Kaunda Selisho
Lifestyle Journalist
2 minute read
10 Dec 2021
12:30 pm

‘The Wife’: Fans left ‘shook’ by Mqhele’s twang

Kaunda Selisho

Despite playing the brooding (and sometimes violent) Mqhele, Bonko Khoza sounds nothing like the character he has brought to life.

Bonko Khoza as 'Mqhele' on the show 'The Wife' on Showmax. Picture: Instagram

Anger about the casting of Showmax’s adaptation of the book Hlomu: The Wife seems to have faded completely as viewers of the telenovela fall deeper in love with the show’s cast members. And a clear fan favourite is the lead character Mqhele played by Bongani “Bonko” Khoza.

Khoza has been so great at bringing Mqhele to life that fans seem to have just assumed he would sound exactly like his character. They were left shook when they came across a video of him hanging out with his co-star and on-screen brother (Qhawe) Kwenzo Ngcobo.

The clips prompted fans to go on a deep dive on his social media and they discovered that he actually does quite a lot of voice-over work.

As the brooding (and sometimes violent) Mqhele, Bonko speaks in a very low, almost baritone voice, complete with a serious Zulu accent so it comes as a surprise to find out that he is the voice for ads for brands such as Dis-Chem, DStv Premium and Nedbank as per the videos on his stories.

As an emerging actor, he currently has a few acting credits to his name including roles in projects such as Necktie Youth, Roots, Beautifully Broken, Professionals and The Mauritanian.

Considering the fact that these projects aren’t wildly popular, it’s easy to understand why he has become Mqhele to most viewers.

ALSO READ: ‘We all hate Mqhele now?’ – Viewers reacts to ‘The Wife’

Although The Wife has been out for just over a month, it is fast becoming one of Showmax’s top local projects.

According to Showmax, the show has broken Uthando Lodumo’s record for the most first-day views of all time on Showmax.

The show also beat crime documentary Devilsdorp’s record for the most hours watched within four days of launch. By doing so, The Wife has outperformed the launch of any film or series on Showmax ever, including the likes of Game of ThronesThe Real Housewives of Durban and The River

Inspired by Dudu Busani-Dube’s bestseller Hlomu The Wife, the 40-episode first season tells the story of a journalist named Hlomu (Mbalenhle Mavimbela from Skeem Saam) who falls in love with a taxi driver, Mqhele (Bonko Khoza from Neckie Youth). 

She soon learns that when you marry a man, you marry his secrets…

The show debuted to rave reviews from critics and fans alike and topped the trending list on various social media platforms and continues to do so when new episodes become available each week.