Holby City: Who’s sitting at Hanssen’s desk?

(Series 15, ep.5)   “Who is running Holby City?” Ric wanted to know when he discovered Henrik Hanssen had taken a leave of absence (that’s “leave of absence,” worried Hanssenites – they mentioned him so often in this episode that I’m quite confident he’ll be back. It’s Luc Hemingway all over again). Ric was not perked up to discover that the answer to his question was (temporarily) Serena Campbell, a woman with whom he does not exactly see eye to eye.

She’s confident, that Serena. Her job interview was more like a sales pitch to the board.  “I have what I believe is a compelling solution,” she briskly informed them. “Me.” The thing with Serena is, although she does display flashes of warmth, she is really all about the balance sheet. As such, she did look scarily comfortable in Hanssen’s chair.

Everyone wanted Ric to go for the CEO job, because Michael Spence and Elliott Hope weren’t interested in it and everyone is scared of Serena. The four of them seemed to be the entire candidate pool. I don’t have any particular knowledge of NHS administration, but I couldn’t help thinking this wasn’t the most realistic scenario I’d ever come across. What it did do, however, was set Ric up for the classic patient v future-of-the-hospital dilemma. He had a patient who was about to have a kidney transplant, and the kidney she was about to get might or might not give her cancer. Serena thought it would be dreadful publicity for the hospital if they gave a patient cancer, but Ric felt the kidney was the only option for the patient. It wasn’t ideal that his interview for the CEO job meant he had to leave the operation early and leave the suturing up in the capable hands of The Malick. Naturally the machines started going beep while he was away, and by the time he got back to theatre there was blood everywhere. “You take the vein, I’ll take the artery,” said Ric.  

All was well that ended well, but Ric didn’t get the job. He didn’t really want it, not after almost losing his patient had reminded him of his priorities. Serena didn’t get the job, either. An external candidate has been appointed, apparently, and we will be meeting her next week.

On Darwin, Jonny Mac was worrying about Mo’s moral fibre, as she had spent the night with Albie, who owns the bar. He’s married, you see. Personally, I think Mo could do much better than Albie, who as well as being married makes Sacha look like George Clooney and seems a wee bit creepy. Mo was in no mood to take relationship advice from Jonny, though, and said if it all goes horribly wrong, she won’t even need him to help pick up the pieces. Sulky madam, she is.

There was another sulky madam on AAU, a new HCA called Ramona. She started off well by referring to Michael Spence as “a jerk.” I love Michael Spence, but I also enjoy seeing him being put in his place by feisty juniors. With Ramona’s direct approach and foreign accent, I couldn’t help but be reminded of the glorious Goth Dr Frieda. I hope we’ll be seeing her again and she won’t end up disappearing like Lleucu and the now-you-see-her-now-you-don’t Mary-Claire.

Michael wasn’t in the best of moods because his children were supposed to be visiting him, but now weren’t going to be coming until Christmas. Attempts to contact Annaliese to shout at her failed, so he had to shout at staff and patients instead. Ramona wasn’t taking any of that nonsense, and gave as good as she got. “How are things going with Ramona?” Sacha asked Michael. “Awesome,” was the reply. “We’re like the Borgias on crack.” You can see why I want to see more of Ramona. Anyway, they ended up bonding a bit in the basement (something good happened in the basement for the second week running!). After he accused her of stealing a silver bookmark with photos of his kids on it, she threw a glass of water over him, then found the bookmark in a bin bag and showed him photos of her kids. Heartwarming.

Next time: The new CEO arrives. Lilah gets Ric into trouble. And Jac is trying to get close to Jonny Mac again.

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9 responses to “Holby City: Who’s sitting at Hanssen’s desk?

  1. Martin Rosen

    If they have appointed an external candidate for Hanssen’s post, the Board must know when (if!) he is coming back as this person would be on a fixed-term contract.

    The last we saw of Henrik was him being summoned to a Board meeting, but packing his stuff into his car and driving off. Out of interest when did the ads go out, shortlisting take place etc. etc ?!

    Is Henrik in charge of Casualty? He doesn’t seem to visit there, and the staff there don’t seem to worry about any new policy decision he may have made.

    • pauseliveaction

      All very good points, but if we worried about all of that we wouldn’t have time to notice the important stuff, like the current status of Michael Spence’s facial hair and counting collapsing patients (yesterday: Car Park 0; Basement 0; Toilets 0; Prayer Room 1). I try to let the admin weirdness wash over me.

  2. Maria

    I don’t know about anyone else, I just find the storylines on AAU the last couple of weeks dull and tedious to watch, even Sacha and Michael whom I like, can’t even salvage the situation to get me out of my bored state. Its so flat. Is Romana the new Frieda mark II ?

    • pauseliveaction

      They’ve had so much excitement on AAU recently, what with Chrissie and Sacha’s wedding and Eddi being a permanent fixture in the drugs cupboard. They’re probably suffering from some kind of post traumatic stress.

  3. LottyC

    I love your reviews and have been reading them for donkeys years, I guess I haven’t commented before.
    I’m not sure about the future between Mo and Jonny or Jac and Jonny anymore. I just think someone should crack Jacs ice queen exterior, I think Jonny could d

    • LottyC

      Sorry continuing- I think Jonny could do this.
      Are you considering reviewing Casualty again, I’d like to see your take on Sam and Tom! (maybe I just can’t find the reviews!)