Beat the lockdown blues with great TV

With the 21-day lockdown starting today, Sowetan has curated a list of comfy and binge-worthy shows to watch that will beat cabin fever.

Noughts + Crosses

SA actress Bonnie Mbuli, renowned for her roles in blockbuster films Invictus, Catch a Fire and Drum, makes her much-awaited acting comeback in international series Noughts + Crosses.

The sci-fi show on Showmax is a small screen adaptation of Malorie Blackman's best-selling young adult novels. The plot offers an alternative history narrative in which Europe is being colonised by Africans.

The show was filmed in SA with mostly local crew that includes cinematographers Jamie Ramsay and Giulio Biccari as well as production designer Shane Bunce. Mbuli is joined by Masali Baduza, Cymru, Jack Rowan, Paterson Joseph , Helen Baxendale, Ian Hart and Stormzy.


Mzansi Magic will introduce new telenovela Gomora on Monday that will air five days a week at 7.30pm. The star-studded cast includes Katlego Danke, Connie Chiume, Themba Ndaba, Thembi Seete and Zolisa Xaluva.

The show depicts the complex story of romance, social inequalities and prejudices in Alexandra township.

"Our customers are in for a real treat with Gomora. It is a refreshing new series that narrates a riveting homegrown story and features a rich tapestry of strong female characters," says Nomsa Philiso, channel director at Mzansi Magic. "These are just some of the elements our viewers can expect from Africa's most-loved storyteller."

Da Vinci

DStv is launching channel 318 for all subscribers that will cater for kids entertainment called Da Vinci. The channel will offer programming that balances education and entertainment. The Germany-based channel was inspired by artist Leonardo Da Vinci.

The shows will include science, maths and technology, play and make, history and personalities, culture, life and nature as well as sports and leisure.

"What we've done is provide a safe space for children and parents to choose from a range of age-appropriate content that is entertaining and educational for both," says Thabisa Mkhwanazi, executive head of marketing at DStv.

"The launch of this channel is in line with our commitment to delivering content that caters and resonates with the whole family, while enriching their lives by delivering programming that educates, informs and entertains."


Two local films are coming to the streaming service next month. Romantic comedy Baby Mamas, starring Dineo Ranaka, Thembisa Mdoda, Kay Smith, Salamina Mosese and Stephina Zwane will premiere. Sthandiwe Kgoroge, Nqobile Khumalo, Dumisani Mbebe and Robert Hobbs lead the cast of political thriller Uncovered. For some risquécontent US erotic romantic drama Fifty Shades Freed is also coming to Netflix.

Madam and Mercy

If you are a reality TV fan, you are in for a treat with the first season of Madam and Mercy on Wednesday April 8. Evodia "Madam" Mogase and her daughter, Mercy, first captured Mzansi's attention in Real Housewives of Johannesburg and are now getting their own spin-off.


Issa Rae and her squad are back for a fourth season. Will Issa ever find love? Is she still broke and messy? What will her mirror alter ego do next? Should we expect more Frank Ocean references? What judgmental comments will her BFF Molly (Yvonne Orji) pass? All will be answered when the show returns to 1Magic and Showmax on April 14.

Ahee Papa Penny and Utatakho

Penny Penny and his family will return to Mzansi Magic on April 9 with his reality show. Nimrod Nkosi is back with more family intervention with Utatakho on April 7 at 8pm.

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