(Series 17, ep.51 & 52) First of all, I apologise for the lack of review last week. I watched the episode with family members I haven’t seen in a while, so there was more talking than watching going on. It’s just as well that last week’s and this week’s episodes pretty much form a unit, with the continuing stories of Cara and her husband, and Adele and Jesse’s wedding, featuring across both.
I thought the Cara/Jed storyline was really interesting and well done. Cara hasn’t had much to do since she arrived except be a bit cheeky and take wedding rings on and off a lot. We discovered why there was so much emphasis on the wedding rings when a ‘friend’ of a patient turned out to be none other than Cara’s husband Jed, who is an undercover cop. This led to some hanky panky in a store cupboard (handily, one that locks on the inside), but it was clear that spending months not knowing where her husband was or what he was doing was taking its toll on Cara. Worse was to come, when she discovered he was the father of the patient’s baby. It was all excellently set up for last night’s episode, when Jed returned as a patient (the Curse strikes again), badly battered. Cara was torn between wanting to protect him, wanting to batter him herself and having to keep his cover story intact in case worse happened to him. Niamh Walsh was very convincing, giving Cara just the right mix of strength and vulnerability. I couldn’t help thinking Cara could do better for herself, though. Yes, Dr Raf Not-Smug, I’m looking at you.
Meanwhile, Adele was back at work for the first time since she was attacked, and inevitably found her first shift difficult. Not as difficult as guest artiste the radiant Denise Welch, who spent most of the episode gasping for breath and having an on/off wait for a lung transplant. Adele spent the shift being a bit flaky and looking sideways every time Jesse was mentioned. From this we could conclude she was Having Doubts.
This week was the wedding itself, but before they could even rehearse, the wedding planner collapsed (the Curse striking yet again). For plot reasons it was decided that Adele would take her to hospital rather than Mo, because the chief bridesmaid (Mo) was deemed to be more necessary at the wedding venue than the bride.
This gave Adele the whole episode to run back and forth between Pulses and Darwin, sometimes at almost supernatural speed. “How did she get there so fast?” Mr PLA said at one point. “It’s like a horror film. She’s always behind you.” The wedding planner turned out to have an unconventional marriage – she was a gay woman happily married to a gay man, an arrangement which has suited both of them beautifully until the man decided to leave. This made Adele look sideways again.
Jesse, meanwhile, was busy helping Selfie with some terrifyingly ninja-level surgery. Jesse had to put his foot down when it seemed that Selfie was putting his patient in danger with his willingness to take risks. This earned Jesse the approval of Hanssen and also of Selfie, who likes people who stand up for themselves. Selfie also likes nurse Fran Reynolds, and after a barf-inducing flirting scene they both went off together at the end of the shift.
Jesse and Adele got dressed for their wedding, but it wasn’t long before Adele was muttering the dreaded words, “I can’t do this,” and dashing off. There was an emotional scene in the multi-faith room (formerly the Linden Cullen Chapel of Torment) and Adele said she couldn’t possibly be with a man who thought it was acceptable to release doves and sea eagles at the same time at a wedding. It was clear that it would end in carnage. That wasn’t really what she said, but it was part of him wanting to always be in charge and take control etc etc. Like the sea eagle, Adele is a free spirit who can’t be confined by that sort of behaviour. Jesse looked stunned, bless him.