February 11, 2008

Memories Of An 80's Childhood (Part 1) By: Citizen J.D.C.

By Citizen J.D.C.

There are some times when I am alone with my thoughts doing nothing, procrastinating or just engaging in my confined soliloquy, or read some books for the nth time, or snoozing; but besides all that I mentioned, there's this one pastime that I would consider my most favorite; going on a trip back memory lane. Being a nostalgic fool that I am, going for a sentimental journey has become my hobby. A trip where I don't have to be physically out of my house. Where my time machine is my recollection about the past and my experiences that comes with them. Where all it takes is to hop in and go with the spiral and spin, spin, and spin around, and around, and around, and around....

"Pagmulat ng mata, langit nakatawa sa Batibot" Ahh, how could I forget that song. And the place. The neighborhood every kids my age wished they lived. Where they can play with the childish, hulking Pong Pagong and the gravel-voiced Kiko Matsing. Where they can listen to Kuya Bodjie's stories. Where they can learn their abc's... or in this case, a-ba-ka-da from Ate Siena. And the puppets: the siblings Ningning and Ginging, Irma and Tikyo, the bickering aliens Sitsiritsit and Alibangbang and other crop of characters whose names I can't recall anymore. All in all, Batibot is perhaps the fondest memory every 80's kid like me has in our respective childhood. And don't forget, Batibot is shown twice a day, everyday; the morning run is aired over channel 9, the afternoon run is aired over PTV 4. Weekend kiddie variety shows means either Uncle Bob's Lucky 7 Club, Pen Pen De Sarapen or Star Smile Factory.

Cartoons. There were lots of that on TV then than now. Especially during weekday afternoons. When ABS-CBN resumed broadcasting after the EDSA revolution it showed robot cartoons every, if I'm not mistaken, 4:00 o' clock in the afternoon. The daily roster is as follows: Monday, Mekanda Robot; Tuesday, (damn I forgot!)... but that is my most favorte among all (I know that it involves computers, that is the clue); Wednesday, Daimos; Thursday, Voltes V. Friday, on the other hand, is for the live-action super sentai Bioman. That was also the time when there are cartoons being shown on primetime. Bet that you could remember watching The Real Ghostbusters every seven o' clock in the evening on channel 2

Weekend Saturday mornings mean Saturday Fun Machine on channel 9, not to mention the adventures of the Superfriends which is light and campy in demeanor compared to the edgy approach of the recent Justice League. Other Saturday staples include channel 7's M.A.S.K and Spiral Zone and channel 2's Pole Position and Visionaries. Channel 13, which was the dominant station of the time, had Looney Tunes, Transformers, G.I. Joe, Denver the last Dinosaur, Widget among others. When primetime comes the fun didn't stopped, rest assured that I have my fill of the Thundercats and Silver Hawks on channel 7.

To be continued...

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Lester Cavestany said...

Back in those days, I loved waking up every Saturday morning to watch cartoons. Aside from the ones you mentioned, another favorite of mine is Astroboy.

Kids nowadays live in a different world. They can watch cartoons 24/7 on Cartoon Network.

Anonymous said...

Just a comment if you don't mind.

Mekanda Robot was never aired on a revived ABS-CBN post 1987 or when the network returned to broadcast on the 1st of September 1987 or in the months thereafter.

Mekanda Robot was aired on GMA pre People Power 1987 sometime in 1982 to 1983 - yes on a Monday, Tuesday was Daimos, Wednesday was Mazinger Z, Thursday was UFO Grendaizer and Friday was Voltes V. Weekend on a Saturday ... robot anime watching shifted to RPN at 530PM for Balatak and followed by Star Rangers. Saturday Fun Machine was on RPN and aired cookie shows like "Super Six," if anyone remembers and of course there was news parody (imagine Jon Stewart as a mountain goat) that was hosted by a goat named Gary Gnu, "Not ganews is good ganews"

ABS-CBN did air Voltes 5 in Tagalog later in the early 90s after another Tagalog version was aired on IBC 13 before ABS. IBC 13 hyped their showing of Voltes V as the complete edition, finally we were able to watch the ending. (The ending on GMA Network's run hinted that there could be relations between the Armstrong kids and Prince Zardos.

