Khumbul'ekhaya Ratings DECLINE | Lost Almost Half Of Its Viewers

The television landscape in South Africa is gradually changing and the results must have the SABC concerned. Could this be the end of SABC's pride show? The ratings and critical darling that was Khumbul'ekhaya is not doing well?

It seems like such a long time ago when Khumbu used to dominate social media every time it was on tv. It was not just Twitter and Facebook that was abuzz with the SABC1 reality show, viewers showed their love with their remotes too. 

At the height of Khumbul'ekhaya's success it pulled between 2.5mil to a near 3 million viewers each week. It was the most talked about show and achieved critical acclaim for its raw depiction of ordinary South African family trials and tribulation. 

A lot of the show's success rested on the subliminal comical moments that were a fodder for social media punchlines and memes. It also offered Mzansi a mirror to see its own reflection of social ills on. Suddenly, real life offered better entertainment than scripted tv. 

Then came Mzansi Magic! It is no secret that the channel pulled most of its content from the proven success of reality tv inspired by Khumbul'ekhaya. The SABC1 show proved that ordinary people are and can make for good television. No surprise that in its re-configurement of local content, Mzansi Magic went that route to draw viewers. 

One can dare say that without Khumbul'ekhaya shows such as Our Perfect Wedding and Date My Family would not exist. The success of Khumbu was the catalyst for what has now become the staple content pull for Mzansi Magic. 

Sadly, while Khumbu pioneered the regular folks reality tv phenomenon, viewers are now tuning off the beloved SABC show. According to the latest available TAMS ratings, Khumbul'ekhaya is getting beat by shows like Wipeout [SABC2] and Rolling With [etv]. This is a travesty!

The show is now the 5th watched show in the reality genre pulling an estimated 1.5 million viewers — a far cry from the almost 3 million it used to pull. 

With Mzansi Magic's Sunday block continuing to dominate conversations across South Africa and social media plaforms, as well as the channel's additional shows such as Utatakho and Please Step In now getting attention, the future does not look good for Khumbu or the SABC for that matter. 

The producers of Khul'ekhaya, should the show eventually bow out, can be proud for having changed local television content. When it looked like we would be bombarded with celebrity reality shows, they took a risk and chose to share our stories, regular folks we connected with and we replied in kind. 

Khumbul'ekhaya will go down in history as the show that changed it all, at the time we nearly lost our South African identity by trying to emulate celebrity American reality tv. 

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