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.
–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)