Doctor Doctor—Season 4, Episode 6 (Oh Baby)

This episode showed major improvement in a season that is proving to be repetitive and predictable.

Matt and April—I’ll start with them as the episode mostly revolves around them. The episode kicks off with Matt preparing a romantic evening for him and April, only for April to reveal that she is pregnant, much to their joy. Despite April asking Matt not to tell anyone about it, he tells Ajax and Charlie about it anyway, which leads to Meryl and Hayley finding out and putting a “Congratulations!” banner out for them at the Homestead when they go over for dinner.

When April finally gets the chance to see Hugh to confirm the home test, he does a blood test and ultrasound and confirms that she had an early miscarriage. April goes home and tells Matt the news, hugging him but not facing him.

Throughout the episode Charlie is present and indirectly causing issues. First, with being at the hospital after April finds out she has miscarried and again at the netball game. At the netball game, things only get worse when Matt fills in on the FIFO netball team and starts a fight with Hugh. When April calls him out when they are back home, he tells her he’s mad at Hugh for being fertile.

After the miscarriage and Matt sleeping alone in the bathtub, April and Matt talk about their relationship. April admits she knows that Matt is confused about his feelings for Charlie, but asks him to pick her so they can have a life together. Matt tells April he loves her and can see their future together but he can’t pick her because he’s still in love with Charlie. April leaves, telling him to go hell.

Overall I felt their subplot concluded their story arc perfectly. They got what they wanted at first, however their relationship ending was inevitable. That being said, now that both April and Charlie have left, it’s hard to know where Matt goes from here. In all honesty, it’s been difficult to be fully invested in both Matt and April’s & Matt and Charlie’s relationships. Last season, Charlie was written as an unlikeable character who walked out on Matt, and when she returned she went out of her way to sabotage Matt and April’s relationship, and now she has left again. Meanwhile, Matt and April’s relationship was rushed last season and even more so with the twelve month time jump at the beginning of this season, and the question of whether Matt accepted April’s proposal going unanswered.

It’ll be interesting to see where Matt goes from here on the romance front.

Meryl and Hayley—Meryl spends this episode working harder on becoming Mayor by going to the Council meetings and helping organise the charity netball game between the clinic and the FIFOs, an idea that Hayley came up with to both raise money for the clinic and introduce the FIFOs to town. This comes after Nancy reveals findings in a report that the town doesn’t like the idea of having 300 FIFOs wandering the streets at night. Meryl eventually finds out from Jarrod that he has 100 not 300 FIFOs, which leads to Meryl discovering that Nancy forged the figures on the report that her brother-in-law wrote, and just stops short of blackmailing her into resigning. The netball match is a success, raising at least $15,000 for the clinic, even though both Matt and Jarrod tackled Hugh throughout the game.

Hugh—Hugh is still in exile, staying at the old ward with Charlie. However Penny has returned from her honeymoon and discovers this, evicting him and Charlie. He keeps himself busy in the meantime by being on the clinic’s netball team, treating a little boy, and finally making up with Meryl and getting Eliza back. At the end of the episode, he moves in with Matt after April leaves. Although the focus on Hugh was minor and sporadic, he made a lot of progress and I’m looking forward to seeing where the writers take Matt and Hugh living together.

Charlie—The focus on Charlie was minor, showing her at the hospital staying with Hugh, running into Matt and hearing the news of the pregnancy, running into April after she finds out about her miscarriage, being on the clinic’s netball team, and eventually leaving town at the end of the episode.

Tara—Tara tries her best to deal with this week’s medical drama. Amelia, an ex-nurse, brings her son, Xavier, in. It is clear she has a crush on Hugh and as a result is antagonistic towards Tara. Because of Amelia’s antagonism, Tara dismisses Amelia’s desire to have Xavier checked out again as her wanting to see Hugh again, however it’s later revealed that Xavier had Giardia and needed antibiotics. Penny chastises her for the error and Tara is seen getting drunk at the pub at the end of the episode. I enjoyed this subplot as it showed Tara as a doctor without any Hugh or drug dramas attached.

 

Overall this episode was an improvement as it brought the Matt-April story arc to a close, opened up story arc possibilities with Matt and Hugh living together and Meryl possibly becoming Mayor, and showed a minor medical drama. It was also refreshing not to see Hugh and Tara on a drug bender, or Hugh be the main focus of the episode.

