What’s new on Showmax in Kenya in December 2023

29 November 2023

What’s new on Showmax in Kenya in December 2023

December is rolling in and bringing sun, fun and a whole host of new shows to enjoy. Catch Kenyan Showmax Originals like adorable animation Twende, a brand-new Kenyan Christmas movie A Merry X-Mess, and some top reality and telenovela titles from South Africa and Nigeria. Some of the biggest movies of 2023 are landing this month, too, to keep the whole family entertained while on holiday.

Showmax Originals: Kenya-South Africa

Twende S1 | Showmax Original | Five eps on 1 December, then two eps every Friday

The first Showmax Original 2D animated series, Twende follows a pangolin of the same name, the slowest moving animal in the savannah. Twende’s belief that “life is about the journey, not the destination” is constantly at odds with his job as a boda boda (motorcycle taxi) driver in the bustling, fictional East African city of Milima.

Twende is voiced by Junior Nyong’o (The Legend of Lwanda Magere), while June Gachui (Crime and Justice) plays his unlikely best friend and navigator, Nuru – a whip-smart bird who always looks out for her bestie, even if his chilled-out vibe drives her crazy sometimes.

Kalasha Awards nominee Elsaphan Njora (Super Sema, Kati Kati) voices Boss, the perennially broke and exhausted hyena who owns the boda boda agency where Nuru and Twende work. The all-Kenyan voice cast also includes Charles Ouda (Crime and Justice) as showy stunt driver Kimbe and Mkamzee Mwatela (Mali) as Boss’s rival, Madam Mongoose, CEO of the evil tech empire Goober. Also listen out for Kalasha Awards winner Nyokabi Macharia (Super Sema), Joyce Musoke (Second Family) and seasoned voice actor and director Khaemba W Edward (Ogas at the Top, The XYZ Show).

Produced by London-based Braintrust and Johannesburg-based Mind’s Eye Creative, Twende is co-created by Charlie Maas, Kayla Archer, Mike Scott and Regan Riskas Maas, with Greig Cameron (Seal Team, Supa Strikas) as the showrunner.

Twende’s pilot screened in competition at Annecy, the world’s premier animation festival, in 2021. 

Showmax Originals: South Africa

Convict Conman S1 | Wednesdays from 6 December

In 2012, Carte Blanche journalist Sasha Wein receives a tip-off to investigate Dawie de Villiers, a Kempton Park photographer and founder of Modelling South Africa. Described in the first episode as “a sophisticated predator” and “the Kempton Park Hugh Hefner”, de Villiers is accused of fraud and of being sexually inappropriate with aspiring models, some below the age of 16. 

Nine years later, in 2021, with de Villiers sentenced to life in jail, investigative journalist Jana Marx (Devilsdorp) receives a tip-off to look into Michael O’Connor. He runs a photography publication and is looking to start business and fashion magazines too. It’s during the Covid pandemic, so his staff have never met him – or even seen his face. 

O’Connor claims de Villiers is a “good friend” but what else do they have in common? 

The Mommy Club S1 Reunion | Stream from 5 December

The Mommy Club, which set a new record for the most first-week views of any reality series on Showmax, follows five affluent Jozi moms and the nannies who help them take care of their heirs.

The reunion special will be hosted by DStv Mzansi Viewers Choice Awards and SAFTA winner Thembisa Mdoda, who will get to the bottom of all the tea that was spilled during the dramatic season.

The mommies include entrepreneur and motivational speaker Hermajesty, former The Real Housewives of Johannesburg breakout star Mpumi Mophatlane, florist to the stars Nunurai Mudarikwa and business owner Ratile Mabitsela, and entrepreneur Ms Manche – named Diva Extraordinaire of the Year at The Feather Awards. 

Adulting S2 | Mondays from 4 December 2023

Adulting follows four friends in Johannesburg. Their strong bond has held them together after varsity even as their journeys in life have taken them in very different directions. As they try to grow as men, finding love, success and the best nightlife spots in Jozi, they turn to each other for laughs and support. 

