Uzalo

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Uzalo
Uzalo logo.jpg
GenreTelenovela, Drama
Created byDuma Ndlovu
Written byBongi Ndaba
Directed by
  • Sabelo Ndlovu
  • Luthando Mngomezulu
  • Mqondisi "MQ" Ngubane
  • Tebogo Mkhabela
Creative director(s)Brenda Mukwevho
Starring
  • Dawn Thandeka King
  • Glen Gabela
  • Masoja Msiza
  • Ntokozo Dlamini
Country of originSouth Africa
Original language(s)Zulu
No. of seasons4
No. of episodes800+(as of February 2019)
Production
Executive producer(s)Gugulethu Zuma-Ncube
Mmamitse Thibedi
Producer(s)Mpfariseni King Dave Mukwevho
CinematographyMike Sono, Howard Nciweni
Editor(s)Gugu Sibandze (online editor), Cynthia Tshele (offline editor)
Running time30 minutes
Production company(s)Stained Glass Productions
DistributorSouth African Broadcasting Corporation
Release
Original networkSABC 1
Original releaseFebruary 9, 2015 (2015-02-09) –
present

Uzalo is a telenovela produced by Stained Glass Productions, which is co-owned by Kobedi "Pepsi" Pokane and Gugu Zuma-Ncube. It broadcasts on SABC1 in South Africa.[1][2]

Plot[edit]

Uzalo tells the story of two families in the township of Kwa-Mashu: the Mdletshe family which plays a significant role in the management of the Kwamashu Kingdom Church and the Xulu family which runs a car theft syndicate. The connection between the families is that their eldest sons were switched at birth during the period when Nelson Mandela was released from prison.[2][3] Uzalo details the relationships and conflict between members of the two families as part of a complex story.

The series Head Writer as of Season 4 is Bongi Ndaba, taking over the reigns from Phathutshedzo Makwarela who oversaw the writing since the shows inception (Season 1-3). Linda Bere oversees the script team as the Script Editor. Chris Q. Radebe, Thuli Zuma, Busisiwe Matonsi and Sizinzo Maqubela are part of the storylining team and other writers include Neo Sibiya, Clive Madiya, Mimmy Mtshali Ntaka, Pusetso Thibedi, Salah Sabiti, Tsale Makam and Sibongile Nkosana. Brigette Madiba serves as the Script Department Coordinator.

Broadcasting[edit]

Uzalo made its debut on Monday 9 February 2015, on South African public television network SABC 1. Initially, Uzalo was broadcast only three times a week on Monday, Tuesday an Wednesday. After the show declared to be a ratings hit, Uzalo was eventually extended to five days a week, Monday to Friday.

The series premiere of Uzalo in February 2015, attracted 5 million viewers. A few months after, the soapie became the most viewed show in South Africa with over 9 million viewers watching. It was competing head-to-head with Generations: The Legacy in a ratings war for the highest viewed show in South Africa.[4] Uzalo set a new TV ratings precedence by being the first ever TV show in SA to have a rating of over 10.25 million viewers in 2018, proving that Uzalo is dominant than the latter.

Production[edit]

The program is filmed in KwaZulu-Natal's KwaMashu F-section.[1] The series use of local talent and infrastructure to depict a realistic portrayal of life in the region makes it unique among other television programs.[3]

Notable Ratings[edit]

SeriesEpisodesOriginally airedAve. RSA viewers
(millions)
First airedLast aired
119 February 2015 (2015-02-09)13 March 2015 (2015-03-13)5.4
2TBA25 September 2018 (2018-09-25)25 September 2018 (2018-09-25)10.25

Series 1 (2015)[edit]

Series 1
No.
overall
EpisodeDirected byWritten byOriginal air dateRSA viewers
(millions) 10
1Premier EpisodeAlex YazbekStory by : Duma Ndlovu
Teleplay by : Phathutshedzo Aldriaan Makwarela
9 February 2015 (2015-02-09)5.4
The story kicked off with a teaser set on 9 February 1990 where two boys were switched at birth, and so was their legacy and destiny. The story picked up 20 years later after the two boys were switched at birth, and the storyline for the entire season followed the family whose wealth was built in the murky criminal underworld, as well as the more wholesome Mdletshe family who’s day to day life, is pretty much centred around the KwaMashu Kingdom Church.

Series 4 (2018)[edit]

Historic South African TV Ratings
No.
overall
EpisodeDirected byWritten byOriginal air dateRSA viewers
(millions) 10
168The Wedding Drama EpisodesLuthando Mgomezulu & Mqondisi 'MQ' NgubaneBongi Ndaba25 September 2018 (2018-09-25)10.25

This record-breaking wedding episode was aired on the 25th of September 2018, and it was preceded by a gripping cliff-hanger on the 24th of September. In the episode which was aired on the 25 September 2018, the saying: "Heaven has no rage like love to hatred turned, Nor hell a fury like a woman scorned" was proven to be true. The gun-wielding ‘woman scorned’ character MaNgcobo, played by Dawn Thandeka King, stormed the wedding of her common-law husband Nkunzi (Masoja Msiza) and love rival MaMlambo (Gugu Gumede) with a loaded gun pointing it to his face, coercing him to make a choice on who he will marry between her and her best friend, MaMlambo. Nkuzi made a decision to marry both woman, MaNgcobo and MaMlambo, thus entering in a polygamous marriage.


