To the Philippines’ Movie and Television Review and Classification Board: Get Real!

After my previous rants about the media, there are those who called me out on the fact that I can’t really blame everything on them. After all, the bottom line is that media companies are simply about making money and little else. Whether or not something is right or wrong, moral or immoral, good or bad is not really their problem. Their only concern is essentially “selling what sells” as a certain NPC once said in Shadowrun. Remember that the Philippines is supposedly a democracy and everyone, media stations included, are allowed to use whatever means are available to them to make a profit.

However, like anywhere else, everyone in a democratic country has standards to meet and boundaries to observe. And yes, this does include the media. When any media station or company begins going past the limits of what is legal and family-friendly, it is the job of the MTRCB to stop them and rein them in. However, with what’s happening so far both on our local televisions and our society at large, I can only wonder whether or not the MTRCB still exists. I mean really, after the general nastiness that seems all too rampant in the Philippines today, I’m at a loss on whether or not the MTRCB still operates in the Philippines or if its members are on some kind of permanent vacation.


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To the members of the MTRCB who might be reading this, here are my two cents on your job so far. Yes, I know that I’m just an amateur, but my days as a psychologist’s assistant has shown me more than I needed to know about what is happening in our society. It’s your job to make sure that the media is giving our youths informative and wholesome entertainment but, with everything that’s happening and continuing to happen, I can only speculate that the MTRCB has essentially become an underground organization like the MIB.

Anyway, here are my observations:

Teen Pregnancy

This is perhaps one of the most common cases my employer and I have encountered as of late. Well, teen pregnancies have always occurred throughout history (heck, Mary was 14 when she had Jesus) but their increase in frequency is getting more and more alarming. Remember what I said about over-romanticism? Well, my employer agrees with me that the way our culture has essentially become focused on romance and little else may have something to do with it.

Of course, there is the fact that we are all free to consume what media we want and I will certainly not deny that the Filipino people are both romantic and passionate in whatever they do. However, it is something else entirely to bombard people with nothing but romance, romance and romance. From our music to majority of our shows, there is not a single one that does not involve romance of one kind or another. And no, it’s not the low-key type of romance either, it’s usually the kind where the lead characters always get together in the end and live happily ever after.

Worse yet, the idea of love is presented as an idyllic thing that is actually quite different from what it really is in real life. While I am no expert on the matter, I really need to say that love is more about an acceptance for one another, a deep sense of trust and an acknowledgement of one’s loyalty and responsibility towards his or her significant other. The local media magnates have essentially confused teen lust with true love and is trying to present it to the common people as the answer to all their problems without showing them the possible consequences such as teen pregnancy.


Well, like the above, there’s no denying the fact that this does happen in real life. What’s essentially sad though is that the media presents it as something that is normal. Look, being a guy, I can admit that our eyes might wander from time to time (and something that is not our hand might point to someone else), especially when alone, but that doesn’t mean we all intend to cheat our significant others (in case you’re curious, I actually don’t have one).

Anyway, thanks again to the media’s greedy ways, more and more people seem to think that they’re spouses are cheating or will cheat on them even though that couldn’t be further from the truth. Asides from teen pregnancy, my employer and I have been doing more and more marriage counseling in the previous months because more and more spouses are convinced that their significant other is seeing someone else or is planning to see someone else.

The most common denominator here is that all these clients have been watching nothing but teleseryes while at home. While I am only an assistant after all, I cannot help but correlate the factors. Please people of the MTRCB, if you understand what I’m trying to say here, stop the media from destroying families through paranoia.

Child Molestation

Ever notice that the victims of child molestation and rape are getting younger and younger?

Well, I hate to say it but I think it might have something to do with the way children in our media are being sexualized. As I’ve already mentioned, no one seems to be bothered by the fact that Willie Revillame essentially forced a young boy to dance like a male stripper and no one seems to give a rat’s ass that a bunch of little girls dressed in skimpy outfits dancing sexily in imitation of noon-time show dancers on Goin’ Bulilit. People even go on to say that as long as we don’t look at them with malice, it’s okay.

