For the last 23 years, hundreds of thousands of Maltese people have tuned in to the massive TV production that was Xarabank, with only behemoths like X Factor Malta managing to best the decades-old weekly panel show in viewership.
Now, both shows are set to be replaced… and it’s all kicking off this week!
October 2020 sees three major updates to TVM’s scheduling, with the biggest slots being taken up by new shows hoping to reel in tens of thousands of viewers on a weekly basis.
Let’s have a look of what’s what, and when.
1. L-Erbgħa Fost Il-Ġimgħa, Mark Laurence’s new show post-Xarabank.
Luckily for Xarabank fans who might’ve feared Gozo’s very own Mark Laurence Zammit was going to vanish into the ether after this summer’s unexpected cancellation, the dapper young TV host will actually be returning to our screens.
Promising “the typical, cliche-sounding ‘current affairs’ – with added information through journalism and investigative pieces, new points of view to the discussion, and mostly, covering the subject through an unconventional style, including in a satirical way”, the show will take up a slot usually reserved for Reno Bugeja’s popular discussion show Dissett.
“I don’t expect the show to change the world,” Zammit told Lovin Malta. “No TV show ever did. I’m not after that (if it were possible, I’d be after it, believe me. But it isn’t, so it’s not worth chasing).”
“My dream is for the show to become a space where you can listen to an interesting and informative conversation about the hottest and most controversial issues,” Mark Laurence continued. “That means that sometimes you will sit through people saying shit you don’t agree with, and at times that will be uncomfortable, but way more satisfying at the end.”
L-Erbgħa Fost Il-Ġimgħa will premiere this Wednesday 30th September after the 8pm news.
2. Serataron, the new show taking up TVM’s coveted Friday night slot.
Twenty three whole years later, TVM’s audience will be tuning in to something other than the legendary Xarabank on Friday night. So what do we know about it?
Serataron sees popular TV and radio personality Ronald Briffa host an entertainment programme replace the discussion show.
From the number of albeit short and out-of-context teasers being put out there, viewers can expect Ron’s signature zany personality to wind down the week with some classic variety TV.
Serataron will premiere this Friday 2nd October at 9pm.
3. Malta’s Got Talent, X Factor’s younger, more varied brother.
From the producers who brought you Malta’s most viewed show (ever), the nation’s next big TV addiction promises much more than singing sensations and hopeless hopefuls.
Seeing the return of major local producer Howard Keith but also adding theatre veteran Maxine Aquilina, decorated actor Ray Attard and influencer-sensation Sarah Zerafa to the mix, MGT is promising “acts ranging from the sublime to the ridiculous.”
So while huge swaths of the population backed their own favourite singing prodigies for X Factor Malta’s two seasons, expect more “I’m sorry, WTF?” moments for this one.
And if the teasers are anything to go by, that’s exactly what we’re getting.
Malta’s Got Talent will premiere this Sunday 4th October at 8:50pm.