Category Archives: Holby City

Holby City: We stay and fight

(Series 23, ep. 41 by Rebecca Harrison 25.1.22) Head over to Metro for my review of this episode. But before you go…

Line of the week: (Jac) ’We stay and fight.’ (Fletch) ’I’ve got no fight left in me.’ (Jac) ’Then find it, because I need you.’

Not in front of Ange (or any woman) line of the week: (Russ) ‘About the only woman who’s worth talking to in this hospital is Jac Naylor.’

Wishful thinking line of the week: (Dominic)’I’m not here.’ (Donna) ‘Well neither am I. I’m on a beach in the Bahamas.’

I didn’t mention the Dominic/Sacha scenes in my Metro review, but they were precious. Sacha’s tie-dyed lab coat was a thing of hideous beauty.

I’m still not feeling Hanssen and Russ, but I can totally picture Hanssen as a stepfather to Billie and a granddad to her baby. He’s a lovely granddad.

Nicky’s last scene, as she looked out of the window at Amelia and Juliet outside, reminded me that we don’t get so many classic ‘window of regret’ scenes any more. Will there even be any more? *crying face*

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Holby City: I’m asking you for hope

(Series 23, ep. 40 by Andy Bayliss 18.1.22) Please pop over to Metro to see this week’s review (and also last week’s, as I didn’t get round to linking that here). But before you do that…

It’s always amazing how on Holby a new treatment option can be found for a case that everyone agrees is untreatable (look how many times Sammy Carrington was running out of road, and now he’s fine). But let’s hope Eli agrees to the surgery that Jac is asking for.

I was thinking isn’t it amazing how Jac, a character who in her early days was characterised by being selfish, unpleasant and cold hearted is now the glorious centre of the whole show? While still being generally selfish, unpleasant and cold-hearted. It’s brilliant.

Only 10 more episodes of Holby to go, and I’m not ready to say goodbye to Jac, or Sacha, or Dom, or Hanssen, or Fletch. They’re like old friends.

I wonder who’ll get a happy ending? It looks like Hanssen might be heading that way, with that funny little romance with Russ. I’m still not really feeling it, even though Guy Henry is doing his fabulous best to make it all seem plausible and the little reactions we see to Russ are very touching and rather sweet.

I very much doubt that Fletch will jump the sinking ship and fully expect him to be there right to the end. But I have been wrong before.

This is far too much talk of endings and I’m going to stop. Far too miserable. See you next week!

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Holby City: The one with the pert liver

(Series 23, ep. 38 by Isla Gray 4.1.22) Happy New Year! Please pop over to Metro to read my review of this episode.

I watched it before Christmas, so apologies in advance if my Further Thoughts are even more muddled than usual.

Jac! I am seriously worried about her.

Scrambled Simile Corner: (Eli) ‘Surgery is like riding a bike. Nobody wants to fall off, so you never forget.’ Especially if you’re an elephant. Who also does surgery. While riding a bike.

You’re willing to turn up looking like you got dressed in the dark’ Madge tells Ange because she has baby sick on her clothes. But then Ange turns the tables when Madge’s uniform has a stain on it: ‘Looks like you got dressed in the dark.’ She’s witty, that Ange.

But what’s with all of Madge’s scars? Is she being abused by someone?

Chat up line of the week: ‘I have a deliciously pert liver in my theatre with no one to put it in.’ Oh Russ, you charmer.

Are we feeling the Russ/Hanssen relationship? I’m not sure, but enjoying seeing how it goes.

Communicator of the Week: (Donna tackles sign language in her own special way) ‘And more signs would be a lobster – no, snail – a lobster, aaaand my personal favourite, booty call.’

Kylie puts her foot in it: (to Nicky re baby Juliet) ‘Do you think she looks more like you or more like erm…’ Erm would be the man who blew up the hospital after killing assorted people.


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Holby City: Last Christmas

(Series 23, ep. 37 by Kat Rose-Martin 14.12.21) Bob along to Metro to read my proper review. But before you go…

Poor Sammy. That child has been put through the mill for our entertainment, hasn’t he? Hopefully he really is cured this time.

No pressure line of the week: (Hanssen) ‘If the baton drops for a single second, a mother will be burying her child this Christmas’

Actual line of the week: (Donna sums up Hanssen) ‘You might be a fun sponge, but you’re a reliable fun sponge.’

