The eagerly anticipated edition of Idols SA Season 11 Top 16 finally kicked off
on a high note might we add on Sunday night with 8 guys vying for the glory of being crown South Africa’s idol.
This season’s Top 16 Guys opened the night with a spectacular group performance of their rendition of Mark Ronson’s and Bruno Mars’s smash hit, “Uptown Funk”. The competition heats up as it’s down to the fans now to secure their favourite idol a spot in the competition. Check out the options and what judges had to say about their latest performance.
Siphelele Ngcobo (24) from Inanda in Durban kicked off the Season 11 Live Spectaculars with Omi’s hit “Cheerleader”, to mixed feelings from the judges.
Idols SA judge Unathi Msengana noted that Siphelele had taken the judges’ advice at Sun City and picked a youth anthem for this performance. “Great song choice,” she commended him. “Halala”.
Gareth Cliff cautioned Siphilele to try to have some more fun on the stage. “For me it sounded like you were singing at a reggae coconut bar,” Somizi Mhlongo complained.
Randall Abrahams acknowledged that it’s hard to be the one opening the show, but he agreed with Gareth that Siphelele had to own the stage. “I thought it wasn’t great,” he commented.
Jozi’s Phila Madlingozi (25) was up next with a local-is-lekker track: “Ungowami”, from Uhuru (featuring Speedy, Wizkid and Donald).
“You owned it – you made it your own song,” said Somizi. “Well done!”
“They loved the song, they’re going to vote for you,” Unathi told Phila, but Gareth pointed out that at this stage of the competition “everybody has to be outstanding otherwise you’re gone. I really hope that was good enough for the votes,” he noted. And Randall seriously cautioned Phila to focus as much on his singing as he does on his dancing.
Phila’s unique contestant number is 02.
27-year-old Thami Shobede from Mthubathuba impressed the State Theatre audience with his performance of Ed Sheeran’s “Photograph”. “I think you handled that very nicely,” said Gareth.
“I think that you’ve got something special – I just don’t think that tonight it was revealed to the point where people are going to remember you. I think it could have been a bit better,” Randall explained. But Somizi clearly disagreed. “Great one,” he said simply. And Unathi also thought that Thami’s performance would be memorable.
Thami’s unique contestant number is 03.
23-year-old Karabo Mogane from Nelspruit earned himself a standing ovation from Somizi with his performance of the first Sam Smith song of the night, “I’m Not The Only One”.
“You are the first one I can guarantee you is through,” Gareth told Karabo definitively.
“You have …” Somizi started, before he dissolved into tears. “Your voice touches the heart,” he told Karabo. “If there was an Idols worldwide you would still be in the Top 10.”
“You just Sam Cooked Sam Smith!” Unathi praised.
And Randall commented that Karabo had always been one of the most likeable performers, but now also one of the most believable.
Karabo’s unique contestant number is 04.
20-year-old Rhema Varrie from Alberton was up next with Ed Sheeran’s “Thinking Out Loud”. Gareth thought Rhema’s performance was quite “studied”. “No doubt you have the voice,” Somizi agreed, “but there’s something missing.” And he cautioned Rhema to “dress young”. But Unathi disagreed. “You look incredible,” she said. “The only thing I’ll say is ‘smile, baby’ …”
And Randall expressed concern that Rhema was still so nervous. “On television its noticeable, it recognisable, and it’s not going to get you votes,” he said.
Rhema’s unique contestant number is 05.
Lungisa Xhamela (24) from Langa in the Cape performed “Touchin, Lovin”, from Trey Songz (featuring Nicki Minaj).
The real trick tonight was to make yourself unforgettable, but he wasn’t sure it was enough.
“It was an okay performance,” was all Somizi had to say. “The disconnect here is if you’re going to choose a song called ‘Touchin’, Lovin’’, you have to be it,” said Unathi. Randall thought that Lungisa is probably the best vocalist amongst the guys, “but you have to bring it,” he warned.
Lungisa’s unique contestant number is 06.
The youngest guy in the Top 18, 16-year-old Loyiso Gijana from Uitenhage in the Eastern Cape, performed another Sam Smith number (featuring John Legend): “Lay Me Down”.
“That is a technical tour de force,” said Gareth. “That’s my performance of the night.” A stunned Unathi agreed, and Somizi literally spoke in tongues. “It’s ultimately a singing competition,” Randall said happily. “And you sang.”
