Donkerbos episode 5 recap: To serve another

By TVPlus28 December 2022

Donkerbos episode 5 recap: To serve another

The discovery of six dead children at an abandoned Limpopo farm continues to mystify the townsfolk of Donkerbos as well as the detectives working the case, who are chasing any lead they can find. Here is everything that happened in episode 5 of the chilling Showmax Original thriller, Donkerbos.

A manhunt

Donkerbos episode 5 is on Showmax

Who can forget Fanie (Erica Wessels) gasping for breath at the end of episode 4 (read more here) after she arrived at the crime scene at Spook Steenkamp’s (Eben Genis) house? Fanie found Spook’s little niece Zellie (Amelie van Heerden) under a towel in the bathroom, her face battered, her body raped. A child, murdered. Donkerbos fans are clamouring for justice to be done after a manhunt was launched to find Spook at the end of episode 4.

Police sirens blare into the night in episode 5, titled To Serve Another, as Fanie and her team set off to find Spook. Hot on the trail, they trace him to his workplace, the flower and timber farm. They start their search in one of the warehouses, and Fanie follows a blood trail but as she gets closer Spook turns on the sprinklers and just as she turns her back, he strikes her from behind and hits her over the head, but Fanie screams out and as the picture goes black, we hear her partner Tsedza (Sanda Shandu) and the police team circling closer to help her and capture Spook.

We can’t go home

Donkerbos episode 5 is on Showmax

The next morning Fanie gets checked out at the hospital. She has a nasty wound at the back of her head and there’s a lot of blood down her cheek and neck. The nurse wants to keep her for observation for the day, but Fanie tells her, “Patch me up, I have work to do.” It’s time to see Fanie in her element. If she can get the truth out of Spook, we could solve the mystery of Zellie’s murder and maybe even those of the six dead children.

In the police cell, Spook paces up and down, but before we can get a good look at him the scene cuts to Kallie (Steph van der Merwe), Fanie’s son, wandering outside Braam’s (Edwin van der Walt) house, where he and Fanie are currently staying, and ducking into the bush. He comes across gravestones, but before he can get closer to read the names on the stones, Braam finds him. Braam quickly tells Kallie that he doesn’t know who is buried there, maybe voortrekkers, he jokes, and then says a bit seriously, this ground was my mother’s (do we smell a fresh clue?).

Braam goes on to ask Kallie what is wrong between his mum and dad Jaco (Jacques Bessenger), but Kallie struggles to answer, remembering his mother’s words to keep what happened between Jaco and his best friend Francois (Marko Vorster) a secret. In the end Kallie simply tells Braam, “We can’t go home.”

“We got him!”

Donkerbos episode 5 is on Showmax

We see Sybrand smoking a cigarette in his room, going through files, when he receives a call from his old roommate Tobias (Ben Albertyn) in the institution. Tobias wants Sybrand to come and fetch him so that he is not forced to go home with his dad, but their phone call gets cut short when Fanie arrives looking for Kallie.

Fanie tells Sybrand, “we f**ken got him!” (meaning they’ve caught Spook). Emotions take over and Fanie tells Sybrand that Spook broke Zellie’s cheekbones. “He just kept on f**ken hitting,” says a distraught Fanie, before she asks Sybrand whether Kallie is okay. Sybrand tells her that Kallie doesn’t want to talk, but asks her where Jaco is and what happened, with a hint of a threat in his voice.

Fanie doesn’t answer, but she tells Sybrand that no matter what happens, he and Braam must take care of Kallie. Then she goes and washes her hands and takes off her wedding ring.

After her shower, Fanie gives Kallie a big hug before heading back to the station. Meanwhile, Sybrand tells Braam they caught Spook and that Spook murdered Zellie, before he also takes his keys and heads out to clear his head.

“The devil made Donkerbos his home”

Centre: Leandie du Randt as Pattie in Donkerbos episode 5
Centre: Leandie du Randt as Pattie in Donkerbos

At the police station, Mariaan (Nicola Hanekom) is filming a news bulletin in which she talks about the abused boy Simon’s disappearance and the murder of Zellie. Mariaan says the chilling words, “The devil has made Donkerbos his home,” just as Fanie enters the station.