Line of the week 2: (Jac is just a sentimental old thing when thinking of Sammy’s surgery) ‘If this surgery doesn’t get us out of special measures, I don’t know what will.’

But talking of sentimental – Amelia singing Silent Night to her lost baby. That was heartbreaking, and beautifully done by Lucy Briggs-Owen.

Carole’s box of letters! She continues to be wonderful even though she’s gone.

It was lovely to see Zosia in the video call with Ollie, and equally lovely to get that little glimpse of Nicky. I have a feeling we might be seeing a few more old faces before the show comes to its untimely end next year. Sad to say goodbye to the wonderful Oliver Valentine, though.

Ange and Josh’s two-way proposal was a precious thing. I like that he wouldn’t agree to it until he knew that she was properly aware of how his bulimia is currently.

And Kylie loves Louis! Adorable.

So that was our last Christmas ever in Holby (apart from the ED, which will still continue as they bravely struggle with the realisation that There Is Nothing Upstairs Anymore). No more carols under the tree in the Linden Cullen Memorial Shrubbery. No more ghostly visitations from dead relatives. No more Pulses’ Christmas menu (same old muffins with extra cinnamon). Bah. Humbug.

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Holby City: Goodbye, Carole

(Series 23, ep. 36 by Joe Ainsworth 7.12.21) Pop over to Metro to read my proper review of this sad, sad episode. But before you go…

I was in pieces when Carole died by the lake. How absolutely brilliant were Julia Deakin and David Ames? I loved how you could see Carole’s lovely warm sparkle was intact despite her failing health. She wanted to make sure Dominic knew how much he was loved. In the scene with Hanssen, too, she managed to convey just enough of how much she valued him.

When Carole said ‘Love’ to Hanssen, it made me remember that Love is his middle name.

Full credit to Guy Henry and Bob Barrett for their parts in making this storyline touch our hearts so much. And of course credit to the always brilliant Joe Ainsworth for the beautiful script.

Hanssen’s admission that he once thought his relationship with Carole ‘might go beyond the cha cha cha.’ Oh, if only it had.

But line of the week: (Carole) ‘Dazzle, my special boy.’ My hayfever is giving me hell today…

I’m so glad that covid filming restrictions have been relaxed now. If Dominic hadn’t been able to hold Carole’s hand, or sob in Sacha’s arms, it would have been wrong.

Jeong-Soo is going to be very sad when he hears about Carole. He was very fond of her too.

In other news: Eli and Amelia have both landed on opposite sides of the Amelia/baby decision, but that was always going to happen. And Claudia is threatening Ange’s confidence in her relationship with Josh, but ditto.

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Holby City: Happy for a good five minutes

(Series 23, ep. 35 by Philip Lawrence 30.11.21) My longer review is at Metro as usual, but before you go and look at it I’ve had some random thoughts…

They’re really going to kill Carole Copeland, aren’t they? I don’t honestly think I can deal with that. Should we form a support group now, so we can look after each other (and Dominic) when the inevitable happens? Hanssen can join as well.

So the Ebrahimis are facing the awful ‘her or the baby’ decision about whether Amelia continues with her treatment or her pregnancy. We’re going to need a bigger support group.

Josh has a support group, but I think they already have a packed agenda.

But what is the agenda of Claudia? Is she going to try to steal Our Joshie away from The Fragrant Ange? Her full name is Claudia Blaise, so she sounds like a minx already.

Line of the week: I couldn’t resist quoting it on Metro and I can’t resist quoting it again. Madge’s reaction to Christmas choirs: ‘Amelia wanted to know where I stand on a Christmas choir. I wanted to say “on the conductor’s neck” but I didn’t want to dampen her enthusiasm.’

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Holby City: He’s not a well man

(Series 23, ep. 34 by Ciara Conway 23.11.21) I’ve applied my usual critical lens to this episode for Metro, but before you go to read that…

I liked the visual effects that showed us some of what was going on in Ollie’s mind in that operating theatre. It was genuinely unsettling.

It wasn’t just visual effects, though. James Anderson has been so good at revealing different sides to Oliver as his Holby story has unfolded. From the cocky, confident junior doctor, to the more mature version shaped by the loss of his sister, to his current incarnation all of the versions of Oliver Valentine have been believable. Like Jac Naylor, he’s the product of all the stories that have gone before.