 

 

Stray Observations:

Dora sighting: At the front of Matt’s house at the beginning of the episode.

-Matt was on a tractor by six months.

-Hayley, Ajax and Jimmy are still living in the caravan but they are clearly getting use to it and have made it more of a home now.

 

Best one liners and interactions:

  • “There are bubbles, Tim-Tams within easy reach…” (Matt to April on preparing for their romantic night)
  • “Is it yours?” “It’s definitely not yours.” (Matt-April on the positive pregnancy test)
  • “Can someone please remove that disgusting brown brick from the fridge?” “Also known as my banana bread, and it’s gone.” (Tara-Betty)
  • “If intervention was easy I’d do it more often.” (Meryl to Hayley)
  • “It would be an honour.” “Against the FIFOs” “A terrifying and unsafe honour.” (Ken-Penny-Ken on the netball game)
  • “I’m not wearing a skirt or pivoting.” (Hugh to Penny on the netball game)
  • “That woman has had as many farewell tours as John Farnham.” (April to Matt on Charlie)
  • “It’s alright who needs a spleen anyway.” (Hugh on Jarrod tackling him)
  • “You’re an arsehole with too many flannelette shirts, you needed to hear that!” (April to Matt)

 

Doctor Doctor—Season 4, Episode 5 (The Getaway)

This episode has Hugh reach a turning point.

Penny and Jarrod—Penny and Jarrod are trying to go on their honeymoon only for obstacles to get in their way. Jarrod asks Hugh to perform pre-medical exams on his miners and Penny asks Tara to run the clinic while they are away. After one setback, and Penny admitting to Betty that she and Hugh kissed, she eventually tells Jarrod about the kiss. After an initial reschedule, Penny and Jarrod miss their flights again, and Penny comes back from the hospital after treating Robbo (who I’ll get to in a minute) to find Jarrod waiting for her. Jarrod tells her he’s not a jealous bloke but also questions her choice to kiss Hugh. Penny admits that she loves her independence and that Jarrod doesn’t play games, and she wants him. They try to go on their honeymoon again, only for Jarrod and Matt to stop their charter flight in search of a kidnapped Eliza.

Overall I was surprised that Penny fessed up to the kiss so quickly and I honestly thought Jarrod would end the marriage, so it will be interesting to see where they are at in next week’s episode.

Hugh, Meryl and Dinah—The main plot for this episode was Dinah kidnapping Eliza, however a series of events leads to this. It starts with Dinah deliberately waking Hugh and Eliza in the morning, then Dinah going to see Meryl where both of them share and admit to their parenting failures. When Hugh comes home from partying with Charlie, Tara and Robbo, and Dinah witnesses him drunk and drugs falling out of his pocket, this leads her to kidnap Eliza the next day.

While Hugh and Matt chase after her, initially thinking her flight is taking off early, Meryl finds her at the airport, waiting for her delayed flight. Meryl peacefully confronts her by reminding her that if Harriet wanted to be with Eliza she would be, and that Dinah kidnapping her and Harriet’s drug problems won’t help her with any custody battle. Dinah says goodbye to Eliza and leaves. When Hugh and Meryl return home, Meryl admits that Dinah was right about Hugh being an unfit parent and orders him to leave and not to return until he has his head screwed on straight. He leaves and goes to stay at an unused wing of the Hospital with Charlie.

Overall I felt this was a strong subplot as there was empathy for all of the characters involved and Meryl kicking Hugh out might possibly bring him back to his senses (eventually). This might also shake up the whole Hugh-constantly-on-benders story arc.

Matt and April—The focus on them was minor with the subplot purely being about trying to conceive, only to be seemingly reluctant when they are unable to give up their vices that will ultimately prevent them from conceiving, and Matt’s inability to perform doesn’t help matters. Although it seems like Charlie is trying to sabotage their relationship again, she only wants her desk back and Charlie never interacts with April.

Considering the promo for next week’s episode being all about Matt making a choice between April and Charlie, I feel their subplot was deliberately showing the cracks to make way for what happens next.

Hugh and Tara—Hugh and Tara’s subplot was minor as they partied briefly with Charlie and FIFO, Robbo, who was given a pre-employment medical which showed positive results for cocaine and marijuana. When their party abruptly ends due to the police busting them, Robbo collapses and it is then discovered that he has a heart infection. He is later sent off for treatment once he is stabilised. On a minor note, Charlie questions whether he screwed up with Tara, which seems to be confirmed when she rejects his kiss during the night.

