Welcome to the dead zone of Nigerian summer television and here’s how to get out

Nollywood

Ordinarily, I wouldn’t have thought of summer TV in Nigeria if not for the announcement of the 2018 Emmy nominations yesterday. Something about going through that nominated list of marquee scripted shows (Game of Thrones, Stranger Things, The Handmaid’s Tale) that just raises the bar in entertainment value.

As I have just noticed, Nigerian summer television is now suffering the same drought in content as American television. Fall is when shows premiere, winter is when they go on hiatus, spring is when these shows return and wrap up for the year. Summer, though? Summer is the dead zone, where there isn’t any deluge of new material.

It’s like a fallow period on American broadcast networks, with audiences turning towards unscripted programming like game shows and reality TV. On Nigerian online platforms, Ndani TV hit series Skinny Girl in Transit long since wrapped up its fourth season with a fifth on the horizon. Inspector K is done for its second outing and Corper Shun only recently on its debut season. This is the dead zone for real, so what are you guys going to do about it?

Stream yourselves to stupor, that’s it. Thankfully, streaming services aren’t governed by the traditional television calendar, and programming on these platforms are easily accessible once you have a stable internet connection. May I recommend Linda Ikeji TV? You will be fine, once you have gone past the platform’s technical hiccups.

But I have to warn you: its original series like Oyinbo Wives of Lagos and King Tonto have a reality television slant. But if that doesn’t pique your taste, try Castle and Castle on EbonyLife ON – a legal drama series that some critics aren’t still sure about, perhaps because the show is still in its early days and trying to calibrate on tone and direction.

There’s also Netflix – reliable, dependable Netflix. Whatever streaming option you decide to opt for, it’s going to be one fallow summer, so sit tight and make it count.

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