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Holby City: All that drama

Holby City(Series 21, ep. 37 ‘Gods and Monsters’ by Alex Straker 10.9.19) For a thorough probing of this review pop over to Metro (and be delighted by all the other Holby coverage there). But first…

– It was a while ago since I watched this episode (I’ve been on holiday) so my recollections are a bit hazy. Hence this will be a poor selection of further thoughts and I apologise for it. 

– Everyone accepted Isla as Essie’s adopted daughter very readily, but nobody thought it was odd that she hadn’t mentioned it before. And wouldn’t she be entitled to some adoption leave? Anyway… plot reasons etc.

– I was amused when Chloe announced that ‘all that drama is now behind me.’ Hello? You do realise you work in Britain’s most dramatic hospital?

– I honestly thought Fletch had had his pretty head turned by Evil Evan, but I should have more confidence in Holby’s King of Nurses. And so should Ange (but I’ve known him longer than she has, so I do feel guilty).

– ‘Does Mr Griffin seem a little more highly strung this morning?’ Lofty wondered. Yes he does. Though I’m not surprised he couldn’t remember his password – it was ridiculously long and meaningless.

– The return of the Tan twins was very sweet and Mrs Tan was lovely. The scene where she advised Ric to not ignore his problems was very emotional.

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Holby City: He’s massive on gut instinct

ange chloe holby 19(Series 21, ep. 19 ‘Ex Marks the Spot’ by Joe Ainsworth 7.5.19) For a full and frank review of this episode, please head over to Metro.

Only a few further thoughts this week:

– Is Evan gearing up to be the next big Holby villain, or is he just a needy and manipulative twonk?

– It’s reassuring to know that the HR department of The Mythical St James’s is every bit as ‘relaxed’ as the one at Holby, enabling staff to be hired on the bitchy whim of a third party recommendation.

– Poor Carole spilling the beans to Chloe. Carole really can’t be enjoying her new receptionist job, bless her.

– Kian was really sweet with Victoria Parker/Molly Pecker, but I’m still getting a Matteo Rossini vibe. I don’t feel I quite have a handle on his character yet.

– Ric was extremely sweet with Darla. He may have messed up a bit with his own children, but as a granddad he’s ace.

– And I felt really sorry for Essie when Darla offered to let her adopt the baby. You could see there was nothing she would have loved more, but she knew it wasn’t possible. Poor Essie.

(Picture: BBC)

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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: Bar bills, buskers and bright yellow chairs

(Series 21, ep. 6 ‘Force Majeure’ by Elliot Hope and Johanne McAndrew 5.2.19) For my full review, get yourself over to Metro (and peruse all the other excellent Holby City content while you’re there). But before you immerse yourself in all that, I have a few things to add.

– It seems odd that Ric is having all of these ‘cash-strapped NHS’ battles on AAU, while only a few floors above Ange can bring in her daughter as a locum CT surgeon more or less just to help her persuade one patient to have an operation. And don’t get me started on the gaudy decor and bright yellow chairs in the YAU (Yow!). Someone somewhere needs to get a grip on the finances.

– It was very amusing that everyone on AAU was putting their best face on while Ric was sort of hoping for them all to be ankles-deep in blood and vomit to show Francoise how desperate things were.

– Why was that busker out in the dark by the Raf Di Lucca Memorial Lump? It seemed very random, and a little bit dangerous for her when you think about all the shady stuff that’s gone on in that shrubbery over the years.

– The nurses apparently call Cameron ‘Camo’ because he’s nowhere to be seen. This is mostly applicable when there’s a bar bill to pay.

– Emma Curtis, who played Holly, did a really nice job of making Holly frustratingly stubborn but quite sweet and vulnerable at the same time. Her story was really sad, though imagine how many more shades of horror Holly might have had to go through if Professor Gaskell and his ‘miracle cures’ were still a thing.

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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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Holby City: Can we keep her?

(Series 21, ep. 3 ‘The Burden of Proof’ by Gerard Sampaio 15.1.19) For my full review, pop yourself over to Metro. But before you go, here are a few random thoughts.

– ‘Oh please, can we keep her?’ I think everybody will have been nodding along with Serena’s wish to have Lola Griffin/Williams on AAU every Tuesday until the end of time. Sharon D Clarke is fabulous in the role – charming, feisty, charismatic, she has an almost magical way with patients and staff alike. I absolutely love her.

– I didn’t think Dominic’s ‘lie’ about being useless at Physics was a big deal, really. It was just an awkward attempt to bond with Harriet rather than a reversion to his ‘Psycho Dom’ days. The exaggeration of his experience in the surgical procedure was more serious, but what doctor on Holby hasn’t occasionally done that? Cut him some slack, Ange.

– Is it just me, or does Holby get an unusual number of patients (and staff) who want to join, or have already joined, the army?

– I’m very glad we didn’t have to witness Nicky and Cam at Albie’s karaoke night. If there’s two things I can’t cope with on TV it’s karaoke scenes, and people who can’t dance trying to dance (hence why I can’t watch Strictly). And nosebleeds. That’s three things.

– I’m excited to see what Lofty gets to wear for his new job of Discharge Coordinator. Maybe he can wear the green scrubs that Essie used to have when she was Transplant Coordinator? Not the exact same ones because I shouldn’t think they’d fit.

– What on earth were Lola and Ric up to to get him that head injury? On second thoughts, best not to dwell on that one.

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Holby City: People are dead! People are in agony!

Holby City Series 20 - Ep46(Series 20, ep. 46 ‘Report to the Mirror, Part Two’ by Andy Bayliss 13.11.18) This week’s review is over at Metro as usual. A few additional thoughts:

– This episode went total body-horror, with Jac having the awful and full knowledge that to get the dreaded implant out of her she had to place her life in the hands of a man she knew she couldn’t trust at all. It’s scary enough having surgery when you know the surgeon is sane and competent and has your best interests at heart, but Gaskell? Yikes. And you could see all of that playing across Jac’s face coupled with the absolute determination that she had no alternative.

– The sight of Lana’s body with open wounds in Gaskell’s lab was one of the most disturbing things I’ve ever seen on Holby. I loved how for a few seconds Ric and Sacha couldn’t quite comprehend what they were seeing either. It was absolutely horrific.

– The line of the episode for me was the Professor saying that Essie was ‘lying down in a cold, dark room.’ If Hanssen hadn’t immediately chipped in to say that she had a headache, would other people have picked up on just how sinister that sounded?

– The showdown at the lake was quite epic. I liked the hallucinatory bits where Hanssen thought Gaskell was on the bank with him rather than being in the water. Hanssen’s struggle to overcome the effects of the neurotoxin and stay with reality was mirrored by his struggle to understand the full extent of what Gaskell had been doing – particularly when he realised that Gaskell had killed Roxanna.

– This whole storyline has been ambitious and brilliantly done. Gaskell was a bit sinister right from the get-go, but never went full mwah-hah-hah until right at the end. It’s been gruelling, though. Hopefully there’ll be some lighter storylines coming up in the run-up to Christmas. After all this (admittedly brilliant) drama and horror we could do with a bit of sparkle, some romance, and a very large glass of Shiraz.

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