Last week’s Holby City, while brilliant, was quite a gruelling watch. It had to be, because it dealt with the horrible realities of coronavirus.
Although the pandemic remains a background to the stories going forward, this week marked a return to the lighter side of life on the wards, with that perfect balance of drama and humour that they do so well.
There were some laugh-aloud lines, mainly delivered by the glorious Jac (Rosie Marcel) in response to discovering that Sacha (Bob Barrett) has ‘set up home with some random.’
The ‘random’ in question is Jodie Rodgers (Sian Reese-Williams), who has now apparently become a fixture at Levy Towers since Sacha invited her to stay with him after he’d inadvertently made her homeless.
Sacha is currently trundling through life in a fog of grief-induced irritability and incomprehension, seeming not really to realise or care whether Jodie is there or not or what people think about it.
Meanwhile, Jodie herself is properly smitten, so much so that she’s volunteered at the hospital so she can be near Sacha even while he’s at work. Yes, it is a wee bit stalkerish. It’s also very funny, especially when a horrified Donna (Jaye Jacobs) and Dominic (David Ames) decided to call in the big guns by telling Jac what was going on.
While Jac had a proper go at him, it was water off a duck’s back to Sacha. He doesn’t care what people think – he’s lost that connection and empathy to people he once had because his pain at losing Essie overshadows everything.
Jodie seems not to care and is constructing her own reality about the relationship, at least as far as other people are concerned, introducing herself as ‘The Jodie’ as if she assumes Sacha will have talked about nobody else for weeks.
There were hints of vulnerability about her – a phone call to her mum which resulted in her mum hanging up – but the way she persuaded a patient to have the surgery he needed by giving him a made up scare story was a bit worrying. I imagine we’re going to find out a lot more about Jodie as the weeks go on.
And it’s a safe bet that she’s going to be much harder for Sacha to shift out of his life than she was to shift into it.
While Jac wasn’t worrying about Sacha she had other important things on her mind, and uppermost was a patient called Clayton (Robert Lonsdale). These two had history, having met in the psychiatric unit after Jac had her breakdown.
Kian (Ramin Karimloo) was jealous, and it seemed that he may have reason to be, as Clayton and Jac were clearly very close. Unfortunately Clayton needed an operation and it didn’t quite go to plan.
This may mean he’ll have to spend more time on Darwin (now reopened after the early phase of the pandemic), which will wind Kian up even more. He’s already scoffing back his little white pills while nobody’s looking. It didn’t help that Jac turned down his kind offer of a mini break to Somewhere Nice, either.
Nicky (Belinda Owusu) would love a mini break to Somewhere Nice with Cameron (Nic Jackman), but she’s not going to get it any time soon. Being (completely undeserved) poster boy for the brave NHS heroes has gone to his already somewhat warped head and has also turned him into quite a Lady Magnet.
An insecure Nicky asked him if they could perhaps make their secret relationship less secret. The poor woman has only ever been a temporary fix as far as Cameron is concerned, and when Chloe (Amy Lennox) – who knows nothing about Cam and Nicky despite sharing a flat with them, that’s how quiet they’ve kept things – agreed to go out for a drink with him he promptly dumped Nicky. The rat.
Last week’s newbies, Jeong-Soo Han (Chan Woo Lim), Josh Hudson (Trieve Blackwood-Cambridge) and Skylar Bryce (Phoebe Pryce) apparently did well in the crisis and have been invited back to Holby as F1s.
Hanssen (Guy Henry) gave them an introductory talk about the time he nursed an injured bird back to health in his office. ‘What injuries did the bird have?’ asked Jeong-Soo, because he’s a nerd. ‘The bird was a metaphor,’ Skylar told him, because she has emotional intelligence.
Meanwhile Josh was falling over in the corridor because he’s clumsy. He also fancies Ange, while Skylar fancies Cameron. Jeong-Soo probably fancies Carrie Fisher in Star Wars because, as mentioned earlier, he’s a nerd.
And poor Max (Jo Martin) was maxing out her credit card again. After paying for PPE from her own purse last week, she’s now stumping up for agency nurses. This proves beyond doubt that her heart is in the right place as far as the hospital is concerned, but there’s going to be a financial reckoning sooner or later.
Sue Haasler is the author of five novels and the official BBC Holby City book, which you can read about here.
Holby City continues Tuesday November 24 at 8:15pm on BBC One.
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