Writer: Abena Ayivor
Director: Thabang Moleya
Producer: Karima Efendi
Cast: Mohau Mokoatle Cele, Given Sturman, Emmanuel Ikubuese and Nick Mutumi
If you have been living under a rock, this is to announce that MTV’s Shuga is back and it is hot.
The show has kept to its promise of exploring stories from all across Africa. First, it was Kenya and then Nigeria, and right now the drama series is enjoying a South African production.
The fifth season is titled MTV Shuga: Down South and episode 1, titled Coming Home, started with the fire. A host of new actors are introduced to the series but it also retains some of its old actors. From what we have seen with the first episode here is what is on with MTV Shuga: Down South.
– Lagos remains a central part of the story:
From Inception Shuga has always paid homage to Lagos. The first season was shot in Nairobi and features a girl that is eager to start her musical career, with the hope of having a booming singing career in the city, she moves to the city. Temptation flashes itself in her face and the club becomes her hot spot. It is in the club we are introduced to Femi, who is Nigerian and a club/music promoter. Femi represents Lagos and through him we are able to see just how influential the Nigerian Music industry is. In the second season, still shot in Nairobi, the story is broader and features more central characters but through it all, Nigerian music plays an integral part in the series. And also, Femi is still there representing what Lagos is. Season 3 and 4 are shot in Lagos and we see Lagos as it is. Season 5 features Bongi (Mohau Mokoatle Cele) as she returns from Lagos. She undermines her country because she has seen and experienced Lagos and to Bongi, Lagos has more life than South Africa. In the first episode alone, we hear Lagos mentioned over 10 times. Yes ten times.
– The Club remain where things happen:
MTV Shuga: Down South draws strong inspiration from the second season. We see an influential club owner Reggie (Given Stuurman) and all he wants is to make money. It also introduces us to a desperate bartender that wants to work in the club itself rather than the inner section of the club, where she can only interact with fellow workers. It is a similar temptation with what happens in the second season, young girls wanting lives that promises exotic flavor and they end up with problems.
– Music still dominates and Celebrities are assets:
Praise makes a guest appearance in MTV Shuga: Down South and this time he has a music video to shoot, we see Nigerian popular dance dominate the choreography of the struggling dancers in this season. Vanessa Mdee makes an appearance and it seems like she will have a very important role in this one. Trust Shuga to create a good start with good music, in the first episode alone, we have heard a lot of songs that make us happy.
– Nick Mutumi and Emmanuel Ikubuese are Shuga Assets: From the first season, they have always had roles to play. Nick is Leo and Emmanuel is Femi. They keep re-occurring. When it was in Kenya, Emmanuel was there, and when it came to Nigeria, Nick was in Nigeria. Now it is in South Africa and they welcome us to South Africa. We have seen a host of new faces but Nick and Emmanuel remain series regular and assets to the show.
– Young Girls are Wilder in this one: When Shuga came to Nigeria, the sexual anxiety and sexual innuendos that made the show what it is were toned down. In Kenya, it was wild and now back to South Africa, we are introduced to young girls that are wild and bubbling with life. They seem ready to explore their sexual capabilities. The dancing, the exposure, and the conversation they have warn us of what is to come.
Are you following MTV Shuga: Down South? Tell us what you see the series doing differently in its fifth season.