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Holby City: Ange needs to get a grip

(Series 21, ep. 7 ‘Good Side’ by Ed Sellek 12.2.19) Before you head over to Metro for this week’s review, I have a few more random thoughts about the episode.

– Call me a horrible person if you like (only do it behind my back rather than to my face), but the ‘shall we switch Holly off?’ story irritated me a bit. I know it’s dramatically huge and is a heartbreaking decision for anyone in that situation. But scene after scene of Ange looking anguished gets a bit trying, doesn’t it? And why does hot-shot Ange need Fletch to tell her that it’s her job to make the tough decisions?

– I enjoyed Mr Burman-Roy. He was a properly funny, eccentric character and he gave Cameron a much-needed reality check.

– I also enjoyed Carole Copeland, who is always glorious. Her scenes with Zav were lovely.

– Line of the week was Hanssen to Zav: ‘You have glitter.’ I know it doesn’t look like a great line on paper, but it was the way he said it. Magnificent.

(Picture: BBC)

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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: So sad for Frieda

(Series 21, ep. 4 ‘A Daring Adventure Or Nothing At All’ by Isla Gray 22.1.19) For my full review of this episode head over to Metro. But a couple of things before you go…

– I felt so sorry for Frieda, because I could really believe in her and Roman as a couple. Not least because of the beautiful way she says his name. I had to google about opening the window to let his soul out, to check it was really a thing, but somehow I knew from the way she did it that it is a thing. It’s a very beautiful thing, I think. I’m glad that at least before Roman died he had a chance to show Frieda that he really was the man she’d always loved.

– Now I want to talk about the decor in the YAU (Yow!). First of all, where did the cash-strapped NHS find the money for all that etched glass and whatnot? And secondly, isn’t a bit patronising to think the young adults need surrounding with the bright colours and cartoony shapes of play school?

– And why isn’t anybody (Sacha?) kicking up a fuss about having half of Keller carved off for the YAU?

– I’m not really getting the Foetus/Fauntleroy rivalry. One minute they’re friends(ish – going to karaoke together at least), the next minute they aren’t. For Nicky it’s a bit of a replay of what she went through with Meena.

– Mia is very amusing. She talks like an adult, but in a believable way. I really like the Mia/Donna/Zav combo.

– And for anyone who would like to know more about Pathological Demand Avoidance (as seen in the Ellen/Ange storyline) there’s a useful website here.

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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: Young adults everywhere

(Series 21, ep. 2 ‘China Crisis’ by Joe Ainsworth 8.1.19) Happy new year, Holby fans! The review for this episode is over at Metro, and now I’ve come out of Christmas hibernation I can summon up a few additional random thoughts about it.

Tom Campbell-Gore succumbed to the Curse of the Holby Relative/Friend/Staff Member fairly easily, didn’t he? It’s a shame, really, as I was rather enjoying his arrogant ways. And enjoying Serena putting him in his place very much.

I rather like Ange at first sight, though she does remind me of Colette Sheward in a practical, sleeves-up, no-nonsense kind of way.

Has the YAU (I hear that in my head as a James Brown sort of ‘Yow!’) been conceived so that Holby can nurture the next generation of young acting talent by bringing in lots of Young Adults? It  would be very commendable if so, but I do get a bit vexed by these ‘units’ that take over perfectly sensible wards. It’s usually Darwin that gets corners of it stolen by other departments, but they always get their territory back in the end. I wonder how long the YAU will last before someone decides they need the beds back?

Essie does love a Special Uniform, doesn’t she?

Cameron’s appearance on Darwin prompted some of the best lines of the week (‘That’s all I need, another pound shop Hugh Grant’ and the line about ‘Foetus and Fauntleroy’ from Jac), but I think my favourite line in the whole episode was ‘Serena Campbell. No Gore.’

The scenes between Lorraine Chase and Jaye Jacobs were beautiful.

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Holby City: Ghost of Christmas past

(Series 19, ep. 64 ‘Always Forever’ by Simon Norman 19.12.17) What a beautiful Christmas treat of an episode. It provided the most gorgeous send-off for one of my favourite characters, and for an episode that dealt so much with grief and loss it was ultimately the most positive, life-affirming thing.

Who knew that Holby cupboards could produce magic to rival the wardrobe that gets you to Narnia? When Morven went into one, partly to sort out some vomit-covered scrubs and partly to hide from Cameron (back to help out at Holby temporarily and as usual giving Morven all kinds of mixed feelings), she accidentally inhaled a lungful of nitrous oxide from a bottle with a leaky valve.

This resulted in her getting gorgeously giggly – and hallucinating that Arthur Digby was there with her.  Continue reading

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Holby City: The lost boy

(Series 19, ep. 31 ‘The Heart Is a Small Thing’ by Sian Evans) Does Jac Naylor need to go to Specsavers, was the question troubling my mind while I was watching last night’s episode. Having previously seen a photograph of Matteo and Mrs Matteo’s wedding, when Mrs Matteo (whose actual character name is Nina Karnik) turned up, it took Jac an awfully long time to work out who it was. I suppose it’s always weird seeing people out of context.

Anyway, Nina was there with her friend/boyfriend Luke (Sagar IM Arya), who needed the kind of medical expertise only Jac Naylor can provide. Matteo made a big fuss and tried to ship him off to The Mythical St James’s, but Jac was having none of it. And eventually it came out that Nina and Matteo are married but estranged, and the estrangement was at least partly due to losing their son, Nico. I say “losing,” because Nico has been missing presumed drowned, and while Matteo has tried to accept this (by sealing himself off, “hermetically”), Nina still holds out hope he might one day be found.  Continue reading

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