Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Some Good News

Let us forget the bad news at the moment and look at some of the successes our little country has lately.

Our TV dramas are popular across Southeast Asia. Although I think most of our series suck, not because I have a disease called colonial mentality, but our television producers insist on mediocrity – same storylines and same people. Despite that they are generating enough attention overseas and changing other nationalities’ perception toward our country as this news item shows:

She was very excited about the trip, eager to learn more about the country and its people. She imagined the Philippines to be an eternal fiesta of Spanish and Chinese Third-World flair, filled with warm and accommodating people who all speak with a clear American accent, where all men have the handsome earthy appeal of Jericho Rosales and women the heavenly mestiza charms of Kristine Hermosa (thanks to Filipino soap operas that have become so popular here in Malaysia).It was certainly one of the most honest cultural impressions I’ve ever heard, and quite amusingly, one shared by many. In my German friend’s opinion, the Philippines is one of the most open-minded countries in Southeast Asia. I found this view rather interesting, especially since it came from a European who’s never stepped foot in the Philippines and whose only direct exposure to the country was me.The funny thing about cultural impressions is that they often come from a place of both acute perception and blatant ignorance, split in the middle by what is painfully true. But they are what they are—impressions.


The power of media is being displayed in the preceding article.

In Asia, no country uses the power of cultural products more than Korea. You may have heard about Hallyu or the Korean Wave - the sudden explosion in popularity of Korean enertainment across Asia. From their newspapers (Chosun Ilbo, Korea Times, etc), internet sites (hancinema), and satellite TV (Arirang) all are geared toward the promotion of this wave. But caveat emptor they have a tendency to exaggerate. It seems their journalists lose their objectivity when it comes to this Hallyu phenomenon.

It would help if our government promotes this mini-Filipino "wave" for lack of a better term. I mean it would count as an export therefore earn dollars, and save dollars too. Instead of buying costly ads to promote WOW Philippines our dramas would do the trick.

Filipino tele-novelas very popular in Asian countries

by Olive Tiu

New Delhi, India (November 26) -- Whoever said that it is only Filipinos who watch Filipino tele-novelas and who swoon over Filipino actors and actresses?
The Filipino tele-novelas are very popular in Malaysia, Indonesia and other Asian countries. This is the revelation of the Malaysian and Indonesian media who are members of the Asean-India Media Exchange Program.

Indonesians and Malaysians also swoon over Jericho Rosales, Deither Ocampo, John Lloyd Cruz, Bea Alonzo, Kristine Hermosa, Heart Evangelista and other tele-novela heroes and heroines. They watch Filipino novellas like Ikaw Ang Lahat sa Akin, Gulong ng Palad and many other Filipino tele-novelas which are being shown in their television channels.

The media from the Southeast Asian Countries said they love the Filipino telenovelas more than the telenovelas from other countries because they have better stories and that the Filipino actors and actresses are more good- looking, more intelligent and more talented than their counterparts.

Ms. Che Rohana Che Omar of Radio Television Malaysia said Malaysian; including herself never miss any episode of their favorite Filipino telenovelas. The same is true with Ms. Novita Christie of PT Radio Sonora in Indonesia. She said that some words in the Tagalog dialect are similar to Indonesian and Malaysian words. Besides there is an interpretation in their language so they really are able to emote and empathize with the characters.

This revelation is a big boost to the Philippines tele-novela producers. This will encourage them to produce more quality telenovelas which may be shown anywhere in the world and can compete with the telenovelas of any country.

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