Jan 29
PECULIARITIES OF DRAMA ON TV by Corie Henson  |  Posted in Articles  |  on Wed, Jan 29, 2014

This is a list of unsolicited advice to the production people of local tv soaps which have been enjoying good patronage. However, concerned production staff should be vigilant to avoid trite scenes and boring stories.

In Maria Mercedes, Jessy Mendiola was offered a cheque by Ariel Rivera who is a rich businessman. Jessy Mendiola refuses by tearing the cheque. Wala bang ibang paraan to decline the offered cheque?

In a scene involving the villain Rayver Cruz, there’s the dialogue, “Iligpit yan.” And in another soap there was “Mabulok siya sa bilangguan” and “Sa isang kundisyon.” Those lines are reminiscent of the radio drama days.

In a fight scene, Gerald Anderson kicked the hand that holds the gun of his enemy. He did that not once but twice. Hindi na nagbago ang style ng mga stunt directors. How we miss the machine-gun punches of FPJ.

More on the fight scenes, it is very noticeable that when the hero fights the goons, just one punch will do the job. Pero pag yung main villain na ang kalaban ng bida ay aabutin ng ilang oras bago matapos ang fight scene.

Another one for the stunt directors. When the hero has a gun pointed to the villain (or vice versa) mabibitawan ang baril para may dahilan na magsuntukan sila. Sinasadya kaya iyun para madagdagan ang TF ng stunt director?


The preparation for the taping of Juan Dela Cruz in Mowelfund Plaza. At 8am the crew and the set were ready but the taping started at 5pm.

The production designer is not exempted from the flaws. In Genesis, the convenience store during the earthquake looked terrible, hatalang makeshift lang. And the stones from the landslide were obviously made of styrofoam kasi kakaiba ang talbog.

In another action soap, Gerald and Rayver were fighting on a grassy area. But the grass below the combatants had that synthetic look. And when Gerald falls on the grass, that portion of the lawn bounced.

In Magpakailanman, Gabby Eigenman fell into a coma due to mugging and knife wounds. After 2 months of laying in coma in ICU, Gabby still has the bruises and even the traces of blood on his face.

Another old style of production designers is the scene inside a moving car. Very obvious ang ilaw sa labas ng kotse na kunyari ay headlights ng ibang vehicles. But an observant viewer would know na effects lang at hindi naman talaga umaandar ang kotse.

And there was the excessive hugging and embracing of characters. Even a tv addict has this to say, “Kapag may good news ay nagyayakapan pero pag malungkot nagyayakapan din habang nag-iiyakan. Ganyan ba talaga tayong mga Pilipino?”


The 3-cam setup of Ipaglaban Mo, a docu-drama of GMA’s news tv channel

In crying scenes, lagi na lang napakatagal ng pag-iyak at iba-ibang camera angles na close up to emphasize the excessive crying. Is this the director’s call or simply editing idiosyncrasies?

Not only on tv but also in movies, why is the villain not only smart but very lucky? Comedies are forgiven but for drama, hindi naman natural na laging successful ang villain at ang hero naman ay laging failure.

Hindi na thrilling ang deadline suspense. Gerald Anderson went to the wake and thought the coffin has no corpse. But it took time for him to convince himself. And he rushed to uncover the truth when the coffin was about to be interred. Habol sa deadline.

Another deadline suspense is the wedding scene where the priest or the judge asks the bride and the bride hesitates to reply “I do.” Ganyang-ganyan ang eksena ni Jessy Mendiola sa remake ng Maria Mercedes.

The out of character dialogue flaw is also prevalent. Vivian Velez plays the role of Malvina, a rich and educated matron, who killed a man. Kaya ba niyang pumatay ng tao by herself? And where did she get the gun?

In Prinsesa Ng Buhay Ko, John Feir said, “Siya kasi ang layason officer.” As Don Lauren Monteverde, a rich businessman would pronounce it the proper way. More likely, hindi alam ng production people ang correct pronunciation ng word na liaison.

Aside from out of character ay meron ding out of situation. Direk Nestor Torre noticed in Genesis that the tsunami was so destructive pero wala namang namatay. Further, Direk Nestor said that the story of Genesis is getting to be boring. Endless kasi ang tragedy.

Exception to the endless syndrome is Be Careful Wth My Heart. The endless romance and excessive pakilig of Maya and Sir Chief, played by Jodi Santamaria and Richard Yap, have been maintaining the high rating of their show.

A consolation to tv productions, they have a relatively huge production budget than most indie movies. Wedding scenes or parties show lavish decorations and posh settings with elegantly dressed extras as guests.

Lastly, we hope not to see this scene anymore, never again sana. A dying scene that would reveal a kilometric dialogue of secrets. Please, make the dying scenes realistic. Natataranta na dapat ang mga tao eh nagda-dialogue pa ng mahaba.

In fairness to tv writers, they are always stressed with the deadlines especially when there is a sudden change in the storyline. Minsan din ay may natanggal sa cast kaya madalian ang pagretoke ng script. Kaya good luck na lang sa mga tv scriptwriters.

Para sa mga komento, puwede kayong mag-email sa corzhens@yahoo.com


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