TV channel Comedy Central (DStv Channel 122) earned its highest ever rating in South Africa with the TV premiere of The Comedy Central Roast of Steve Hofmeyr on Monday 24 September.
The comedy special dominated the TV airwaves on National Heritage Day (informally dubbed National Braai Day), achieving the comedy channel’s highest ever rating (5.99) among DStv premium viewers aged 20 to 49. While the roast was airing (21h00 to 22h45 CAT), Comedy Central went unchallenged as the highest ranked channel in the DStv bouquet in terms of ratings and audience share, with nearly one in four Premium viewers aged 20 to 49 tuning in to watch.
In the digital space, the roast dominated too, accounting for 9 of the top ten trends on Twitter for more than 12 hours. Some of South Africa’s most prominent Tweeters all had something to say, with Gareth Cliff, Loyiso Gola, Dineo Ranaka, Minnie Dlamini, Khaya Dlangla, Sizwe Dhlomo, David Kau, Pabi Moloi and Riaad Moosa all sharing their comments.
Tweeted Cliff, who has 345,000 Twitter followers: “Well done to @steve_hofmeyr for putting himself out there on the first ever SA roast. Love him or hate him, that takes balls’. Minnie Dlamini praised David Kau’s performance to her 160,000 followers: “Ok David Kau my roaster of the night!!! #RoastZa’ while Dineo Ranaka’s 174,000 followers saw Ranaka tweet: “Steve Hofmeyer is a LEGEND BRA! HE SAYS “I’ve made a career out of ending Steve Hofmeyer’s career” hahahahaha #TROSH aka #RoastZA’.
A prolific tweeter himself, Hofmeyr took to Twitter repeatedly before and after the Roast aired, ironically advising his mother not to watch by saying: “Right, mom, time to switch over to History Channel! You gonna hate @ComedyCentralAF’.
After the end credits rolled, Hofmeyr commented, “The Roast is the most violent thing that can happen on TV, without actual bloodshed.’
Commented Evert van der Veer, Head of Comedy Central, Africa: “We are delighted that South African audiences have welcomed the roast concept so warmly to their hearts! Steve Hofmeyr, Trevor Noah and our roasters all rose to the occasion, helping us to create a major TV comedy event and ensuring our first ever roast on African soil was more successful that we could have imagined. The roast demonstrated what Comedy Central is all about: leveraging the power of comedy to bring people together, to look on the funny side of life, to put things into perspective and to address subjects that we don’t always talk about.’