Five scores to settle in Lockdown S5

Nobody forgets a grudge at Thabazimbi Women’s Correctional Facility when Lockdown S5 starts. Catch it on Mzansi Magic (DStv 161) from Monday, 6 April.

Local prison drama series Lockdown launches into its fifth season with rival prisoner faction leaders MaZet (Dawn Thandeka King) and Tyson (Lorcia Cooper) looking deceptively chummy in the exercise yard. Three months have passed since the death of cult leader Masabata (Nthati Moshesh) and things at Thabazimbi seem to be back on an even keel. But poke the situation with a sharpened toothbrush and the truth will bleed out, because there are unhealed wounds beneath the surface.



Prison governor Deborah Banda’s (Pamela Nomvete) head is on the chopping block when the Department of Correctional Services’ new commissioner, Israel Cele (Patrick Ndlovu), cracks down on the facility following the catastrophic death toll in S4. Behind Israel’s back though, Deborah and Deputy Commissioner Siyanda (Molefi Monaisa) are plotting to get rid of Israel – with a little help from the inmates and a mental asylum riot. Deborah doesn’t appreciate being told off like a schoolgirl or threatened in her own office, and this queen of manipulation has plenty of minds inside and outside the prison to twist to her will. But a shock pregnancy will have her facing some tough personal decisions and place her at the mercy of her prison nemesis, inmate Maki (Linda Sebezo).



Ruthless but compassionate MaZet is a study in contradictions. She might seem like she is playing into Tyson’s hands this season, but don’t let the apparent vulnerability deceive you. MaZet is always five steps ahead. She has just one blind spot though: her friendships. MaZet’s downfall this season is trusting a previously loyal ally – a person she herself has betrayed in the past. And it’s a twist that will place MaZet’s daughter, Nkuli (Busisiwe Mtshali), in death’s shadow.



Tyson wants MaZet knocked off her perch, leaving all the power in the prison to Tyson. And to do that, she is planning to hurt MaZet through what she loves most – her family, namely her daughter. It’s a confusing relationship that will get even screwier later in the season as the two make up after a full-on murder attempt and promise to be allies again. If you think that sounds crazy, you’re not alone, because Tyson and MaZet will both wind up having their heads examined at Kgotsong Asylum this season.



Ex-singing star Monde (Zola Nombona) starts the season in a miserable position. Fellow inmate Vicky Viks (Lauren Jenae) is targeting her in a humiliating prank war over a series of betrayals, aside from the fact that Monde accidentally scarred up Vicky’s pretty face with boiling porridge during a fight.

And Monde’s envious sister, Katlego (Natasha Thahane), is headed for Kgotsong Asylum after her collision with S4 inmate Masabata’s mystic death cult, which has left her imitating Masabata’s eerie head tilt. If she ever learns that Monde was the one who sent her to the asylum, we’ll find out just how like her creepy mentor Monde can be.

At the asylum, Katlego will fall under the care of head nurse Palesa – played by series newcomer Sophie Lichaba – who is harbouring an old grudge against Deborah thanks to Deborah’s affair with Palesa’s abusive ex-husband… Deputy Commissioner Siyanda.



The rift between Deborah and Maki is deep and twisted. Deborah used a version of Pavlovian conditioning in S4 to get vicious prison assassin Maki practically eating out of her hand and barking like a dog in Deborah’s secret torture cage. Now Maki is heavily dependent on drugs and she has lost respect among the inmates that she used to terrify with a clack of her teeth.

The tables will turn this season when Maki gets Deborah in her power and new torture session begins. Deborah might have a blackmail tape in her hands, but Maki could get the last laugh when she finds a way to make Deborah pay for the biggest crime that Maki holds against her -- the loss of Maki’s son. It’s an eye for an eye this season.

Lockdown S5 starts on Monday 6 April on Mzansi Magic (166) at 20:00 

How to watch Lockdown online

Sign up for DStv Now, a free service for all DStv subscribers. With DStv Now the same channels you watch on your decoder at home are available for you to stream online, or using the DStv Now app on your phone.

Or binge the series on Showmax now.

Locked in

If you’re fascinated by life behind bars, stay inside with the following shows…


Life After Lockup

This series follows couples who fell in love while one person was behind bars. In the second season, ex-prisoner Michael returns with the two women he’s strung along, married and had kids with, and we find out that he’s been chatting up even more women online. But it’s not just the guys or the prisoners misbehaving, as free-woman Lacey juggled two jailbird fiancés until she seemingly settled on one husband, but she sort of had her fingers crossed behind her back.

Season 2 starts on Tuesday 7 April on 1Magic (103) at 19:00

For Life

In this compassionate drama series based on a real-life story, a club owner who was wrongfully convicted of drug trafficking decides to make the most of his life sentence by studying law. After he earns his degree, he sets about representing his fellow inmates, overturning many of their cases.

Season 1 starts Wednesday, 29 April on 1Magic at 20:30


Escape At Dannemora

Based on real-life events, this mini-series slowly lays bare the manipulation and abuse of power involved as two convicted murderers each start an affair with a female prison employee who will eventually aid in their escape.

Now streaming on Showmax

Prison Break

In this classic adventure series, structural engineer Michael Scofield (Wentworth Miller) has a prison map tattooed on his body before getting himself arrested in an elaborate plot to free a death row prisoner – his brother Lincoln Burrows (Dominic Purcell), who has been accused of murdering the US Vice President’s brother.

Seasons 1-4 now streaming on Showmax