This was a historic episode in the history of the South African television prime time viewing as Uzalo became the first ever television show to hit a 10 million mark and surpass it. This episode cemented Uzalo’s dominance in the South African tv landscape.[5]

Cast[edit]

Main characters[edit]

Actor Character Seasons
1 2 3 4
Dawn Thandeka King Lindiwe 'MaNgcobo' Xulu-Mhlongo Main
Leleti Khumalo Zandile 'MaNzuza' Mdletshe Main Recurring
Glen Gabela Melusi Mdletshe Main
Nay Maps Mxolisi Mdletshe Main
Gugu Gumede Hlengiwe Mlambo-Mhlongo Main
Masoja Msiza Nkunzebomvu Mhlongo Does not appear Main
Thokozani 'TkDee' Dlamini Zweli 'Mastermind' Maphumulo Main
Nokuthula Mabika Thobile Ngcobo Main
Jo-Anne Reyneke Sindiswa Main Does not appear
Sihle Ndaba Smangele Maphumulo Main Recurring
Khaya Dladla Gamakhulu Cetshwayo Main
Nompilo Maphumulo Nosipho Xulu Main
Baby Cele Maloka Gabisile Mdletshe-Zikhali Does not appear Main
Thembinkosi Thwala Mondli Mdlalose Does not appear Main
Nomcebo Gumede Mumsy Mdletshe Does not appear Main Recurring
Khumbulani 'Kay' Sibiya Ayanda Mdletshe Main Does not appear
Mpumelelo Bhulose Gxabhashe Xulu Main Does not appear
Siyabonga Shibe Qhabanga Khumalo Does not appear Main

Character Bible[edit]

Dawn Thandeka King portrays Lindiwe (MaNgcobo) Mhlongo (formerly Xulu). She is the ex-wife of Muzi and mother of Nosipho and Ayanda. She raised Mxolisi but it is found Ayanda and Mxolisi were switched at birth making Mxolisi the son of Zandile and Nkosinathi's brother. After Muzi divorced Lindiwe, she rekindled her old relationship with an old ex- boyfriend named Zakhele. When Zakhele proposed marriage to Lindiwe, it was discovered he had no intentions of marrying Lindiwe and was revealed to be a con artist. On the wedding day, Zweli and Mxolisi uncover the truth about Zakhele and his intentions and record for Lindiwe to listen. Once the truth is revealed, Zakhele confesses that it was all revenge he plotted against Lindiwe and this was because she dumped Zakhele for Muzi many years ago. As Zakhele attempted to make an escape with the money while keeping the family hostage, Lindiwe grabbed him and the gun. She got shot but survived and Zakhele also got fatally shot and died from the bullet wound. She went to Mamlabo's wedding with a gun and forced Nkunzi to take her as first wife. And Nkunzi agreed to take her as first wife. Now she is Nkunzi's first wife

Glen Gabela portrays Pastor Melusi Mdletshe. He is the husband of Zandile and the father of Nkosinathi and Mxolisi. He also has an illegitimate daughter named Mumsy and this indicates that he had an affair with another woman during his marriage to Zandile. He briefly had an affair with MaMlambo when Zandile nearly divorced him for having an illegitimate daughter outside the marriage. After Zandile's affair with Bheki got exposed by Bheki's wife Lillian, Zandile went out of town to stay with her sister. Melusi tried to resume his affair with MaMlambo but she rejected his advances. Weeks later, Zandile returned to Kwa-Mashu to win Melusi back, but he showed no interest. When Zandile got gunned down by thugs at church, a tearful Melusi quickly cradled her dying body and her last words was asking Melusi to forgive her and take care of Mxolisi.

