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Holby City: Not under control

(Series 21, ep. 9 ‘Guts’ by Martin Jameson and Patrick Homes 26.2.19) Head over to Metro to read my full review of this episode.

Before you go, a few random thoughts.

– Is it a bit odd that Jac’s making such a thing about Zosia settling for second best by being at Holby? If Holby is that inferior, why is Jac (best CT surgeon in the world) still there? Frieda came back to Holby to ‘learn from the best.’ Might that not be what Zosia is doing? I suppose Jac’s line ’You were supposed to grow up’ is the significant thing. Jac feels that Zosia is still in a drama loop rather than lifting herself to the next level of surgical brilliance.

– Arlo looked absolutely nothing like George Clooney. Nothing.

– Al Nedjari (who played Tarek) has hardly changed since he was Deirdre Barlow’s toyboy Moroccan husband on Corrie.

– I hope Sacha and Patricia do get together because they’re both lovely.

– I suppose Lofty’s ‘honeymoon with Sheilagh’ is just a ruse to give Lee Mead some time off to pursue his singing and other projects. I hope they don’t use it as an excuse to quietly bump Sheilagh off (due to a nasty bug on a cruise ship or whatever). She hasn’t met Carole Copeland yet.

– Line o’ the week was from Hanssen: ‘This situation is many things, but under control is not one of them.’ This could be the motto for almost every Holby episode ever.

– And it’s certainly the motto for the upcoming crossover episodes. Watch out for some juicy spoilers for both episodes from me on Metro on Saturday morning. To make sure you don’t miss anything follow me on Twitter  and Facebook

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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: Everybody hurts

(Series 20, ep. 9 ‘Ache’ by Martin Jameson 28.2.18) Jac is struggling on despite being in horrendous pain (and Rosie Marcel is making sure we can feel that pain in every agonised breath Jac takes). I suppose she’s worried that if she gave up and went home they would have to get a locum heart surgeon in, what with Jac and Frieda being the only functioning heart surgeons left in the whole hospital. Or worse still, give half of Darwin away to some other unrelated department like they’ve tried before with plastics and neuro. Either way, Jac is not putting up with it and would rather try to carry on with her duties in between spells of lying on the floor with her teeth clenched. I have two solutions for her: (a) Pilates and (b) Mo. I would love to see Mo pop back to hold the fort until Jac is better, and I think Mo is about the only person Jac would trust. Apart from Joseph Byrne, but that ship has long sailed. And Elliot Hope, ditto.

Frieda’s solutions were (a) nagging and (b) very powerful drugs. When Jac was eventually persuaded to take the drugs (which Frieda had written a prescription for), did she thank Frieda for easing her pain and looking out for her? No. She thought Frieda was getting just a bit too uppity and needed taking down a peg by relegating her to the being the one who holds the suction thing in theatre (an important job, but not quite the role Frieda was expecting). Oh, Jac.  Continue reading

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Holby City: This time last year

(Series 19, ep. 35 ‘The Hard Way Home’ by Martin Jameson and Nick Fisher) Has it really been a year already? On this very day in 2016, Holby and the world lost Arthur Digby, husband, friend, doctor and all-round lovely man. The repercussions of that have lasted ever since, especially among those closest to him – Morven, Zosia and Dominic. Morven’s reactions have been more straightforward, and on the anniversary of his death we found her trying to work up the courage to face a memorial get-together, and sobbing her heart out on the stairs.

Dominic has had a torrid time of it in the last twelve months. After losing his best friend, he found himself in an abusive relationship with Isaac. His self esteem at an all-time low, he’s recently been taking to the gym like a man possessed and throwing back steroids. This has made him all angry and shouty, and this culminated in him getting rather nasty with Sacha in theatre. It reminded me of when Oliver Valentine turned on Elliot Hope after Tara’s death, because Sacha, like Elliot, is a delightful human being and beloved mentor, but also like Elliot he has his vulnerabilities and in some ways lays himself open to attack. Sacha doesn’t get cross very often, but I rather like it when he does, and he did.  Continue reading

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Holby City: Breaking hearts, one week at a time

digby hanssen holby(Series 18, ep. 33) For those of us hoping for Hanssen to pull a miracle cure out of the bag for Digby, like he did for Ric Griffin, he is leaving it a little late. And I rather fear that if he was going to do it, he’d have done it in this episode.

There was a lot of Hanssen this week, as he’d decided to station himself on Keller for the day. The first thing we discovered about him is that his middle name is Love. It’s pronounced ‘Loovay,’ apparently, but his stethoscope is engraved with ‘Henrik Love Hanssen.’ It’s too delicious.

digby holbyThe stethoscope as a symbol of the practice and vocation of medicine, and Love as a symbol of, well, love, featured prominently in this episode, as Digby came to the realisation that the future he’d imagined for himself might be disappearing.  Continue reading

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Holby City: The first day of the rest of Fletch’s life

fletch holby(Series 17, ep.15) Since his transfer from Casualty, Fletch has been floating decoratively around AAU being funny, relatable, supportive – but without having anything very much to do apart from a bit of banter. This was fixed in dramatic style this week, as he was given what we might call an “emotional rollercoaster” of an episode to get his very nice teeth into.  Continue reading

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Holby City: Three little words

bonnie holby(Series 16, ep. 25) Jonny and Bonnie’s wedding day. What could possibly go wrong? Given that the groom’s heart didn’t seem to be entirely in it, there was scope for quite a lot to go wrong. A jilting at the altar seemed the most obvious choice, and when Jac contrived to have Jonny assist her on a tricky piece of surgery on the bride’s brother, of all people, it looked like there was every chance he’d see the error of his ways and decide he wanted Jac.

jonny jac holbyThere was a lot to love about this episode, but one thing bothered me a bit – even assuming that no one wanted to give Bonnie the news that her brother was undergoing heart surgery in case it spoiled the wedding, didn’t she notice he wasn’t there? Didn’t anybody else? And wouldn’t she have rather been at her brother’s bedside?   Continue reading

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