Holby City (BBC One, Tuesday, 18 November, 8pm) is one of the most mental and confusing programmes I’ve ever, ever seen. I think I’m right in assuming that Holby is the soap offshoot of Casualty, and what Holby can’t be arsed doing is leaving the little clues for newcomers like me to pick up on, and thereby, pick up what’s been happening, enabling a new found love of some medical trash. They all charge around talking quickly, then switching gear to veeery sloooowly. Usually arguing. Also, it’s got a cast that is impossible to tell apart. Let me explain.
In the name of realism, the producers have assembled a cast that are quite plain looking… but because it’s TV, the assembled are a slightly good-looking but still plain cast. This basically means you have a mixture of ‘ordinary’ and ‘cheap catalogue model’, which means that whilst looking at a character’s face, you forget what you’re looking at. Not as in ‘you forget you’re watching a TV show and begin to believe this could be real‘, but rather, ‘You forget what a person looks like as you’re looking at their face, and as such, get the overwhelming feeling that a hypnotist is slowly erasing your mind like a picture being wiped from an Etch-a-Sketch‘.
Of course, they’re not all mind-erasingly ordinary. There’s some slightly famous people in too. You have Patsy Kensit who has had so much work done on her face that she looks like she’s constantly being stung by a hornet’s nest in her lips. Then you’ve got Robert Powell who played Jeebus and starred across from Jasper Carrott in the dreadful ‘Detectives’. Then there’s that tubby bloke who played Nigel on Eastenders. Then there’s Nicola from Girls Aloud and someone who danced on Strictly.
With this being a medical soap, it’s got huge open sores of melodrama. Some woman had a baby that constantly cried, except of course, when someone else held it. Then there were internal politics, the resident sleaze, the moody one who gets things done in his own way, the tough woman with a walking stick… hang on… isn’t this ER? I know this is a lazy comparison on the surface of things, but let’s look at it closely.
Tough woman who is nice underneath the front? Dr Kerry Weaver. Tough black maverick doctor? Dr. Benson. Young struggling Asian woman with personal problems? Neela. Then you’ve got all the nurses who ‘understand’, not like those hoity doctors. Blond girl with an icy front, but who cares deep down? Sam. The kinda square white guy who really really cares? Mark Greene! I get that these characteristics could be attributed to most shows, but even down to the same race? It’s quite astonishing really. What made this line of thinking go really weird for me, weird enough to make the universe fold in on itself slightly, was when one doctor picked up a bit of equipment and quipped “This looks like something from ER!” Then, the Holby City gods taught the character a lesson for blowing the whistle by making him do something monumentally thick.
This bozo shadow boxed with those paddles that send huge volts of electricity through them to resuscitate patients, he ‘won’, rubbed them together and clean killed himself in a hilariously stupid electrocution. Stone. Cold. Dead. In fairness to the show, I actually pissed my sides laughing at this. There really should be more events of staggering moronic behaviour in TV. Cast members should be randomly killed off in strange self inflicted accidents. Like Holby City, the cast should be seen laughing their arses off about it after the event. I don’t blame you if you think I’m making it up… but watch the last 15 minutes on iPlayer. You won’t believe your steenkin’ eyeballs.Join TVScoop on Facebook for exclusive competitions and gossip