Masoja Msiza portrays Nkunzebomvu (Nkunzi) Mhlongo. He is the ex-husband of Innocentia and the fiancé to MaNgcobo. After Lindiwe was sectioned to a mental hospital, he took interest in buying her house. When Nosipho refused to sell the house, he threatened to kill her by dousing petrol all over her and setting fire on her. After tricking Nosipho, he managed to get the house and move his wife and daughter inside the house. It was later revealed that he was criminal and he took part in bombing ATM cash machines and killing people by pouring petrol on them and burning them alive. After he was caught red-handed, he got arrested on his wedding day and imprisoned. Lindiwe then ended the relationship and kicked Zekhethelo out of the house. Months later, he was released from prison for good behaviour and moved in with his brother Qhabanga. Lindiwe realised that she was falling in love with Nkunzi and they quickly got back together despite Zekhethelo's shock. When Mxolisi still believed that Nkunzi was up to no good around town, he organised an angry mob which resulted in the injuries of Nkunzi and Zekhethelo and this caused both of them to end up in hospital. Nkunzi managed to recover from his injuries but Zekhethelo was in critical condition and the doctors revealed the only way to save her life is to pay for an expensive operation located in Switzerland. Backed into a corner of desperation, he bombed another ATM machine in order to save his daughter's life. Once he got the money to pay for the operation, Zekhethelo was flown to Switzerland for procedures to be done in order for her to live. After she survived and recovered, she returned to Kwa-Mashu. Nkunzi's ex-girlfriend and Zekhethelo's biological mother named Mapadi came waltzing back saying she wants Zekhethelo back. Mapadi and Nkunzi had a heated argument up until she revealed Zekhethelo wasn't his daughter. He refused to believe Mapadi as he raised Zekhethelo but the DNA results revealed that he in fact was not her biological father. He is the older half-brother of Qhabanga. He begins cheating on Lindiwe by having an romantic affair with MaMlambo and Fikile. When Lindiwe reveals Nkunzi's affair with MaMlambo to the entire church congregation, MaMlambo also reveals about his affair with Fikile. Nkunzi is later shot by Fikile's boyfriend Sbu and this was revenge after Sbu found out their affair. He is later paralysed for a while but regains full use of his legs. He then announces to Lindiwe that he wants to take MaMlambo as his third wife much to her shock. He then marries both MaNgcobo and MaMlambo at the same time after she forces him to pick between her and MaMlambo.

Ntokozo Dlamini portrays Zweli (Mastermind) Maphumulo. He is the brother of Smangele and Mxolisi's best friend. He also is the ex-boyfriend of Thobile and also had a brief affair with Nosipho during his relationship with Thobile. He briefly dates Mxolisi's sister Mumsy after Thobile dumps him due to his immaturity. When he learns off Mumsy's affair with his childhood friend Bafana, he nearly attempts to kill her out of anger but eventually calms down. After his sister's death, he receives Smangele's life policy letter and this makes him realise that Smangele had left him a huge amount of money. After noticing this, he realises that he still has feelings for Thobile and they eventually end up getting back together. Months later after Smangele's death, the couple move into a new house. Zweli's ex-girlfriend Mumsy comes back to Kwa-Mashu in order to support her father after Melusi struggles to get over Zandile's death. Mastermind eventually gives in to Mumsy and has sex with her while still dating Thobile. Mumsy then unexpectedly announces her pregnancy shocking both Zweli and Thobile. This causes friction on Thobile and Zweli's relationship and to make matters worse, Mumsy moves in with them and lies that her father kicked her out of the house. As Thobile finally accepts the pregnancy, a married man announces he had an affair with Mumsy and revealed that she got pregnant in the affair. Zweli and Thobile did not believe this but he revealed he cheated on his wife with Mumsy and when Mumsy told him she was pregnant, he wanted her to terminate the pregnancy. He then claimed that he was ready to be a father and this made Zweli crestfallen and angry that Mumsy lied to him all along and made him realise her unborn baby was not his. When Mxolisi found out, he reluctantly helped Mumsy escape back to Swaziland. When Zweli found out about Mxolisi helping Mumsy, the engaged in bitter fistfight. After learning of Mumsy's lies, he and Thobile managed to fix their relationship. Thobile then later began to develop a crush on young and handsome man named Wandile. As Thobile and Wandile spent more time together, Zweli notice this which caused him to threaten Wandile and Thobile with his gun and commit more to Thobile. Zweli still had hopes to be a father and got girlfriend Thobile eating healthier and taking supplements. However Thobile realised that she wasn't ready to have a child and began taking birth control tablets to prevent from getting pregnant. She began doing this behind Zweli's back and when Zweli found weeks later, he became angry with her and ordered her to leave the house. Thobile begged Zweli for another chance but he said he could not forgive her for taking the pregnancy prevention tablets. As Zweli needed more money, he began stealing cars for Nkunzi's client Phillipe. As he got caught by the police, he tried to resist arrest but ended up being shot and hospitalised. As he awoke from being in a coma, he was then prosecuted, charged and sentenced to life in prison. Thobile tried all sorts of ways to get him released but he eventually surrendered to his crimes. He later wrote a letter to Thobile saying he was sorry for all the pain he caused her, told her he forgave her and that he will always love her but told her to move on with her life. He then later left his money, car and house to Thobile after ending their relationship via letter. The actor is said to be taking a break from the show. He will return for season five.

Nompilo Maphumulo portrays Nosipho Xulu. She is the daughter of Muzi and Mangcobo. She is the sister of Ayanda and half sister to Amandla. She briefly has an affair with Ayanda unaware he is her brother and also has a brief affair with Zweli. She unexpectedly quickly falls pregnant by her brother Ayanda, but has a secret abortion and does not tell anyone. She dates Mondli on and off. After having enough of his neglect towards her, she dumps him. She ends up meeting Nkunzi's brother Qhabanga and ends up dating him. After learning that her mother and Mxolisi killed Nkosinathi, she disowns them. When her mother's murder case is dropped, she moves out of the house. She meets a pimp named Amos. He eventually forces her into prostitution and forces her to use cocaine before she sleeps with Amo's clients for money. She became engaged to Qhabanga after months of dating but after finding out about him taking part in criminal activities alongside her mother and Nkunzi, she breaks up with him after he, Nkunzi and Lindiwe are arrested and gets back together with Mondli. She then splits up again with Mondli after he fails to understand and support her through her ancestor calling.