But then again, what about people who do look at children with malice? And, from the way they’re allowed or forced to do what they do, who’s to say that the producers didn’t have malice in their minds? Then we even have the gall to wonder why we pedophiles like it so much in our country…



17 Replies to “To the Philippines’ Movie and Television Review and Classification Board: Get Real!”

  1. Dear Grimwald,
    it seems that you put all the responsibility of “taking care” of the weak soul and “educating” the young is a task of a TV channel/network.
    Now, I come from a country where such tasks and duties are the sole responsibility of the parents.
    My parents have to protect me (as a child = weak soul) from the filth on TV and other media.
    Or they (my parents) have to make clear that what is shown on TV doesnt come close to what life is about in real(ity).
    So I (as child/teenager/adoloscent) have to distinguish between what is the “fake” world and what is the real world.
    If and when Filipino parents cant take up this responsibility seriously then they are un-equipped, unsuited and not qualified to be parents in the first place. And the PH TV networks know this. So the Philippine public is an easy target for TV networks.

    1. And you have nailed the issue right on its head. The parents have no real idea what to do with their kids just following tips they hear from others… which tends to be from other people who got their tips in Philippine TV in the first place!

      Sad to say, but I can see Philippine media devolving into love porn. Kinda like how in “Idiocracy”, the movies devolved into Ass. Literally.

      1. Ricardo,
        what about PH radio stations? What about the PH newspapers? Personally, I am reasonably okay with Sun Star (Cebu issue).

        1. Newspapers for the most part remains unchanged aside from the ads they show. Radio stations that tell the news? Just fine. Music or storytelling? Nothing but deep lust.

  2. The Media people are also susceptible to corruption. “lagay diyan, lagay dito”. So that, they will look the other way; while these bad shows are released for public consumption, by their approval.

    I have never seen a teleserya; where the Politician had many wives; many children; and was Stealing from the National Treasury, to support his “Harem” , and provide for many of his children.

    I have yet to see a teleserya; where the Politician steals from the National Treasury thru: Pork Barrel, DAP, PDAF, BBL Law,etc…

    These are the Realities in our lives, that need to be featured in the media.

    Not, infidelities; romances, where the hero and heroine lived happily ever after; children acting like adults; and other stupid stories, that do not make sense…

    If you want a True Reality Show. Feature how a Politician steals from his Pork Barrel. And remit his loot, to his overseas bank accounts…

  3. @Grimwald. I understand your utter frustration at the pathetic state of PH media. I used to be an avid TV watcher. But for the past 10 years I have survived without any TV signal or cable connection in my home. The widescreen we have is just for DVDs. Most of my visual content I just get internet – esp. News sites and YouTube.

    To everyone listening. Try going on a fast from TV for a season. You will find a renewed sense of freedom. The freedom to decide what content is worth your time, and not be at the mercy of people who can’t judge between whats beneficial content and garbage.

    Besides, life is short. time is gold. Why waste it on crap TV programs fixated on romance?

    We’ve got a country to change so let’s try to tone down on wasting time watching these clowns trying to entertain us. Look at the sorry state of PH society mostly shaped by stupid TV programs. It’s not funny anymore.

    To GRP team. Thanks for being so prolific on the posts. Would appreciate if we could diversify on the range of topics for a change. How bout an article on PH educational system? Or are there any other requests people?

    1. I am a witness to that freedom. It was the one good thing I got from living through Armageddon.



      Yolanda Survivor.

  4. It might not be true that things like teen pregnancy and child molestation are worse than ever (leaving aside population growth), simply because things tended to be less reported in the past – lack of policing, records, awareness and empowerment, too much misplaced shame. Though I’m not confident those things have improved enough to give an idea of the real picture even today.

    Even in the UK and US, there have been all those high-profile paedophilia and rape scandals stretching back decades and only coming out recently because the victims were afraid of the celebrity’s power and influence. How many Jimmy Saviles have been at large in the Philippine media all this time?

  5. The only valid censorship of ideas is the right of people not to listen. Indeed, censorship is the child of fear and the father of ignorance.

    When truth is replaced by silence,the silence is a lie. Withholding information is the essence of tyranny. Control of the flow of information is the tool of the dictatorship.

