Johannesburg – A new ‘Laan’ is coming to the SABC in the form of Systraat, the South African public broadcaster’s first web series in the form of an Afrikaans animation show.
Systraat will also be the SABC’s first show to roll out and be “broadcast” online first before it’s shown on linear television.
Systraat (“Sidestreet”) is produced by Stemmburg Television - also responsible for the long-running Afrikaans music competition show Noot vir Noot and the more recent Musiek Roulette on SABC2.
The first episode will debut on 24 November at 21:00 on SABC3’s YouTube channel.
Systraat’s internet debut follows the second season of Clifton Shores, now retitled as The Shores, also currently playing out with a new episode weekly on YouTube as the South African TV industry starts to move more TV content to viewers through over-the-top (OTT) players and platforms.
The new web series follows the comedic exploits of the Afrikaans Kotze family and will have English subtitles.
“We’re moving into a new digital age where television becomes on demand, so we thought we want to make this two firsts – the first South African animated sitcom but we also want to make it the first South African on demand show from the SABC and put that on YouTube,” creator Carl Stemmet told the SABC.
“That’s the perfect platform for it where people can watch it at anytime, anywhere, where ever they are in the world. We’re reaching ex-pats who are sitting overseas as well who are hungry for and miss local content, so in this way we’re reaching a much wider market.”
According to Stemmet Systraat’s stories and humour will be very specific to South Africa. “The characters in the series are very identifiable as South Africans – and the situations they deal with: things like the matric dance that everyone has to go to, the braai competition that everyone wants to take part in, the university rugby team that the oldest son wants to be part of.”
“The other themes of father/son relationships, squabbles at home, the love life at school and trying to get the girl’s attention and social awkwardness, all that kind of stuff is universal,” says Stemmet.
Animation exploits of the Kotze family
Systraat revolves around dad Gys Kotze, an enthusiastic, yet somewhat dimwitted guy who sees himself as an inventor. His wife, Esbe Kotze is the strict one.
They have two sons; The older brother Werner is the jock and rugby player at university and the younger brother Hein is the awkward, social outcast and studious child.
Similar to The Simpsons, South Park and Family Guy the main characters are surrounded by a collection of supporting characters ranging from the principal and rugby coach to a butchery owner, a doctor and various other characters who pop up throughout the different webisodes.
Watch a trailer of Systraat here: