(Series 32, ep. 30 by Rebecca Wojciechowski 31.3.18) What a sad, touching episode. Lovely nurse Robyn and her equally lovely brand new husband Glen ended up back at Holby ED much quicker than anyone hoped or anticipated after Glen had a seizure and Robyn crashed their car.
It soon became clear that Glen’s condition was worse than anyone had thought, and he only had days to live at the very most – probably only hours. Plans were put in place to allow him to die at home, with Robyn, Charlie and Duffy in support (the Rolls Royce of palliative care), but poor Glen didn’t even get that far and passed away at Holby.
This was heart-rending stuff, with particularly poignant performances by Owain Arthur and Amanda Henderson as the newlyweds. As with the death of Arthur Digby on Holby, this was something that affected the entire cast, and there was a similar gathering of supportive colleagues at the end, as everyone decided to keep vigil in support of their friends. And, like Digby, it wasn’t all doom and gloom. That wasn’t Glen’s personality, and he said he felt liberated by the knowledge that his death was imminent, rather than being the dreaded cloud on the horizon like it had been for so long.
Elsewhere, a doctor with red hair whose name I don’t know disagreed with Dylan’s diagnosis of a patient and managed to out him as an alcoholic in the process. Army Dr Sam wasn’t pleased to learn he’d kept that a secret from her during their brief marriage.
Read about Casualty/Holby crossovers in the official Holby City book – out now. More info here
(Series 32, ep. 20 by Matthew Barry and Kelly Jones 13.1.18) If there was one thing that was going to tempt me back to Casualty after not watching it for I don’t know how long, it was the promise of seeing Dr Zoe Hanna again.
And there she was in all her magnificence, scrunching a ciggie out with her unfeasibly high, unfeasibly pointy shoe and slathering herself in Chanel No. 5. Max smelled her before he saw her – the cigarettes and Chanel combo that he knows and loves.
But did he love it, or even love her? He made every effort during the episode to pretend he didn’t, and even went so far as to lend her a pen so she could sign their divorce papers. Continue reading
(Series 31, ep. 44 ‘One’ by Paul Unwin) The word that was going through my mind as I watched this one-shot, real-time episode of Casualty was “choreography.” The way the camera moved fluidly around the different parts of the set, at one point even being lowered from the first floor down to the ground and then moving seamlessly on, was nothing short of incredible. Actors would walk into shot, deliver their lines and then the camera would be following somebody else, taking up some other part of the story. Apparently the crew were all in costume in case they happened to appear in any shot, but if they did I certainly didn’t notice them – everyone in the background seemed to be doing the usual doctor-stuff, nurse-stuff and patient-stuff, as always. I didn’t see a mis-step or a thing out of place.
The whole thing had been brilliantly thought out by the writer, Paul Unwin, and the director, Jon Sen, so that the episode had dynamics and pace. The actors all made it look easy, and it was testament to them that after a while I started to forget the “one-shot” aspect of it and got swept into the story. I actually felt a bit emotional by the end, with Jez’s scene with the father of the baby who died in the fire, and then with Duffy’s voice-over. I know that last bit was a tad cheesy, but if such a special episode couldn’t be used as a love letter to the NHS it would have been a missed opportunity.
See the behind-the-scenes video here
(Series 31, ep. 43 ‘Somewhere Between Silences Part 2’ by Jeff Povey) Okay Casualty, you’ve lured me back with your gimmicky promise of an exciting “one shot” episode next week. Which means I needed a bit of context. You can’t just turn up cold for a one-shot, you know.
First thing to say about this week’s episode is – George Rainsford. Blimey. Acting on a Shakespearean level there, all suppressed grief and rage and ethical conflict. Pitched against this was the dwindling family of racist thugs, the Ellissons. Papa Ellisson has expired previously. One of his sons (the nasty one, Scott) spent this week’s episode in a “will he ever walk again?” situation after falling from the Casualty mezzanine, which should surely have had some kind of mesh fitted after lovely nurse Sam Colloby tumbled off it years ago. The good news (for Scott) was there was no reason why he wouldn’t walk again, but the bad news (for Scott) was that now he almost certainly won’t walk again, because he’s dead. Continue reading
(Series 31, ep. 33) Last week we left Dr Lily Chao unconscious in a car park somewhere. Luckily, this week Gem called an ambulance, and it wasn’t long before Iain and Jez were on the scene. Lily arrived in the ED all confused and shouty, which is normally a very bad sign indeed.
A CT scan showed that nothing terrible was amiss, so hurrah and phew and that. But it had been widely publicised (there’s such a thin line between whetting your appetite for a show and giving so much away that you may as well not watch it) that someone would die. So if not Lily,who? Continue reading
(Series 31, ep. 32) Rebecca Ryan, who plays Iain’s sister Gem, was previously in Waterloo Road. Anyone who watched Waterloo Road for more than a few episodes will know that what pissed-off and pissed-up teenagers tend to do is drive stolen cars in circles around car parks. It happened so often in Waterloo Road that it became A Thing. And it seems that Waterloo Road’s effects rub off on its cast members. Tom Chambers is currently reprising his role as head teacher Max Tyler (while reprising his role as Mister Strachan), and Rebecca Ryan is still being a disgruntled and misunderstood teenager (or early twenties, possibly). Continue reading
(Series 31, ep. 31) I haven’t watched Casualty for ages, but you know, Easter and that. I thought it was time to revisit the emergency wing of everyone’s favourite hospital.
What do I find but Mr Strachan (which my mind still has to say in a Connie Beauchamp voice from back in the day when he was very much a junior), apparently in charge of things in some unspecific administrative way.
When Sam used to be in Holby City I didn’t pay him much attention because I was always on Team Joseph, but every time I’ve seen him on Casualty he’s been a loathsome little rat. In fact, he’s exactly the same character he was when he was Max Tyler on Waterloo Road – officious, pompous and annoying. And what I really want to know is, how come among all the aggrieved staff in this episode, not one of them thought of going to Hanssen with their concerns? Hanssen is still in charge of the hospital, isn’t he? I realise that Guy Henry may not have been available to ooze down from the upper floors to re-calibrate Mr Strachan’s moral compass because he’s busy in Borehamwood, but surely someone should at least have mentioned him as an option? Continue reading