We were about to leave the church after the mass when my dad told me that the man sitting on the pew behind us had a television show before but stopped airing in 2008 or 2009. His exact words were, “May tv commentary sya dati, may katuturan yung mga topics nya; hindi katulad nung kay Boy Abunda. Baka fi-nire na siya kasi yung mga tao gusto yung mga walang kwentang palabas.”
Nothing against Boy Abunda’s show though, I do think that we really had more mentally stimulating shows before because I remember that SOME of the shows I watched when I was younger were educational (I emphasize on the some because of course I’d be lying if I say I didn’t watch cartoons. I mean, what kid doesn’t watch cartoons?). I remember watching shows like Math Tinik, Hiraya Manawari, Epol Apple, Sinskwela and Pahina. These shows covered topics in Math, Science, English and even History. It looks quite weird if you imagine it but I remember shouting answers to math or science questions when tv actors would ask questions towards the audience (AKA home audience.) Although I’d have to admit that I enjoyed the history shows better because if I’m not mistaken, Hiraya Manawari was the show where an old man would tell stories to his grandchildren (a girl and a boy) and they would actually transport into the past. They would only be able to get home when they have learned the entire story of an event where they get to interact with different historical figures like Tandang Sora and Andres Bonifacio.
I also remember my aunt telling me that her ultimate childhood crush was MacGyver. For those who don’t know him, Macgyver was the lead in a tv series also entitled Macgyver, who was an agent of a fictional department of the US government who solves complex problems with the everyday tools he finds. He was not only hunky (according to my aunt) but also made her interested in chemistry. Now, compare that with the crushes of little kids nowadays and think of what kind of influence they’ll have, specifically, what kind of things they’ll become interested in.
I think that the media has become too commercialized in the sense that it has weakened, if not lost, its inclination towards topics that actually matter and have substance. The shows nowadays either romanticizes the real world too much which I think gives the younger generations a wrong perspective on real life (as I have observed in my 9-year old brother) or are just plain stupid. Of course an example of the first are the ever popular teleserye’s whose existence I do not condemn because I myself follow some of the shows but the problem is that that’s the only thing on tv and nothing else. An example of the second are cartoon shows like The Regular Show or Billy and Mandy which really annoy me when my little brother watches them because in all parts of the show, from the beginning, climax to the end, I find myself who made the storyline and what were they thinking when they made them because the storyline really made no sense.
I remember a speaker in one of our NSTP discussions said that the problem with bringing back educational shows is that is one network airs it, the other network with a teleserye showing simultaneous to it would have all the audience. What they want to happen is to have both networks air educational shows at the same time so no one loses its viewers. I think it is this kind of commercialism where we come back to the saying, “pera pera na lang yan.”
This events only show that people or at least the ruling class of nations have lost the true passion for different endeavors and have concentrated on the profit that everything can produce rather than the simple joy that things can produce.
I guess the cliché challenge to us is will our generation only replace and turn into the profit-seeking ruling class or will we make for ourselves a future that brings back the passion in the things that we do?
-Maan Marie B. Ariate
2012 – 59006