Talent tilt in tumultBy Nestor U. Torre
Philippine Daily Inquirer
Three current talent competitions on TV are experiencing less than super-duper times these days, due to a wide range of different factors or unexpected developments.
Most “shocking” of all have been the recent developments on GMA 7’s “Protege” search for new stars. The tilt’s mentors were caught off-guard last week when more than the usual number of finalists was eliminated, and the mentors were asked to choose just one survivor each, and refused.
The following week, however, the mentors more equably did as instructed.
On the plus side, the tilt’s “shockers” made it unpredictable and thus “exciting.” On the other hand, it intimated that there was trouble or dissent brewing in the competition, and that isn’t a good thing.
But, the bottom line is: After all of the dramatics, will the tilt produce some really stellar finds who will boost GMA 7’s roster of gifted luminaries? In a few more weeks, we’ll get the answer to that key, make-or-break question.
On TV5’s “Artista Academy,” the flies in the ointment include some of the jurors’ occasionally less-than-astute notes and verdicts on its contestants’ performances. They also tend to give exceedingly high marks for less-than-amazing performances, and come up with facile “motherhood” statements instead of truly incisive critiques.
As for the tilt’s young hopefuls, the majority are goodlooking, as starlets should be, but only a few of them have the unique temperament or charisma that’s a key requisite for stardom.
To be sure, it’s par for the course in local show biz for stars presumptive to project a merely generic “stellar” look, because fans here go for cookie-cutter types instead of unique performers, as should be the case. Why, some starlets even try to look like established show biz luminaries, rather than working hard to be different and distinct!
So, the “fault” isn’t the jurors’ alone, but is shared by the entire industry and its fans. Still, we would hope that talent searches like “Artista Academy” would try to break that limiting mold, so that its finds will have a better chance of making it as true-blue stars—for the long run.
As for “X Factor Philippines,” its biggest bone of contention and confusion is still the inexplicable survival of some of its “idiosyncratic” (as opposed to genuinely gifted) bets, even if the singing tilt is down to its final six—and some better singers have already been voted off.
Whatever the psychological or pop-anthropological explanation for this weird phenomenon is, it continues to detract from the competition’s reliabality as a showcase for superior singing ability.
Of course, the tilt’s view is that the vaunted “X Factor” it’s looking for is not dependent on good singing alone—but we would think that a basic modicum or minimum of musical ability should be observed and maintained!
Be that as it may, the amazing thing is that our own three “favored” bets were still able to survive last Sunday’s cut! We’re hoping against hope that KZ Tandingan, Allen Sta. Maria and Jeric Medina will eventually be able to make it to the tilt’s Final Three, despite the “idiosyncratic” interlopers still in contention—but, will our collective luck hold that far?
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