(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. 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. 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
(Series 19, ep. 16) The thing that shocked me the most about this episode was finding out that the mythical HR department actually exists. We saw it! Although, thinking about it, we only saw the glossy facade and Mo never actually went in, so it could have just been a hallucination caused by sleep deprivation.
The reason Mo was hallucinating the HR department was that she and Mr T had a plan to go to Gothenburg for a year with the baby. Mo would be putting her career on hold for a life of smorgasbord and bilingual mother and baby groups.
That was never going to fly with Jac Naylor, who employed the strategy she used so effectively with Zosia – pretend someone is completely replaceable and not needed at all, until they realise that there’s no place like Holby and cancel their foolish plans. Continue reading
(Series 31, ep. 5) David Hide is one of the more interesting characters on Casualty at the moment. He’s a bit of an oddball, quiet and quirky, somewhat guarded and closed-off.
This week his back story became the front story, when we met his estranged wife (Lorraine Pilkington) and his son, Oliver (Harry Collett). I forget exactly how old Oliver was, but he was definitely too young to be driving a car. He did it rather well, though. It turns out that David is bipolar and his son probably is, too. They were both up on the roof shouting about it, anyway. Oliver’s mum reckoned that David had once tried to kidnap Oliver, but I don’t expect she meant he was doing it for a ransom. He seems too nice for that sort of thing. Continue reading