The first four episodes of Tali’s Baby Diary, the long-awaited sequel to Tali’s Wedding Diary, are now streaming on Showmax.
In the laugh-a-minute mockumentary, an unexpected pregnancy forces Tali (Julia Anastasopoulos, aka SuzelleDIY) into a desperate pivot from Insta-influencer to wholesome momfluencer.
Early reviews are loving the new Tali. TV critic Thinus Ferreira says, “A joy to behold… Tali’s Baby Diary is the best South African TV show of 2021 so far and 100% guaranteed to make you laugh loudly.”
Similarly, Litnet reviewer Reney Warrington writes, “The first two episodes are even wittier and more over the top than Tali’s Wedding Diary, but the characters are already drawn with humanity, with heart. The script, the direction, the actors are all on point. Here’s to Tali’s Baby Diary building on this great start and taking South African television to a next level.”
On Cape Talk’s Binge Club this morning, Refilwe Moloto calls it “hilarious… so identifiable and so relatable, especially to a Cape Town viewer in terms of the stereotypes we’re familiar with,” with her guest Matthew Green adding, “I cannot describe how good it is. It’s so funny but it also has satire to it… I could watch her for hours and hours and hours… I was laughing from start to finish….”
Tech Girl editor Sam Wright agrees. “A few minutes into the first episode I was laughing hard and shouting for Player 2 to come watch something that had me crying with laughter… The show comes out punching from the get go. The satirical depiction of wealthy white South Africans living in Cape Town doesn’t miss a mark… The best part of the show though is that for all the laughs there is a very real sweetness to all the characters. They’re human and you learn to love them even as you laugh at them. Ari and Julia have this incredible talent of pulling the human out of even the most ridiculous of situations.”
Writing on Business Live, Tymon Smith says, “Suitably cringe-inducing and offering a slightly wilder, weirder shake-up of the bubble of privilege protecting its heroine, this season offers plenty of awkward laughs and moments of uncomfortable recognition to keep fans entertained and amused.”
And Glitched founder Marco Cocomello praised Tali’s Baby Diary as “pure joy to watch… After watching the first two episodes I am pleased to say it’s incredible… One can’t help but sit and laugh at it.”
Of course, despite what Tali thinks, everything isn’t just about her. This season, as the nine-month clock ticks down, fan favourites Darren (Anton Taylor) and Rael (Glen Biderman-Pam) are still navigating the choppy waters of the Cape Town property game, with their two most ambitious plans yet – to bring Woolworths to Woodstock, and to finish Cape Town’s unfinished highway.
“In Season 1, Darren was a bit downtrodden,” admits Anton. “But in Season 2, he’s in a good place. He’s resigned to the fact that he’s married to a crazy woman, but he’s her ride or die – he supports her no matter what. Even in her worst moments, he’s standing there with her. He’s just a good oke who loves her to bits. But in this season, he’s definitely less scared of Tali. In Season 2, he grows a bit of a backbone and I think he might surprise people.”
Similarly, “In Season 2, the audience can expect to see a much wider range from Rael,” says Glen, who went viral last year with My Kreepy Teacher, his spoof of the hit My Octopus Teacher documentary. “We see a lot more of Rael and Darren’s business, GoldProp, and the shenanigans that go on behind those doors as the competition with the Seleibowitz brothers reaches new heights. Rael’s not only focused on professional success, but his personal journey as well. He’s inspired by Tali and Darren creating a legacy, and is looking to create his own. Let’s just say Rael has some pretty interesting ways of meeting women this season…”
For Tali’s Baby Diary, production company Sketchbook Studios has also brought back all your other Season 1 favourites, including Lara Toselli (Chin Up!, Swaaibraai) as Tali’s frenemy Gabi; two-time Fleur du Cap winner Guy De Lancey (Troy: Fall Of A City, The Pervert Laura) as her dad, Les; and Fleur du Cap Best Actress winner and SAFTA nominee Kate Normington (Those Who Can’t) as her mom, Michelle, who is about to have a mid-life crisis at the thought of becoming a grandmother.
Sketchbook has also added a host of famous faces, including Coconut Kelz and Danny K; stand-up comics Kate Pinchuck, Kurt Schoonraad, Nik Rabinowitz and Tracy Klass; and SAFTA winners Deon Lotz (Skoonheid, Trackers), Schalk Bezuidenhout (Kanarie, Hotel) and Siv Ngesi (DAM and Knuckle City), not to mention rising stars Shamilla Miller (The Girl From St Agnes, Blood & Water) and David Viviers (Rage, No Hiding Here), as well as a few real South African momfluencers and Insta personalities, from Jeannie D to Jo-Ann Strauss.
The first ever Showmax Original, Tali’s Wedding Diary set a (then) record for the most first-day views on Showmax and was the most awarded comedy at the 2019 SAFTAs, taking home five prizes, including Best Comedy, Best Director (Ari Kruger) and Best Actress (Anastasopoulos).
In addition to the new mockumentary, Tali’s been busy dishing out advice to other expectant mothers, like how to pack your baby bag for the hospital:
Tali’s Tips: Baby Bag
She’s also been sharing her pregnancy experiences online, like in this video about morning sickness, which she thinks needs to be renamed:
The first four episodes of Tali’s Baby Diary are now streaming first and only on Showmax, with the final six episodes due on 12 March 2021.
Tali’s Baby Diary is the third Showmax Original to launch this week, following on from the critically acclaimed small town psychological thriller DAM, starring Lea Vivier and Pallance Dladla, and Kenya’s first Showmax Original, the police procedural Crime and Justice, a co-production with Canal+ International. This month, Showmax also launched reality series I Am LAYCON, Nigeria’s first Showmax Original, about the most recent Big Brother Naija winner, and issued a call for entries for Temptation Island South Africa, the first international reality TV format Showmax has licensed.
Image Courtesy: Supplied