Overall I found their subplot a little predictable as the outcome of the bender and Robbo’s heart condition being discovered didn’t surprise me.

Meryl, Hayley and Ajax—Ajax’s decision to move out in the previous episode was briefly touched upon in this episode. At the beginning, Ajax and Hayley bid farewell to the Homestead, with Hayley later confronting Meryl about being underpaid when working for her. Hayley admits to her that renting is more expensive than expected, and that she and Ajax are more capable than Meryl gives them credit for. At the end of the episode, Ajax gets a caravan which he parks on the property, not far away from the Homestead, which clearly makes Hayley unhappy.

Overall I found this minor subplot a little boring as it didn’t resolve the issue or progress it all that much, maybe in next week’s or a later episode it will be dealt with more.

Charlie—The focus on Charlie was also minor, with her taking her writing desk with her and staying at an unused wing at the hospital when she goes to say goodbye to Hugh and admits she has nowhere to go. She also parties with Hugh, Tara and Robbo, kissing Robbo at the end of the night. At the end of the episode she is seen sleeping in the bed in the wing, as Hugh comes in after being kicked out by Meryl.

Ken—Ken’s subplot started out silly but ended up becoming crucial. Ken’s subplot mainly revolved around his over-the-top efforts to find his missing, favourite pen. Ken wants to up security and even buys a go-pro camera after being inspired by a miner’s go-pro camera on their bike helmet, which leads to him recording footage of Dinah kidnapping Eliza from the Hospital. Betty ultimately ends up finding Ken’s pen under the photocopier. Overall I found this subplot ridiculous but I feel it redeemed its place in the episode by leading to a crucial moment in the main story.

 

Overall I felt this episode was a little all over the place with too many minor subplots with the supporting characters, however the Hugh subplot was well executed.

 

Stray Observations:

-Betty has apparently been married four times.

Best one liners and interactions:

  • “Wakey wakey! Hands off snakey!” (Dinah to Hugh after waking him up in the morning)
  • “You should put one of those in the staff room, it would end lunch theft forever.” (Betty to Ken on his Go-Pro camera)

 

TV Show Analysis: Charmed and the Trolley Problem

Charmed (the original series) revolved around three powerful, sister-witches known as the Charmed Ones who use their powers to fight against evil.

While Charmed revolves around the sisters and their use of witchcraft to fight against evil, it’s never been purely around magic. It explores sisterhood, life, mortality, morality and even philosophy. In the season 2 penultimate episode, Apocalypse Not, Charmed explores the philosophical thought experiment known as the Trolley Problem.

Apocalypse Not premise:

Good and evil have to join forces when Prue becomes trapped in a vortex with one of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse.

The Trolley Problem:

The basic premise of the Trolley Problem is as follows:

“There is a runaway trolley barreling down the railway tracks. Ahead, on the tracks, there are five people tied up and unable to move. The trolley is headed straight for them. You are standing some distance away in the train yard, next to a lever. If you pull this lever, the trolley will switch to a different set of tracks. However, you notice that there is one person on the side tracks. You have two options:

  1. Do nothing and allow the trolley to kill the five people on the main tracks.
  2. Pull the lever, diverting the trolley onto the side tracks where it will kill one person.”*

There are many variations of the Trolley Problem. According to Wikipedia, the original dilemma involved a judge faced with rioters demanding that a culprit be found for a certain crime and threatening otherwise to take their own revenge on a particular section of the community. As the culprit is unknown, the only way the judge can prevent this revenge is to frame an innocent person and have them executed. There is also an example where a pilot whose plane is about to crash is deciding whether to land in an uninhabited area.

More well-known variations include the fat man, which involves throwing a fat man standing next to you onto the bridge to stop the trolley, killing him to save the five lives. Another well-known version is a transplant where a surgeon has five patients in need of organs, each of whom will die without that organ and there are no organs available. However, a healthy traveler passing through the city goes to the surgeon for a check-up and discovers he is a match for all five patients. Does the doctor kill the healthy person to save the five patients?

The popular Netflix TV series, The Good Place, dedicated a whole episode to the Trolley Problem, where Chidi, an ethics professor, is teaching the Trolley Problem to the other three main characters, and demon, Michael. Michael argues that the problem is too theoretical and using his magical powers makes the problem literal, forcing Chidi to make a choice. Chidi is unable to make a choice every time, and Michael also explores the problem using the surgeon variation. In a later episode, he determines that self-sacrifice is the solution to the problem.

