Much like the premiere episode’s cold open, the second episode opens with a gruesome montage. A mother in shock cradling a child, an odious puppet scene only exacerbated by its monologue, a girl covered in blood rocking back and forth holding a knife and a man with multiple stab wounds in his back, dead at the kitchen table.
In an anger-inducing episode that delves into parental paedophilia, Silas (Alfred Munyua) and Makena (Sarah Hassan) are called in to solve the murder of Mr Njoki (Mburu Kimani) who was stabbed 8 times by his daughter Rehema (Foi Wambui).
Speaking about her character in an interview with Showmax, Foi said, “I feel honoured to be able to stand in this gap and express on-screen what so many have felt. Rehema is a representation of so many women, and I hope that anyone who watches this episode will feel seen and heard and that it heals people.”
In the course of their investigation the detectives find out that not only was the victim and father abusing his daughter and perpetrator, he also fathered his own 5-year-old granddaughter.
Staying true to her character as introduced in the first episode, Makena (Sarah Hassan) is not okay with the idea of a 17-year-old girl going to prison for killing her abuser while both her partner and the prosecutor are adamant that “murder is murder.”
In shock and disbelief at her colleagues’ apathy, Makena implores defence lawyer Yaro played by recurring guest star (Koome Kinoti) to defend Rehema, a move that earns her a chewing out by her boss Kebo (Makbul Mohammed).
As per the show’s format, the detectives quickly wrap-up their investigation as the second half of the episode plays out in court. Unfortunately for Makena, Rehema and her mother Mrs Njoki, the court agrees with Sokoro’s (Paul Ogola) argument that no matter what preceded the crime, murder is still murder.
This episode puts into perspective that justice does not always constitute fairness.
Foi has played a number of roles in her young acting career. In 2020, she played the funny friend and hype woman in Nick Mutuma’s coming-of-age romcom, Sincerely Daisy, a role that earned her a Kalasha win for Best Supporting Actress. She’s also starred in the Kalasha-winning short Morning After, as well Uhuru, another short which she also produced. Currently, she stars in Maisha Magic’s comedy Anda Kava, alongside Njugush and Abel Mutua.
All these past roles have had some degree of liveliness, none of them nowhere near what the role of Rehema demands of her. It feels great to take a more serious role, she says. “As an actor, diversity is important. I’m glad that people get a chance to see me in a different light with this role.”
To prepare for the role, she had to meditate a lot to have a deeper connection with Rehema. “I did a lot of meditation so that I could be more present mentally to really feel the emotions. I also drew a lot of motivation from my personal life.”
In doing so, Foi says it became easier for her to express Rehema’s pain and to cry on cue. It’s this sincerity with which she captures her character’s pain that has been praised by co-star Alfred Munyua (Silas). Singling out the second episode as his favourite in the eight-part series, Alfred says, “Foi is definitely a force that’s going to take over the industry if we do right by her.”
When Showmax released the Crime and Justice trailer a week ago, Foi’s brief yet heart-breaking scene caused a stir. In it, her character Rehema laments to Makena (Sarah Hassan): “We are women in the land of men.”
She reveals that the snippet caused a lot of curiosity from her family, and especially her parents who are excited to watch her in action. “My dad has been asking about it since the trailer came out. I can’t wait for them to watch it.”
Catch Crime and Justice episode 2 “Primal” on Showmax. New episodes arrive every Monday.