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Holby City: Festive spirit

There was Christmas spirit all over Holby yesterday, embodied in the form of a patient on Keller, who loved Christmas and knew the Christmas traditions of every country in the world. This would come in handy later. It was also embodied in the fine figure of Mr T, who was dressed like an elf. Frankly, this was a wonderful thing. I was temporarily distracted (I’m currently Christmasing at the parental home), so I didn’t see what made him decide to do a striptease, but it was before the watershed so he was stopped before he got even to a half Monty.

It all served to make Mo realise what a catch he could be. He’s charming, sweet, can knit, is fully qualified in Lady Parts and he’s always thought Mo was adorable. Surely, what with it being Christmas and that, the Holby writers would let Mo and Mr T get together under the mistletoe and go home to roast chestnuts on an open fire (which may or may not be a euphemism, depending on how things went)? But no. No sooner had Mo decided to ask him out, than she was pipped to the post by a patient’s relative. Nooooo!!!

But there’s always new year. I’m an optimist and it Must Happen.

Meanwhile, Edward Campbell was getting into the Christmas spirit – literally, as the spirit in this case was vodka. Yes, it turns out that the reason Edward makes so many mistakes is because he’s quietly plastered a great deal of the time.

This worked out well for Mary-Claire, because once the news got out about Edward being drunk in charge of an anaesthetised patient, he was sharply out on his ear and Mary-Claire had an apology from poor Serena, who was forced to face the fact that Edward was a philandering drunk. Once again, the unseen Holby HR department has been shown to be woefully lacking, as apparently Edward was “let go” from his previous post due to his drinking and nobody thought to pursue this until he was caught red-handed and red-eyed with his fist clamped around a bottle.

We found out a bit more about Zosia and Selfie. It seems that Zosia’s Polish mother died only recently and this is her first Christmas without her. Selfie had a present for her, something her mother had asked him to give her, but she refused to take it. For the first time I actually liked Selfie a bit in this episode. He understood that she needed some space and he gave the present to Digby to give her. Digby proved to be the perfect choice, as he prepared a Polish Christmas with all the Polish trimmings. It was so lucky he had that Christmas expert of a patient as a resource. Digby is absolutely adorable, and I’m completely warming to Saucer too.

It wouldn’t be Christmas without some festive singing, and the carols this year benefited enormously from the presence of Dr Harry Posh – Jules Knight had a previous career as a singer and it was a good excuse for him to show us his stuff.

Needless to say, Jac Naylor was not to be found singing under the tree in the LCMS, but there was a nice little scene where Jonny Mac prised his face away from Bonnie’s for long enough for him to remember that last year he discovered Jac had never decorated a Christmas tree, and to promise her that next Christmas she’ll have a tree – and a family – of her own. We’ll just have to keep our fingers crossed that he’s right.

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Holby City: A new man

malick digby holby(Series 16, ep.7)  It was Malick’s farewell episode, and didn’t we just know it? He was given maximum opportunity to do all the classic Malick things – rush around going “Grrr,” shout at Digby, have an almighty strop, mess up a bit of surgery and try to worm out of it, and wrestle with his conscience about what kind of father he was to Jake. The only typical Malick thing that he didn’t get to do was have a steamy encounter in the locker room, but there was hardly time for any of that nonsense because he was so busy elsewhere.

malick serena holbyIt was actually all rather magnificent (apart from the sloppy one-handed chest drain incident – what happened to the standard cry of “We need some help in here”? And surely there’s a call button in the CT scanner room?). Since he damaged his hand, Malick has (understandably) been a tad immersed in self-pity, which has at times been fairly tedious to watch. By the end of this episode he’d recovered his mojo, but incorporated a few life lessons into it and become a humbler and wiser man. He’s The Malick again, but he’s Malick 2.0 – teacher, mentor, father. Ego restored and off to Sweden with his son and a James Brown soundtrack.   Continue reading

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Holby City: This stuff isn’t meant to happen

jac jonny holby(Series 15, ep.48)   Jac Naylor was never going to be a stereotypical mother. Maternity leave? “You think some midget is going to halt my inexorable rise?” Nursery essentials? They’re for “the slack-jawed, yummy-mummy, coffee morning crowd.” And don’t even think about referring to her as “preggers.”

This is the thing with Jac, though – the things that are the most important to her are the things she gets most spiky and defensive about. And there’s no doubt at all (even despite the “some midget” quips) that the baby she’s carrying is the most important thing that’s ever happened to her.

Because Jac is such a wonderful character and Rosie Marcel is such a wonderful actress, the scriptwriters don’t ever give her an easy time. It was too much to hope that she’d have a normal pregnancy, give birth normally and go back to sarcastic normality. So it wasn’t a total shock that her 20 week scan revealed that the baby had a congenital problem that means it only has a 50/50 chance of survival, but it was very, very sad.   Continue reading

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Holby City: The one with the unexploded device

ric holby(Series 15, ep.47)  In light of the title of this post, I think we’d better put on our blast-proof clothing and go straight to AAU, where a patient was brought in with Something embedded in his chest. Dr Posh was assigned to talk to the patient’s brother to try to get a clue about what it could be.

Prior to this, Dr Posh had annoyed Ric Griffin by being unexcited at the prospect of watching him perform an appendectomy. Posh was disappointed to learn that the procedure was going to be a ground-breaking, first-for-Holby, laser type of thing, but it was too late – Ric gave the gig to Dr Honey instead.