Released in March 2023, Adulting’s first season set a new record for the most first-day views on Showmax of any drama series. 

All four lead cast are returning for Season 2: Thembinkosi Mthembu as Bonga, Nhlanhla Kunene as fan-favourite Eric, Thabiso Rammusi as Mpho, and Luthando BU Mthembu as Vuyani. 

Kwa Mam’Mkhize S2 | Thursdays from 14 December

Kwa Mam’Mkhize is finally back and this time it’s a Showmax Original. In the first season, we followed Shauwn Mkhize as she readjusted to life as a single woman after her highly publicised divorce. A massive ratings hit for Mzansi Magic, the first season won Best Reality Show at the Hollywood and African Prestigious Awards and led to Shauwn Mkhize’s nomination as Personality of the Year at the 2022 DStv Mzansi Viewers’ Choice Awards.

In Season 2, we get an all-access inside look at the life of the businesswoman and her close family members, including her son Andile, her daughter Sbahle, and her daughter-in-law Tamia Mpisane. 

Sports Wives S1 | Tuesdays from 5 December

Directed by Thumeka Hlotshana (The Real Housewives of Durban S2-3), Sports Wives is a reality show that gives you a front-row seat into the lives of the wives, girlfriends and exes of South Africa’s sporting greats. 

Showmax Originals: Nigeria

Wura S2 | Showmax Original | 4 episodes a week from 4 December

Following a successful first season that captured the hearts of audiences as Showmax’s first and longest-running Nigerian telenovela, with gripping episodes that earned the lead cast and titular character, Scarlet Gomez, a nomination for Best Actress in a Drama, Movie, or TV Series at the 2023 Africa Magic Viewers’ Choice Awards (AMVCAs) and for Acting at the 17th edition of The Future Awards Africa Awards, the telenovela is back and promises more intrigue, drama, and unforgettable moments. 

Wura is the Nigerian adaptation of the hit South African 1Magic telenovela The River, which scooped an International Emmy nomination for Best Telenovela. Wura follows the lives of characters bonded and divided by the discovery of gold in Iperindo, a small community in Osun state, where the story is set. The show’s protagonist, the enigmatic Wura-Amoo Adeleke, is a woman with two sides: a perfect wife and a loving mother on one side and a ruthless Chief Executive Officer of the fictional Frontline Gold Mine on the other. Her unrelenting pursuit of success knows no bounds, making her the ultimate Iron Lady.

Agu S1 | Showmax Original | Thursdays from 14 December

Directed by AMVCA-winning director Anis Halloway (Unmarried, Truth, Hustle), Agu is a six-part legal drama series that explores the lives of three Nigerians – Etim (Nollywood legend Kanayo O Kanayo), Pius (Nonso Odogwu), and Victoria (Ruby Okezie) – as they find themselves entangled in a court case for the murder of Jonathan, a close friend of Pius. 


International movies


The Super Mario Bros. Movie | 18 December

The biggest animated opening of all-time, and the biggest global opening of 2023, The Super Mario Bros. Movie follows a couple of plumbers named Mario and Luigi, a princess named Peach, and an evil Koopa king known as Bowser .… Sound familiar? That’s because it’s based on the classic megahit Mario video game franchise.

The voice cast include Chris Pratt as Mario and Anja Taylor-Joy as Princess Peach, alongside Charlie Day as Luigi and Jack Black as Bowser. 

Variety says The Super Mario Bros. Movie’s “ingenuity is infectious. You don’t have to be a Mario fan to respond to it, but the film is going to remind the millions who are why they call it a joystick.”

Fast X | First on Showmax | Stream from 4 December

The end of the road begins in Fast X, which was the #1 international box office opening of 2023. 

Over many missions and against impossible odds, Dom Toretto (Vin Diesel) and his family have outsmarted, out-nerved and outdriven every foe in their path. Now, they confront the most lethal opponent they’ve ever faced: a terrifying threat emerging from the shadows of the past, fuelled by blood revenge, and determined to destroy everything—and everyone—that Dom loves, forever.  