Nay Maps portrays Mxolisi Mdletshe/Xulu. He is the son of Melusi and MaNzuza. He is the brother of Nkosinathi and half brother to Mumsy. He has a sexual affair with Nombuso until she marries Ayanda. When Nombuso discovers she is pregnant, Ayanda forces her to do a DNA test. This causes her to have a miscarriage. After Nombuso is fatally shot and killed, the DNA results reveal Mxolisi was the biological father of her unborn baby. Mxolisi begins to date on older married woman named Nokuthula but after he dumps her, she begins stalking him until she almost kills him. After Nokuthula, he begins dating Zekhethelo. He later cheats on Zekhethelo by drunkenly having sex with Fikile. They break up for a while but reunite months later. After Mapadi's death, Mxolisi later helps out Zekhethelo physically and financially as she struggles with finding a stable home after her a rough patch with Nkunzi. He and his girlfriend begin working for a local pimp named Amos and start delivering drugs for him. Mxolisi and Zekhethelo start taking drugs together and both begin to spiral out of control. When Zekhethelo collapses from drugs, she is then rushed to hospital and she decides to quit using drugs and his aunt Gabisile decides to make a fake rehab for him, Zekhethelo and other drug addicts. Once Zekhethelo fully recovers, she decides to turn a new leaf and quit using drugs.Zekhethelo decides she wants to be a proper Christian and stop making bad choices. This begins to upset Mxolisi because of the fact he wants to have sex with Zekhethelo but she objects. Zekhethelo and Mxolisi's relationship begins to have a complete strain with constant heated arguments. When she falls ill again, she is rushed back to hospital where the doctors tell her that there is still cocaine in her system. Zekhethelo announces she wants to confess to the entire church about her and Mxolisi's wrongdoing. Gabisile and Mxolisi beg her to keep quiet and Gabisile buys an engagement ring for Mxolisi to give Zekhethelo. Once Nosipho discovers Mxolisi's affair with lily, she blurts the whole truth to her mother, Zekhethelo and Nkunzi when the Mdletshes come to make lobolla negotiations. With Zekhethelo being crestfallen, she dumps Mxolisi, packs her bags and moves out of the Mdletshes house, disowns Melusi and Gabisile and moves back home to Nkunzi. Mxolisi then falls into deep depression and when he visits Mastermind in prison, Mastermind blackmails him into giving him R5,000,000 or he will send a video of the church shooting to Mondli. It is revealed that all along Mxolisi accidentally killed his mother MaNzuza not Mondli.

Nokuthula Mabika portrays Thobile. She is Smangele, Fikile and GC's friend and Zweli's ex-girlfriend. She had dated Zweli for a few years but their relationship came to an abrupt end after she discovered Zweli's affair with Nosipho. She also gets arrested for attempting to kill her uncle named Mbhekiseni, after revealing he had raped her when she was 12 years old. With no one believing her, she was perceived to be mentally disturbed by her uncle and the church people. As other women eventually came forward about Mbekhiseni sexually abusing them, a woman came forward to the police about Mbekhseni raping her as an adolescent which resulted in a pregnancy. Mbekhiseni agreed to do a DNA test in order for to prove to his girlfriend MaMlambo that he was innocent. As the DNA revealed that he was in fact the father of the victim's child, he was eventually arrested and MaMlambo broke up with him. This also caused Thobile to be released from prison and the charges against her were dropped. After Smangele's death, Thobile ended up spending a lot of time with Zweli and comforting him as he struggles to cope with losing Smangele. After helping Zweli to recover, she ends up realising that she is still in love with him and this causes her to get back together with him. However Thobile and Zweli begin having friction when Zweli has an affair with his unfaithful ex-girlfriend Mumsy. They begin to have more difficulties in their relationship when Mumsy announces her pregnancy in a baptism ceremony. However Thobile began to make peace with it and accepted Mumsy until her lies were exposed by a married man she had an affair with which caused Mumsy to flee back to Swaziland. Zweli still had plans to be a father got Thobile to eating better foods and supplements. Thobile realised she wasn't ready to be a mother and began taking birth control pills. As soon as Zweli discovered this, he kicked her out the house. When Zweli was shot by police for stealing cars and resisting arrest. As he recovered from hospital, he faced his crimes and wrote Thobile an apologetic letter and announced the end of their relationship. As Thobile read this, she fell into depression and drank heavily which caused her to scratch Lindiwe's car. She then reunited with a man named Wandile that she met a while back. They first kissed and nearly had sex but this hurt Thobile more as she told Wandile she wasn't ready to start over with him after Zweli dumped her for good. Months later, Thobile reunited with Wandile and kissed him on New Year's Eve. She then ended up having sex with Wandile and considered starting a relationship with him; however her ex-boyfriend Zweli called her from prison and asked her to visit him. This began to confuse Thobile more realising she admires Wandile but stills loves Zweli. Wandile proceeded to kidnap Thobile and torture her after finding out she had been visiting her ex Mastermind in prison. Once Thobile broke free, she beat up Wandile with a huge gardening tool and left him bloodied and unconscious. Realising that she had enough of her life in Kwa-Mashu, Thobile packed up all her clothes and possessions and decided to move to Johannesburg. She then made a farewell to GC, Fikile and all the church members including Madlala, Gabisile and Melusi. She then left.

