Lorcia Cooper in "Lockdown". Picture: Supplied
The first three episodes of season five of "Lockdown"", the most awarded drama at last year's SAFTAs, are now streaming only on Showmax, with two more episodes launching every Thursday. 

The first episode of season five will also premiere on YouTube on Thursday, January 30 at 8pm, alongside a live chat with DStv Mzansi Viewers Choice and SAFTA nominee Zola Nombona, who plays Monde. 

Notorious for its cliffhangers, plot twists and emotional rollercoasters, Lockdown takes viewers into the cells and offices of Thabazimbi Women's Correctional Facility, where survival is the order of the day. 

As season five picks up, Masebata’s cult is no longer in power. Arch-rivals Mazet (Dawn Thandeka King in a SAFTA-winning role) and Tyson (Lorcia Cooper in a SAFTA-winning role) are running the prison yard together, for now. 

Watch the trailer here:

Governor Deborah Banda (Pamela Nomvete in a SAFTA-nominated role) is under pressure from The Department of Correctional Services, after one death too many at the prison. And Monde (Zola Nombona in a SAFTA-nominated role) is trying to make things right with Vicky (Lauren Jenae). 

Multi-award winners Linda Sebezo, Nomsa Buthelezi, Patricia Boyer and Sophie Ndaba co-star. 

After an intimate cast screening at MultiChoice City on Wednesday, the key cast - looking far more glamorous than we’re accustomed to in Thabazimbi - received plaques from the production company, Black Brain Pictures, celebrating their role in making Lockdown the first Mzansi Magic drama series to reach season five. Linda, so tough as Maki in Lockdown, shed a tear when she received her plaque, while Lorcia spoke for the cast when she thanked fans, saying, “We are nothing without our audiences.” 

Watch the first episode here: 

Dawn echoed this, saying, “I look back at the first day we did this and I can’t believe we made it this far. It’s been rough - in our personal lives and on screen. But look at us now! The devil did not win. Lorcia is right: we are nothing without the support. Don’t ever think we take it for granted.”