All your faves are back, including Charlize Theron, Helen Mirren, John Cena, Michelle Rodriguez, Jason Statham, Jordana Brewster and Chris “Ludacris” Bridges. Brie Larson, Jason Momoa and Alan Richtson (Reacher) all make their franchise debuts. 

As Mashable critic Kristy Puchko says, “This is what summer movies should be! It’s spectacular! It’s thrilling! And it’s the kind of movie you can’t wait to yammer about to your friends. Truly, I walked out of Fast X with a big Momoa smile on my face, so wide it hurt.”

65 | Stream from 11 December

In 65, a catastrophic crash strands Pilot Mills on an unknown planet, where he quickly discovers he’s not alone. With only one chance at rescue, Mills and the only other survivor, a young girl named Koa, face an epic fight to survive as they make their way across an unknown terrain riddled with dangerous prehistoric creatures … that look uncannily like those that roamed the Earth 65 million years ago. 

The sci-fi thriller stars Adam Driver (Star Wars’ Kylo Ren) and was written, directed and produced by the writers of A Quiet Place.

Magic Mike’s Last Dance | Stream from 25 December

Directed by Oscar winner Steven Soderbergh, Magic Mike’s Last Dance sees Channing Tatum back in the third instalment of the blockbuster film franchise, which went straight to #1 at the US box office. 

The story picks up with “Magic” Mike Lane returning to the stage for what he hopes will be one last hurrah. Mike heads to London with a wealthy socialite (Salma Hayek) who lures him with an offer he can’t refuse…and an agenda all her own. With everything on the line, once Mike discovers what she truly has in mind, will he—and the roster of hot new dancers he’ll have to whip into shape—be able to pull it off? 

As Huffington Post says, “Tatum, whose stripper past first inspired the character, looks more comfortable than ever in a role that, like the film, is in equal parts funny, playful, sexy and sincere.”

The Amazing Maurice | 7 December

Based on Terry Pratchett’s Carnegie Medal-winning novel The Amazing Maurice and His Educated Rodents (which was in turn inspired by the Brothers Grimm’s Pied Piper of Hamelin), The Amazing Maurice follows a sassy, street-smart ginger cat. With his band of rats and pied-piper friend Keith, he travels across the countryside, swindling villagers with a staged rat plague. But when the gang sets its sights on a scenic market town, they quickly realise that someone else got there first… 

The all-star voice cast features Hugh Laurie as Maurice and Emilia Clarke as Malicia, alongside Himesh Patel, David Thewlis and David Tennant. 

Common Sense Media gives it a 4/5-star rating, recommending the film for ages 8+ and saying “this fun-packed animation captures the [Terry Pratchett] magic that appeals on multiple levels to kids and adults alike.”

House Party | Stream from 7 December

House Party, the remix to the fan-favourite 90s comedy, follows aspiring club promoters and best buds Damon (Tosin Cole from 61st Street) and Kevin (Jacob Latimore from Like a Boss), who are barely keeping things together. 

Needing a sudden injection of cash, they decide to host the party of the year at an exclusive mansion they’re hired to clean, which happens to belong to real-life NBA star LeBron James. No permission? No problem. What could go wrong? 

Look out for plenty of star cameos in the cast, including Snoop Dogg. Watch the age-restricted trailer on YouTube.

Margaux | Stream from 28 December

A group of college friends rent a smart house for a weekend of partying but soon begin to realise that the house’s super advanced AI system, Margaux, has sinister plans for them. 

The cast includes Vanessa Morgan (Riverdale), Richard Harmon (The 100), Madison Pettis (American Pie Presents: Girls’ Rules) and more, and features Susan Bennett, the original voice of Siri, as Margaux. 

“What makes Margaux an interesting antagonist is the idea that she’s always watching, listening, and collecting information. Even the greatest of slasher villains aren’t omnipresent,” says Dread Central, praising the horror’s “darkly comedic sensibility” and calling the film “a fun time at the movies [that] entertains from start to finish.”