Loyiso’s unique contestant number is 07.
Ruan Grobbelaar (24) from Somerset West closed the first Season 11 Live Spectacular with George Ezra’s “Blame It On Me”.
“Well done, white boy,” Gareth said bluntly. An excited Somizi said he could imagine Ruan doing his first solo show in New York’s Central Park. “That was magnificent!” he cried. “What you managed to do which many of our contestants didn’t do was be believable,” said Unathi. Randall thought it was a good performance but not especially captivating in any way.
Ruan’s unique contestant number is 08.
Next Sunday, the Top 8 girls take the stage to perform for the fans’ votes in Idols SA on M-Net, channel 101 on DStv, and Mzansi Magic, channel 161 on DStv. The Top 10 for Idols SA Season 11 will be announced the following Sunday, 13 September. Don’t miss it!
Squid Game Ending Explained; We’ve Been Scammed
We’ve been had, and Squid Game is here to prove it.
When the end of the South Korean horror drama arrives on the ninth episode, the winner finds himself harrowed by what the coveted prize has cost his soul. In the rat race for survival, along with a better life that hinges on the never ending hustle, there’s no time to stop and see the horror our lives become. By the end, we see how the winner has sold his soul for a crappy deal that came with a few toys, and a happy meal.
A group of 456 players are mysteriously invited to take part in a set of children’s games for a grand prize of $38 million, which will be enough to give the winner the financial freedom they desperately need. The players are selected from different walks of life, with the burden of excessive debt being their biggest motivation to give the Game a go.
The first of deepening terrors comes during the first game, when the players discover that penalties for losing in the challenges will be death. DEATH. Horrified, the players initially vote to leave and return to their lives.
This noble departure doesn’t last long; their material realities as fugitives on the run from debt collectors only highlights the glow of the precious promise they’ve now left behind. When they return for the second time, they now consent to their highly probable deaths.
Led by Lee Jung-jae, who plays Seong Gi-hun, a taxi driver with a gambling addiction, the South Korean series has become somewhat of a global phenomenon. Now the most streamed Korean series of all time, Squid Game is also said to be on pace to dethrone Bridgerton as the most streamed series in the history of Netflix. And it’s with good reason. Squid Game is a trip.
Survival is the drive. The blues of a broke life pile up for Seong Gi-hun, who’s daughter is being taken away to the US by her mother and step father. His mother is battling deteriorating diabetes and even in her frail condition, is still working hard to make ends meet. It’s during the peak of his frustrations that Gi-hun is randomly invited to take part in the Game.
After accepting the offer, he finds himself in a discreet location along with 455 players, who are also drowning in debt. The players are kept under an authoritarian system of surveillance. Masked guards in pink suits keep the scene under control under the supervision of the Front Man. Gi-hun allies with other players, including his childhood friend Cho Sang-woo, as a the most strategic way to survive the bloody challenges.
Amongst those that end up in this team is player 001, a frail old man who who became his “gganbu”. Sae-byeok, who was also in the team, was killed by Sang-woo, Gi-hun’s childhood friend, team member and flip-flopping ally. Several other team members had to be killed by their team mates, which revealed the wickedness of the games.
In the end, Gi-hun’s victory came without an apology. He had to defeat a close ally in the games, the old and frail player 001. They’d bonded throughout their time, but in the end he had to advance himself against those he’d built alliances. As the games progressed, the players found themselves having to face tough calls. Someone else has to die for you to make it another day.
After a series of brutal games, it comes down to childhood friends Gi-hun and Cho Sang-woo. They’d played different games, with Sang-woo having played hard and stopping at nothing to win. Gi-hun is mad at Sang-woo for a series of betrayals, including him stabbing Sae-byeok to her death. In the end, Gi-hun wins when Sang-woo apologised and kills himself.
Yet despite emerging a winner, Gi-hun finds that the cost of becoming an overnight billionaire has bankrupted his soul. For a year following the day his bank account was loaded with a nine zero figure, he didn’t touch the money. After all, he returned to find his mother dead on the floor. One of his motivations was getting the money to get her medical help over her advancing diabetes.
Gi-hun is clearly troubled by the bodies upon which his new wealth rests. A year passes and he hasn’t touched the money – even oddly reverting to old patterns of asking for loans to get by. It might be late to be so concerned about the moral questions surrounding the games now – the long and short of it is he won and his life has changed.
