Tag Archives: catherine russell

Holby City: We don’t want Ric to be a dead guinea pig

max serena holby 42 ss(Series 21, ep. 42 ‘Hope is a Powerful Drug’ by Simon Norman 15.10.19) Pop yourself over to Metro for my full review of this episode (and a side-ponder about Ric). But first…

– I was unreasonably excited by the glimpse of Joseph in the ‘Previously…’ section. One has to take the few crumbs one is given.

Line of the week 1: (Jac) ‘The competency level just went up.’

Line of the week 2: (Chloe, about Evan) ‘Was he in any pain?’ (Cameron) ‘In my opinion, not nearly enough.’ Yes, Cameron!

Line of the week 3: (Sacha) ‘You can’t just do things ad hoc!’ This clearly marks a radical new change in policy for Holby, where things are done ad hoc on a weekly basis.

– I loved Jac being sympathetic to Chloe. It was perfect. Jac knows that the last thing Chloe needs is mollycoddling – she gets enough of that from Ange.

– What a drippy woman that Frankie is.

– But Callum (the Keller patient) was brilliant. It was one of those guest turns that makes me wish he could be in it every week. We haven’t had a good sociopath in Holby for… oooh, weeks. He was absolutely charming with it, as well.

Max McGerry is wonderful. Max McGerry v Serena is genius.

Line of the week 4: (Max) ‘There is another option. Option C.’ (Serena) ‘Are you pausing for dramatic effect?’ (Max) ‘Did it work?’

– I loved the sequence at the end with Ric hearing the voices from his past accompanied by Arvo Pärt (Fratres For Strings And Percussion – I looked it up). This makes me very excited for the ‘return of Diane Lloyd’ episode. Excited – but nervous…

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Holby City: Another memorial in the Memorial Shrubbery

serena alex holby 31(Series 21, ep. 31 ‘Things My Mother Told Me’ by Martin Jameson 30.7.19) Please head over to Metro for this week’s in-depth review (it’s quite a long one, so maybe get the kettle on – and read this bit – first).

– Does Nicky really like Cameron, romantically, do you think? She responded fairly sharpish to his kiss. But she must have seen him mooning about after Chloe?

– When Alex said she was the love of Bernie’s life do you think she was? There was amazing chemistry between them when we first saw Alex soon after Bernie’s arrival on Holby. The army was a huge part of Bernie’s identity and Alex shared that in a way Serena never could. It was clear that Serena was very precious to Bernie, though, and there was no attempt to airbrush her out of her life as soon as Alex was back on the scene.

– It was interesting that the Darwin patient, Delia, was scared of the treatment she was going to have. I’m sure most people are scared before operations but on Holby they hardly ever show it.

– There was a little reminder that Lofty has a baby on the way, although he doesn’t realise it. That’s obviously going to be a Thing in the not-too-distant future.

– As is Evan. Though I do wonder whether Chloe really needs a divorce – was the bedside wedding legal?* I suppose Evan is the type who’d have rushed off and got all the legal stuff sorted the minute his drip was removed.

– Carole can’t leave, because we haven’t seen her and Hanssen dancing yet, and I so much want to see Dancin’ Hanssen.

– Line of the week: (Carole) ‘Dominic has made a new life for himself and I’m very happy for him but if it’s alright with you I’m going to hang on to my Dazzle.’ Said so much in just one line. Beautiful.

* I have now heard from an extremely reliable source that the bedside wedding was indeed legal, so Chloe does need a divorce, or at least an annulment.

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Holby City: So many questions

alex heather peace serena holby 30(Series 21, ep. 30 ‘Don’t Leave Me’ by Gerard Sampaio 23.7.19) For a full review of this episode please head over to Metro. But first…

– I really enjoyed this episode and was gripped from start to finish. There were so many questions: could Bernie really be alive or was Serena just kidding herself? What was the mystery about Sunny/Vanessa and Kian’s insistence that Sunny had to have her operation today, come what may? And is Oskar going to turn out as spooky as his father?

– Beautiful work by Nic Jackman in this episode. For too long he hasn’t had much to do apart from be competitive with Nicky and gaze longingly at Chloe, so it’s good to see him having a big storyline to work with. 

– It’s always wonderful to see Heather Peace in anything. I would love to see her in Holby full-time – she has such incredible screen presence.

– Isn’t it always the way? You just get your hands full of lung and the lights go out.

– Line of the week: (Oskar) ‘‘Is that bloood? So muuuch! Can I touch it?”

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Holby City: He hasn’t changed a bit

dominic serena isaac holby 24.jpg(Series 21, ep. 24 ‘Over My Dead Body’ by Joe Ainsworth 11.6.19) For my rather long review of this episode pop yourself over to Metro (best make a cup of tea – and read this bit – first).

– ‘I was desperate for you to see how much I’d changed,’ said the man who hasn’t changed at all. Including that when he resorts to violence, as he did here, it’s still as shocking as when we first saw him hit Dominic all that time ago. I think it’s because Marc Elliott’s portrayal of Isaac is of a monster who works primarily on the psychological and emotional level, always with a veneer of charm and reasonableness. His violent outbursts come apparently out of nowhere and are more disturbing for being unexpected.

– His callous attitude to his father was stomach-turning too.

– Talking of stomach turning, that remark by Chloe to Dom about his ‘receptionist mother’ was really nasty, particularly because we all love Carole so much. So does Dominic, as you could see on his face. He was wounded on her behalf, and also perhaps a part of him felt the truth of what Chloe was saying – that he’d been as willing to drop his receptionist mother as he’d been to change his name from Darren to Dominic.