    1. Forsaken,
      I must avoid to embarras you bec it may/will lead to Hiya. So I will be silent and not speak.

      In short: the PH culture is a culture that promotes tiranny, densorship and lying.

      So again, I wonder why the likes of Grimwald keep on accusing the media while its already happening within the population.

      1. To answer that, Phillipine media wasn’t always the love cesspool that you see it today. As a guy born in the late 80s, I actually saw Philippine media trying to be creative. In terms of comedies, horror, action. It may be crappier than the norm, but let’s face it. Even Bollywood (India), Chinese and Japanese cinema were just as laughable.

        But then the Mexican teleserye “Marimar” happened. It sold like mad when it arrived. Network executives saw it as a cash cow. And so they imported more Mexican and Spanish teleserye and at the same time, tried studying how it works.

        Like Marimar, it sold like mad. Even the shows made in the Philippines based on it also sold like mad. To promote the shows, they began selling love songs.

        And thus began a spiral where the networks continued to make copies upon copies thus leading to the love media cesspool you see today.

        The irony? Several.

        For starters, Mexico has become a very corrupt country ran by the Cartels. Not unlike the Philippines which are ran by both corrupt officials and foolish voters.

        Chinese, Indian (Bollywood), and Japanese media have reached Hollywood quality in both filming and storytelling. While Philippine cinema have remained in the 90s and is not moving up anytime soon.

        Hope that answers your questions.

        1. Ricardo,
          thanks and appreciation for your elaborate explanation.

          I am totally unaware of PH tv history (where they come from, where they are now and where they wanna go to).

          In my country, there is also a lot of crap tv programs. So what I do then is turn off my tv or switch channels. And bec of that I cant blame the TV networks for airing and producing crap TV. For them its a job and a business. They thrive on the number of viewers so they can sell the commercials for a higher rate.

      2. Thank you Grimwald, because you are not alone in your frustrations.

        I knew there was something off when the media has nothing but love over in all their heads. And look at the society it helped create. A society obsessed with gossip, romance and inane things.

        Not saying that media is the sole cause. It’s part of a greater problem.

        Because by limiting your interests, you are also limiting possibilities. The Philippine media may not realize this, but the media that a person is exposed to is what that person looks up to. Whether they realize it or not. (An old article of yours Grimwald, pointed this out but it deserves to be mentioned again)

        Many modern marvels you see today started because of the inspiration the media on them.

        Development and interest in space travel and exploration continues thanks to Star Wars, Star Trek and even various Sci-fi novels and Anime.

        Various advancements in technology are driven by scientists, who were at one point geeks who were inspired by the various books, film and shows they saw when they were younger.

        Part of the reason why Japanese tend to be selfless and helpful was because of the old Sentai and Kamen Rider shows that showed them how to do it. And unlike Philippine Cinema which continues to stagnate despite a few facelifts, these shows explore different themes and ideas. Thus keeping it fresh.

        “Bad works are a distraction. Good works change you.” ~Oancitizen

        Still, they should put Anime back in its proper place like back in the 90s. Or hell, bring back the old Tokutatsu shows. (Kamen Rider/Super Sentai)

        At least they teach different and good values than any of the Philippine “romances” can give. Ever.

      3. Robert,

        My mouth is often wounded by my sharp words, so sometimes when I’m out in public, I’ll wear a large Band Aid over my lips.

  6. The news media in public or abs-cbn, TV5, and GMA news are so dumbing down the people watching it. Compared to CNN Philippines the way they say, present and broadcast their news are in a very non-propaganda way. But of course you need to pay cable tv to see that. The major tv networks in the Philippines needs to change their means of broadcasting television shows and news so that the Filipino cultural heritage will be watched and enjoyed by Filipinos. Just because it is free doesn’t mean it can’t be presented in a very stupid way. Our national language has been stupefied by poverty and corruption. The place in where I live is very unsanitary full of stray dogs that poops on th road noisy neighbors and no moral character that is needed for a functional society. THE END. Just stating my opinion. Evolution will find a way for things to get better but that will be long before I experience it. Or maybe if I go to a different place I will be better. x

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