International series


Poker Face S1 | Binge from 11 December

Natasha Lyonne (Russian Doll) is on the case in Poker Face, a Peacock Original mystery from Oscar-nominated creator Rian Johnson (Knives Out). 

Lyonne plays Charlie Cale, a casino worker with an extraordinary ability to detect lies. After a close friend is murdered, she hits the road. At every stop, she encounters a new cast of characters and strange crimes she can’t help but investigate and solve. 

The all-star cast include Adrien Brody, Nick Nolte, Chloë Sevginy, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Ellen Barkin, Benjamin Bratt and Ron Perlman. 

Poker Face is the 10th best-reviewed series of 2023 on Rotten Tomatoes, with a 98% critic’s rating, and is up for four Emmys, including Lead Actress (Lyonne) and Guest Actress (Light). 

The Winter King S1 | First On Showmax | Mondays from 4 December

Before Britain, there was King Arthur… 

Set amid the brutality of the 5th century in a land of warring factions and tribes, The Winter King follows Arthur Pendragon (Iain De Caestecker, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.) as he evolves from outcast son to legendary warrior, leader and ultimately, legend. Look out for former Cape Town model Jordan Alexandra as Guinevere. 

An epic revisionist take on the well-loved Arthurian legends, it’s based on The Warlord Chronicles trilogy by Bernard Cornwell, and has an 82% critics’ rating on Rotten Tomatoes. As the critics’ consensus says, “Action-packed and sprawling in scope, The Winter King compensates for its lack of fidelity to Bernard Cornwell’s books with sheer entertainment value.” 

Shining Vale S2 | First on Showmax | Binge from 4 December

Season 2 of Shining Vale promises a Phelps family reunion like no other. The story picks up four months later, with Pat (Friends star Courteney Cox) being released from the psychiatric hospital. But she quickly finds out her children don’t need her, and her husband, Terry, (Greg Kinnear) doesn’t remember her – thanks to that little brain injury. 

To make matters worse, Pat’s new neighbour looks uncannily like Season 1’s resident spectre, Rosemary (Mira Sorvino), and the house is starting to reveal the shocking secrets of its dark past…

Blue Lights S1 | Binge from 11 December

Set in Belfast in Northern Ireland, Blue Lights follows three rookie police officers who find themselves up against criminal gangs, undercover agents, their own communities and even their own police force as they work to complete the last two months of their probationary period.

Blue Lights has an 89% critics’ rating on Rotten Tomatoes, with five-star reviews from both The Daily Telegraph and The Guardian, with the latter calling the series “well-crafted, fantastically tense, thrilling stuff,” and “one of the best shows of the year”.

World on Fire S2 | 20 December

Four years after its acclaimed first season, the World War II series World on Fire is back. The ensemble series is set between 1940-1941, taking us from the war-torn streets of Britain and the start of the Blitz in Manchester deep into Nazi Germany, the resistance within occupied France, and the brutal sands of the North African desert, including the Siege of Tobruk and Operation Compass.

Season 2 has a 100% critics’ rating on Rotten Tomatoes, with The Guardian’s 4/5-star review calling it, “totally gripping”.


Non-fiction series


How To With John Wilson S3 | Binge from 20 December

The third and final season of the zany, hilarious, and widely acclaimed HBO Original docu-comedy series How To With John Wilson follows documentary filmmaker and self-described “anxious New Yorker” John Wilson. Continuing his heartfelt mission of self-discovery, exploration, and observation, Wilson films the lives of his fellow New Yorkers while attempting to give everyday advice on six wildly random topics, from how to find a public restroom and how to work out, to how to clean your ears. 

Nominated for a 2022 Emmy, the series boasts 100% critics’ rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

The Guardian calls it “miraculous”, saying, “Every episode of this visual essay is an absolute masterpiece – like nothing else on television… One of the finest shows to come out of the US in years… A complete modern reinvention of the visual essay form, something funny and profound and head-spinningly human, a glimpse of New York City from an angle it’s never been seen before, at grubby street level and round freakish little corners.”  

