Uzalo remains the highest-rated daily television show in South Africa across all formats.
As of December 2020, the Durban based telenovela attracts more than 8 million viewers every night. They also aren’t neck and neck with Generations: The Legacy anymore. Despite keeping their hot 8 PM prime time slot on the channel, the soapie would need almost 2 million viewers per night to compete with Uzalo. With the stale storylines and questionable quality of production, the former hit will likely not see that day.
Skeem Saam has been doing pretty well in the ratings, especially with their time slot considered. More than 4,4 million people tune in to watch every day.
And facing cancellation, with reports last year The Queen might move to SABC 2 in its place, Muvhango attracts just a little over 3,6 million daily viewers, making it the lowest-rated soapie in the South African free to air television space.
Scandal! remains eTV’s highest-rated soapie, trouncing a slew of other local daily dramas on the free to air commercial television station. Scandal! rakes in almost 4,7 million daily viewers. Behind it is Rhythm City at 3,74 million viewers. Unfortunately, that wasn’t good enough for the channel as they decided the end the show after a decade on air. Imbewu is not too far behind, with 3,72 million.
It will be interesting how Durban Gen performs. eTV revealed in November that the new daily drama had already reached 2 million viewers.
The DStv numbers are always some of the most searched, as the shows there trend more often on social media.
In December, Gomora returned to its previous spot as the highest-rated television show throughout DStv, once more dethroned The Queen. With 1,34 million viewers tuning in everyday, Gomora was able to prove its potential to remain a top player. The Queen still gets 1, 3 million tuning in, despite lacking direction.
Once the highest-rated show on DStv, Isibaya had fallen out of the Top 5. And with 867 000 viewers, things aren’t looking too good.
If you are wondering about The River, it’s on the Compact Plus and Premium packages, which most DStv subscribers do not access. We know it would eat all these girls up.
According to the latest numbers from the Broadcast Research Council of South Africa, this is what’s up.
UZALO – 8 041 490
GENERATIONS THE LEGACY – 6 858 031
SKEEM SAAM – 4 408 258
MUVHANGO – 3 695 208
SCANDAL! – 4 698 809
RHYTHM CITY – 3 744 228
IMBEWU – 3 724 787
GOMORA – 1 340 306
THE QUEEN – 1 300 610
ISIBAYA – 867 080
Vusi Kunene Leaves Generations The Legacy – Not Coming Back
Another one bites the dust!
Vusi Kunene’s infamous character on Generations The Legacy, Jack Mabaso has exited the soapie in a bloody scene. And, we can safely assume that he won’t come back a third time around.
We reported last month that Generations’ numbers were in the decline, and some of the major stars have already jumped ship. Kunene’s character was arguably one of the biggest drawcard for the show and after five years, he’s bowing out.
It’s difficult to see how Generations will bounce back from the exodus that has seen actors such as Rapulana leave the soapie. The channel released a statement through their social media platform to show gratitude to Kunene for his tremendous work.
— SABC (@SABCPortal) May 10, 2021
Kunene was also appreciative of the experience he’s amassed playing the popular role.
“I’ve always had a serious passion for Jack. He is the most popular character I have ever played and bringing him to life has been a pleasure. I’m really going to miss everyone because Generations is like a family,” said Vusi.
Here’s a clip of the final episode of where Jack Mabaso is killed. The scene aired on Wednesday, May 12, where his enemies finally got the best of him.
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Generations: The Legacy Ratings on a Slow Decline
Viewer numbers dip further low.
The viewer numbers for ‘Generations: The Legacy’ are seeing a downward spiral, and it doesn’t seem to be slowing down. Once the highest rated show in South Africa, the long-running television soap opera has seen a significant plunge in the number of people tuning in at 20:00 weekdays to catch up with the storylines on the Morula Pictures production.
According to top television commentator Phil Mphela, the show’s ratings averaged 6,4 million viewers in March 2021. In perspective, this is more than 2,2 million viewers lost since June 2020, and a further loss since December 2020.
TV: Generations losing viewers
Ratings on SA’s second most watched tv show have continued to decline in 2021
The show began the year with 6.97-million viewers and peaked at 6,6mil in February.
— Kgopolo Mphela ☕️ (@PhilMphela) April 12, 2021
QuenchSA reported in February that the series brought in 6 858 031 daily viewers by December 2020, making it the second highest rated show on SABC 1 after ‘Uzalo’. While that number looks good at first glance, it’s how much the series has continued to face a gradual decline in ratings that matters. In June 2020, Generations: The Legacy had over 8,7 million people tuning in to watch daily.
While that boost was mainly down to the initial lockdown, the loss of more than 2,2 million viewers in a matter of months suggests that audiences are tuning out from the show.
Things haven’t been the same for the show since it went off air in August 2014, when the 16 main cast members walked off the set and refused to resume filming following disputes over salaries, a cut of R500 million in royalties and three-year extended contracts.
Then known as ‘Generations’, the show was off air for a month between 30 September 2014 and 30 September 2014, returning with the ‘Generations: The Legacy’ rebrand on the first December that year.
Sello Maake Ka-Ncube Returns to ‘The Queen’
Guess who’s back?
He led the formidable cast that helped The Queen to strike ratings gold when the telenovela premiered in August 2016.
And years after he left, Sello Maake Ka-Ncube is now expected to return to the daily drama television series in the coming months. The award winning South african actor will be back to resume on the portrayal of Kgotsile, Harriet Khoza’s brother.
The veteran actor’s presence on the set of the show also suggests that differences between him and the Fergusons. In 2020, he reportedly hinted in an interview with Isolezwe that his departure from the show had not been as smooth as most would believe. “The Fergusons can only be the one’s who will reveal the sketchy details surrounding my exit on the show”, he said to the newspaper at the time. “However I can confirm that, there was something that went wrong between us but they are best suited in letting the public know of what the reasons were.”
We never quite got down to those details, but all looks to be well.
The news of Maake Ka-Ncube’s return were shared by series producer Shona Ferguson, who dropped an awe inspiring clip of the cast applauding the actor from the set. While there’s no confirmation from production and M-Net at yet, there’s reason to believe that Kgotsile will be back on our screens in no time.
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After all, the Fergusons will have to play some of their best cards to sustain the relevance of the telenovela. Over the past year, the landscape has seen some significant shift. And now that Isibaya, once the highest rated television series across DStv, has recently aired its finale after eight seasons on air, times call for new moves.
With ‘Gomora’ currently dishing out epic storylines and maintaining its place as the most viewed programme on DStv, as well as DiepCity replacing Isibaya with hard hitting stories delivered by a fresh cast, The Queen will be needing to refashion their approach.