EastEnders to air groundbreaking true life episode about knife crime


by Emma Dodds |
Updated on

EastEnders are breaking tradition with an upcoming knife crime episode

EastEnders have never shied away from breaking soap traditions, but their newest venture is arguably one of the most groundbreaking things they've ever done. The recent tragic knife crime storyline about Shakil Kazemi, played by Shaheen Jafargholi, has touched the hearts of many families around the UK.

To pay tribute to those who have lost their lives to knife crime, show bosses have announced their plans to air a true life episode which will include interviews with real-life families of knife crime victims.

Check out: Next week's EastEnders spoilers...


EastEnders Spoilers Week 26 2018 - SLIDER

EastEnders Martin Stacey Fowler1 of 12

Martin and Stacey Fowler are back on track

Things have been moving in the right direction for Martin and Stacey Fowler and next week the former Slater suggest to her O/H that they make things official by moving back in together.

EastEnders Martin Stacey Fowler2 of 12

EastEnders Martin Stacey Fowler

Martin tells Sonia their plans and explains it'll make things less confusing for Bex – poor Sonia is left disappointed. Things get awkward when Bex bumps into Mo and Hayley Slater who accidentally reveal that Martin spent the night at Stacey's and is moving back in with her. Later when Martin tries to explain things, Bex has some harsh words for him.

EastEnders Carmel Kazemi3 of 12

Carmel Kazemi sets up a youth club

Still grieving for her son, Carmel decides to set up a youth club after she notices some school kids having around on the street. Later on in the week Bex Fowler, Keegan Taylor and Louise Mitchell don't have the heart to tell Carmel Shakil would hate her younth club idea. Instead they let her continue with her plans.

EastEnders Bernadette Taylor and Tiffany Butcher4 of 12

Things get very awkward between Bernadette Taylor and Tiffany Butcher

Bernadette Taylor – who still feels awkward about the kiss she shared with Tiffany Butcher in the club - continues to stay out of Tiffany's way. Later as the pair play chess together, Tiffany reveals she knows Bernadette has been distant because she fancies her, a humiliated Bernadette tells Tiff to leave. Eek!

EastEnders Bernadette Taylor and Tiffany Butcher5 of 12

EastEnders Bernadette Taylor and Tiffany Butcher

Later on when Bernadette admits to her BFF that she's confused about her feelings, Tiffany supports her and their friendship is soon back on track.

EastEnders Ian Beale6 of 12

Ian Beale continues to (try and) woo Mel Owen

We're wondering when Ian Beale, Masood Ahmed and their business plan will soon be on the same page and it doesn't look like it's going to be any time soon…The pair both have different ideas for their business and continue to butt heads about their partnership. While Masood hides the cheque from the investor, Ian gives him a tiny mention of their restaurant flyers.

EastEnders Ian Beale7 of 12

EastEnders Ian Beale

Later on, Ian tries to impress Mel Owen by having a soft-launch for the new restaurant and strikes up a mutually beneficial deal with her. While Ian and Masood prepare for the soft launch of their new fusion restauarant, Kathy is left annoyed when she discovers Ian asked Hunter Owen to help at the opening bid.

EastEnders Ian Beale8 of 12

EastEnders Ian Beale

Ian then reveals to his mum that he's going to marry Mel and wants her to see how successful he is… bare in mind she's actually dating Jack Branning. Ian, Masood and Kathy are disappointed at the lack of interest in the soft launch but Ian gets over it pretty quickly when Mel arrives. The pair soon have a surprise heart to heart about his belated daughter Lucy but when Jack arrives, Ian is left seething.

EastEnders Ian Beale9 of 12

EastEnders Ian Beale

Kathy then steps in to console her son but it turns up he's determined more now than ever to win over Mel Owen's heart. Does Ian remember that they were married but split of their wedding day? We can see that this isn't going to end well…

EastEnders Kat Moon Jean Slater10 of 12

The Slaters hit out at Jean's husband Ollie

The week starts off with an annoyed Kat Moon returning that the rest of the family plan on keeping Charlie's cab and demands that they all vote whether to keep it or sell it. After they all vote Kat notices how uncertain Jean is and realises she's hiding something.

EastEnders Kat Moon Jean Slater11 of 12

EastEnders Kat Moon Jean Slater

When Kat tells Mo that Ollie has been hitting Jean, they decide to invite him round for lunch on Saturday but are then left shocked when Ollie turns up unannounced at the Slaters house. It's not long before the feisty females refuse to hear him out and lay into him; poor Jean is left shocked that Kat and Mo got the wrong end of the stick.Oh boy…

EastEnders Mick Carter12 of 12

Mick Carter consoles Halfway

Elsewhere Mick Carter tries to reassure Halfway, who is feeling guilty for letting their target get away.

Brooke Kinsella
©Actress Brooke Kinsella MBE has been advising on the show © Shutterstock

The interviews will air in an episode about Shakil's funeral in a first for EastEnders, who have been taking advice from actress Brooke Kinsella MBE, whose younger brother Ben was a victim of knife crime 10 years ago.

Executive consultant John Yorke said: "From the very beginning we were determined to treat the difficult subject of knife crime in a responsible, non-sensationalist way. We started out with detailed research, and the more stories we heard the more we felt other people should hear them too.

"The episode gradually evolved into something unique for EastEnders - real families telling their own devastating stories alongside our own characters. We’ve tried to find a way to do justice to an incredibly difficult, tragic and emotive subject, and with huge help from the families of real life victims and the support groups they work with, we hope we’ve come some way to getting that enormity across."

BBC Three have also announced that they will produce multiple short films to "give viewers a further insight into the lives of some of the families involved with the special EastEnders episode."

The character of Shakil was murdered in a horrifying knife attack last month, leaving his family utterly bereft. Actor Shaheen, who had played the character since April 2016, told Digital Spy: "The first thing that was going through my mind was just the responsibility that we held with this because obviously it's such a huge issue.

"I feel so blessed to be able to leave with such an incredible storyline – that means so much."

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