Holby City: We need to talk about Sacha

(Series 19, ep. 29 ‘Two Hearts’ by Katie Douglas) Sacha Levy is the most caring, empathetic, huggy doctor in the hospital. That’s just a fact. So as soon as he started being snappy with a distressed patient, Essie knew something was up. Her alarm bells were already ringing when she spotted him arriving in yesterday’s shirt with his hair messed up, but she’s no stranger to the walk of shame herself, so that could have been dismissed. But as soon as Sacha starts being less nice to people, we all worry. Then Essie discovered he’s suddenly acquired a shoplifting habit/issue/problem. I really like how not being in a romantic relationship with Sacha has properly freed Essie up to love him and care for him like she couldn’t do when they were trying for babies and she was being all Chrissie 2.0 with him. I also loved how she enlisted the help of Jac Naylor to get him to admit there was a problem. Was he feeling depressed, they wondered? Sacha said that everybody in the room was probably feeling depressed, and given that the room was Pulses I wouldn’t be surprised if they were. Jac wasn’t surprised either. “Except that’s just my personality,” she said. I’m hoping bits of humour like that will be our friend as Sacha recovers from his depression, because it’s very hard watching him suffer. 

When Jac wasn’t staging interventions with Sacha, she was up on Darwin pretending she was “a one woman country made of ice,” according to Mo. Her iciness was particularly directed at Mr Matteo Rossini – for being married, but mainly for being all charming and getting past her usually stringent border defences.

Matteo’s patient had a failing heart, wasn’t suitable for a transplant and didn’t want any kind of assist device in him. Matteo had the idea of sticking an extra heart in – a risky and unusual procedure – and Jac wasn’t best pleased. She was worried about mortality rates and future funding, and she drafted in Hanssen to watch Matteo through the glass and threw Oliver Valentine out of theatre so she could assist.

Hanssen observed that Jac and Matteo “work rather well together,” and the patient’s two hearts ended up beating in perfect harmony, which was literally good for the patient and metaphorically good for Jac and Matteo’s ongoing relationship – once Jac can trust him again.

Meanwhile, Oliver Valentine was not happy at being ousted from theatre. It was just the last in a long line of setbacks and snubs he’s had on Darwin, and he’d had enough. Matteo said he should try a break, and I was thinking “Noooo – not the Mythical St James’s!” He’s taken an even bolder step and signed up for AAU, where there’s a bit of a gap since Serena went off to sort herself out. Jac thinks his skills will be wasted on “mending broken nails,” and you’d have to say she has a point. But if anyone is thinking of having an emergency heart problem, Holby is definitely the place to do it. With Sam Strachan and Connie Beauchamp in the ED and Oliver Valentine in AAU, you could not be in more specialised hands.

On the subject of AAU, Ric Griffin was back – and hurrah for that. He arrived to find a ward in some disarray thanks to Bernie’s prioritising (she does all the medical stuff first, and if there’s time – which there never is – she does the admin. Tidying up is bottom of the list). Picking his way through the mound of empty Shiraz bottles that used to be Serena’s desk, Ric announced an efficiency drive. This was immediately derailed when a long-lost granddaughter turned up. Ric has apparently got a son called Kofi. Did we know that? I only remember Jess and Leo. Anyway, this Darla (Naomi Katiyo) was the daughter of Kofi and she’d come to Holby City bearing a piece of paper bearing the words “Mr Griffin” and “AAU.” Considering her surname was also Griffin, it’s perhaps worrying that she needed a reminder of her grandfather’s name, but it had been a long while since she’d seen him. So long, in fact, that Bernie had to give Ric a quick refresher course on how to deal with stroppy kids who fake illnesses just to spend time with their estranged relatives. It completely derailed any efficiency plans Ric might have had, though.

Next time: Mr T’s mother Birdie is back. And does she have her eye on any Swedish CEO’s in particular?


Filed under Holby City

10 responses to “Holby City: We need to talk about Sacha

  1. HolbyNut

    Sacha’s storyline has sort of come from nowhere – there’s not been enough focus on him or a build-up. Don’t enjoy Sacha in distress – like watching a puppy being tortured. HC writers – please just make him happy again! I love it when he’s being all fatherly and jolly…

    • Victoria

      I totally agree. Can’t fault Bob’s performance and it was lovely to see him both have more to do and a reminder of his strong friendships with both Essie and Jac but as a storyline it seemed bungled. Yes he’s had some wobbly moments like the secret lipo but the shoplifting coming out of nowhere/his denials and the well intentioned lectures from his friends made it seem like something rushed together to tie in with a particular national week.

      Of course low level depression is incredibly common, can hit anyone, and the sufferer is often the last to realise (I know from personal experience) but I do feel both the storyline and the actors involved should’ve been given a longer build up and better developed storyline.

    • mrssatan

      I agree, it does seem to be an out of leftfield storyline. I know depression is common, and more than one person in a workplace is likely to have mental health issues but the writers had already covered it with HH, and I found that more believable… (and not just because I am an HH fan)


    • I thought that too about the storyline, but according to my mum and dad, who both have depression themselves, that’s what the illness does to you… So maybe that’s why they did it , to highlight that…

  2. Rachel Fleming

    When Darla showed up in the previews I thought she was Mia (donna’s niece) I found it quite disappointing that she was his grandchild with a son that I don’t recall he has ever mentioned!!

    Can’t wait to see Birdie back next week

  3. Donnty

    Bob was brilliant but I felt a bit blindsided by the storyline, as if it came from nowhere – maybe that was the point?
    Ric did as Ric does – launched into an obnoxious, condescending speech, announced a new dawn for the ward (and bored me to tears) and then was the first person to balls it all up by having even more family issues. It’s repetitive, it draws attention from far more relevant characters – Ric needs to go.

  4. Did this storyline come from nowhere though? There have been a few oddities, he has seemed a bit forlorn at times since he and Essie split and don’t forget his liposuction. That ought to have raised some red flags.
    The shoplifting/stealing doesn’t work for me though, Sacha is such a dedicated doctor and he knows a criminal record would get him struck off.

  5. Samantha Glennerster

    What is Rics position now? And where has he been?

  6. Brilliant review, as always Sue!
    There have maybe been a few signs that Sacha wasn’t quite himself, but I do agree with most of the other comments that it was a bit of a surprise to suddenly have it turn into a full-blown plot.
    I have missed Ric, but why can they never show him being an actual surgeon any more? He just comes along and is a bit aggravating and condescending, which is a waste. I feel maybe Kofi has been mentioned but a long way back…And yes, re: Darla and the piece of paper. Obviously her name would also be Griffin! FAIL.
    As a side-note, does anyone else think Sam Strachan has had a complete personality transplant? What has he been doing in the USA to turn into the complete opposite of everything he ever was when he was still in Holby?

  7. Teresa

    I think out of nowhere is the point. I knew someone who was a regular work attenders joining in then suddenly didn’t and didn’t call in either. We found her at home couldn’t move just rocked in her chair.

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