Christmas movies

A Royal Christmas Surprise | Stream from 21 December

Having weathered the “Royal Surprise” of the first film, Riley Stephenson and Mandla Amitu, now engaged, have settled back into life in Los Angeles. Riley’s Aunt Priscilla and Uncle Leon have offered to host a Christmas Eve engagement party at their beautiful home in Kentucky, which also seems like the perfect time for Riley’s family to meet Queen Nobantu and King Chidike, Mandla’s parents …but is it? Riley and Mandla will have to navigate tension between the matriarchs of their respective families, planning their engagement party, and another “Royal Surprise” that puts into question the couple’s entire future.

Thapelo Mokoena (Trackers) andJennifer Freeman (You Got Served) co-star, with SAFTA nominee Sello Maake Ka-Ncube (Blood Psalms, The River) and Abena Ayivor (Black Earth Rising) as the king and queen. 

School Run | Showmax Original | Stream from 15 December

School Run is a heartwarming, entertaining holiday-themed family drama that follows the story of Timileyin Kalejaiye and Adeola Kalejaiye, a career-obsessed couple, and their 11-year-old son, Bolu Kalejaiye. Problems arise when a seemingly simple school pick-up for extra activities during the holidays becomes a nerve-racking emotional journey for Timileyin and Adeola, who must bury selfish interests to find their son after he is picked up by the wrong bus driver. 

School Run is headlined by the gifted young actor Greatness Ewurum. Joining the line-up are Ifeanyi Kalu and Amanda Iriekpen, who play Bolu’s parents.

A Merry X-Mess | 15 December

What happens when extended family with different personalities and agendas come together for Christmas? In this Kenyan Christmas feature, the Nyatis have to get through the seven days of Christmas without killing each other. 

Chaos erupts when the competitive family matriarch Zawadi invites her equally competitive sister from the village to help her to win the annual family Christmas choir competition at church. Meanwhile, Zawadi tries to meddle in her son’s love life, while her daughter, visiting from America, grapples with the African traditions that her uncle tries to impose on her children. As modern beliefs and traditions clash, and with the ultimate choir competition bringing out the worst and best in them, can the spirit of Christmas bring joy to the Nyati family?

Written by Damaris Irungu (Pepeta) and directed by Gilbert Lukalia, A Merry X-Mess stars Melissa Kiplagat (Country Queen), Bruce Makau (Kina), Sheila Munyiva (Country Queen), Mufasa Kibet (Crime and Justice), Regina Re (Pieces of Us), Joel Kennedy Otukho (Country Queen), Raymond Karago (Twende) Eunice Kangai and Naomi Ramtu.

A Merry X-Mess is Showmax’s second Christmas feature film in Kenya, following Reuben Odanga’s A Familiar Christmas last year. 

Christmas overseas

Also look out for international Christmas films like The Great Holiday Bake War (14 December), Christmas in the Caribbean and Santa’s Got Style (both 18 December), as well as A Christmas Story Christmas, Christmas Down Under, Christmas Unfiltered, and The First Noelle (all 21 December). 


Reality TV


The Real Housewives of Johannesburg S3 | 25 December

Return to the lavish lifestyles of six dynamic women as they navigate life, wealth, friendship dynamics, romantic relationships, and making it big in the City of Gold. 

Showmax is also home to the other African editions of NBCUniversal’s multi-award-winning Real Housewives franchise including Abuja, Durban, Lagos and Nairobi

Special Forces: World’s Toughest Test S1 | Binge from 20 December

This military training reality series throws a group of celebs into some of the harshest settings in the world, where they’ll take on a series of gruelling training exercises that will push them to their limits both mentally and physically.  

Season 1’s contestants include singers Mel B and Montell Jordan, reality stars Kate Gosselin and Dr Drew Pinsky, and sports superstars like Olympians Nastia Liukin (gymnast),  Gus Kenworthy (skier) and Carli Lloyd (football), as well as former White House communications director Anthony Scaramucci.

