My verdict: All Kenyan legal dramas need more than ‘njia tatu’ to defend themselves

By David Mwenda

Lately,  I have been doing a lot of research on our local dramas. One of the things that catch my eye is Kenyan legal dramas. They are not many and they have only one outlook and this makes it very hard to find variety.

From Vioja Mahakamani to Mashtaka

From the beginning, law dramas in the country have had the same outlook. Take for example Vioja Mahakamani which is the first of the very few legal dramas in the country. The drama seems to have set the trend for the way legal dramas were going to be set in the country. The next legal drama that came out was Mashtaka which seemed to have the same narratives but had good ratings in the country.

This is my take on how these works of art can be improved.

First, the creators need to change the scenes of the shows. As of now we are just seeing the same court scene and there is no back ground to how the crime happens. They have the same narratives that are still there. The most eminent scene is the courtroom. There is no change to the scene unless it is prison.

Though acting is a work of fiction, it is important for them to make sure they have some grounding on the truth. They need to catch the fact that even though a lot of cases taken to court are petty crimes, there are also other court room drama problems.

There is also the problem of the legal representation. Because of the focus of the petty crimes in the country they bring into question representation. They need to make sure they have done their job to make sure they have represented legal dramas in the right way. They need to clarify that one needs legal representation in court.

There are also some of the things that are just a miss in the way the defendants represent themselves in the courtroom. For one they do not seem to get fair treatment to represent themselves in the court. They also seem to be very inclined to make sure the defendants are going to be punished and if they admit to their crimes they are either pardoned or given a lighter sentence.

Leave the petty crimes alone

They need to involve different crimes into the script. They have been able to sell the narrative of petty crimes being punished more. However they fail to talk about the narrative where the rich explore the legal system. They need to make sure they have given the petty crimes alone.

There is a need to make sure they have done their research. Most producers when they are putting up legal dramas in Kenya only think of the comical fees in the area. They need to make sure they have done their research and tried to involve legal heavy weights when they are working on the legal system in the country. They need to make sure they have done their best to make sure they can generate better story lines.


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