Later, he is shocked to find out that the “gganbu” who had to be killed after losing to him in a game of marbles, was never really killed.
In a shocking plot twist that changes everything – he also finds out that the old man is in fact the creator of the games! Finding him in a medical bed after receiving a mysterious invite to the location, Gi-hun discovers that the man’s real name is Oh Il-nam, an obscenely rich fella who created the games in 1988 (the same year Korea hosted the Olympics for the first time) purely for their entertainment. We already know by now that ‘the VIPs’ are a bunch of morally bankrupt elites who find pleasure in watching the poor masses slaughtering each other for money in a broken system. Where have we heard that before?
Although his participation in the games as player 001 was a farce, what he told Gi-hun back then, that he had a brain tumour, had been true. And of course, he challenged him to another sick game. A man had been freezing to death on a street pavement, and Oh Il-nam challenged Gi-hun to guess to bet on the odds that someone who help him when the clock strikes 00:00 at midnight. As Gi-hun wins, Oh Il-nam dies.
We assume this marks the end of the games. However later in the episode, Gi-hun sees the man who recruited him doing it to someone else. He runs to stop what is happening, but arrives at the exact scene late, the train has already taken off. Later on the way to boarding a flight, he turns and calls a number. “I can’t forgive you for everything you’re doing,” he tells ta man we assume to be In-ho. He turns back, clearly about to begin his new mission.
What we know now, is that Oh Il-nam created the games to tickle the sick tastes of his sick rich network. But he is now dead. Who is now behind the games? This, and Gi-hun’s passionate manifesto, are strong indications that next season of the series is already shaping up to a different arc. It’s his final transformation, and he is ready to take down the operation and those behind it. He won’t allow people to be “horses” for the entertainment of wealthy elites.
We know that In-ho shot Jun-ho in a bid to stop him from alerting the police about the games. The signal was bad, delaying the delivering of the evidence Jun-ho had been trying to send in several texts, right up to the moment the moment he plunged from a cliff and hit the water. What we don’t know is whether the messages were really not delivered. There’s also no conclusive evidence that Jun-ho is dead.
Potentially, the biggest lesson from season one is that our relentless pursuit for material success in a punishing money system kills us.
First Look at HBO’s Game of Thrones Spin-Off ‘House of The Dragon’
Things look promising for HBO’s upcoming drama series, The House of Dragon. The highly buzzed Games of Thrones prequel’s first visual teaser has been met with much fanfare, raking in more than 8,6 million views on Youtube within two days of its arrival.
First reactions and buzz around the epic teaser have been strong indications that the series, slated to premiere in 2022, is off to a good start despite the infamous final season slump suffered by G.O.T. And it could mean that maybe, just maybe, the world ready to let old baggage go.
The House of Dragon, created by an entire different team, will arrive about three years since the cold winter. The cast includes Matt Smith, Paddy Considine and Sonoya Mizuno who will be bringing to life a different era of Westeros.
Midnight Mass is Creepy With A Dark Subtext and You Need To See it
‘God’s angel’ had sinister plans for the town.
The reign of terror plunges a small and quiet town to ashes when the arrival of a charismatic yet mysterious priest coincides with the return of a disgraced young man who has just been released from prison.
While Riley (Zach Gilford) initially finds that Crockett Island and its 127 residents – along with his childhood sweetheart Erin (Kate Siegel) – still conduct a mundane existence, Pastor Paul (Hamish Linklater) soon changes that.
When the island’s much loved Roman Catholic senior priest takes a trip to the pilgrimage and never comes back, an energetic new priest takes his place at the Holy Land church. And while his arrival brings with it a new wave of spiritual revival amongst the island community, something sinister begins to haunt the town.
With each episode, the esoteric occult that powers Paul’s ability to perform astounding miracles and mesmerise the islanders, slowly gains dominion over the unsuspecting community. Instead, they begin taking up a renewed interest in the church as word of mouth spreads about the signs and wonders. Much like Jesus Christ was able to draw crowds wherever he went, the appearance of Paul’s supernatural power is able to attract even those who’d remained sceptics their lives.
It’s the blending of the sacred and the sinister. The taking of communion that has been contaminated with demonic blood, which functions as the miracle drug promising eternal life.
We soon find out the miracles come at an unthinkable cost.