Family Shows, Family Time
This post was originally published at Pinoyatbp.
I still remember the old television set we had when I was growing up in Noveleta, Cavite in the 1970’s. It was boxed in a wooden cabinet with sliding doors, an antenna on top and wooden legs. It had four dials. One to turn it on and to adjust the volume as well. Another one to change the channels ranging from 2 to 13. Also one for horizontal adjustment and another for vertical adjustment.
At night, my family (and once in a while neighbours, too) would gather around the TV and watch whatever show was on. One show that sticks in my mind is “John en Marsha,” the family sitcom that starred Dolphy and Nida Blanca in the title roles and also the hilarious Dely Atay-Atayan as the rich mother-in-law whose line “Kaya ikaw John magsumikap ka” always ended the weekly show. Dolphy’s son Rolly Quizon and the young Maricel Soriano portrayed their children Rolly and Shirley.
One other favourite of mine was the family tear-jerker, “Gulong ng Palad.” This was about a family who experienced, I think, more downs than ups. As the song lyric goes: “Ang kapalaran kung minsan ay nasa ilalim… minsa’y nasa ibabaw.” This show starred the beautiful Marianne dela Riva as Luisa, the equally handsome Ronald Corveau as Carding, and the young Romnick Sarmenta as the cute and adorable Peping. This series made the song “Gulong ng Palad” famous. I still remember the lyrics, “Kung minsan ang takbo ng buhay mo. Pagdurusa nito’y walang hanggan. Huwag kang manimdim ang buhay ay gulong ng palad.”
These lyrics prepared me for what was to happen in my life. My parents separated when I was 12 and it was really tough on all of us. Mama, my sister and I left Cavite and went to live with my aunt in Pandacan, Manila. And then Mama left us there when she went to work in Canada.
I was very shy and didn’t join my aunt’s family at night when they watched TV. Most of the time I stayed in the bedroom, which I shared with my sister and cousins, usually studying. It turned out to be a good thing because I got high grades and excelled in most of my High School subjects.
It was then the 80’s and the popular shows were the Janice de Belen starrer, Flor de Luna and and its rival, the Julie Vega starrer, Anna Liza. I got a glimpse of both shows every now and then when I got home from school.
When my sister and I got our own place when we were in college, we were not able to afford a TV set and I wasn’t really able to follow the shows that were on. I didn’t mind it, though. It actually helped me concentrate on my studies and I spent my extra time reading lots of books. Had I watched TV then, I would have known that my elementary classmate was one of the bagets of “That’s Entertainment” and was known by the screen name Raffy Romillo.
When I came here in Winnipeg, Canada in 1989, I found myself attracted to family sitcoms. “Fullhouse” was one show I enjoyed. This was about a single dad raising three children that included the Olsen twins. “Cosby,” although about a black family, tackled issues not just relating to the race but also about issues in raising teenagers. “Family Matters” was enjoyable and was made more hilarious by the nerd Steve Urkel (Jaleel White). “Growing Pains,” with teen heartthrob Kirk Cameron, was another favourite.
As my family grew and the children got older and as we acquired more TV sets, I noticed that the kids were having different choices in shows that they wanted to watch. During the day, we are scattered around the house watching different shows in different rooms.
But the one TV where we usually gather around is the one in the kitchen. I know some people wouldn’t agree with having a TV in the kitchen and watching TV during a meal. To some, dinner is the time for the family to talk. So does in our house. It’s also the time that our favourite family shows are on.
Our current favourites are: “George Lopez,” “Still Standing,” “Malcolm in the Middle,” and “Everybody Hates Chris.” These shows have kids that are the same ages as mine. Although, these shows sometimes tackle controversial issues, it prompts me to talk to my kids about those same issues. I have three boys, a teenager, a pre-adolescent, and one who’s not quite there yet. It’s not easy for me to sit each one of the two older ones down and talk about drugs, alcohol, and sex. They would squirm and go, “Ewwh.” But somehow, when we are all gathered around watching these issues on TV via a sitcom, it’s easier for me to mention these topics and point out to them the moral lesson of an episode. And it’s not too awkward for any of us.
Television sets have evolved to different sizes and shapes. There are now plasma TVs and widescreen TVs. They have become more technologically advanced. Remote controls have made it easier to flip through hundreds of channels. Families have been able to afford more than one set in the house. Different kinds of shows have come and gone. And family shows are still popular. I think it’s because we can all relate and they also try to tackle subject matter that we encounter every day.
These are the 7 Comments on “Family Shows, Family Time” that was published at Pinoyatbp.
DarkBlak said on November 10th, 2005 at 8:03 am
kabayan!!!! taga Cavite ka pala
Naalala ko yung TV rin namin dati may pinto rin, Black & White pa. Kaya lang di ko na naabutan na maayos. hehehe
Irene said on November 10th, 2005 at 11:21 pm
Kababayan, naabutan mo pa rin pala yung ganung tv.
Sidney said on November 11th, 2005 at 12:38 pm
Nice piece of TV history! Time pass by so quickly!
Irene said on November 12th, 2005 at 10:52 am
Aye, aye to that Sidney. It doesn’t seem so long ago when Cosby was still on air. Well, it still now (on reruns) but it’s already considered a classic.
duke said on November 13th, 2005 at 9:11 pm
uy! may tv di kaming ganon! gawa sa kahoy yung frame
Nanood din ako ng fullhouse. ang bata pa ng Olsen twin duon ngayon Mary Kate and Ashley na sila! I like Malcolm in The Middle . Nakakatuwa panoorin! Good for kids (and kid at heart like me!)
Irene said on November 16th, 2005 at 11:37 am
Patok sa mga anak ko ang Malcolm in the Middle dahil puro boys din silang magkakapatid.
melai said on December 6th, 2005 at 4:05 pm
uhmmnnn naiiyak ako, mejo senti ako pag nagrereminisce ng past e …. anyways ,, yung tv namin na ganyan andit pa sa bodega nakakatuwang tignan pag napapasok ako ng bodega noon
This post was last updated on July 6, 2008