Michael V is happy that Pepito Manaloto has a strong following even though there are a lot of competing shows during its time slot.
“Ako, natutuwa para sa show. Hindi na for myself, e. Kasi, ang ginagawa namin is magpaligaya ng specific audience,” he said when PEP.ph (Philippine Entertainment Portal) and other entertainment reporters visited the cast on the set of Pepito Manaloto.
He added that the show’s objective is to keep the family together on a weekend.
“Ito ‘yong grupo na parang kagaya ko na noong time na nanonood ako ng John en Marsha, Iskul Bukol, mga mahilig sa sitcom.
“Parang feeling ko, lost art siya. Nawala na ‘yong bonding time ng family, na may schedule na kapag ganitong oras ng ganitong araw, upo lahat, manonood, kumakain sabay-sabay habang nanonood ng TV.
“Parang nawala na ‘yong ganun so, ang objective namin is maibalik ‘yong ganung habit ng family bonding habang nanonood ng sitcom.
“Parang nangyayari naman. Kapag nanonood ako, sinasabayan ko ng tweet ‘yong mga televiewers,” said Michael.
ON WATCHING COMPETITORS. Is the Pepito Manaloto team bothered by the ratings of their show?
“Alam ko, network lang ang nabo-bother.
“Ewan ko, minsan hindi ko rin maintindihan, madalas ang nagpa-panic ay ang network [executives],” he laughed.
Because of this, Michael reveals that they sometimes get orders from network executive suggesting some changes in the show. Fortunately, as a creative writer of the show, Michael has the chance to defend their show from bosses.
“Sometimes they ask you to do something na you don’t ordinarily do.
“Para sa akin, no-no ‘yon, e.
“Parang, teka lang, sandali, huwag muna tayong mag-react.
“Tingnan muna natin kung ano ang mangyayari,” he said.
However, he admitted that sometimes he checks out rival programs to see how Pepito Manaloto will fare in the ratings game.
“I do watch the competition from time to time,” admitted Michael.
“Kailangan ma-gauge mo kung kaya mo o hindi.
“Kapag nakita ko naman na kaya, mag-stalker mode naman ako sa talents, sa writers, pati sa director, sa mga accomplishments.
“Kapag sa tingin ko kaya, we don’t normally change anything.
“Titingnan na lang namin kung gaano katagal sila tatagal, pahabaan na lang ng pisi.”
For Michael, it’s better to give viewers a quality show than constantly offering them new programs.
“Alam namin na they can produce five to ten sitcoms na pwedeng ipangtapat sa amin, pero if you do that, acceptance na kaagad ‘yon ng defeat, palit ka nang palit.
“Dapat mag-capitalize ka sa isa, ‘tapos tutukan mo nang maigi. Quality kaysa quantity pa rin.”
Right now, Bitoy said their team is more inspired to produce better episodes because of the positive comments they usually receive from viewers.
“Inspired kaming gawin kasi parang every week may nakukuha kaming kwento, may nakukuha kaming istorya na pwedeng i-develop into an episode.
“‘Yong istorya hindi lang sa akin nag-uumpisa, nanggagaling din sa writers, sa co-stars, minsan kahit sa tweet ng fans o audience.
“Sila mismo ang nagbibigay ng idea, which is good kasi kapag napanood nila, matutuwa sila, sa akin nangyari ‘yon.”
This Saturday, August 9, Pepito Manaloto will be airing its 100th episode featuring Asia’s Songbird Regine Velasquez. This sitcom is part of GMA Sabado Star Power sa Gabi.