Netflix’s second original African series Blood & Water has gone down a treat with viewers since it debuted in May, joining a long list of successful teen dramas to launch on the streaming platform.
The mystery drama is set at a prestigious Cape Town school and follows 16-year-old Puleng Khumalo – a new arrival at the school who thinks she has discovered her long lost sister, who had been abucted at birth seventeen years ago.
But is the series based on a true story? Here’s everything you need to know…
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Is Blood & Water based on a true story?
Officially, the series isn’t based on a true story – although it does bear striking parallels with the case of Miché Solomon, a Cape Town resident who attended the city’s Zwaanswyk High School.
In 2015, a new pupil, Cassidy Nurse, arrived at the school and Miché was alarmed to find that the pair looked almost exactly identical.
Speaking to the BBC in 2019, Miché said “I almost felt like I knew her. It was so scary — I couldn’t understand why I was feeling like this.”
And it turned out that Miché and Cassidy did know each other, with a DNA test revealing that they were twin sisters who had been separated at birth.
Miché had been born Zephany Nurse and had been abducted from the Cape Town hospital at which she was born when she was just three days old – with Lavona Solomon, the woman who had raised her, being arrested on charges of kidnapping shortly after the discovery of her real identity was made.
Solomon denied any wrongdoing but was found guilty and sentenced to ten years in jail for kidnapping, fraud, and violating the Children’s Act, although Miché opted to keep her name – although she is also happy to go by Zephany – and kept living with her adopted father Michael Solomon.
In the same 2019 interview she told the BBC, “I think I hated Zephany in the beginning. She came with such force, such an uninvited invitation, so much suffering and so much pain.
“But Zephany is the truth and Miché, the 17-year-old girl that I was, she was a lie. So I’ve managed to balance both names. You can call me Zephany or Miché, it’s fine.”
So while Blood & Water might not be a straight adaptation of this true life story, it seems likely that it was inspired by the case in one form or another.