(Series 20, ep. 50 ‘The Right Sort of Animal’ by Ed Sellek 11.12.18) Pop over to Metro for a full review of this glorious episode. Before you go, some random thoughts.
– How fabulous was this episode? I love the quirky things that Ed Sellek puts in his scripts and there were loads of them here. Xavier’s reference to The World According to Garp (telling Serena she was ‘pre-disastered’) has shot him right up in my estimation, and there was another literary reference with Morgan the Organ – the poor man who got hit right in the middle of Pachelbel’s Canon (ouch). The stained glass face stuck in Lexy was brilliant too.
– Reverend Richard Coles’ appearance was really nicely done. His character Henry De Havilland added to the general quirkiness of the wedding in a really joyous way.
– Greta (Zoe Croft) looked absolutely beautiful.
– I also loved Greta’s advice to Dom. Both Greta and Jason are great at getting straight to the heart of things and cutting through the nonsense.
– It was nice to hear Lee Mead using his singing talents, and well done to David Ames for being able to be sung at without going bright red and giggling. Or is that just me?
– It was also lovely to have a Dofty wedding. I was so happy I forgot (till it was over) that Carole Copeland and Sheilagh Chiltern weren’t even there. Luckily both of them will be making appearances in the next few months (see the winter trailer) – but will they ever meet?
– I have a lot of thoughts about Berena, which you can read about in a separate piece over at Metro.
(Series 20, ep. 44 ‘The Family You Choose’ by Johanne McAndrew and Elliot Hope 30.10.18) This week’s in-depth review can be found over at Metro, but before you go here are a few random thoughts.
– That lift dropping gave me the horrors. I have actually been in this situation in the Empire State Building of all places – the lift dropped from the 80-something floor to the 60-something with me, Mr H and Ms H and assorted other tourists inside. As soon as we pressed the panic button for assistance the display changed to floor 2 – probably so we didn’t panic. I panicked anyway, but I’m British so I did it quietly and passive-aggressively (this was mainly directed at the group of French teenagers who thought it might be fun to jump up and down while we waited).
– I’ve also been stuck in a lift very briefly at ITV in London. If I’m going to be stuck in a lift it must be at a prestige location.
– I’m very much enjoying the little bromance between Jason and Xavier. And Jules Robertson has been doing brilliant work with Jason’s character. His comic timing is wonderful.
– Halloween and Frieda were made for each other, really, and today’s outfit was perfect for the occasion while not frightening the patients. And I loved Frieda’s reaction to news of the lift dropping: ‘How exhilarating.’
– It seems that Jac and Fletch isn’t going to happen, which is good news as far as Team Joseph & Jac 4 Eva (i.e. me) is concerned. But my goodness, Rosie Marcel and Alex Walkinshaw are incredible together. That scene where he was talking about a parallel universe, you could almost hear this universe holding its breath for a minute or two. Stunning work.
– The actual lift plummet situation looked far more dramatic on the autumn trailer than it did in the episode, but it was an interesting way to get various story strands spread over more people, and I’m sure we’ll be seeing the consequences in the coming weeks. Possibly Meena will now start to join the dots more about Gaskell and the come-uppance he so richly deserves will be heading his way. Or not.
– Quick plug for the Holby book. It genuinely is almost sold out everywhere and there won’t be any more, so if you’ve been thinking it’s a perfect Christmas gift idea it’s best not to hang around (unless you want a soggy second-hand one from eBay).
(Series 20, ep. 43 ‘Too Good To Be True’ by Gerard Sampaio 23.10.18) I’ve reviewed this episode in lingering detail over at Metro, but before you go to have a look please bear with me while I waffle on about a few additional things.
– Serena’s blouse. While I applaud a bold colour choice, I don’t think lime green is really her. It might look different on a big telly, but when I was watching the preview on my laptop screen it was making her hair look a bit greenish too. That could be just my laptop or my eyesight, I suppose.
– I thought the girlfriend of the Keller patient was going to turn out to be one of Leah’s former conquests when she recognised her. The story was actually more interesting than that. I wonder whether seeing Leah away from Serena has changed the minds of the people who thought she was a crazed stalker? She seemed rather nice here.
– When Bradley from EastEnders needed his brain operation and Dominic was telling him confidently that ‘our neuro team’ would sort him out I was thinking who’s that, then? Roxanna is dead, Gaskell’s in Lisbon and when we last heard of Selfie he was at home watching Blue Planet with Oliver Valentine (on Thursdays at least).
– The Fletch and Jac will they/won’t they – I’m really hoping it just fizzles out, because though they are great together, Sacha has just moved in with Jac and I don’t want him feeling like he’s a third wheel while Fletch and Jac play happy families. And Jac is a great mother to Emma and seems to get on with Evie, but coping with Mikey and the other Fletchlings? I can’t see it.
– Congratulations to everyone at Holby for winning the Inside Soap award for Best Drama Storyline for last year’s brilliant hospital shooting episode. Relive every tense moment in my blow-by-blow-account review of the episode here.
– And thank you to the BBC for mentioning the Holby book over the closing credits. It’s selling out fast (there are no copies left at the warehouse, so when current stocks sell out that’s it), so if you haven’t got yourself one yet, here’s where to get a copy.
