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10 TV series that debuted and ended during the pandemic

Luckily, protocols got laid-back or agreeable enough to accommodate the resumption of production for some shows that stopped airing in March 2020 due to the availability of fresh episodes.

The lack of fresh scripted content is [definitely] one of the immediate impacts of the pandemic—at least to the local entertainment scene and the viewers.

When the pandemic started nearly 20 months ago, it probably didn’t occur to many that we’d have full months of replay episodes of past TV shows—some of which were aired many years ago—on television.

It [surely] was amusing in the first few weeks. I mean, seeing Santino and the Sanggres again. That practically sent us back in time.

But a few months into the pandemic, most of us surely were already wondering whether or not we’d be seeing something new again.

Will the pandemic end? Because that would mean production studios can now resume filming, and new shows will finally replace the replays.

Luckily, protocols got laid-back or agreeable enough to accommodate the resumption of production for some shows that stopped airing in March 2020 due to the availability of fresh episodes.

By the middle of the year, shows like ABS-CBN’s A Soldier’s Heart and FPJ’s Ang Probinsyano have successfully returned with new episodes. GMA Network took a few more months to bring back stalled shows like Descendants of the Sun and Anak ni Biday vs Anak ni Waray.

That said, GMA Network, ABS-CBN (through Kapamilya Channel and block time deals with TV5 and A2Z), and TV5 are each able to deliver fresh contents within the pandemic.

Here’s a look back to their programs that aired their pilot and finale episodes during the pandemic:

Ang Sa Iyo Ay Akin.

Lead stars: Iza Calzado, Jodi Sta. Maria, Sam Milby, and Maricel Soriano

This revenge-themed drama series was the first ABS-CBN drama to premiere during the pandemic. 

The show’s premiere got postponed a few times due to the ABS-CBN shutdown and the sudden implementation of protocols that hampered TV and movie production. 

Nevertheless, the show premiered on August 17, 2020, over the Kapamilya Channel. The series, which ended its successful run on March 19, 2021, can now be streamed on Netflix.

Walang Hanggang Paalam.

Lead stars: Angelica Panganiban, Zanjoe Marudo, Paulo Avelino, and Cherry Pie-Picache

Walang Hanggang Paalam follows the story of two parents’ quest to retrieve their child who fell prey to a human-trafficking syndicate that sells human body organs harvested from the kids they kidnapped. 

The show aired from September 28, 2020 to April 16, 2021.

Bagong Umaga.

Lead stars: Tony Labrusca, Barbie Imperial, Kiko Estrada, Michelle Vito, Yves Flores, Heaven Peralejo, and Glydel Mercado

Airing from October 26, 2020 to April 30, 2021, Bagong Umaga is a daytime drama series, which followed the story of six young adults and their interconnected lives. 

The show succeeded the afternoon series, Love Thy Woman, whose airing was first canceled during the pandemic.

Init Sa Magdamag.

Lead stars: Yam Concepcion, Gerald Anderson, and JM de Guzman

Recently concluded, Init Sa Magdamag, is the first ABS-CBN series to complete its airing on both A2Z Channel 11 and TV5.

The series premiered from April 19 to September 10, 2021. 

The story revolved around three characters and their chaotic love-triangle. The series featured elements of political drama.

Owe My Love

Lead Stars: Lovi Poe, Benjamin Alves, and Ai-ai de las Alas

It’s GMA Network’s first romantic comedy series. It had its pilot and finale episodes during the pandemic. 

About a street-smart young lady burdened by financial loans, she met a wealthy, handsome doctor she would later on fall in love with in Owe My Love.  It got aired from February 15 to June 4, 2021. It was Lovi Poe’s last project with GMA Network before transferring to ABS-CBN.

Babawiin Ko Ang Lahat.

Lead stars: Pauline Mendoza, John Estrada, and Carmina Villaroel

This short-lived afternoon drama marked Pauline Mendoza’s first solo-starrer.

The series followed the story of a young woman whose life turned upside down when his father’s original family, returned to their lives.

The series aired from February 22 to May 21, 2021, completing only 63 episodes.

First Yaya.

Lead stars: Sanya Lopez and Gabby Concepcion

First Yaya is a highly successful primetime series, which served as Sanya Lopez’s first solo-starrer in a primetime series. The show, which followed the story of a nanny who fell in love with her employer—the President of the Philippines—aired from March 15 to July 2, 2021.

Heartful Café.

Lead stars: Julie Anne San Jose, David Licauco, and Edgar Allan Guzman

This short-lived romantic drama featured a love story about an online novelist and café owner, who fell in love with her business partner.

It aired from April 26 to June 18, 2021.

Ang Dalawang Ikaw

Lead stars: Ken Chan, Rita Daniela, and Ana Vicente

This recently-concluded afternoon series, and featured Ken Chan in multiple roles. The show aired exactly 60 episodes, from June 21 to September 10, 2021.

Paano Ang Pasko/Pangako?

Lead stars: Maricel Laxa, Ricky Davao, Beauty Gonzales, Julia Clarete, Devon Seron, Elijah Canlas, and Ejay Falcon

This ensemble drama is the first and only (so far) primetime drama of TV5 that aired its pilot and finale episodes, within the pandemic. Airing from November 23, 2020 to March 3, 2021, Paano Ang Pangako’s scenes are mainly filmed in San Pablo City, Laguna. 

Which of these shows is your favorite? Did you think of another show that should be on this list? Comment below.

Note: The list does not include mini-series, weekly series and Web series (including iWantTFC-produced shows)

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