, the show will recycle talents from previous lunchtime productions, which failed miserably against perennial noontime leader "Eat Bulaga!" The new recruits like Melai and Bianca have yet to prove their pulling power.

I am not optimistic that "HYY" will be a strong threat to the near 32-year noontime program. Unless there's something really new to attract viewers or one ridiculously high cash prize, like P10 million, "HYY" will go the way of "Pilipinas Win na Win," which ended its mere five-month airing on New Year's Eve last year. Remember that Kris Aquino, who usually commands high ratings whenever she's part of a show, failed to pull in the viewers to "Win na Win."

But you can never tell. ABS-CBN's "Student Canteen" was the leading noontime show for decades since its inception as a radio show in the 1950s. After GMA-7 revived the show two years after Martial Law was declared, "Student Canteen" was the only noontime show in the 1970s before "Eat Bulaga!" premiered July 30, 1979 on RPN-9.

At that time, "Eat Bulaga!" had its hands full in competing against "Student Canteen," which enjoyed a vast audience being the only noontime show Filipinos knew. With mass-based programming, sticky contests like "Macho Man," "Miss Gay Philippines," and "Little Miss Philippines," and hosts like Aiza Seguerra and Coney Reyes fusing charm to an already humorous, wacky trio of Tito, Vic and Joey, "Eat Bulaga" managed to dislodge "Student Canteen" from its lofty perch by the 1980s. And the rest is history.

Of course, "HYY" could pull the same feat but it's a long shot.

By George, he's got it

While the fortunes of "HYY" seem uncertain, a male heartthrob now seems to get things right.

For the first time since 2005, when Sam Milby first gained prominence after the reality TV series "Pinoy Big Brother," I watched the Fil-Am actor actually speak fluent Tagalog in an interview aired on ABS-CBN's "SNN." While he may still not offer that distinctive Pinoy accent, Sam is moving in the right direction in terms of embracing the Filipino language.

If he continues his "integration," Sam will see more thespic doors opened for him, such as opportunities to take on more roles, unlike his typecast mumbling and fumbling balikbayan portrayals, and compete head-on with full-blooded Pinoy actors.

Reposted From Ed Sicam for Yahoo! Southeast Asia

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