Temptation Island USA S5 | Binge from 20 December

The ultimate test of faithfulness returns with fresh twists and turns in Season 5 of Temptation Island, where four couples – all committed to each other but at a crossroads in their relationships – will test their love on an amazing vacation in paradise. 


Family and kids’ favourites


Dragons Rescue Riders: Heroes of the Sky S1 | 1 December

Heroes take flight and friendship soars in this animated series, from DreamWorks Animation’s How to Train Your Dragon franchise. It has a 4/5-star rating on Common Sense Media, where it’s recommended for ages 5+. As they say, this “charming and delightful entry into the How to Train Your Dragon franchise… is more friendly to younger kids than the original movie series.”

Fright Krewe S1 | First On Showmax | 1 December

An ancient prophecy and a Voodoo queen put misfit teens in charge of saving New Orleans from the biggest demonic threat it’s faced in almost two centuries. 

In their 4/5-star review, Common Sense Media recommends the series for ages 9+. As Polygon says, “Fright Krewe has all the makings of a show that could be the next big thing — and maybe even redefine audience expectations for all-ages animation.”

Paw Patrol S9 | 15 December

A runaway rocket, a tooth fairy in distress, a lonely ghost, a giant squid, a floating castle, a reef in trouble and baby space rocks! Season 9 of Paw Patrol is keeping our favourite Pup Squad busy, busy, busy as they race to the rescue in Adventure Bay.

Also watch 


More to watch on Showmax

1 December

Archibald’s Next Big Thing Is Here S1 | Curious George S15 | Fifi and the Flowertots S3 | Mighty Mustangs S1-3 | My Life Me S1 | That’s What She Said 

4 December

G.I. Joe: Retaliation | G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra | My Ma Kook Beter As Joune S1 | Overlord | Righting Wrongs | The Postman Fights Back | In The Line of Duty II

7 December

100 Million BC | Madagascar | Penguins of Madagascar | Tiger Cage

11 December

Couple’s Retreat | Dirty Little Deed | Play Dead | Private Property

14 December

Dotty & Soul | The One | Trolls

15 December

Stars S1

18 December

Bridget Jones’ Baby | Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason | Younger S1-7

21 December

Nanny McPhee | Nanny McPhee Returns

25 December

Girls Trip

27 December

The Undeclared War

28 December

Back To The Future 1-3 | Bee Movie | Evan Almighty | The Loneliest Boy in the World

Original African stories by local talent

Original Sin: My Son The Killer on Showmax

Original Sin: My Son The Killer

Original Sin: My Son The Killer follows the murder of Andrea Venter by Gerhard Jansen van Vuuren, who then went on the run from South Africa to Brazil.

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Tracking Thabo Bester on Showmax

Tracking Thabo Bester

From the makers of Devilsdorp and the director of Convict Conman comes the true-crime documentary South Africa has been waiting for. Two episodes now streaming, and the remaining two episodes land on 22 March 2024 on Showmax.

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The Illuminated S1 on Showmax

The Illuminated

The Showmax Original docuseries The Illuminated explores different religious movements in South Africa. Stream now, with new episodes every Wednesday.

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Koek S1 on Showmax

Koek S1

The crime comedy Koek, starring Cindy Swanepoel, now streaming on Showmax, with new episodes every Thursday.

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Ekhaya Backpackers is on Showmax

Ekhaya Backpackers S1

Stream the Showmax Original comedy series Ekhaya Backpackers, with new episodes every Thursday.

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Cheta M on Showmax

Cheta M

Cheta M explores the love story between Adanna and Nnanna, young lovers who battle the spiritual and political forces in their way. Stream now, with new episodes Wednesday to Friday.

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Youngins on Showmax

Youngins S1

Stream Tshedza Pictures’s first teen drama, Showmax Original Youngins, with three new episodes every week. 

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Sadau Sisters is on Showmax

Sadau Sisters S1

Rahma, Zainab, Aisha, and Fatima Sadau pull back the curtain on their family, fame, and lifestyle. Stream now on Showmax.

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