Khaya Dladla portrays Gamakhulu (GC) Cetshwayo He is the friend Thobile, Smangele and Fikile. He has a homosexual relationship with a guy named JoJo. GC is forced to enter a marriage with woman he does not know by his overprotective father named Bhomu. His mother supports him when he reveals that he is gay. However, when GC eventually manages to escape the upcoming arranged marriage, he attempts to try and rekindle his relationship with JoJo but JoJo dumps him and moves to Johannesburg. This prompts GC into drinking heavily. He begins falling out with Thobile, Fikile and other people. Eventually he loses his hair salon and home and becomes homeless. He begins stealing from people such as MaMlambo, Zandile and Zweli. However Smangele still supports and helps him. He ends up being stabbed and rushed to hospital. When his parents hear about this, they come back and he and his father reunite when his father gives in to him and offers to support him.

Gugu Gumede portrays Hlengiwe (MaMlambo) Mlambo Mhlongo. She befriends MaNzuza and MaNcgobo and has a brief affair with Melusi after Zandile nearly divorces him for having an illegitimate child named Mumsy with a woman named Zanele. She enters a relationship with a man named Mbhekiseni. She eventually breaks up with him after he is arrested for raping various women as well as his niece Thobile. MaMlambo begins having a sexual affair with her friend Lindiwe's fiancé Nkunzi. After Nkunzi is fatally shot and paralysed by Sbu, MaMlambo ends their affair. However, after Nkunzi recovers from his bullet wounds, he asks MaMlambo to marry him but she refuses. She then reluctantly agrees some time after. She eventually marries Nkunzi in a double wedding.

Nelisa Mchunu portrays Fikile. She is Thobile, GC and Smangele's friend and hairdresser. She has a drunken one night stand with Mxolisi but no relationship happens. She begins dating a criminal named Sbu who works for Nkunzi. Fikile previously also had a sexual relationship with a sinister and corrupt man named Pastor Nkosi. When Sbu is out of work, Fikile resorts into desperate measures to pay the rent they owe to Mastermind and Thobile and takes a second job as a hostess in Lindiwe's brand new nightclub called "Club Genesis". Sbu's boss Nkunzi begins making sexual advances at Fikile and she gives into him and has sex with Nkunzi. After this Sbu gets his job back at the panelbeaters. Once Sbu finds out Nkunzi had sex with Fikile, he shot and had him paralysed. Sbu was upset with Fikile for a bit, but she then explained why she did it. When church member Madlala announces her wealth after her husbands death, she then celebrates her wealth. Sbu and Fikile figure a way on how they will get their hands on Madlalas money. They pretend to have an argument and break up and Sbu moves in with Madlala. Madlada attempts to have sex with Sbu but her manages to lie all the time and tell her she is needed at the club. Once she discovers the truth from GC about Sbu and Fikile's plan, she realises Sbu lied and conned her. It is revealed Sbu and Fikile are now con artists and thieves. They begin stealing from customers and Lindiwe's club.

Nyalleng Thibedi portrays Zekhethelo Mhlongo. She was raised by Nkunzi but it is revealed that he is not her biological father. Her stepmothers are Innocentia and Lindiwe and her biological mother is called Mapadi, who has been absent throughout her life. She has an on and off relationship with Mxolisi. After Nkunzi shows lack of interest in being in her life after the DNA results, she goes back to live with her alcoholic mother. Her mother begins to fall ill and the landlord pressures Mapadi with the rent. Since Mapadi has no money, she forces her daughter Zekhethelo to sleep with the landlord. When the landlord almost rapes Zekhethelo, Mxolisi comes to her rescue. Eventually Mapadi dies from alcohol poisoning and Zekhethelo and Mxolisi quietly bury her. She moves in with Mxolisi and Melusi. When Nkunzi sees her, he realises his mistake in rejecting Zekhethelo and pleads with her to forgive him, mentions he still sees Zekhethelo as his own daughter and says he still wants to be a part of her life. Zekhethelo meets a pimp and drug dealer named Amos who is now paraplegic after being shot in the knees by Lindiwe for forcing her daughter Nosipho into prostitution and drug addiction. She begins working at Thobile's salon. Zekhethelo begins using illegal drugs such as cocaine. She then becomes a drug addict and steals stock from Thobile's salon prompting Thobile to fire from her job. After spiralling out of control with massive drug intake, Zekhethelo is later put to hospital where they diagnose her with respiratory failure. She then decides to quit using drugs and decides to become a strict Christian. When she falls ill again, she is rushed to hospital where the doctors tell her, her boyfriend Mxolisi, Gabisile and Melusi that there are still traces of cocaine in her body system. She then tells Mxolisi and Gabisile that she wants to confess her wrongdoing to the entire church congregation. Mxolisi and Gabisile immediately object her idea and beg her to keep quiet. She refuses and Gabisile forces Mxolisi to propose marriage to her. Mxolisi is later spotted by his sister Nosipho, having sex with lily in his car. Nosipho asks him on why he is cheating on Zekhethelo and he confesses everything and that he is not ready to marry Zekhethelo. Once the Mdletshe family arrive to Lindiwe and Nkunzi's house to negotiate lobolla, Nosipho openly blurts out the truth and confesses; she caught Mxolisi and lily having sex, Gabisile forcing Mxolisi to propose and that the ring Mxolisi proposed to Zekhethelo with was Gabisile's ring. As this leaves Zekhethelo heartbroken, she dumps Mxolisi, moves out of the Mdletshe house, disowns Gabisile and Melusi and confesses the truth to the whole church during a Christmas play. She then moves back in with Nkunzi, Lindiwe, Nosipho and MaMlambo.