And of course Guy Henry tapped into the very deep sadness at the heart of Henrik Hanssen.

Which brings me once again to thinking how absolutely terrible it is that this programme is being axed.

Back to tonight’s episode, and Dominic’s storyline was really interesting. I liked that it was never suggested that Dominic was actually racist, but his attitude to Tianna was carelessness based on what Max identified as ‘unconscious biases.’

So sad to hear that Carole didn’t recognise him, too. No wonder he wasn’t firing on all cylinders.

He learned his lesson, though, and so did Ange. Josh doesn’t need or want to be mother-smothered.


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Holby City: Still the same soul

(Series 23, ep. 33 by Emily Groves 16.11.21) Pop over to Metro for this week’s review, but before you go…

Last week I was singing the praises of Jeong Soo and this week we were once again reminded of how marvellous Louis is – he’s wise and thoughtful and just generally lovely. I liked how he was able to repay the kindness of Lucky helping him with his transition by helping her to transition into her new life.

It was also nice that Lucky got to do one last bit of good work at Holby by getting Fletch and Evie back on track. I can’t have any upset among the Fletchlings.

Speaking of whom, it’s time we saw Mikey again.

Jac’s terror at the thought of her ‘brain being fried by protons’ was absolutely real and relatable. It’s like the Panic Attack Olympics on Holby – Jac, Ollie and Josh have all had them recently, and very convincingly too. I’m not saying that to belittle panic attacks, by the way. Just to heap praise on Holby’s brilliant actors.

Charlotte and Susannah were a lovely couple and it was a beautiful scene when Ollie’s treatment brought Susannah back from her confusion. Charlotte’s line, ‘She is my peace, Dr Hudson’ almost had me in tears.

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Holby City: The first place that feels like home

(Series 23, ep. 32 by Emma Dennis-Edwards 9.11.21) Pop over to Metro where you will find my ‘proper’ review of the episode. But before you dash off…

Did we know that Amelia had previously had a brain tumour?

Hands up who thinks that Amelia can now be a guinea pig for some trial treatment that will eventually save Jac’s life? Puts hand up.

Ollie slapping Maisie was a shock. Normally I wouldn’t buy the ‘I have blackouts’ line when trotted out by an abuser, but this is lovely Oliver Valentine we’re talking about, and he probably really does have blackouts thanks to having had part of his brain blown away by Fredrik’s bullet.

I like how Eli learned the lesson from last week that what Josh needs is a listening ear, not someone trying to come up with solutions. It’s so important and so helpful.

But having someone wangle your F2 registration when you’ve forgotten to submit the forms is also supremely helpful.

Line of the week: (Max finds Kylie slightly intimidating) ‘It’s like my mother’s been reincarnated into a white Liverpudlian lady.’

The preview episode I watched didn’t show what was on the phone screen when Doreen sent the unfortunate group message. Can anyone enlighten me?

Jeong Soo’s little speech about Holby being the first place that feels like home reminded me once again that Jeong Soo is the spiritual heir to the glorious Arthur Digby. Kind, quiet, nerdy, adorable, bespectacled and clever.

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Holby City: The one feat. Chris Packham

(Series 23, ep. 31 by Rebecca Wojciechowski 2.11.21) Whizz over to Metro to read this week’s review. But before you go…

Poor Josh. He was about to tell Ange what was going on with him but she launched in by telling him how much she was missing the twins and that she’d come back to work too soon. This forced him back into his default setting of being the one who looks after everybody else. ‘Do I look like I can’t handle the pressure?’ he said to her, and in that exact moment looked as relaxed as anything. Of course we know that’s just a front that he puts on.

The Sammy story was very sad, especially the way it echoed Josh’s story in that Sammy’s mum was trying to protect him from the truth, and Sammy was trying to protect his mum from knowing that he knew he was dying.

I never expected to see Chris Packham on Holby!

Nice work from the prosthetics team with the stick in Billie’s neck. It’s been a while since we had anything resembling a Human Kebab Tragedy on Holby.

Do you think Ollie has previously maimed someone in surgery?

His flinchiness (is that a word? It is now) in theatre was very well done. I’d flinch too, being back in a scenario where I’d previously been shot in the head. In fact I would not be going near that scenario.

Line of the week: (Kylie sums up Max) ‘You’re only human. It just took me a while to get that given your… whole vibe.’

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