Apocalypse Not and the Trolley Problem: How it presents itself to the viewer

The Trolley Problem first presents itself in the episode to the viewer at the beginning of the episode, where Phoebe tells her sisters that she bought a book from her sociology professor that is filled with deep profound questions, which could make for a good bar game at P3. One of the questions in the book, which she poses to her sisters, is a variation of the Trolley Problem, “What if a building was on fire? Do you save five strangers or one sibling?” Prue dismisses the question by telling Phoebe that she thought they were supposed to be hard questions and answers “sibling”, as does Piper and Phoebe.

This scene provides an introduction to the Trolley Problem to foreshadow what will happen in the second half of the episode.

While Piper and Leo are on their way out on a date, they are caught in the middle of a street brawl. When she uses her power to freeze to stop a watermelon going through her car windscreen, the supernatural evil or foe presents itself to Leo and Piper, as well as the viewer—a man in a black suit and green tie who doesn’t freeze like everyone else. They chase after him, however he gets on his horse and disappears.

The sisters cannot correctly identify the evil or foe at play, so they make their best guess, the Demon of Anarchy and make a vanquishing potion based on this guess, meanwhile the Four Horsemen set a trap for the sisters. When Piper sees the Horsemen she saw earlier at another riot scene later that evening, the sisters chase after him, Prue in the lead. When Prue catches up to him and sees the other three Horsemen, she is held hostage by another Horseman, War, which Piper and Phoebe discover when they catch up. Both groups cast their respective spells, which leads to Prue and War being sent into the vortex.

Both groups try to figure out what to do while both Prue and War try to reach their respective groups through the astral plane. It is War who tells his fellow Horsemen that they need to cease fire and co-operate with the sisters. Leo informs the sisters that they need to do the same, via the Elders. Both groups reluctantly agree to work together.

 

Apocalypse Not and the Trolley Problem: How it presents itself to the sisters

While the Trolley Problem is initially presented to the sisters via Phoebe’s book at the beginning of the episode, the Problem isn’t presented to them first-hand until Leo identifies the Horsemen.

Throughout the episode, Leo is against the sisters’ methods. He is first against their guess at the identity of the Horsemen, which ultimately leads to the situation they are in. He is then against them working with the Horsemen to rescue Prue. Due to the sisters dismissal of his concerns, he goes to the Horsemen’s headquarters to find out for himself who they really are, and he does. When he reveals their identity to the sisters, that is when the Trolley Problem is presented to them and they are starting to live it.

Emotions affecting the Trolley Problem in Apocalypse Not:

As mentioned earlier, there are many variations of the Trolley Problem, which include whether the person pulling the lever knows the one person on the second set of tracks. Apocalypse Not explores this variation when Piper and Phoebe make it clear that they will still work with the Horsemen to get Prue back, even after Leo informs them of their identity and intentions. Leo points out that they are thinking like mortal sisters and they need to think like the Charmed Ones and of their duty to the world. He also points out that when the sisters travelled to the future in an earlier episode, they learnt that sometimes there are more important things than saving your sister. Despite Leo’s valid points, the sisters go ahead with the plan.

Phoebe choosing to save five strangers:

Although Leo does his best to point out the stakes of saving Prue over protecting the greater good, it isn’t until the sisters are made aware of the consequences of choosing that one person on the second set of tracks over the other five people  that the Trolley Problem in Apocalypse Not plays out and is resolved.

When Phoebe shakes Strife’s hand, she has a premonition of the impending apocalypse. She knows exactly what will happen and how this Trolley Problem will play out. Although she starts to go through with hers and Piper’s plan, she eventually abandons it. When Piper questions her, she tells her Leo is right, that they can’t rescue Prue and War, and be selfish. Piper reluctantly agrees and stops casting the spell to re-open the vortex. Moments later, the Source of All Evil opens the vortex, using it to vanquish the Horsemen. While this happening, Phoebe and Piper finish casting the spell to hopefully pull Prue out, which they successfully do.

The solution to the Trolley Problem in Apocalypse Not:

As mentioned earlier, The Good Place dedicated a whole episode to the Trolley Problem, with Michael eventually coming up with the solution of self-sacrifice. Apocalypse Not implements the same solution as Piper and Phoebe make the choice not to rescue Prue to save the greater good, and the Source makes the choice to vanquish or sacrifice the Horsemen, as their mission can’t be completed due to the sisters’ self-sacrifice.

