After Ramadan ended and took with it the seasonal shows that temporarily crammed Lebanese TV screens, local TV stations are restoring their routines with their traditional shows and programs, only, with empty audience chairs.
For a brief time, the abundance of shows during Ramadan masked the unenviable state that has overwhelmed Lebanese TV shows, which have been forced by the health situation to let go of their life force; the interactive studio audience.
Nonetheless, the shows must go on.
Therefore, the popular Lebanese political programs, beloved drama series, and awaited entertainment and talk shows have returned to help ease the effects that the prolonged self-quarantine has had on the Lebanese people and their lifestyles.
The recent returnees include Al-Jadeed’s popular shows Ana Hek (I’m like this) and Tony Khalifeh, MTV’s Sar El Waat (It’s time) and Min Byaaref? (Who knows?), as well as LBCI’s Vision 2030, to name a few.
That is not to say that Lebanese TV has not seen fresh additions in the past weeks.
Today, especially in light of the ongoing lockdown, some stations are continuing to produce and introduce new shows and programs to the public.
One recent example is MTV’s new entertainment game show Kamashtak (Gotcha), hosted by Tony Baroud, which has gained significant traction since it aired for the first time earlier this year before the epidemic reached its current critical stage.
Despite there being no studio audience to engage with the game show, Kamashtak will continue to air every Monday night.
Old or new, strict preventive measures have had a serious effect on TV programs and their production crews. They are having to conform with certain procedures, such as maintaining social distancing, to avoid infection cases among their members.
Some crew members and employees at Lebanese TV stations have even been laid off entirely as a means to decrease crowding in their facilities, Al-Akhbar reported.
On a side note, Ana Hek, which aired for the first time after Ramadan on Wednesday night, had the Minister of Public Health Hamad Hasan as one of its guests for the new episode.
Minister Hasan used the popular show’s far-reaching influence to urge the Lebanese public to continue respecting the preventive guidelines by wearing face masks and adhering to social distancing and the even-odd traffic rationing system.
We have a dedicated coronavirus section where you can find the latest news/updates about the pandemic in Lebanon, inform yourself with WHO-verified resources, and track the number of cases in Lebanon in real-time. Click here.
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