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COMMENTARY: ABS-CBN and GMA-7 election-related videos

by Maridol Ranoa-Bismark
Mar 9, 2016
John Lloyd Cruz (left) and Piolo Pascual are some of the Kapamilya stars featured in ABS-CBN's "Ipanalo ang Pamilyang Pilipino" summer station ID. Michael V (right) is featured in GMA-7's "Dapat Tama" music video.

Time was when summer station IDs meant shots of dreamy beaches, colorful fiestas, and the glorious morning sun peeping through dappled leaves.

The presidential elections seemed light years away, and what mattered most were the stars and the song that went with the video.

But the presidential elections are here, and GMA-7 and ABS-CBN, true to their role as opinion makers and agents of change, must heed the call of the times.

Their traditional summer station IDs are no longer only about the beauty the stars and Mother Nature.

It has stepped up to the level of politics, and, more, importantly, the future of the young generation.

ABS-CBN's station ID, dubbed as "Ipanalo ang Pamilyang Pilipino," is composed by Marcus Davis, Jan Duran, Thyro Alfaro and Yumi Lacsamana, with lyrics by Lloyd Oliver Corpuz and Christian Abuel.

The beat is upbeat but not frenetic; happy but not overjoyed.

GMA 7's music video "Dapat Tama," on the other hand, uses Gloc 9's hip-hop rap style to drive home its point about clean elections.

Unlike ABS-CBN's video, the tone is dead serious, even foreboding.

MICHAEL V TAKES A RISK. Michael V drops his comedian persona and is all business. He frowns, kicks his legs to make a point, raises a defiant arm up and clenched fist in the air.

Trading that funny man image for a serious one is no joke. It's a 180-degree turn for him. To his credit, the singer-songwriter took the risk to drive home his point about clean elections.

In doing the music video, Michael V and GMA are staying true to the network??s image as a station whose forte is news and public affairs. Hence, you see Lola Nidora (played by Wally Bayola) portraying a corrupt politician luring voters with his money. You see a cameraman taking crowd shots the way any guy like him would in a political rally.

In contrast, ABS-CBN banked on star power to attract as many viewers as possible. Piolo Pascual, John Lloyd Cruz, Angelica Panganiban, Sarah Geronimo, Bea Alonzo, Anne Curtis, are just some of them.

The lyrics of the election jingles used are also worlds apart.

GMA-7's music video borders on the poetic: ??Pag ang tinta ay humalik sa daliring / Siyang ginamit at nagturo na wala ay maibalik, referring to the voting process of putting indelible ink on one??s point finger.

ABS-CBN's language, meanwhile, is simpler. It mimics Juan dela Cruz's way of speaking: "PINA smile mo kami/Parang araw matapos ang ulan."

But video being the visual medium that it is, the images overshadow the lyrics.

LIGHT VS HEAVY. ABS-CBN??s summer station ID, with its multiple references to the Filipino family, targets viewers' hearts. It also tries to bring out the fan in them by putting their biggest stars together scene after scene.

Not so with GMA. The network relies less on star power, more on rational reasoning. Images of corrupt politicians flash on screen as the melody of Michael V's "Dapat Tama" plays and replays in the background.

ABS-CBN plays to the gallery; GMA seeks to single out those among them who'd rather weigh things first before making a political decision.

One is fun and light; the other heavy and aspirational.

It's a case of what is or what should be.

Only the viewer can decide what's best for him and the country. The bottom line is, the elections are approaching, and we have to be vigilant about our votes.

The rival networks have no quarrel about this. It's a message we hope these videos clearly communicate, especially when election day--May 9--comes around.

Otherwise, all those big stars, those catchy music and lyrics, and those little children looking innocently on, would have made their presence felt in vain.

PEPsters, what can you say about ABS-CBN's "Ipanalo ang Pamilyang Pilipino" station ID and GMA-7's "Dapat Tama" music video?

Ed's Note: The "PEP Review" section carries the views of individual reviewers, and does not necessarily reflect the views of the PEP editorial staff.

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John Lloyd Cruz (left) and Piolo Pascual are some of the Kapamilya stars featured in ABS-CBN's "Ipanalo ang Pamilyang Pilipino" summer station ID. Michael V (right) is featured in GMA-7's "Dapat Tama" music video.
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