What the sisters learnt after their first-hand experience with the Trolley Problem:

The episode ends with the sisters hanging out at P3 and Leo coming to see them after a meeting with the Elders. He tells the sisters that their selflessness stopped the Source’s plan from going forward and that there was too much good in the world for the apocalypse to be successful. Prue has an emotional reaction to this news and the fact that the sisters had to sacrifice her for everything to work out, however she accepts that Piper and Phoebe were doing their jobs.

The final moments of the episode have one of P3’s bartenders bringing Phoebe’s book back to her and asking them the same question Phoebe posed to her sisters at the start of the episode. This time, the sisters answer in unison, “five strangers”. These bookends perfectly illustrates that they have learnt from their own personal Trolley Problem experience that the greater good must come first, by changing their initial answer to a hypothetical and seemingly simple Trolley Problem posed to them at the beginning of the episode.

 

*https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trolley_problem

 

New Blog Category: TV Shows—Analysis

Although I write my reviews of TV Shows in great detail, I’ve decided to add another category to this blog: TV Shows—Analysis.

As a writer, especially a character rather than plot driven writer, I’ve always loved analysing fiction, especially characters and themes. As I watch TV shows, both the ones I review and the ones I don’t, I notice themes that come up from time to time, so I’ve decided to write blog posts analysing characters and themes of TV shows as I come across them and as I see fit.

My inspiration for this new addition to this blog not only comes from being a writer and my love for analysis, but also by similar analysis of TV shows and movies undertaken by others. I’ve especially fallen in love with The Take’s videos on various themes, plots and characters of TV shows and movies. You can view some of their videos below, as well as on their YouTube channel.

 

 

 

Stay tuned!

 

Doctor Doctor–Season 4, Episode 4 (A House Divided)

This episode was all about playing dirty.

Ajax, Meryl, Hayley and Betty—Ajax and Meryl upped the ante with their election campaigns, which kicked off with them going on about their slogans on trucks, running into each other and causing a traffic jam, later culminating in Meryl revealing Ajax didn’t finish high school and Ajax almost revealing Meryl faked a heart attack.

Throughout the subplot, Hayley is stuck in the middle and struggling with her loyalties, when she asks for guidance from God, Betty ultimately plays dirty by having Hayley admit the truth by swearing on a “Bible” (which turned out to be The Da Vinci Code). However it doesn’t pay off as Ajax decides not to reveal to the community that Meryl faked the heart attack.

The election outcome is finally revealed and Meryl wins. She starts to make a grand speech, only to stop herself and simply say thank you. She goes to see Ajax and he tells her that exposing the truth about her “heart attack” would make him no better than her and he doesn’t want to be like her. Moments later he makes up with Hayley and asks her to support him by moving out and getting their own place, an idea she clearly isn’t happy with. Meryl and Betty also made up at the end of the episode.

Overall I enjoyed this subplot as it exposed elements in Betty that we have never seen before and it truly showed what kind of people Ajax and Meryl are.

Hugh and Penny—This episode also dealt with Hugh and Penny’s suppressed feelings for each other with Penny’s impending wedding. Betty and Ken are the first to ask Hugh whether he is still in love with Penny and he denies it, only to lie to her about the need to quarantine the hospital when a sick patient comes in, to prevent her wedding from going ahead.

While they are in lockdown, Penny finds out about Jarrod’s fertility test, which she didn’t know about, contrary to what Jarrod stated in the previous episode. She reveals to Hugh she doesn’t want any more kids and assumed that they were on the same page about it.

Meanwhile Penny’s sister, Celia (Ella Scott Lynch) returns to Whyhope for the wedding. While Hugh and Penny are in lockdown, Celia gets everything ready for Penny, however it’s not what Penny wants. When Penny goes to The Brewery and sees Celia’s over-the-top reception decorations, her and Hugh have shots and he kisses her. She storms off, in denial of her own feelings and overwhelmed from Celia’s “help” and suggests to Jarrod that they elope, which they do that night.

Just as Hugh finally admits to himself, after a heart-to-heart with Charlie, how he feels about Penny and tells her not to marry Jarrod, she reveals he’s too late.

