Cape Town - If you were a kid in South Africa during the 1970s and 1980s, chances are you can probably still belt out the theme song for Wielie Wiele Walie – whether you understood Afrikaans or not.
Television only arrived in the country in 1976 and the local industry quickly rose up to create original content for the local market. Some legendary Afrikaans shows emerged during this time, many of which featured incredible puppets and beloved characters like Benny Boekwurm, Prins Poggenpoel, and Snorkie the Dragon.
Alongside the local productions, there was also a range of great kids content that was dubbed into Afrikaans.
Here’s a look at some of our favourites that you can watch right now on ShowMax:
Liewe Heksie (1978)
One of the very first homegrown series, Liewe Heksie is a witch with good intentions, but a terrible memory and bad decision-making skills. Based on the children’s books by Verna Vels, the series was first broadcast on radio before it arrived on screen. Liewe Heksie lives in Blommeland and in each episode ends up in all sorts of trouble as a result of her less than perfect magical abilities.
Head on down to Asblikfontein ("Dustbinville") where old, discarded rubbish comes to life. In the lead role is the loveable Oscar the rabbit and his friends: Prins Poggenpoel, Snorkie the dragon and Marietjie the rag doll. It’s not just fun and games though, because Oscar’s biggest enemy, Knersus the pterodactyl, has a particular fondness for rabbit meat and is always trying to sink his teeth into Oscar.
Die Swart Kat (1986)
Borrie Veldt has a secret: he’s not just a normal 12-year-old boy, he’s a crime-fighting superhero! At night he disguises himself as Die Swart Kat (Black Kat), heads off on his BMX with his trusty slingshot in hand, and solves the mysteries his detective father can’t. Based on the books by Chris Sassner.
Brakanjan en die Drie Musketiers (1970)
Dubbed from the Spanish-Japanese adaptation of the Three Musketeers, Brakanjan is the dashing lead character. He embarks on many adventures with his reliable steed Rofti and three musketeer friends, Porthos, Athos and Aramis. The series was hugely popular in South Africa, so much so that many young South Africans named their dogs after Brakanjan.
Originally created in Japanese, this anime series is based on the classic Swiss novel about a young girl, Heidi, who goes to live high up in the Alps with her grandfather. Watch it and enjoy the unusual combination of anime and Afrikaans.
For more kids shows, take a look at the full catalogue available on Showmax.com in Afrikaans, English and Tswana.
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