An old-fashioned new sitcom

SHADES of John en Marsha! A new sitcom promises to give viewers a sense of nostalgia with good old-fashioned family fun (and antagonistic overtures from in-laws).

The beloved long-running sitcom, which ran from 1973 to 1990 and had a number of spin-offs and movies, followed the adventures of John Puruntong (played by the comedian Dolphy) and his wife Marsha (played by Nida Blanca) who try to live their life and raise their children in a poor community next to the train tracks, all the while dealing with the interference of Marsha’s rich mother, Doña Delilah (played by Dely Atay-Atayan)

Team A, the newest comedy series from Viva Entertainment, the Sari Sari Channel, and TV5, tells the story of young parents Ian and Janet (played by former Rak of Aegis stars and real-life couple Jerald Napoles and Kim Molina) and how they fare in raising a child (Gianna Iguiron). Compounding the conflict is that they are the adult children of intrusive parents, namely Ian’s father Arman Ambida (played by Anjo Yllana), and Janet’s mother Violeta (played by Yayo Aguila).

The show was introduced to media guests during a press conference on March 9 at the TV5 studios, where the four main players played a game of charades for the audience (with the answers being terms related to family).

Also in the cast are Gene Padilla as Mon Bagsic, Violeta’s husband, and Janet’s father; Cindy Miranda as Rochelle, Janet’s beauty-queen YouTuber sister; Marc Acueza as Estong, Rochelle’s innocent-looking but rich husband; Ethan David as Jaime Sobel, Ian’s over-confident co-driver; and Ashtine Olviga as Diane, Janet’s youngest sister.

The show premieres on March 18 on TV5 at 9:30 p.m., with a new episode airing every Saturday and re-runs at 9 p.m. every Sunday on the Sari Sari Channel (Cignal Ch 3).

On the schedule, Dino Laurena, TV5’s Chief of Marketing Operations, noted: “Ang naisip namin, maganda mag-introduce ng mga (it’s nice to introduce) programs on Sundays and (Saturday) timeslots that are of the same genre of old. Something that you would look forward to every weekend because they are really something that would be close to our hearts,” he said during the press conference.

Team A is directed by Mervyn Brondial, known for TV rom-coms and telenovelas (his credits include Be Careful with My Heart and The General’s Daughter; as well as the raunchy Vivamax series Lovely Ladies Dormitory). “Mas relatable at experiential ang mapapanood natin (what we’ll see is more relatable and experiential),” he said.

Hastings Holdings, Inc., a unit of PLDT Beneficial Trust Fund subsidiary MediaQuest Holdings, Inc., has a majority stake in BusinessWorld through the Philippine Star Group, which it controls. —  Joseph L. Garcia