Overall I found their subplot to be a little all over the place. At the beginning of the episode they are in denial, Penny’s reaction to discovering Jarrod had a fertility test (freaking out than seemingly forgetting about it) was unrealistic, as was the eloping, and Hugh rushing to her door to beg her not to get married was a cliché. However I’m looking forward to seeing how the marriage changes the love triangle dynamic.

Matt, April and Charlie—The love triangle between Matt, April and Charlie continues to intensify as Matt struggles to keep Charlie sticking around and writing at her desk a secret from April.

At the start of the episode we see Charlie wandering around her and Matt’s house, putting the framed photo of Matt and April down and stealing a detailed box, which was later revealed to be the box that Matt presented her engagement ring in when he proposed. The tension escalates when Charlie joins the family for dinner, sitting next to April at the dining table.

Ultimately and unsurprisingly, April discovers Charlie in the house and angrily tells her to leave not only the house but Whyhope. When April asks where Charlie got the house key, she covers for Matt by saying she still had a spare. When Matt agrees with April that Charlie needs to leave, she is shocked and he tells her April was right and she needs to leave, and they need to move on.

Charlie still hasn’t left Whyhope by the end of the episode, so it will be interesting to see where the love triangle goes from here. Overall I found their subplot to be a little predictable.

Dinah and Meryl—The focus on them was minor but I have a feeling the tension between them will play out in later episodes. Dinah is caught by Meryl snooping around the Homestead, which leads to Meryl “firing” her, which Hugh finds out about when Dinah comes to see him during the hospital lockdown.  At the end of the episode, Dinah tells Meryl she’s staying, much to Meryl’s chagrin. I’m looking forward to seeing how their tension and dynamic plays out.

 

Overall this was a solid episode, however I felt the Hugh and Penny subplot wasn’t well executed.

 

Stray Observations:

-An explanation for Floyd’s absence is finally provided when Penny tells Celia he is still at boarding school.

-What Rod did to get a restraining order placed on him from Meryl was finally revealed: he stood on her front lawn with a boom box in his underpants.

 

Best one liners and interactions:

  • “We ran out of books at book club, the last three weeks have been about you.” (Ken to Hugh regarding his and Penny’s suppressed feelings for each other)
  • “I thought you liked Jarrod?” “We do, more than you.” (Hugh-Ken)
  • “I have big ideas for your entrance; can you ride side-saddle?” (Celia to Penny)
  • “Nothing says occasion like riding in on a Shetland!” (Celia to Penny)
  • “Can I paint a moustache on it?” “That’s not how we’re going to win this.” (Ajax-Betty on Meryl’s campaign poster)
  • “What’s happening? Did somebody throw a punch?” (Hugh on the phone to the family)
  • “You can’t get married now, I’m wearing ugg boots!” (Celia to Penny)
  • “Did somebody call for a witness?” (Ken to Penny and Jarrod)

 

Doctor Doctor—Season 4, Episode 3 (Self-Fulfilling Prophecies)

This episode was a breath of fresh air as Hugh didn’t go on a bender and the focus started to shift to the other characters.

Dinah—I thought I’d start this episode’s review by focusing on the newest arrival in Whyhope, Dinah, Harriet’s mother and Eliza’s grandmother. Dinah offers to babysit Eliza while Hugh is working, much to his relief as he is struggling with single fatherhood and finding day care for Eliza. However Dinah eventually but mostly unintentionally causes trouble for Hugh, Meryl and Ajax.

With Hugh, she decides to take Eliza for a walk in the bush, only to get lost and call him for help. This leads to Jarrod going down a ditch to rescue her, only to get a groin injury. She then causes trouble for Meryl as she suggests to her and Hayley to find a dummy candidate to increase her chances of winning the election. This leads to Meryl and Hayley picking Ajax, but they don’t tell him he’s a dummy candidate, which only makes the situation worse when he does find out and leads to unintended consequences (which I’ll get to).

Dinah doesn’t leave Whyhope at the end of the episode, so I’m assuming she’ll be around for a while. It’ll be interesting to see what other trouble she causes.

Meryl, Hayley, Ajax and Betty—As mentioned earlier, Dinah gives Meryl and Hayley the idea to have a dummy candidate run in the local election, they choose Ajax, convincing him to run, after discovering Eddie is running for Annie’s seat. Throughout the episode, Ajax plays along, letting Hayley speak for him in an interview and basically doing what Meryl and Hayley tell him to do, however this all changes when he discovers the truth, taking it as Meryl thinking he is dumb. He proves that he is not only intelligent but a solid and good candidate for Council, when he reveals his knowledge of the area, and his ideas are original and beneficial for the community. Ajax gets a note from someone to meet up at the cemetery, the mystery person is Betty, who convinces him to work with her to get revenge on Meryl, for her contribution to her and Darren’s break up. He agrees and they announce that he is a serious contender and Betty will be managing his campaign. Eddie withdraws from the election and ends up endorsing Ajax.

Overall I enjoyed this subplot, it shows once again there is more to Ajax than meets the eye, and the twist of Betty wanting revenge was a nice touch and I’m looking forward to seeing where this goes.

Matt, Charlie and April—Their subplot was relatively minor however was crucial in their overall story arc. April spends most of the episode out of town at a wedding expo, which leaves him alone with Charlie and struggling to deal with his feelings for her. The first sign of this struggle is his obvious jealously of the chemistry between her and Val. This leads him to snap at Val over his international chicken schnitzel idea for The Brewery, which leads to Val quitting, convinced by Charlie to do so. Matt tries to get him to come back, but he refuses.

This leaves Matt and Charlie having to cook the international schnitzels for the candidate forum by themselves, where their feelings for each other and sexual tension are demonstrated further. At the end of the day, they decide to have drinks and it appears that they have slept together, especially when Matt greets Charlie the next morning with a “good morning, babe” and a kiss, however Charlie reveals they didn’t. Charlie tells Matt that sitting at her desk has enabled her to write again and wants to stick around longer than promised.

Matt’s struggle is illustrated further when April is FaceTiming him throughout the episode, constantly passive-aggressively suggesting that they get married. I can’t help but feel this is due to Matt and Charlie’s obvious feelings and chemistry, which she can sense and therefore feels the issue will be fixed or go away if they get married.

I’m looking forward to seeing where this love triangle will go.

Hugh and Tara—They didn’t spend much time together until the second half of the episode when Tara has to deal with a pregnant patient who is experiencing complications. Tara is seen having panic attacks and gets Hugh to help her at the eleventh hour. Hugh calls her out and the dangers her anxiety posed, which leads to her revealing to Hugh where her anxiety originated—a pregnant patient with complications who died giving birth to her baby, who also died due to said complications. She also reveals that she hasn’t had counselling to deal with her anxiety and begs Hugh not to tell Penny about it. The episode ends with Hugh and Tara having a one night stand.

Overall I enjoyed the character development with Tara, however I felt the one night stand outcome was inevitable and predictable. It will be interesting to see if Tara’s anxiety has other unintended consequences throughout the season.

Penny and Jarrod—This episode was actually a little “Penny lite”, however we did find out from Jarrod that they are considering having a child together, with Jarrod choosing to get his sperm tested. Penny and Jarrod’s plans are almost blown when Jarrod slips while rescuing Dinah and injures his testicles, but Hugh manages to treat the injury.

At the end of the episode, Penny suggests that they get married on Sunday.

Overall this subplot didn’t really add anything to the episode other than the fact that Jarrod is aware of Hugh’s suppressed feelings for Penny.

Betty and Eddie—Throughout the episode, Betty is interacting with Tara’s pregnant patient. After talking to her, it is revealed that Eddie is the father of her child. At the end of the candidate forum, Betty tells Eddie everything by whispering in his ear. The fate of the patient and Eddie’s relationship is left unknown at the end of the episode, however this minor subplot was a nice twist on Eddie’s character.

 

Overall I enjoyed this episode and it is the most interesting one of the season to date.

 

Best one liners and interactions:

  • “He still hasn’t arranged day care.” “I refuse to change any more nappies, I refuse!” (Penny-Ken on Hugh’s struggles with single fatherhood)
  • “I’m Jarrod, I’m marrying the girl he likes.” (Jarrod introducing himself to Dinah)
  • “Time is testicle!” (Hugh to Jarrod after Jarrod falls and injures himself)
  • “This is like the elephant speech in year 9, only worse.” (Ajax to Meryl and Hayley on speaking at the candidate forum)
  • “You can’t sell people down the river and not have karma sail back up for you Meryl!” (Betty to Meryl on helping Ajax with his election campaign)

 

Doctor Doctor—Season 4, Episode 2 (Don’t Stop Me Now)

The theme for last week’s episode was “back to the way things were/are”. The theme for this week’s episode was “the more things change the more they stay the same.”

