Change of the gender guard in show bizBy Nestor U. Torre
Philippine Daily Inquirer
It happens every TV-film season: You watch a number of shows and movies in a row for a few months, and then you realize that a particular new male talent is getting more than his share of key scene exposure in a series of productions—so much so that he seems to be shaping up as the new “flavor” of the season.
It makes sense if he really is star material, and if he’s got what it takes to deserve all that exposure in increasingly bigger roles. More often than not, however, the new fave and fantastic find isn’t really all that good, and sometimes downright gauche and deficient in his portrayals.
Once upon a female
So why do TV channels and their sister movie companies spend so much time and resources to make him a big star? Why is this new talent favored over the dozens of other very “eligible” starlets out there? What has he got that they haven’t?
From past experience and evidence, talent clearly doesn’t have to be the main selling—or buying—factor. If the “talent” delivers what the “sponsor” wants, the benefits follow!
There was a time when the talent of the year was often female. She became known as her production company’s “princess”—without having the royal lineage or genes for it.
But most of the “sponsored” talents who become stars these days are male— which says a lot about the radical changing of the “gender guard” in local show biz.
Many new stars are male because quite a number of the new power brokers and key production executives are gay. Every once in a rare while, a female star is created, or a veteran actress’ comeback bid is supported by lesbian backers. But the gay male connection is clearly the name of this season’s game.
It wouldn’t be so bad if the new talent were genuinely talented. But most of the time the new discovery is unable to do justice to the wonderful roles assigned to him, and it’s us poor viewers who are left holding the bag!
The new star is happy, his sponsor is grinning from ear to ear, but we—the members of the viewing public—are not getting the quality of entertainment we deserve.
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