Maverick Life

This weekend we’re watching: Westworld Season 2, Gun Runners and Wild Wild Country

By Antoinette Muller 1 June 2018

Photo: John P. Johnson/HBO

Another weekend, another chance to binge. This weekend we’re getting stuck into real life and sci-fi that’s probably a proxy for real life.

Gun Runners

While it doesn’t do much for the clichés about Kenya and long-distance running,  Anjali Nayar’s 2016 documentary does do a bit for forcing you to think a bit deeper about what it takes to make it in elite sport.

The documentary was filmed across 10 years  and follows two characters, Julius Arile and Robert Matanda, two ex-cattle thieves who gave up their guns in exchange for amnesty and running.

Nominated for Best Cinematography in a Documentary at the 5th Canadian Screen Awards, the film is grippingly visual but also thoughtfully simplistic.

You can choose to take the documentary at face value or you can think a bit deeper and indulge a bit more by reading about the incredible financial pressures of becoming an elite distance runner in Kenya.

Available on Netflix.

Westworld Season 2

We know, we know. Season 2 started weeks ago already and your social media timeline and favourite websites are packed with spoilers and fan theories.

But we’re suckers for gluttony and with Super Rugby largely on a hiatus and the World Cup two weeks away, what better time is there to binge than now?

The final episode is due to air on 10 June, so it’s a good time to get stuck in – we promise. Minor spoilers ahead – freeze all motor functions if you don’t want them.

If you’re not familiar with Westworld, you’re in for a treat. It’s a gung-ho Sci-Fi Western that carries the risk of entrenching yourself so much that you’ll start wondering whether the people you interact with are hosts or visitors.

It sounds like a lot to get your head around because it is. You might barely be able to remember last season’s plot lines and massacres, but, let’s be honest, we’re not really watching to write thinking pieces about how Westworld is a proxy for the power plays in modern society.

If you want to get intellectual be our guest (see what we did there?) but if you want a bit of skop, skiet en donner, you’ll enjoy Season 2 regardless of what the reviews have said so far.

Season 1 ended with almost everyone dying and Season 2 is a mix of future and past and if you’re actually following the plot line, try and stay focused through all the extreme violence

Available on DStv Catch Up.

Wild Wild Country

Speaking of things that are out of this world. Wild Wild Country is in the same vein, only, it’s real.

A mostly forgotten story that played out in the 1980s has become a documentary series that has the television world agog.

It’s called Wild Wild Country, and it is an instant classic. Its six hour-long episodes made their debut in March. In his Flixation review, Tony Jackman has some very good reasons why this is so bingeworthy.

Video of the week: Loved By All: The Story of Apa Sherpa

Loved By All tells the story behind the Everest climbing throngs, focusing on the Sherpa. Surrounded by the wealthy climbing elite who descend upon the highest peak in the world, the daily struggle of the people who do most of the heavy lifting is sorely overlooked.

Quick hits:

The Springboks take on Wales in America. We’ll be watching, Gwyn Jones who will be paid to watch even though he slammed it as a “shambles that devalues international rugby”.

Those looking for something that has a bit more grace, David Attenborough’s Blue Planet 2 and its captivating cinematography is held in high esteem by almost all of the Daily Maverick team. DM


Watch Pauli van Wyk’s Cat Play The Piano Here!

No, not really. But now that we have your attention, we wanted to tell you a little bit about what happened at SARS.

Tom Moyane and his cronies bequeathed South Africa with a R48-billion tax shortfall, as of February 2018. It's the only thing that grew under Moyane's tenure... the year before, the hole had been R30.7-billion. And to fund those shortfalls, you know who has to cough up? You - the South African taxpayer.

It was the sterling work of a team of investigative journalists, Scorpio’s Pauli van Wyk and Marianne Thamm along with our great friends at amaBhungane, that caused the SARS capturers to be finally flushed out of the system. Moyane, Makwakwa… the lot of them... gone.

But our job is not yet done. We need more readers to become Maverick Insiders, the friends who will help ensure that many more investigations will come. Contributions go directly towards growing our editorial team and ensuring that Daily Maverick and Scorpio have a sustainable future. We can’t rely on advertising and don't want to restrict access to only those who can afford a paywall subscription. Membership is about more than just contributing financially – it is about how we Defend Truth, together.

So, if you feel so inclined, and would like a way to support the cause, please join our community of Maverick Insiders.... you could view it as the opposite of a sin tax. And if you are already Maverick Insider, tell your mother, call a friend, whisper to your loved one, shout at your boss, write to a stranger, announce it on your social network. The battle for the future of South Africa is on, and you can be part of it.


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