It’s Christmas party time and Charlie (Derek Thompson) is getting a name for himself as a swinger! Yes, Charlie! This reputation is ‘out there’ courtesy of Duffy (Cath Shipton), who is well and truly ensconced in a full blown relationship with Charlie boy and they’re not doing a great job of hiding it. A quick kiss stolen in full view of Jez (Lloyd Everitt), who else belly laughed at the look on Jez’s face?
While the festive spirit has gotten into Mr Fairhead, Connie (Amanda Mealing) is not quite so keen to embrace the spreading of joy. Especially when a young boy with a life threatening condition is in the ED desperately awaiting a heart and lung transplant which looks unlikely to happen. Noel (Tony Marshall) has to do away with his Christmas decorations as Connie goes off on a rampage of cleanliness. Peter Barnes (Brenock O’Connor) is the unfortunate young boy in the ED awaiting new organs, and his estranged mother, Annie (Claire Price) has been called in to see him. I jumped for joy at the casting of Annie, Claire Price is a fine actress, in my humble opinion and she tugged at the heart strings with this role. It was wonderful to see a miracle come to fruition at the last minute and for mother and son to be so happily reunited in the face of a tragic accident from the past.
Love is most definitely the over-riding theme of the show, this week, Alicia (Chelsea Halfpenny) has been trying to play match maker for Ethan (George Rainsford) and poor Ethan has been trying to ignore the hanky panky going on between Alicia and his brother, Cal (Richard Winsor). Hanky panky is the phrase of the episode, with Charlie exclaiming to Duffy that his activities in that area are being discussed among the staff (and not activities such as gardening, Duffy! so many jokes….).
The Christmas party sees a drunken Duffy dancing around with tinsel on her head and hanging mistletoe over as may pairs of revellers as she can find. Alicia and Cal are merrily karaoke-ing and much surprise is being shown that Robyn (Amanda Henderson) is not drinking alcohol. Her pregnancy news which inevitably is broken to those colleagues who are not in the know, already, is met with much joy. Lily (Crystal Yu) is still enjoying the attentions of Archie Grayling (James Wilby), much to the dismay of Iain (Michael Stevenson). Plus, Duffy and Charlie’s news is also broken, in an inebriated stupor – met with the phrase “Ma and Pa are in love!”. It looks set to be a romantic finish to the evening for ‘Chuffy’ with a park bench and bottle of cider in the offing – swish, Charlie boy! However, there’s always been the question of Ryan (Russell Boulter), Duffy’s husband hanging over proceedings. Guess who was baaaack?
Meanwhile, a snapshot into Connie’s home life reveals frustration as she tries her hardest to take charge of Grace’s (Emily Carey) rehabilitation and Jacob (Charles Venn) is already annoying her with his well-meaning.
Finishing on an Alicia/Ethan cliff-hanger was wholly expected, but what will come next? We shall see! Love triangle ahoy!