3 reality shows that caused a stir and went on to become hits
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Let’s be honest, a bit of controversy sometimes goes a long way in boosting ratings.
And some shows piggyback on the noise and ride out the storm to achieve victorious results.
Below are three such shows:
Love Island South Africa (Showmax)
The show first aired on M-Net in March this year. Mzansi was outraged by the lack of diversity on the reality show. And they made their feelings known on social media.
Of the initial 10 cast members, there were only two coloured and two black contestants.
The shoddy editing and other blunders were also another talking point. The channel, feeling the fury of viewers, made haste in rectifying the unforgivable oversights.
Eventually, the tension simmered and the show got a fair amount of attention. But it will forever be remembered for falling short on one of the biggest issues plaguing the industry.
Indian Matchmaking (Netflix)
I remember shamelessly binge-watching the show after a colleague had mentioned it.
Being Indian, it wasn’t a culture shock. Of course, what it did do was highlight the prejudice and sexism within the community, be it in India or the greater Indian diaspora across the world.
In this day and age, issues of casteism, colourism and sexism are not taken lightly.
While marriage consultant Sima Taparia sets out to play matchmaker with the best of intentions, her comments like, “They want tall. They want fair. They want from a good family” and “She’s very nice but she’s short. This will not match”, caused a stir.
That said, the show was a hit. Streamers couldn’t get enough of the quirks of most of the cast, who remained single in the end.
Uyajola 9/9 (Moja Love)
Where does one even begin with this Moja Love show? The format is based on the long-running US series, “Cheaters”.
The local version is not shot with as big a budget though – and it shows. But let’s delve into the umbrage around the series. First, viewers took great exception to it being hosted by Jub Jub (real name Molemo Katleho Maarohanye).
Their outrage around him was short-lived as they moved on to raising hell about the show targeting the indigent black community and violating their rights.
They also accused the makers of staging some of the cases.
All the noise was drowned out by the ratings though. The show outlived the controversy and become a firm favourite.
Read more stories in the latest edition of our IOL Entertainment magazine here.