When Reality Bites

Photographs courtesy of GMA-7 ‘Tahanang Pinakamasaya’ hosts Isko Moreno and Paolo Contis.

Arrogance and ungratefulness — these are what people pinpoint as the sour givens that prevailed in Tahanang Pinakamasaya. The flagship daily noontime variety show only had a nine-month run on GMA 7, the biggest free TV network nowadays. What the Kapuso television viewers watch now are replays of the short-lived entertainment fare.

Reality Bites

The battalion of Dabarkads’ loyalty, love and support remain and continue with the longest reigning noontime variety show Eat Bulaga!

Aside from EB’s audiences, its advertisers, brands and sponsors followed their idols and icons, their trusted trio and monarch of the luncheon slot: Tito Sotto, Vic Sotto and Joey de Leon, plus Allan K, Maine Mendoza, Ryan Agoncillo, Ryzza Mae Dizon and the other regulars whose new home is TV5.

With regard to the legal battle between TAPE Inc. and the original hosts and creators of the show, we all know who Lady Justice proclaimed victorious.

During the nine months that the program had no choice but to change its name, rating digits paled in comparison to the Eat Bulaga! and the other program in competition, It’s Showtime.

The challenges and contests, games and what-have-you offerings did not offer magic, not even guffaw-inducing moments, memorable and real-time happening. To be fair, Tahanang Pinakamasaya tried and tested all sorts of tricks and treats to seduce their audiences, with the hope that they will be not only be welcomed, but enjoyed and be part of daily-viewing habit.

Lamentably, their bubble gum fare and fresh talents were no match to the “isang libo’t isang tuwa, mula Batanes hanggang Jolo (a thousand-and-one happiness, from Batanes to Jolo)” branding and entertainment that Eat Bulaga! started since its 30 July 1979 premiere.

Buboy Villar

Realizing the Lessons

The short-lived reign of Tahanang Pinakamasaya on television is proof that the old saying “If ain’t broke, don’t fix it” carries much wisdom and this time, it kicked some asses and eroded pride. There is nothing boring, old and unwatchable in the everyday repertoire of Eat Bulaga! They not only have the expertise but mastery of what to offer their loyalistas and new generation of viewers.

The new bloods of TAPE Inc. and their battle cry of “Discard the old, and welcome the new” showed that “tradition,” “nostalgia, “respect” are of no value to them and can be treated as garbage.

What the brat pack of TAPE Inc. failed to realize is that the 45-year-old variety show, where TVJ acts as central figures, made a lot of people feel — happiness, aspiration, inspiration, dreams coming true, changing lives, tears of joy and sadness, family that stays and grows together.

Some serious queries

From the grapevine, is it true that there is an outstanding P800-million debt erred by TAPE Inc., and that is why the heads of GMA 7 opted to just discontinue the program, terminate the contract to avoid incurring losses?

Wow! Oh, wow! Is it true that the super liquid status paraded by the “Pinakamasayang” leadership are all lip service, and that they were greatly affected by the pullout of the majority of advertisers and sponsors that pledged loyalty and allegiance to the original EB?

What can be said as a matter of fact, Paolo Contis, Isko Moreno, Buboy Villar and Legaspi twins, Maverick and Cassy, still have careers that need re-evaluatuon and re-invention.

To the 130 employees, may you find new jobs soon and may it be easy for all of you given your experience and levels of expertise.

In due time, we will know if It’s Showtime or the network produced TikToClock gets the coveted daily afternoon time slot. Exciting times indeed, most especially for the audiences.

And to the high and mighty that leads TAPE Inc., enjoy your heaps of “humble pie,” that’s all.