Siyabonga Shibe portrays Qhabanga Khumalo. He was a policeman from Kwa-Mashu police station and he was revealed to be a corrupt police officer. He is Nkunzi's younger half-brother and he dates Nosipho after she dumps Mondli and he and Mondli began a bitter feud. He slept with Nkunzi's wife during her troubles with Nkunzi. After months of dating, He and Nosipho became engaged to be married until he got arrested for his crimes. After his release from prison, he began begging ex-girlfriend Nosipho to give him another chance. He and Mondli briefly had a feud over Nosipho. Nosipho eventually got slightly drunk over red wine and had sex with Qhabanga but she told him to forget that it happened. Qhabanga eventually then moved on and started getting involved with the church. He took over after Melusi decided to resign as a pastor. This was because Melusi discovered that Qhabanga was still involved in crime and the money he was earning was crime money. On his brother's double wedding day, he shared a passionate kiss with Melusi's sister Gabisile which was recorded by GC. He then later began dating Gabisile.

Thembinkosi Thwala portrays Mondli Mdlalose. Mondli dates Nosipho. He also has a son and quickly marries Mbalenhle who is the mother of his son. When Mbalenhle abandons her son and Mondli, this forces him to be a single father. After Nosipho dumps him after neglecting her, he becomes jealous of her dating his colleague Qhabanga. Mondli tries different tactics to win Nosipho back but it fails. On Nosipho and Qhabanga's engagement party, Mondli gathers evidence about Lindiwe's, Nkunzi and Qhabanga's criminal activities. This prompts him to arrest them and show Nosipho all the evidence. This caused Nosipho to have a breakdown and have sex with her ex Mondli. They eventually start over and get back together. However, when Nosipho begins acting strange, this confuses Mondli. Nosipho begins having dreams about an non-existent old woman. It is then revealed that Nosipho has a calling from the Xulu ancestors and want her to do an ritual. When Nosipho has enough of Mondli not supporting her along the process, she dumps him again and moves back home to her mother.

Baby Cele Maloka porttrays Gabisile Mdletshe. She is the sister of the Pastor Melusi and Zandile's sister in law. She is the aunt of Mxolisi, Nkosnathi and Mumsy. She moves to Kwa-Mashu to be near her brother. She is a landlady of a house she owns. She supports her brother after he struggles to get over his wife Zandile's death. She becomes involved with the church. She then later shares a passionate kiss with her brother's enemy Qhabanga. She then begins dating Qhabanga.

Former cast[edit]

Mpumelelo Bhulose as Bhekumuzi “Muzi” (Gxabhashe) Xulu. He was Lindiwe's ex-husband and father of Ayanda and Nosipho. He also had an illegitimate child named Amandla who was born in affair he had with a woman named MaPhindi. He later ends up being arrested for all his crimes after his employee Zweli sells him out to the police. He was later sentenced to 25 years of life and was sent to a prison in Pretoria. He later divorced his wife Lindiwe and left his panelbeater business and house to her. As Nkunzi attempts to visit Muzi in prison, it is revealed by Nkunzi that Muzi was stabbed to death in prison and it is found out that Qhabanga had Muzi murdered.

Leleti Khumalo as Zandile (MaNzuza) Mdletshe. She was the wife of Pastor Mdletshe and the mother of Nkosinathi and Mxolisi. Initially she raised Ayanda but it was found that Ayanda and Mxolisi were switched at birth making Ayanda, Muzi and Mangcobo's son and Nosipho's brother. Zandile entered an affair with a lawyer named Advocate Bheki Zulu. Once the affair was revealed by the advocate's wife Lillian, she chose to leave her husband to stay in a village out of town with her sister. She returned to Kwa-Mashu in order to win her husband back and for Smangele's upcoming wedding but ended up getting fatally shot and killed alongside Smangele in a shoot-out by thugs during a church service.

