The essay chronicles the history of the teleserye or the Filipino TV soap opera, one of today’s transnational televisual products making waves in different parts of the globe. It covers three periods—the period of transition from radio to TV (1962 to 1986), the period of competition (1986-2000), and the period of transformation (2000-present). Traversing through 60 years of the form’s enduring presence in Philippine television, it traces the format’s beginnings as it was introduced to the medium in a highly volatile social environment, and assesses its continued flourishing in democratized, contemporary times and consequent entry into the highly competitive global drama market, where it serves both foreign and its very own Filipino diasporic audiences. The essay echoes the abiding thesis of my studies about the cultural history of the teleserye—that the form is indeed the drama of Filipino life. As domestic, serial form, the teleserye’s intimate relation to the Filipino everyday ultimately makes it reflective of the country’s life and times, its evolution interconnected with the ebb and flow of Philippine history. These are illustrated by representative texts from the said periods, as well as key contexts that unravel the evolution of the form, now gleaned from a global, as well as diasporic context.
Sanchez, L.J.A. (2022). The Teleserye Story: Three Periods of the Evolution of the Filipino TV Soap Opera. Rupkatha Journal, 14(1). 1-16. https://doi.org/10.21659/rupkatha.v14n1.13