(Series 19, ep. 35 ‘The Hard Way Home’ by Martin Jameson and Nick Fisher) Has it really been a year already? On this very day in 2016, Holby and the world lost Arthur Digby, husband, friend, doctor and all-round lovely man. The repercussions of that have lasted ever since, especially among those closest to him – Morven, Zosia and Dominic. Morven’s reactions have been more straightforward, and on the anniversary of his death we found her trying to work up the courage to face a memorial get-together, and sobbing her heart out on the stairs.
Dominic has had a torrid time of it in the last twelve months. After losing his best friend, he found himself in an abusive relationship with Isaac. His self esteem at an all-time low, he’s recently been taking to the gym like a man possessed and throwing back steroids. This has made him all angry and shouty, and this culminated in him getting rather nasty with Sacha in theatre. It reminded me of when Oliver Valentine turned on Elliot Hope after Tara’s death, because Sacha, like Elliot, is a delightful human being and beloved mentor, but also like Elliot he has his vulnerabilities and in some ways lays himself open to attack. Sacha doesn’t get cross very often, but I rather like it when he does, and he did.
Dominic needed a patient whose case would help him to reflect on his own issues, and she came in the form of Mim (Sarah Niles), who’d been abusing her own body in the name of weight loss. Dominic could relate to that – eventually – but not before he’d annoyed her into making a complaint against him, and then sorted out what was wrong with her. I also liked Lofty’s contribution. He’s calm, quiet, dependable – irritatingly so, as far as Dominic was concerned – but he got Dom to open up. Lofty asked if Dominic had been in love with Arthur, and Dominic touchingly admitted he had – not romantically, but it had probably been the most important relationship of his life.
At the end of the episode, Sacha found Dominic in his (Sacha’s) car. Bless him, what he needed was a good cry and a cuddle from Sacha, because while he might be right that Sacha thinks of him as a substitute son, it’s also true that Dominic has never had a huggy kind of father in his life and he needs Sacha as much as (or more than) Sacha needs him.
On AAU, Jasmine announced she was staying after all, and not going to the mythical paeds department at the mythical St Catherine’s. Hurrah! One person looked less than thrilled, however, and that was Fran. Fran was working on AAU and had spent the shift trying to get Jac and Jasmine to bond. There was a beautiful scene in the locker room where the two of them traded insults – or Jasmine insulted Jac, and Jac assisted her – and they’ve never seemed more like sisters. They say the same things at the same time and they laugh at the same things. Fran looked confused. I think she quite likes the idea of being Jac’s proxy sister herself, but blood (even Paula Burrows’ blood) is apparently thicker than water.
While Jac was occupied on AAU, it meant she wasn’t up on Darwin being sarcastic and withering. This was good news for new F1 Damon Ford (David Ajao), whose introduction to Holby was slightly less terrifying as a result. Damon is young, bouncy, enthusiastic, and a bit nervous, and this contrasted beautifully with Matteo, with whom he had most of his scenes. Matteo glides through the ward like he’s the Earth’s representative from Planet Calm. It was still enough to frighten poor Damon, who had to go through the upset of a patient dying on his very first shift. It wasn’t his fault, though, and Matteo was impressed with him. Let’s hope that boosts his confidence for when he has to work with Termi-Naylor.
Have you seen the summer trailer yet? Donna. A junior Griffin. Selfie. And “a loss that is beyond measure”. It looks unmissable!