Sihle Ndaba as Smangele Maphumulo. She was the sister of Zweli and the estranged wife of Ayanda. Smangele briefly dated Muzi's jailbird brother Mkhonto before dating and marrying Ayanda. After Ayanda discovered the truth about Smangele and her adopted child, he left and divorced her and got back together with Sibahle. A man named Khumbulani took an interest in Smangele. The two ended up dating but after Smangele found out that Khumbulani was HIV positive, she ended up not being sure to continue pursuing her relationship with him. They later reconciled and got back together. But it was short-lived as Smangele got fatally shot during a shoot-out at the church service. At hospital, the doctors declared her brain-dead and she later dies when her entire vital organs shut down.

Sihle Xaba as Khumbulani. He developed a crush on Smangele and tried on numerous occasions to have a date with her but she refused due to her horrible divorce with Ayanda. He then fell in love with her and started dating her. When he confesses that he is HIV-positive, Smangele isn't sure to be with him. Because of this, he briefly leaves Kwa-Mashu. He returns months later and proposes marriage to Smangele and they reunite. However their joy is short lived when his fiancée Smangele is fatally shot and killed during a church service and just before their wedding day. Still hurt and saddened over Smangele's death, he later left Kwa-Mashu for a better life.

Nomcebo Gumede as Mumsy Mdletshe. Mumsy is the illegitimate daughter of Melusi and an unknown woman named Zanele. She is the half-sister of Mxolisi and Nkosinathi. She is also the step-daughter of Zandile and niece of Gabisile. She had an abusive relationship with a criminal from Swaziland named Terror. When Terror held Mumsy and the Mdletshe family hostage, he was knocked out by Mastermind and then arrested for attempted murder. She then fully started a relationship with Mastermind but it was short as she had an affair with Mastermind's childhood named Bafana. She then returned to Swaziland to her mother after Mastermind found out and attempted to kill her. She briefly came back to Kwa-Mashu for her stepmother's Zandile's funeral. She made a full return after when Lindiwe opened a nightclub named "Club Genesis". She then drugged Thobile and seduced and had sex with her ex-boyfriend Mastermind. She battled with sex addiction. She had sex with Mastermind a few times, this caused friction between Mastermind and Thobile and to make matters worse, she announced her pregnancy during her baptism. Even though Thobile managed to forgive Mastermind, she showed bitter resentments towards Mumsy. A man named Mncedisi came to Kwa-Mashu to look for Mumsy. As soon as he found Mumsy hiding out in Mastermind's house, he revealed that he is a married man and had affair with Mumsy which resulted in her pregnancy. He admitted that he tried to persuade Mumsy to get an abortion as he feared losing his marriage but insisted that he is ready to raise his child. Realising how much pain she caused by lying and manipulating Mastermind, she quietly revealed the truth to her brother Mxolisi. Mxolisi then reluctantly agreed to help Mumsy escape after realising the how much ruin and damage she caused amongst Mastermind, Thobile, Melusi and Gabisile. She then ran away back to Swaziland.

Thandeka Zulu as Nombuso Mdletshe. She had a relationship with Ayanda and married him, however at the same time she was also having a sexual affair with Mxolisi. She then fell pregnant and this caused Ayanda to force her to take a DNA test which resulted in her having a miscarriage. As she was heartbroken by the loss of her unborn child caused by Ayanda, she packed up and prepared to leave him. As she was about to tell Mxolisi the truth about his real mother, she ended up being fatally shot. As she was in critical condition at the hospital, the doctors eventually took her of life support as she was unable to regain consciousness and she eventually died. The DNA results later revealed that Mxolisi was the father of her unborn baby and not Ayanda.

Khumbulani Kay Sibiya as Ayanda Xulu/Mdletshe. He was Muzi and Lindiwe's son as well as Nosipho and Amandla's brother. He was raised by MaNzuza. He dated Nombuso and married her, When Nombuso died, he entered a sexual affair with Nosipho unaware she was his sister. He also dated Smangele but he dumped her when he fell in love with Sibahle. After he discovers the truth about Smangele's plan to trick him by making him believe that he was the father of the child she illegally adopted and trapping him into marrying Smangele, Ayanda packed up all his clothes and went crawling back to Sibahle. Sibahle refused this and this caused Ayanda to cry. Eventually Sibahle reconsidered and Ayanda quickly divorced Smangele. After he and Sibahle got back together, they both left Kwa-Mashu and moved to Cape Town for a fresh start.

Lungelo Madondo as Amandla Maphumulo. She was Muzi's daughter and the half-sister of Nosipho and Ayanda. She was raised by Smangele and Zweli who were believed to be her siblings but it was discovered that they are actually not her siblings. Her mother was a woman named MaPhindi who left her at avery young age. She briefly dated Zandile's son Nkosinathi after her mother and boyfriend Richard Davis got arrested and jailed for attempting to con the Xulu's out of their money. When she found out about her mother's imprisonment, she turned to drugs for comfort alongside Nkosinathi. As she attempted to steal and sell Zandile's watch in order to purchase more drugs, this caused Nkosinathi to end the relationship with her. She later attempted to start a relationship with her father Muzi which ended up in him rejecting her. This caused her to fall deeper in depression which resulted in her death due to overdosing drugs.