(Series 20, ep. 33 ‘Bargaining’ by Katie Douglas 14.8.18) For a full-length review of this super-tense episode, head over to Metro. Before you go, here are some random thoughts:
– Serena telling that porter that his arm would have to be amputated was a bit much, wasn’t it? Isn’t there something in the ethics handbook about that sort of thing?
– It must have been the lightest script that Rosie Marcel has had recently. I think the longest sentence she had to learn was ‘Fix me.’
– Prof Gaskell banging his head on the desk was amusing. Was it frustration that his trial is so close to succeeding, yet it inconveniently keeps killing people?
– The Prof kind of reminds me of Donald Trump in the way that he rejects people who are critical (Roxanna) and tries to surround himself with people who can reflect his own magnificence back at him (Essie). Obviously he has nicer hands and better hair than Donald Trump though.
– There’s a lot of blue, glowing stuff around Holby recently. They also have it in the new operating theatre on Casualty. I don’t know what it is, but it’s very pretty.
– Serena’s comment, ‘I’m a hell of a woman, Jason, and I intend to keep it that way.’ Are Berena fans worried about Serena’s susceptibility to flattery from Steven? Should Bernie be worried?
(Series 20, ep. 25 ‘Primum Non Nocere, Part Two’ by Patrick Homes 20.6.18) This episode started exactly where the last one left off, if we ignore a bit of preamble with Prof Gaskell muttering ominously to an unseen someone on a ventilator. Meena had just told the Prof of her worries about the trial, and Jac was just about to go into surgery.
Abi had found someone called Dr Philippe Duplessis (Wela Mbusi) who was keen to watch Jac’s op. He was in a similar line of research to the Prof, only his trials were confined to mice. He was excited to see a guinea pig instead, in the form of Holby’s top CT surgeon.
Jac was having a few pre-op worries – the anaesthetist had gone AWOL, the Prof kept wandering off, it was looking like a bit of a shambles – but she went ahead anyway. Continue reading
(Series 20, ep. 21 ‘Belonging’ by Katie Douglas 22.5.18) Junior doctors are very competitive, aren’t they? Always wanting to get their noses into the exciting procedures with the best surgeons, tripping over each other to get their hands on the most obscure and gory thing possible.
Meena and Nicky are no exception, although in their case it comes with a side order of stroppy hair-tossing and foot-stamping that reminds me of when PLA Jr used to go to an all-girls’ school. In other words, it’s a tiny bit irritating and makes me think, “Oh, just grow up, will you?” But on the other hand (as with PLA Jr’s school days) I have sympathy for them, too – it’s not easy being a young woman in a competitive environment. Continue reading
(Series 20, ep. 14 ‘Tete a Tate’ by Joe Ainsworth 3.1.18) Today we met new CEO Abigail Tate (Olivia Poulet). She’s a heart surgeon, so well done to the fictional HR department for finding a Hanssen/Jac combo (jobs-wise) at such short notice.
It remains to be seen what she’ll be like as a CEO. Her managerial style seems at first glance to be ‘by the book and a tad on the cautious side,’ but that’s perhaps sensible given that she had one doctor just back from a spell in the nick and another one attempting who-knows-what maverick stuff all over the place. At times like this a bit of caution is probably what’s needed. All the same, she could have been more supportive of Ric’s artificial bladder idea.
That’s the CEO side of her job, but we haven’t seen what Abi’s like with a scalpel in her hand yet. What Fletch has already concluded is that she is no Jac Naylor. He was being especially fussy with her because he was rather fond of her patient, Hannah (Sasha Clarke), who was one of Evie’s (sort of) teachers, but Abi is going to have her work cut out impressing Holby’s best bearded nurse. Continue reading
(Series 20, ep. 12 ‘No Matter Where You Go, Part One’ by Patrick Homes 20.3.18) It was the day of Ric’s trial – and at the very end of the episode the verdict was in! But we’re going to have to wait for another week to find out what it is, because this was the first of a two-parter. AAAARRGHH!!
What we did discover was the reason Ric has been so tight-lipped about what was going on during the three hours he was away from the hospital on the fateful day of Mrs Warren’s death. We know he was helping Jason, who was having trouble with ex-girlfriend Lola (Megan Jones), but what we didn’t know was that he was delivering Lola’s baby, in a car. And the reason he still won’t tell anyone about that is that the father of the baby, who’d been beating Lola up, also happens to be a policeman. If any of it was mentioned in court, he might find out where Lola and the baby are. This matters to Ric because he’s a man of conscience who would do the right thing anyway, but as an extra factor he’d just heard from his daughter Jess that she was thinking of going back to her abusive ex. The refuge Ric took Lola and the baby to was one Jess had had to make use of in the past. Continue reading
(Series 20, ep. 6 ‘Not Your Home Now’ by Patrick Homes 7.2.18) She’s back! And she has several new blouses!
With Hanssen in emotional and psychological meltdown following his son’s recent gun rampage, he had to find a safe pair of hands to look after the hospital. Who better than Serena Campbell, now fully recovered from her own traumas and ready to – temporarily – take the Holby helm.
She kept emphasising, to anyone who assumed otherwise, that she was only there for about a month at most. Her heart, and her future, was with Bernie, who as we speak is setting up a trauma unit in Nairobi. Hands up who would like to see that as a spin-off series? Bernie got loads of mentions, because everyone wanted to know how she is, and we were left in no doubt at all that Serena would be Nairobi-bound at the earliest opportunity. Continue reading