Long-running shows honored
STAR BYTES - Butch Francisco () - October 8, 2002 - 12:00am
When this year’s Star Awards for Television is staged at the UP Theater this Saturday, Oct. 12 at 9 p.m. (telecast is on Channel 9) 16 long-running shows will be given citations for longevity – for having lived through the varying tastes and demands of generations of TV viewers. The 16 programs to be cited by the Philippine Movie Press Club are the following:

Ating Alamin.
Produced and hosted by Gerry Geronimo, this livelihood show began in the early ‘80s on Channel 4. Now airing on Channel 13 every Sunday, the charm of Ating Alamin lies in the fact that its format is so simple and even uses the grassroots approach to reach out to the viewing public. It is a show that is of interest even to non-farmers and non-hog, cattle and poultry raisers. I remember that when the Gawad CCP Para sa Telebisyon selected the 10 best TV shows in 1988, this was the program that topped the list.

First aired in 1983, this children’s show began as a local alternative to Sesame Street. Although there’s absolutely nothing wrong about Big Bird, Ernie and Bert and Oscar the Grouch teaching Pinoy kids the basic rudiments in English, it’s best that local kids are also taught about our own language and culture and Batibot – through the years – has done that best.

The Big News.
This English newscast began in the old ABC-5 - with the late Jose Mari Velez as anchor. When Channel 5 was shut down as a result of Martial Law in September 1972, The Big News also went into hibernation. It only returned on the air when ABC-5 resumed operations in early 1992.

Chikiting Patrol.
A show that began in the mid-‘80s, this children’s show teaches kids social values and responsibility very early in life. Obviously, this program believes in starting them young.

With no less than Rosa Rosal as host, you can never doubt the sincerity of this show in reaching out to our less-fortunate brothers. But aside from extending help to the needy, Damayan on Channel 4 also features interesting interviews regarding health – mostly with doctors who are tops in their fields of specialization.

Eat Bulaga.
When this program was launched in 1979 and challenged the supremacy of Student Canteen in the noontime race, everyone thought the people behind this show (Tony Tuviera, Malou Choa-Fagar, Poochie Rivera, etc.) and its hosts, Tito, Vic and Joey and Chiqui Hollmann were crazy. But instead of landing in the mental institution, Eat Bulaga – after 23 years – has become an institution on Philippine television.

Home Along Da Riles.
Launched in December 1992, this sitcom marked Dolphy’s big comeback after public opinion drove him away from television in 1989 – no thanks to his headline-hogging elopement with Zsa Zsa Padilla that year.

Kapwa Ko, Mahal Ko.
When this public service program started in the mid- ‘70s, Rosa Rosal was originally at the helm. Unfortunately, somebody very powerful then got envious of Ms. Rosal and her charity work and had the Red Cross Governor removed from the show. The only good thing about this is that Kapwa Ko, Mahal Ko is still around on Channel 7 and still helping a lot of our less fortunate countrymen – and so is Tita Rose’s Damayan. In a poor country like the Philippines, there’s never too many public service shows like Damayan and Kapwa Ko, Mahal Ko.

Maalaala Mo Kaya?
Hosted by Charo Santos-Concio, this drama anthology started airing in the summer of 1991 and featured among its early episodes three works by Lino Brocka (he died around this time) that were originally part of a package started by the great director for ABS-CBN in 1988, but was left unfinished up to the time of his death. Brocka – wherever he is – must be very pleased to see that Maalaala Mo Kaya has maintained its topnotch quality through the years.

Magandang Gabi, Bayan.
A public affairs show that started in 1988, its title was obviously inspired by now Sen. Noli de Castro’s opening salutations – done in his deep and bellowing voice in TV Patrol ("Magandang gabi, bayan!"). Known for its fearless exposes, it continues to help solve some heinuous crimes in society today.

Although its peak was during the Martial Law years, this news program with several editions managed to maintain its credibility and integrity. The fact that it has stayed this long (it’s the longest running newscast in English), it must be doing something right.

Partners: Mel & Jay.
This talk show began on ABS-CBN with Korina Sanchez as executive producer. A quarrel with Mel Tiangco and Jay Sonza on one side and Dong Puno on the other (regarding Mel’s decision to endorse Tide in 1996) resulted in the hosts along with some of the show’s key people – like the very talented Buboy Favor) jumping to the rival station, GMA-7, where it is still doing very well in the ratings game.

The Probe Team.
This magazine show began as The Probe on ABS-CBN in 1987. Channel 2, unfortunately, didn’t see its potential and let it go after only a few months. It resurrected later on Channel 7 where it became one of the most respected and most awarded shows on Philippine television.

Ricky Reyes: Beauty School Plus.
This TV show started out as instructional and has evolved into a hairstyle program. No, it’s not all about glamour and beauty procedures. In the process, it also reaches out to the poor – to those who don’t have the funds and resources to enroll in beauty schools, but may want to have a career in the forever-flourishing business of beauty salons. (Wasn’t that how Ricky Reyes started – as a beauty parlor helper? Look where he is now!)

Travel Time.
Hosted and produced by Susan Calo Medina, it’s the mother of all travel shows. It has succeeded during all these years because it is always well produced. The show is not only entertaining, but also very educational. It teaches geography the painless way.

TV Patrol.
It revolutionized news programs on Philippine television when it was launched by ABS-CBN in 1986. TV Patrol has had a lot of changes in anchormen. Add to that the fact that it went from one hour, to 45 minutes to half an hour. But through all these years, it is always there – delivering the news at 6 p.m.

Recipient of the this year’s Lifetime Achievement Award is the original queen of showbiz talk shows – the one who started it all: Inday Badiday.
* * *
This year’s Star Awards is produced by Airtime Marketing Inc. of Tessie Celestino Howard. Among the sponsors of the show are Best Ever Rejoice, Samsung Electronics, Babyflo Nursers and Silicone Nipple and New Surf Jumbo Cut; Regent Cakes, LG, Goldilocks Foodshop, Star Margarine, Greenext All Purpose Cleaner, Globe Handyphone, Chowking, Dulcolax, Dunkin’ Donut, Cleene Toothbrush, Myra 300E, Mc Donalds and Family’s Brand Sardines, Albatross Bathroom Deodorizer, Apollo Pure Petroleum Jelly, Mediplast Plastic Strip, Babyflo Cotton Buds and Hope 100s.

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