MANILA — Nearly five months since its digital migration, “FPJ’s Ang Probinsyano” registered on Thursday its highest viewership so far on Kapamilya Online Live, in the latest indication of the series’ enduring popularity despite its platform shift and over its 5-year run.
The January 21 episode of the ABS-CBN series, titled “Black Ops,” reached 80,000 concurrent live viewers on YouTube alone, according producer Dreamscape Entertainment. That count is aside from the live viewers on Facebook, where Kapamilya Online Live is also available.
The four-part upload of the episode on YouTube, available for 24 hours after its Kapamilya Online Live broadcast, each had nearly a million views, as of writing.
Kapamilya Online Live is the continuous, free live streaming of ABS-CBN programs on YouTube and Facebook, launched in August 2020 after a congressional panel voted to reject the network’s bid for a fresh broadcast franchise.
Ahead of Kapamilya Online Live’s launch, “Ang Probinsyano” had started streaming full, new episodes on YouTube in July 2020. At the time, its digital debut’s live viewers peaked at 56,000.
Kapamilya Online Live is one of several airing venues of “Ang Probinsyano.” It is also available on A2Z Channel 11 (free and digital TV in Mega Manila), Kapamilya Channel and CineMo (cable), and iWant TFC (on-demand streaming).
During its primetime run on ABS-CBN’s Channel 2, a free-TV channel seen nationwide, “Ang Probinsyano” was the country’s undisputed No. 1 program, according to Kantar Media.
In February 2020, the last full-month survey prior to the coronavirus lockdown, “Ang Probinsyano” retained that distinction with an average national TV rating of 34%. Its highest-ever viewership for a single episode — 47.2% nationwide —was recorded in October 2018.
The spike in number of Kapamilya Online Live viewers during “Ang Probinsyano” shows that the series remains popular among Filipinos, despite its platform pivot in the absence of Channel 2.
Its record-setting January 21 episode saw the newly introduced Black Ops unit carrying out a shoot-to-kill order against Cardo (Coco Martin), whose numerous near-deaths in the series have sparked memes of his “infinite lives” online.
The episode also introduced several additions to the cast, led by “Darna” actress Jane de Leon as Black Ops sniper Lia. Debuting cast members also included Geoff Eigenmann, Vance Larena, Mark McMahon, Paolo Paraiso, and AJ Raval.