– Hanssen and Oskar – adorable. Holby are so good at casting child actors, and it was a brilliant idea to bring Hanssen and his grandson together like this.

– I guessed straight away that Oskar’s problem was that Hanssen was wearing scrubs. I find Hanssen in anything other than a suit quite odd, too.

– They really do need a neurosurgeon at Holby, don’t they? The number of times no neuro person has been available, because they’re all either dead or at home watching Blue Planet with Oliver Valentine.

– Quote of the week – Essie: ‘Has [Oskar] moved into the office?’ Hanssen: ‘He has made a little land-grab there.’

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Holby City: Family matters

dominic holby 15(Series 21, ep. 15 ‘The Family Way’ by Becky Prestwich 9.4.19) As usual, pop over to Metro to read my full review of this episode.

But before all that…

– David Ames is wringing every last drop of emotion out of this storyline and he’s being brilliant as usual. Bringing Roger back was a lovely idea, both as a sort of avatar for Lofty but also because he’s a lovely character in his own right and it was nice for Dominic to have some support.

– I’ve had a scathingly brilliant idea that Steven Fletcher should turn out to be Dominic’s father (the father hasn’t been mentioned or asked about, weirdly). That would make Dominic Fletch’s brother and Dominic would become a Fletchling. Of course that’s too far-fetched even for this far-fetched storyline, but a girl can dream.

– The episode was beautifully written (by the marvellous Becky Prestwich) and didn’t go over-the-top with Ange’s reminiscences about her six months with Baby Dom (was it Ange who named him Darren? If not, what did she call him?). This left the imagination to fill in the gaps of those sweet and stressful months as she bonded with her little boy only to realise she had to give him away.

– The scene where Serena talked to Donna about daughters was beautifully written, too, and Catherine Russell delivered the most touching performance.

– Zav’s little talk with Mia was perfect. It took me a while to warm to Zav, but I think he’s entirely precious now. The relationship between him and Donna is a wonderful thing.

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Holby City x Casualty: So much to enjoy

For a full review of both episodes head over to Metro. But first, it’s random thoughts time…

Well that was all very exciting, wasn’t it? I think the thing I enjoyed the most about the crossover episodes was seeing unfamiliar combinations of familiar characters. Dylan working with Serena was a highlight and I really want Dylan to be lured to Elstree as soon as possible. They have a Lidl really close to the studios – I think anyone would be tempted.

Other things I enjoyed:

Hanssen walking along the corridors with a torch. Finally we’ve discovered the only way to stop him looming is to put lights on him so you can see him coming.

– Zosia’s comment ‘Wouldn’t be Holby without a crisis.’ Indeed not.

– The guilty/delicious feeling of listening to Ric having a go at Sacha about his parenting skills (when he thought Beka might be pregnant) when we knew Ric was going to have to take a close look at his own family very soon.

The evil electronic door locks that kept Connie out of her trauma theatre and locked Essie and Beka into the CT room. It was like the hospital had a mind of its own. Evil!

Elle and Ric. It’s about time Ric walked down the aisle again and I like Elle a lot more than I like that Francoise.

Sacha’s favourite shirt had to be ripped! I expect by next week Jac will have sourced him another one, because she’s good like that.

– Ange seriously deep-down thinking that the entire scenario was just an elaborate ruse to get her off the Holly Cartwright case.

– Jac pretends to be all head and no heart, but as soon as Sacha is in peril she’s fighting Connie tooth and claw. And Connie gave as good as she got.

– The touching scene between Essie and Beka.

Noel coming clean to Hanssen about clicking the link and the email, and hearing that Hanssen really had nominated him for an award.

And now we’ve got the spring trailer to watch as well! Some interesting-looking new characters, and the return of some old faces – including a total shock at the end…

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Holby City: Will Ric go viral?

(Series 21, ep. 5 ‘Mad As Hell’ by Martin Jameson 29.1.19) For a full review of this episode pop over to Metro. Before you go, one or two random thoughts.

– I really enjoyed the medical/political slant to this episode. The pressures on the NHS and the dedication, commitment and frustration of the staff working in it were brought out in dramatic style. Because the message was carried in the specific human stories of Gareth Gannon (who was heartbreaking – nice work from Trevor Georges), Tavia Milner’s grandmother and Denise Mullins, it didn’t feel that we were being preached to. We felt the dilemmas that Ric and co. faced right along with them.

– Hugh Quarshie is always magnificent in this kind of storyline. While Serena and Zav were taking the increasingly pressured situation with the sort of humour that I imagine real-life medics have to deploy to keep functioning, Ric had got to a point where he could no longer ignore how bad things were getting. I wonder whether Ric’s megaphone speech will ‘go viral’? Will he be an internet sensation this time next week?

– I was so sad that Frieda had to lose her dog, and was hoping that its owner would decide she could keep it after all. Hurrah for Jac coming up with a substitute. I thought it was hilarious that Emma was on board with the decision to offload Gary – she’s clearly her mother’s daughter and prioritises practicality over sentiment.

– The scene where Frieda broke down and cried about Roman (and the dog) was incredible.

– You know you’re getting old when CT surgeons start looking younger every day, but Chloe Godard does look awfully young to be a hotshot CT surgeon. And that’s in a hospital that already has ‘Foetus and Fauntleroy’ on the staff.

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