Casualty was all about David (Jason Durr) this week and I felt it demonstrated how well the show is tackling, highlighting and engaging in mental health issues. When you’ve a strong actor like Mr Durr taking on such a role, plus a talented team around him, it has great potential to work. I think that this episode worked… and then some! Here are the highlights:
Disaster for David? ~ David has been reducing the amount of meds he take for his Bipolar. This is self-imposed and in his case, highly non-recommended. However, his inability to feel emotions, especially in relation to his son, have led him up this path. Now, his son is going to have to move to Spain and David behaves even more bizarrely as the moment he has to let him go, approaches. Hiding him in the ED and letting him have a day off school, having run-ins with Jacob (Charles Venn) into the bargain. His intelligence and know-how in matters appertaining to mental health come to the fore and help immensely in a crisis with a Schizophrenic patient. However, his emotions run so incredibly high once he waves goodbye to his son (applause to Harry Collett who plays Oliver), that David takes matters into his own hands and throws away his meds. Oh dear!
Squirrel Robyn! ~ Robyn (Amanda Henderson) is by far one of David’s closest confidantes. She picks up on a comment about secret squirrel, tonight and asks if he’s calling her one because of her red hair. It’s a sweet and very telling moment in itself, not at all a scene to be dismissed. I fear for Robyn with David being such a pal, though – especially as she will be clueless to his current arrangements re: meds.
Elle’s ear ~ Elle (Jaye Griffiths) hands over to David in this instalment, holds her hands up to his knowledge where mental health is concerned and listens to his opinion. That’s quite a step forward for her, and also carries its risks, especially if David goes off the rails once he is completely off his meds. However, there’s no denying that Elle showed strength of character when she allowed David to be heard.
More trouble from Gem ~ Gem (Rebecca Ryan) is working in her newly acquired job and Iain (Michael Stevenson) is relieved that she has a reason to stay on track. However, when she gives the wrong change to a patient, alarm bells ring. With further investigation it seems that she is not thieving but lacks basic maths and indeed reading skills. Iain’s test in the ambulance bay proves the theory, it looks like there’s a long way to go for his little sister, but I am loving Rebecca Ryan in the show. I hope she becomes a long term fixture.
Lilly ~ Crystal Yu couldn’t be more different to Lilly in real life, two interviews with the lady herself have been proof enough of that. Crystal has been one of my favourite interviewees to date. Lilly as a character has evolved hugely since she first started in the ED and her involvement with Iain and his sister has played its part in that. What’s remarkable is the lighter side to her personality that is gradually emerging. I hope that we continue to see more light and shade to her persona. I quite like this new side to Lilly and hat’s off to Crystal, she plays the part brilliantly.