Free-to-air channel e.tv has announced that it is cancelling long-running soapie Backstage, with the last episode to be aired at the end of June 2007.
According to the channel the reason for cancelling the show is that "modern youth culture is dynamic and ever evolving, and it is the right time to adapt to these fresh challenges as well as the changing television market."
According to Deon Opperman of Bottom Line Productions, the producers of the show, the time is right for the channel "to aggressively compete in this primetime slot."
In other words - Backstage has not been competing well in its daily 18h30 slot. It faces competition from Take 5 on SABC1, and two of the biggest local soapies: 7de Laan on SABC2 and Isidingo on SABC3.
Backstage was intended as a "daily youth drama", which is a fancy way of saying "soapie for teens". Clearly teens don't exactly relate to the show, though.
At least the channel has seen the light and taken the only appropriate, decent action - all we can hope is that they replace it with something far, far better.
An announcement will be made shortly by e.tv with regards to a replacement show.