This week’s episode of Crime and Justice “Slaughterhouse” was inspired by a university student Lawrence Warunge who allegedly murdered four members of his family and a farmhand at their home in Kiambu.
The varsity student later revealed that he was inspired by Villanelle, Jodie Comer’s unhinged assassin in the British spy thriller Killing Eve.
The episode follows detectives Makena (Sarah Hassan) and Silas (Alfred Munyua) as they investigate a violent crime where three family members are found murdered in their home.
With no motive, no murder weapon and a recluse teenager who survives the incident, Silas and Makena must determine what really happened.
“Slaughterhouse” is written by Voline Ogutu, one of the new writers who joined the second season alongside Damaris Irungu.
Voline reveals that she enjoyed writing “Slaughterhouse” because of its different format.
“The killer was already known. The detectives just had to figure out his motive,” she says.
On writing her first police procedural with Crime and Justice, Voline admitted that the rules and pace can be different but, ultimately, it all comes down to the story.
“The story and the writer’s vision dictate the pace,” she says. “A thriller can have a slow pace, just like a dramedy story like Njoro wa Uba would have. The rules of storytelling can be applied to any genre.”
For this episode, she tapped into her love for horror stories, and three drafts later, she delivered what director Tosh Gitonga (Nairobi Half Life), who made his Crime and Justice debut with “Slaughterhouse”, described as a “super interesting script.”
“Episode 4 tackles an unfathomable subject, but we know for a fact that it can happen,” Tosh said.
The challenge for Tosh, whose most recent film project, Disconnect, is a feel-good rom-com, was to capture the darkness that “Slaughterhouse” calls for.
“I worried that I wouldn’t find the right temperament, and the right state that Tim (the teenage suspect) should be in after committing such a heinous crime,” he said.
Tosh praised his young cast, made up of newcomers like Lewis Leshan, Kendi Kinyua, Jones Njoroge, Collins Kamau Ngugi and Victor Kibe.
“I really enjoyed working with the young upcoming cast. The future is bright for our industry.”
Fans can catch Crime and Justice Episode 4 “Slaughterhouse”, now streaming on Showmax, with new episodes every Monday.