4Play: Sex Tips for Girls was a 26-part television drama series broadcast on eTV from 2010-2012, consisting of 2 series. Set in the fast-paced city of Johannesburg, the series told the story of four thirty-something friends as they negotiate the ups and downs of sex, love and relationships and embark on a journey to find fulfilment and value in contemporary South Africa.
The four friends regularly met at Noma’s Hair and Beauty Salon where they pampered themselves with beauty treatments while at the same time, creating a space where they can talk about their sex lives, reveal their secrets and share their joys and sorrows. Audiences travelled with the characters through their experiences and got the opportunity to vicariously live through their challenges and celebrate their achievements. The issues the characters are confronted with included negotiating interpersonal relationships, dating, infidelity, alcohol abuse, multiple sexual partners, parenting, intimate partner violence, HIV and TB.
The series’ overall educational objective was to encourage women to take responsibility for their health and sexuality. Themes central to the series are the value of women’s friendship; the unfortunate habit of continuously placing other’s needs above one’s own; and the importance of women learning to take responsibility for their lives and talk openly about sex, love and relationships.
4Play: Sex Tips for Girls was written and developed by Quizzical Pictures in association with Johns Hopkins Health and Education in South Africa, with funding from the United States Agency for International Development via PEPFAR. CADRE provided strategic technical input during script development, conducted a post-broadcast audience reception analysis of series one and two and wrote a discussion guide for series one for use in non-broadcast environments.
Link to discussion guide: