Conception and the first Batibot
Batibot was conceptualized and produced by Feny Bautista, a teacher from the Community of Learners Foundation and writer Rene Villanueva. The show was inspired by the American children's show, Sesame Street which educates preschoolers through dance, song, and role-play educational skills through them.
First aired in 1984, Batibot debuted as Sesame!. It stars Pong Pagong and Kiko Matsing which the characters were based on one of the Filipino stories, The Monkey and the Turtle popularized by José Rizal.Template:Citation needed In the first year of its airing, the children's show was co-produced by the Philippine Children's Television Foundation and Children's Television Workshop (now Sesame Workshop) with the support of then First Lady Imelda Marcos. Government support did not last long, ended within 1984 and the co-production deal was cancelled. The Philippine producers went on to produce a show based on Sesame Street in February 1985.
Batibot was then done wholly in Filipino and featured stories in a Philippine context. Airing on weekdays with a time slot of 10:30 AM, the series consistently ranked in 1985 among the top 10 daytime shows in the Philippines, outdoing its performance in 1984 when it was still a co-produced series and wholly American produced Sesame Street which first aired in the country in 1970.
By February 1989, Batibot was airing its sixth season. However the producers of the series were experiencing financial constraints which placed uncertainty regarding the future airing of the show.
Batibot was first aired in RPN and ABS-CBN, then it was later aired by PTV and GMA. In 1999, Batibot was relaunched as "Batang Batibot" airing on a Saturday morning timeslot. "Batibot" ceased airing in 2003.
TV5's Batibot (2010–2013)
TV5 announced in 2010 that it would revive the Batibot series that first aired in the 1980s. It premiered on November 27, 2010. TV5's version of Batibot featured a different set of characters than the prior series–Ate Maya and Kuya Fidel, and Koko Kwik Kwak. Instead of a Monday–Friday broadcast format, the new series was aired on Saturday at 8:30 a.m. The airing of the series lasted until 2013.
Cast and characters
Template:More citations needed Batibot featured characters portrayed by puppets as well as human characters. Most of he puppets used for the show were locally made. Kiko Matsing and Pong Pagong who were among the main characters of the first Batibot were crafted in New York.
- Human characters
- Aling Nena portrayed by Angie Ferro
- Ate Sylvia portrayed by Susan Africa
- Luz portrayed by Dessa Quesada
- Mang Lino portrayed by Joe Gruta
- Ben portrayed by Tito Quesada
- JD portrayed by Bunso
- Human characters
- Kuya Bodjie portrayed by Bodjie Pascua
- Ate Sienna portrayed by Sienna Olaso
- Kuya Ching portrayed by Ching Arellano
- Kuya Dwight portrayed by Dwight Gaston
- Kuya Mario*portrayed by Junix Inocian
- Ate Isay portrayed by Isay Alvarez-Seña
- Mang Mokyo portrayed by Soliman Cruz
- Popoy portrayed by Alvin Froy Alemania
- Ate Jojie portrayed by Adriana Agcaoili
- Rap Rap portrayed by Rafael Mallanes
- Ate Celia portrayed by Sheila Noreen Lopez Gamo
- Kiko Matsing*– a monkey
- Pong Pagong*– a turtle
- Kuya Derms (inspired by German Moreno aka "Kuya Germs") - a TV-host for "Negoshowbiz" (parody of NegoSiyete GMA-7)
- Noli de Casio (inspired by Noli de Castro) - a News anchor for "Magandang Araw Bayan" (parody of Magandang Gabi, Bayan ABS-CBN 2)
- Angelique Baso (inspired by Angelique Lazo) - a TV-host for "Balitang Bituin" (parody of "Star News" segment of TV Patrol ABS-CBN 2)
- the Byaps-Byaps
* – from Sesame!
Batibot as introduced by TV5 in 2010 featured a different cast from the original Batibot
- Human characters
- Kuya Fidel portrayed by Abner Delina
- Ate Maya portrayed by Kakki Teodoro
- Irma Daldal*- very talkative TV Field Reporter puppet
- Koko Kwik-Kwak*– a bird character inspired from the Philippine Eagle, based from Big Bird of Sesame Street
- Manang Bola*– a forgetful fortuneteller
- Kapitan Basa*– a character who has a magic book which he uses to answer questions from children
- Sitsiritsit*and AlibangBang*– a curious duo of space aliens
- Ningning*and Gingging*– characters based from Ernie and Bert of Sesame Street
- Tarsi - a tarsier
* – from the original Batibot
Batibot has its own spin-off Koko Kwik Kwak (named after a bird character), which also aired on GMA Network from 1999 to 2002 every weekday mornings.
On August 14, 2015, Smart Communications launched a mobile app for Android devices based on the children's show series. Smart together with the Community of Learners Foundation commissioned OrangeFix to develop the app. The development of the app content costed around Template:Philippine peso.
The Batibot app is specifically targeted to children from kindergarten to Grade 3. It is aligned with the Department of Education's kindergarten curriculum and is in Filipino. An iOS version of the app was released on July 5, 2017.
- "'Batibot' reincarnates as mobile app", Philippine Daily Inquirer, Philippine Daily Inquirer Inc., 27 August 2015.
- "Batibot coming back with a bang", Philippine Star, April 19, 2010.
- "Smart launches 'Batibot' app, the first learning app", Manila Bulletin, 14 August 2015.
- "Filipino Sesame Street facing tough times", United Press International, 12 February 1989.
- "Home Grown Values Replace Kermit in Filipino Version of "Sesame Street"", The New York Times, The New York Times Company, 24 July 1985.
- "TV Guide", Manila Standard, Standard Publications, Inc., 16 March 1987, p. 14.
- "TV Guide", Manila Standard, Standard Publications, Inc., 20 March 1987, p. 14.
- "How Batibot's Pong Pagong and Kiko Matsing Became Part of Talks on U.S. Military Bases in the Philippines", Esquire Magazine, September 7, 2020.
- "Batibot & little kids in need of a boost", The Philippine Star, 7 March 2012.
- [Episode https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UxDhvAlnkHU] on Batibot by Kapuso Mo, Jessica Soho, 2007
- "Batibot will return to Philippine television starting November 27", PEP, November 22, 2010.
- "Batibot's problems on a Saturday morning", Live Feed, The Philippine Star, 4 July 2012.
- Archived copy.