There’s a brand-new new South Africa and it’s got a home on Showmax here as 13-episode drama The Republic. It’s somewhat paralleled with the real political world of SA, with figures like Former President Kgalema Motlanthe being mentioned, and fictional characters who’re running the country.
But make no mistake: while you will laugh at some of the plot lines, this is drama at its finest on the local front. Fan-favourite actor Siyabonga Thwala plays corrupt Hendrik Zondo, who has been fired for his unethical practices and policies and how he has not only allowed state capture, he’s spearheaded it. Not all that far-fetched, is it?
But what makes The Republic a stand-out is that it keeps viewers on their toes. In the show, it takes minutes for new policies to become legislation, rather than months in real life. There’s a combination of actual news footage tugging on the heartstrings and footage that feels like it’s come straight out of a Hollywood blockbuster thriller. And there’s a woman president, which would be huge for South Africa – Lufuno Mulaudzi (played by Florence Masebe).
“Lufuno is the perfect role to play right now,” says Florence. “It’s an honour [to play her] and I am glad that [series creator and writer] Phathutshedzo Makwarela came up with such a strong female lead. Women are usually followers. Now we are standing up!”
Also look out for household faces like Seputla Sebogodi (Nchabeleng in Diamond City) as Moses, leader of the Dogs Of Soshanguve gang; the Vice President (Hlomla Dandala, Zweli in The River) and corrupt cop Thabang Ranaka (Warren Masemola, Tjovitjo’s MaFred and The River’s Oupa – putting his epic dance skills to use in The Republic’s action scenes).