Increase in Yemeni television programs for Ramadan
Yemeni TV channels heatedly contest with each other in order to gain Yemeni viewers who have become harder to please. The multiple numbers of TV channels pose the challenge of how to earn additional viewers.
Imad Al-Nahari, 26, an employee at a computer company, said viewers now have many choices with respect to Ramadan series and programs. TV channels try their best to satisfy their audiences; it is an indication of improvement for some TV stations.
"Personally, I follow local series such as Mabish Hala Fi Shi (Nothing Is Sweet), broadcast on Azal. It is a dramatic comedy series that highlights social issues in a beautifully ironic way."
Among the well-known programs followed by Yemenis is Akis Khat. It is broadcast on the Suhail TV channel. It highlights national problems and the government is presented ironically in a political tone.
Lamia Al- Yafei said, "We impatiently wait for Akis Khat. My entire family follows it. It’s funny and talks about painful issues. This program presents issues daringly and points fingers directly at the government.
Aini Ainak (My Eye Your Eye) series has been broadcast for four seasons; however, this Ramadan it has appeared differently and much better. It covers the daily problems and suffering of Yemenis.
Abdu Al-Rahman Al-Aswadi, 33, an employee of the Life Makers Association, said he likes following the Aini Ainak program as it discusses the Sana'ani society problems and communities nationwide.
"The series is still in its beginnings. I don’t want to judge now. I hope this series will be surprising and full of variety in the ongoing Ramadan. Otherwise, it will be disappointing," said Al-Aswadi.
Absence of planning and limited budgets
Yemeni artists have a different a standpoint about the performance of Yemeni TV channels during Ramadan. Amal Asmael, an artist, said Yemeni TV channels still lack planning for preparing creative programs and series; a
The Hami Hamak (My Concern Is Yours) series has been well received by audiences. This year, its episodes have been presented as well for the year during Ramadan.
Khalid Al-Kahtani, an artist who is a fan of Hami Hamak, said, "This series was followed by Yemeni and Gulf viewers last year because it highlighted the political situation Yemen experienced in a comedic way. The Tehami slang played a role in attracting audiences who wanted to be introduced to the slang in a simple way."
Al-Kahtani criticized the integration of Egyptian and Tehami slang in the Hami Hamk seires this year. "It would be better if integration was excluded at this time like the Tash Ma Tash series that continued for sixteen seasons without deviation from the Saudi tone."
Regarding the problems facing Yemeni TV channels, Mohammed Al-Hubaishi, a director and author, said production is the major problem. "If there isn’t an adequate budget to cover the size of the work, the program will fail. The Public Corporation for Radio and Television and the media ministry ought to cooperate and care for this field."
Al-Hubaishi said Yemeni dramatic series content is an indication of these channels’ improvement and their ability to evolve; no well-known channel has any repetitive programs.
Although the budget of these channels is pitiful, Ramadan this year has witnessed a much larger number of programs and series compared to past years. For example, the dramatic series, Haft Al-Ans, broadcast on Al-Saeeda TV channel and uses Adeni slang, has proven very popular and attempts to address negative phenomena in Yemeni society.
There is a group of varied programs on many TV channels such as the competition programs named Masabakat (Rivalries) on the Azal TV, Camera in the Village program broadcast on Al-Saeeda and Sada Al-Qwafi, a competitive poetry program on Yemen TV. There are also many other programs vying for viewers.