Romani parody of "telenovelas" breaking viewership records on Czech Internet, picked up by cable TV
A Czech-Romani sitcom called "Ďábelské cikánky" ("Diabolical Gypsy Women"), which is a parody of the "telenovelas" that are watched worldwide, is breaking records for viewership online. The episodes posted to YouTube have been viewed hundreds of thousands of times and were broadcast by the Barrandov cable television channel this fall.
There is no lack of drama, humor, intrigue, love affairs and unexpected situations in this story of the three Červeňáková sisters. The simple plot revolves around an inheritance left to them by their rich father.
The obstacle to receiving the inheritance is a clause in the will requiring the sisters to live together under the same roof for one year. Ordinarily that would not be such a strange thing.
These sisters hate each other, though, and in the beginning they do not want to go along with the requirement. Eventually they acknowledge that a year is not such a long time and try living in the same house.
The sitcom features the famous Romani singer Jan Bendig and his younger brother Marcel and has been running online since September 2019. Its first episode has racked up more than 1.1 million views.
Bendig and his team produced a total of 18 episodes of the comedy series, with the last one being broadcast this June. Their success was noticed by the Barrandov cable television channel in the Czech Republic, which broadcast six episdes of the sitcom in its programming slot after 23:00.
"According to the numbers that I have from the management of the television channel, the Ďábelské cikánky series is being followed by more than 100 000 viewers, which is a success for the 23:00 time slot," Bendig's manager Lukáš Rejmon told news server Romea.cz, revealing that originally just five episodes had been scheduled to see how viewers would respond to the series. "It has become one of the most successful formats that TV Barrandov broadcasts, so we agreed they will take all 18 episodes," he said, adding that most reactions to the series are positive.
"Naturally there are also some hideous reactions when people don't get why the guys are dressing up as women, but thanks to the series Roma Place, where the guys are themselves, it can be clearly seen that in Ďábelské cikánky these are just roles and a certain form of fun. Many viewers have understood that under no circumstances is this some kind of satisfaction for our actors, this is not about a fetish of some kind," Rejmon explained.
Bendig is offering the no less successful series Roma Place on his Romflix YouTube channel, a series set in his own home where he plays the main role. His brother Marcel appears together with him there as well, as does Lucie Bikárová, who was a finalist in the SuperStar singing competition this year or Mirka Pikolová, a former Miss Roma who competed for the Miss Czech Republic title three years ago.
Last month viewers were able to watch the seventh and last episode in the first season of Roma Place, called "The Wedding". The second season should broadcast in the spring of 2021.
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