The cast of 'Impilo: The Scam': Picture: Supplied
The cast of 'Impilo: The Scam': Picture: Supplied

'The Scam' that got fans hooked on the small screens

By Debashine Thangevelo Time of article published Jul 25, 2019

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While fans of "Big Little Lies" are pinning for a third season, HBO is beyond thrilled with the ratings going through the roof for the second instalment.

South Africans got to catch the final episode on Monday. Sadly, I’ve yet to view the episode so I’m avoiding fans - and social media commentary on it -  at the moment. 

In other trending news, TV aficionados are still gobsmacked by the announcement that "Masterchef Australia" judges Gary Mehigan, George Calombaris and Matt Preston will not feature in the next season. 

We’ve seen this happen all too often in the entertainment sphere. No one is bigger than the show. Let us not forget Mara Louw’s exit from "Idols SA" as well as that of Gareth Cliff from the same show as well as 5FM. 

Even DJ Fresh felt the sting of organisational politics with the Metro FM saga. And remember Noeleen Maholwana-Sangqu, who hosted SABC3’s "3Talk"? Well, that slot was filled with "Real Talk with Anele". 

That’s the thing about this industry - everyone’s replaceable irrespective of popularity or social media support. 

Now for some real (albeit scripted) drama. 

Mzansi Magic’s "Impilo: The Scam" has become a firm favourite since it aired. 

Of course, the mere fact that Desmond Dube (Khulubuse Mtshali) and Sthandiwe Kgoroge (Nokulunga) are helming this series is incentive enough to tune in. 

These seasoned actors lend such gravitas to any role they take on. Kgoroge brings commendable intensity to her performance as a struggling mother of two sons, one of whom is gravely ill. Having told her sons their father is dead, she feels the brunt of their anger when he shows up on her doorstep a decade later.

This time, he’s dressed in snazzy suits and drives a BMW. 

Although she’s wary of him, her teenage son Mnqobi feels differently, so much so that he starts working for his father in a pyramid scheme project. 

The story explores how Khulubuse exploits the people of Alex, who are desperate to escape the shackles of poverty.

Dube’s versatility shines through in this role. He inhabits the skin of a silver-tongued conman with aplomb.

The writers ensure there are ample morally bankrupt characters in the series to lend authenticity to the ekasi backdrop. 

And the stellar cinematography and directing speak to the calibre of talent we have on our home soil. 

If you are looking for some mindless but fun entertainment, I think "Blood & Treasure" on M-Net ticks that box. It boasts the high-action adventure we’ve enjoyed in shows like "The Relic" and "The Librarian". 

The series follows Danny McNamara (Matt Barr), a former FBI agent who now specialises in repatriating stolen art, and Lexi Vaziri (Sofia Pernas), a seasoned con-woman and thief. 

Their worlds collided while Danny was an FBI agent. Of course, a romance followed thereafter as did a bitter breakup. 

The two find themselves working together for Jacob "Jay" Reece (John Larroquette), a billionaire,  who needs Danny’s help with regards to his captured mentor Dr Ana Castillo. 

She is an expert on Cleopatra and Egyptian terrorist leader Karim Farouk (Oded Fehr) has plans for her. 

Our protagonists find themselves travelling from one exotic city to another, dodging gunfire, while surviving getting poisoned and, at the same time, ousting a traitor in their midst.  

Let’s just say the discovery of a long-lost tomb triggers a series of risky missions and one person has a personal score to settle at the end of it all. 

"Impilo: The Scam" airs on Mzansi Magic (DStv channel 161) on Monday at 8pm. "Blood & Treasure" airs on M-Net (DStv channel 101) on Saturday at 8pm. 


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