(Series 19, ep. 30 ‘Gold Star’ by Ed Sellek) Well that was fun, wasn’t it? Apart from the dead patient at the end, which was extremely sad. But up until that point, it was one of those episodes packed full of one-liners and excellent comedy stuff from – well, everybody, really. There was a bit of slapstick from Zosia (did you see her whizzing off with troublesome Mr Phibbs in a wheelchair in the background of the scene where Hanssen was talking to Birdie at her bedside?), some funny business with the vending machine and Hanssen’s favourite snack, the Whippy Whirl, Sacha smiling again thanks to a relaxing shvitz (it’s like a sauna, apparently, and it certainly did Sacha a power of good), and Bernie and Ollie teasing Ric about needing naps. Continue reading
(Series 19, ep. 29 ‘Two Hearts’ by Katie Douglas) Sacha Levy is the most caring, empathetic, huggy doctor in the hospital. That’s just a fact. So as soon as he started being snappy with a distressed patient, Essie knew something was up. Her alarm bells were already ringing when she spotted him arriving in yesterday’s shirt with his hair messed up, but she’s no stranger to the walk of shame herself, so that could have been dismissed. But as soon as Sacha starts being less nice to people, we all worry. Then Essie discovered he’s suddenly acquired a shoplifting habit/issue/problem. I really like how not being in a romantic relationship with Sacha has properly freed Essie up to love him and care for him like she couldn’t do when they were trying for babies and she was being all Chrissie 2.0 with him. I also loved how she enlisted the help of Jac Naylor to get him to admit there was a problem. Was he feeling depressed, they wondered? Sacha said that everybody in the room was probably feeling depressed, and given that the room was Pulses I wouldn’t be surprised if they were. Jac wasn’t surprised either. “Except that’s just my personality,” she said. I’m hoping bits of humour like that will be our friend as Sacha recovers from his depression, because it’s very hard watching him suffer. Continue reading
(Series 19, ep. 24) If you’ve been knitting ickle baby things since last week, put away your knitting needles right now. Baby Zollie isn’t going to be happening any time in the near future, it seems. Being cautious about knitting was only the second lesson to be learned from the Darwin story line, though. Lesson one was to never leave your handbag carelessly stowed behind the nurses’ station (particularly as Darwin has no nurses to keep an eye on it).
Last week Zosia stood up to Isaac because she knows he hasn’t been treating Dominic well (this is an understatement, and it looks like things are about to get a lot worse). So Isaac set about eliminating that particular threat by messing things up between Ollie and Zosia, and when he discovered she’d apparently taken pills to end her pregnancy (after he rummaged in the aforementioned handbag for evidence), he had the ammunition. Continue reading
(Series 19, ep. 21) There was ninja-level acting in AAU this week, as Serena’s “what doesn’t kill you makes you a better F1” mentoring of Jasmine reached critical point. Catherine Russell showed yet again what a great range she has as an actor – there was no sign of cheeky, Shiraz-swilling Serena as grief for her daughter has made her more angry, upset and confused than she knows how to deal with. Some of her scenes were heartbreaking – especially the little moment when she looked at her sleeping patient and you knew she was picturing Elinor, her meltdown in front of all the staff and her speech to the counsellor at the end.
Lucinda Dryzek has also been excellent in this storyline. Jasmine’s whole body language has changed – she’s tired, worn down, stressed out. But you never lose the feeling of who she essentially is – the perky, lively, optimistic person who seems to be the opposite of her sister. Continue reading
(Series 19, ep. 18) Hanssen was back, but he wasn’t wearing the tie of authority. he was wearing the open-necked shirt of civilian life. “Avante garde for the NHS,” according to Dominic. Hanssen wasn’t there as CEO, but as a patient’s relative. His son Fredrick (William Postlethwaite – son of Pete) had been in an accident, and needed surgery.
There was a strange drug in Fredrick’s system, the fictional Oxamorol, manufactured by Lovborg, the family business now run by Fredrick. It was a magic bullet for depression, according to Fredrick. Hanssen was devastated to think that he might have passed his own depression to his son.
The truth was actually even more devastating than that. Fredrick was using himself as a guinea pig to test the drug, which had already been shown to have nasty side effects including possible and actual death. He was willing to risk his own life, but also to cover up the negative trials that had already been done. And he didn’t even have depression, dismissing Hanssen’s condition as a weakness. Continue reading