In the foyer Fanie finds Pattie (Leandi du Randt), Zellie’s mum, crying with Officer Bongani (Aphiwe Sithole). She takes the file from Bongani and asks Pattie for her statement. Fanie asks Pattie where she was the previous day and when Pattie just says that she was not at home, Fanie tells her, “You were at a television interview with Mariaan. Hope it was worth it. Everything you dreamed of. You knew about him, and you left her with him.”

Pattie feels the sting, and we get second-hand burns. Then Fanie goes for the jugular and shows Pattie a picture of her daughter’s broken face, which Pattie slaps away before she starts to cry uncontrollably, just as Tsedza calls Fanie to Captain Baleka’s (Thoko Ntshinga) office. They discuss Spook’s case and what it comes down to is that to nail him for the murder, they need him to confess.

Meanwhile Jaco – Fanie’s husband and Spook’s employer – is called in for questioning, Tsedza grills him as Fanie watches from behind the mirrored glass. Jaco gets uncomfortable when Tsedza confronts him with the fact that Spook was a registered sex offender. Jaco claims he didn’t know, and when Tsedza shows Jaco pictures of Zellie’s body, he freaks out completely. At that point Fanie comes into the interrogation room and tells him he is off the hook for Zellie’s murder, and that she will see him later at the house.

We see Francois again, still crying and now drawing sad pictures. His parents try to get him to go to church with them, but he stays behind and finds comfort with their housekeeper, Sara, who gives him a hug. Meanwhile Braam and Kallie braai together and at church the new dominee Abel (Carel Nel) reveals that he was once a “Child of Satan”. He reveals tattoos on his arms of a satanic nature, inked before he was saved by Christ, and he tells his congregation that the six children were murdered by a devil worshipper.

“She didn’t want to lie still”

Donkerbos episode 5 is on Showmax

Finally, Spook’s interrogation! Fanie puts the pictures of the six victims in front of Spook, including that of Zellie. Spook only looks at Zellie’s picture. Fanie reads out Spook’s record, revealing his first conviction at the age of 16, linked to an attack on an 11-year-old girl at a swimming pool in Alberton. As she reads out the rest of his record, Tsedza enters with a box full of evidence and pulls on some gloves. Tsedza puts down rock after rock with painted eyes (all found in Spook’s storeroom). Spook claims that he found them all in his garden (but he’s not terribly convincing).

Fanie tries her luck as she tells Spook that Pattie is just outside and that they are going to bring her in so that Spook can explain to his sister exactly what happened to Zellie. Fanie asks Tsedza to go fetch Pattie, which makes Spook squirm, and he calls out for them to wait. Fanie places Zellie’s picture in front of Spook and in her most motherly voice she asks, “Was it necessary to hit her like that, Spook?” to which Spooks replies, “She didn’t want to lie still.” The most chilling confession we’ve ever heard.

“Your niece is under your fingernails”

Donkerbos episode 5 is on Showmax

Again, the final 20 minutes of the show pack scenes in at a breakneck pace.

Sybrand goes back to the log that he smashed Spook’s face on when he arrested him months ago, and he screams in frustration.

Fanie and her team agree that Spook killed Zellie, but not the six victims.

Tsedza goes over Jaco’s record and remarks that he is too clean, he doesn’t even have a speeding ticket, which raises red flags. Tsedza is convinced that Jaco is hiding something (could that be the fact that he was molesting Francois … or doing something else illegal with the boy?).

Fanie heads home where she searches Jaco’s bakkie but finds nothing. When she enters the house, we see the painting of the young boy has been taken down off the wall and is on the table. Jaco is making dinner, trying to smooth things over (as if!), but Fanie wants nothing to do with him. She wants to know where the flash drive is that was hidden behind the painting of the boy, and as Jaco takes it out of his pocket, he asks what Kallie told her (about him and Francois), but before Fanie can answer him, Tsedza rocks up. Fanie grabs the flash drive before Tsedza can see it, and they head off back to the crime scene on the farm, where another body, that of poor, abused Simon has been found…

Meanwhile, Officer Wolf (Stian Bam) visits Spook in the cells. Wolf tells him off and tells Spook that his niece is still stuck underneath his nails. Just after that we see a hooded figure, who lights a fire right outside the police station, causing a distraction. As Wolf tries to contain the situation, the hooded figure enters the police station, heads to the cells and stabs Spook repeatedly until he’s dead (Justice for Zellie … or an accomplice covering their tracks?).

The next episode of Donkerbos is available on Tuesday, 3 January, and we are expecting our assumptions about the case so far to be completely overturned.

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