Hugh, Penny and Tara—Penny makes the decision to sack Hugh due to the Cardiac Unit deal going south for the Hospital. This leads to Hugh going off to Sydney to find another job, only to find himself constantly rejected as the outcome of the deal has travelled the medical grapevine.  After the constant rejection, Hugh goes on yet another bender, which consists of driving a tractor in the wrong paddock, smoking two joints and getting high with Charlie. While Hugh is on his bender, Penny asks Tara to consider her as a mentor, and shows her the ropes, which includes tending to their hypochondriac patient, Bruno.

Hugh’s bender is abruptly brought to an end when Penny and Tara call for his help after Bruno shocks himself on an electric fence and his chest is impaled by wood. Hugh comes to the Clinic but informs Tara that he’s stoned and gets her to perform the surgery. He manages to successfully guide her through it and Penny asks him to come back to work.

Overall I found this subplot interesting as it provided insight into what Tara is like as a doctor, it showed Hugh is capable of being a brilliant doctor even when stoned, and I appreciated that the subplot involved having Hugh and Penny apart for a while and successfully brought back together when necessary.

Matt, April and Charlie—Their subplot was minor, with the chemistry between Matt & Charlie and April’s fear of it evident. Charlie joins Hugh on his bender, which doesn’t sit well with Matt, even more so after she admits to him that she slept with the Brewery’s new cook, Val. Meanwhile, Hayley reveals to Charlie that Val is the third cook Matt and April have hired in recent months, hinting that the business is experiencing troubles, although the extent of them are not completely laid out to the viewer. Meanwhile, Charlie does a reading of her latest book to the Whyhope locals.

Meryl, Darren and Betty—After the sudden death of Green Annie in an “alpaca incident”, Meryl tries to get her bribe back, only to find the lunchbox empty. When Betty later shows her the commitment ring Darren gave her, Meryl digs a little deeper and discovers Darren stole the bribe money to buy Betty the ring.

Meryl tries to blackmail Darren into giving her back the money multiple times, only for him to point out her own shady behaviour. He eventually tells Betty the truth and she ends up dumping him. Darren gives Meryl the ring. Meryl later goes to see Betty to ask her to give him another chance, only for Betty to also call out her shady behaviour, and say that she’ll get her back. Towards the end of the episode, Meryl makes the decision to run for Council again.

Overall I enjoyed this subplot as Meryl met her match in Darren, and it showed a different side to Betty.

Hayley and Ajax—The focus on them was minor but hilarious and sweet. After Hayley attends Charlie’s reading and listens to her reading out an erotic scene from the book, she discovers she is naïve, sexually. She tries to do the ‘Flying Dutchman’ move with Ajax, only for him to fall asleep before anything begins the first time she brings it up. The second time she brings it up, she tells him they need to try something different, although at first he thinks she’s referring to his pistol skills. She eventually makes things clear to him, giving him Charlie’s book to read and the page number to go to. When he starts reading it, a smile appears on his face.

Overall, despite the numerous good moments, I felt this episode was a little monotonous as it had similar elements to the premiere. It had a similar theme and Hugh going on another bender. Although the interesting thing is, is that Hugh’s benders have happened for a specific reason—the first due to Penny’s engagement and this week’s one was due to being fired. I’m also becoming concerned about Hugh’s benders; the promo for this season was all about Hugh going back to being ‘a bad guy’. I hope there is some bigger purpose for this as it’s beginning to appear that the four years of character development the writers have worked hard on is being thrown away.

Hopefully things will shake up a little next week.

 

Stray Observations:

Dora sighting: In Matt’s yard, in the background, when he and April are talking.

-At the beginning of the episode, Hugh and Glen are taking in Glen’s office. It is here it’s revealed that some sort of ‘misunderstanding’ has happened between Glen and Meryl, which has led to an AVO. However no other details were provided to the viewers. Hopefully, we’ll eventually find out what happened between them.

 

Best one liners and interactions:

  • “I don’t need it!” “I can’t write it!” (Hugh-Penny on the latter giving the former a reference)
  • “Whyhope Hospital and I have parted ways.” “About time.” “They sacked you?” (Hugh-Meryl-Charlie)
  • “I love anything after a large tequila!” (Matt to Charlie)
  • “I’m not taking sides, I’m Sweden.” “Switzerland?” “Wherever!” (Hayley-Charlie-Hayley on the former knowing about the Brewery’s cook issues)