Sipho Mhlongo as Nkosinathi Mdletshe. He was Zandile and Melusi's son. He briefly dated Amandla but dumped her when she tried to steal from his mother. He was later accidentally killed by his brother Mxolisi and Lindiwe when he had evidence to show Zandile of Mxolisi and Lindiwe's criminal activities.

Mondli Makhoba as Pastor Nkosi. Nkosi was introduced to Kwa-Mashu church after Melusi disappeared to Swaziland after being released from prison. He briefly moved into Melusi and Zandile's house. He was a sinister pastor whose main illegal activities included Financial Fraud, Bribery and sexual abuse. He was killed in a physical altercation with Ayanda during a live broadcast.

Luthuli Dlamini as Bheki Zulu. He is a lawyer and is married to Lilian Dlamini-Zulu. He also enters an affair with Zandile. It is revealed that Bheki and Zandile fell in love when they were younger but then grew apart after Zandile fell in love with Melusi and married him. After Zandile died, he came to the church for the funeral but was forced out of the funeral service by Melusi and Gabisile.

Sthandwa Nzuza as Innocentia Mhlongo. She was Nkunzi's first wife and stepmother to Zekhethelo. She was forced to leave Kwa-Mashu by Lindiwe who threatened to expose her for sleeping with Nkunzi's brother Qhabanga. This was revenge Lindiwe had planned after Innocentia deliberately had her put into a mental hospital.

Londeka Mlaba as Sibahle Dhlomo. She was Dhlomo's estranged daughter. She got into a relationship with Ayanda after he dumped Smangele. She was later revealed to have been a prostitute and working for a pimp named Amos.

Don Mlangeni Nawa as Dhlomo. He was Sibahle's estranged father and a policeman for Kwa-Mashu police station who was forced to step down due to his incompetence.

Reception[edit]

Uzalo's premiere in February 2015 attracted 5 million viewers. In recent months, the soapie has been most viewed show in South Africa with over 9 million viewers watching. It is competing with Generations: The Legacy for highest viewed show in South Africa.[4]

Accolades[edit]

Year Award Category Recipient Result
2015 Simon "Mabunu" Sabela Awards Best Newcomer Khumbulani 'Kay' Sibiya Won
Best Actor Mpumelelo Bhulose Won
Best Actress Sihle Ndaba Won
Lifetime Achievement Award Don Mlangeni Nawa Won
Best Soapie Uzalo Nominated
2016 The Sunday Times (South Africa) Generation Next Awards Coolest Soapie Uzalo Won
Simon "Mabunu" Sabela Awards Best Actress Sihle Ndaba Won
2017 Dstv Mzansi Magic Viewers Choice Awards Best Actor Ntokozo 'TKDee' Dlamini Nominated
Best Actress Dawn Thandeka King Nominated
South African Film and Television Awards Best Achievement in Scriptwriting Uzalo Writing Team; Head Writer Phathutshedzo Makwarela Nominated
2018 Simon "Mabunu" Sabela Awards Best Supporting TV Actress Nokuthula Mabika Won
Best Actress Baby Cele Won
Best Supporting Actor Simphiwe Majozi Won
The Sunday Times (South Africa) Generation Next Awards 2018 Coolest TV soapie Uzalo Won
South African Film and Television Awards Most Popular Soapie Uzalo Won
Dstv Mzansi Magic Viewer Choice Awards Best Actor Masoja Msiza Nominated
2019 South African Film and Television Awards Best TV Soap Uzalo Pending
Best Actress Dawn Thandeka King Pending
Best Supporting Actor Khaya Dladla Pending
Best Achievement in Editing - TV Soap Nhlanhla Mngandi Pending
Best Achievement in Sound - TV Soap Timotheus Du Preez Pending
Best Achievement in Wardrobe - TV Soap Nokubonga Ngobeni Pending
Best Achievement in Make-up and Hair - TV Soap Stella Johnson Pending
Most Popular TV Soap/Telenovela Uzalo Pending

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "SABC1's new Uzalo: 'We're not Generations'". news.yahoo.com. Yahoo. February 10, 2015. Retrieved April 16, 2015.
  2. ^ a b Bambalele, Patience (February 9, 2015). "'Uzalo' hope for Zuma". www.filmcontact.com/. Retrieved April 16, 2015.
  3. ^ a b "SABC1 takes on the telenovela with Uzalo". www.tvsa.co.za. January 13, 2015. Retrieved April 16, 2015.
  4. ^ a b Hlongwane, S'thembiso (February 12, 2015). "Uzalo's first episode clocks 5 million viewers". drum.co.za. Drum. Retrieved April 16, 2015.
  5. ^ Tvsa, Tvsa Team. "Top Shows on TV: September 2018". tvsa. Retrieved 8 October 2018.

External links[edit]