Posh discovered that the embedded Something was an unexploded rocket of some kind, and the army were duly called. Soon AAU was resembling outtakes from The Hurt Locker, with Dr Honey and Edward Campbell getting kitted out in helmets and body armour to go in and change the blood bags and keep the patient monitored. I loved how Serena looked just a tiny tad worried that her ex was in peril.   Continue reading

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Holby City: I need you. No I don’t

sacha chrissie holby(Series 15, ep.46)  If we hold this episode up against my patented PLA Relationship-o-meter™ we find Serena/Edward and Jac/Jonny going up, while Elliot/Sharon and Chrissie/Sacha (especially Chrissie/Sacha) plummet.

In a way, it makes me feel a bit cross that I was so happy about the fairytale Christmas episode where Chrissie failed to get on the ImagineAir flight to Sydney and Sacha hurtled all the way to Stansted on the back of Jac’s motorbike, and it was snowing and everything was romantic and twinkly. Because ever since then, Chrissie and Sacha have not made each other happy. Apart from when he got stabbed and Chrissie fed him quiche in a desperate attempt to keep him alive, Sacha has been nothing but a disappointment to Chrissie and she’s wasted no opportunity to agree with anybody who offered the opinion that she could do far better than him. And despite the thrill of knowing he’s married to a woman so beautiful that it has to be remarked upon by everyone who meets her, Sacha has really had only insecurity and a lack of proper emotional connection throughout the relationship.

This week Chrissie discovered that her cancer is not as bad as she was fearing, and the outlook is reasonably good. I can understand her not wanting to throw a party and scream “Hurrah!” from the rooftops, because obviously she’s still terrified about her future and about Daniel etc. But where my patience runs a bit thin is the way she treats Sacha. Come home, she says. I need somebody there. But on the other hand – don’t think things will be the same as before (i.e. it’s not going to be the same as the first week we were married, before I realised I could have done a lot better and you started going to Fit Club with Mo because she was 100% more fun than me). On second thoughts – don’t come home at all. “I can’t do complicated,” she sighed. Darling, you can’t do anything else.   Continue reading

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Holby City: Pub quizzes. Not always a laugh

(Series 15, ep.45) As we approached our favourite hospital for yet another fun-filled episode, the first thing we saw was the Linden Cullen Memorial Shrubbery absolutely over-run with undesirable types (no, I don’t mean Sahira Shah. She’s not back). They really need to get to grips with that garden, otherwise no one is ever going to want a fairytale wedding there ever again.

chrissie sacha holbyApparently the reason for so many bodies hanging around was that there’d been some sort of incident at the gig of ageing punk rocker and one-time support artiste to the Buzzcocks, Rex. It fell to Sacha to look after Rex, who had an abdominal aortic aneurysm, diseased kidneys and a fractured relationship with his marine biologist son to sort out. Rex also claimed to be able to feel the heat coming off Michael Spence’s loins, which is frankly a skill I’d pay good money to have. It did nothing for Sacha, though, whose wife was supposedly the reason Michael’s loins were in such a state of warmth.

Michael was actually just being a friend in need to Chrissie, who does have cancer and has to have surgery. She seemed to be partly confiding in Michael because of his winning bedside manner, but partly because he’s proved to be good at getting procedures fast-tracked for her. To Sacha, though, it seemed like the inevitable had happened. His daughter Rachel said to him, “I always thought that if you and Chrissie broke up it would be because…” and Sacha finished the sentence for her: “She wanted an upgrade?” That’s how Sacha sees their relationship and has always seen it. Sadly, that’s also how Chrissie has seen it, too.   Continue reading

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Holby City: Trouble for Chracha, Monny and Sedward

(Series 15, ep.44)  Sacha and Mo and Jonny were talking about these conjoined couple names that irritate me so much I generally refuse to use them. You know the ones – Brangelina etc. But it was quite funny when Mo mentioned ones that are commonly used by Holby fans – “Janny” for Jac and Jonny for example. It was like Mo had been reading the Digital Spy forums or Holby fan tweets, which would be weird as she’s fictional (I know, it’s a shock).

Anyway, one of the more apt names she came up with was for Chrissie and Sacha. I suppose it should technically be written “Chracha,” but it’s pronounced “Crasha,” and it really fits their relationship, which has been a bit of a car crash all along.

chrissie michael holbyOver Chrissie’s long Holby career she’s mutated from being the good time who was had by all, to a rather bitter, smug, superior woman who thought she was worth far more than being married to the Nicest Man in the World. It always seemed to be just a matter of time before she swanned off with a better-looking, more suave example of humanity (yes, you, Michael Spence), but the actual demise of her relationship with Sacha  has been much more subtle. Driven away by Sacha’s lack of trust in her and failing to properly talk to her about Daniel being a bone marrow donor for Rachel, Chrissie did turn to Michael Spence, but only as a friend. Even though Sacha believes that it was more than that (because he’s never believed he was good enough for Chrissie), what has torn them apart has been the loss of trust and emotional intimacy (if it ever really existed). When Chrissie had her breast cancer scare, it wasn’t Sacha she turned to and when she found another lump it was Michael Spence she went to again.   Continue reading

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