A fourth Tagalog version of Voltes V air(s) or air(ed) on Hero Channel which is owned by SkyCable, sister company of ABS-CBN. Friday cartoon primetime for ABS-CBN from 1988 to 1990 did run cartoons - correction not "The Real" Ghostbusters but "Ghostbusters" alternating off season with "Teen-Age Mutant Ninja Turtles." Programming after was followed by the Bruce Willis TV series "Moonlighting," later on the "Baywatch."

To add to the nostalgia, a die cast 12 inch Mazinger and Voltes V cost P100 at Good Earth Emporium (now a tianggean and more recently Uniwide Store).

I begged, I cried, I even threatened suicide (partly a blank threat though) at the age of 9 to have my own Voltes V toy. I got the six-inch model instead at 60 Pesos. At that time I argued with my Mom that add 40 pesos and a larger version is cheaper at half a size at 60 pesos.

For those who couldnt relate to inflation in the early 80s - 20 pesos could buy a bayong full of goods at the wet market meaning one can buy 3 kilos of meat, a dozen eggs and a pack of Choc-Nut. The long neck cooking oil was sold at 50 cents. Heres a closer reference - a Ginebra bilog was P1.75 from my neighbor store Mang Ayong.


Anonymous said...

Eto pa po kung may nakakaalala.

- Superbook
- Flying House
- Macross/Robotech
- Kissyfur

Doc Donnie said...

wow. i also remember the exact sched of the monday to sunday slot. I laso gotthe smaller Voltes V, but I really wanted the big one which can volt out. I also wanted the UFO grendaizer. Besides voltes V, the most memorable opening credits for me goes to mekanda robot. "Mekanda-mekanda-mekanda robot-hahahahaa." Check this out: Nostalgia: Mekanda Robot

Balatack now I remember. I find it the corniest, but I still watch it bcause yun lang airing ng saturdays.


Anonymous said...

Mekanda WAS aired on the revived ABS CBN, contrary to the account of another anonymous commenter. It was on a Monday, i remember this correctly because i was too young during the first wave. It wasn't 4 o' clock, it was 6 or 6:30, and i am certain of this because there was an episode where i had to watch it at a relative's house, and it was dark na.

Voltes V during that run was in English.

The Tuesday slot was occupied by Laserion, which was cool ang dating kasi medyo bago-bago pa ang animation compared to the earlier SuperRobots


oh, there was a series named
Bird Man sa BBC 2 before, he's like HawkMan yata but blasts comes from his hands or something...who remembers tat po?

Anonymous said...

To correct some info...

The Japanese cartoon robots were aired by channel 7 in 1979 and not in the 80s. Mekanda on Monday, Daimos on Tuesday, Mazinger Z on Wednesday, Grendaizer on Thursday and Voltes V on Friday. I do remember Chanel 9 was airing JAK-Q on Saturday.

Anonymous said...

Sadly, I was born after Star Ranger & JAKQ were aired. They never aired the endings to both series in the Philippines since they got cancelled mid-way (meaning audiences never got to see JAKQ's Fifth Ranger Big One debut & that episode where he was disguised as Hitler until years later).

Bioman was the first Super Sentai series I ever watched (even if I was only able to watch the last episode years later on YouTube due to me taking a nap during the time it originally aired). Still love it to this day.

Watching the 2011 Super Sentai series Gokaiger brings back memories whenever the title heroes transform into any of the Super Sentai heroes whose series aired here. Check it out some time just for the nostalgia value.

Anonymous said...

Yung Superbook at Flying House po ay pinapalabas po sa GMA 7 pag weekend morning ( saturday and sunday po yata yun ). Iyon din po ang nagpasimula ng Super Kids Club...

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