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Mark Simon Hewis
21 people from the 21st century are being brought together in an Edwardian Country House. 6 of them are the Upstairs family and the 15 others are the servants. For three months, these people have only the rulebook and each other...
When period pieces are done well, they are interesting to watch. This is one production that has been done well, and shows what an early 20th Century English Hospital was like, and how the medical profession was still making discoveries on how the body functions, which is taken for granted today. According to the credits at the beginning of the program, the plots are based on diaries, hospital records, and newspaper stories.
It is fascinating to see how nurses were treated, how the poorer class of London (who came to the hospital) were taken care of, and the behavior of the administrators and doctors who were in the upper echelon of the pecking order. In that respect, not much has changed.
Cherie Lunghi, plays Chief Nurse, Eva Luckes, who oversees the nursing staff, who is firm, but as the story progresses is fair. Sara Smart, as Ada Russell, is one of the probationary nurses at the beginning, who is promoted early in the story and is given much responsibility despite her youth. We see her ability and compassion for the patients she is serving. Charity Wakefield, as Ethel Bennett is a probationary nurse who is extremely bright and secretly wants to become a doctor.
The doctors include William Houston as Dr. Millais Culpin, who is a capable doctor that works in "Reception" or as we know it today as Admitting/Emergency Room. He and Nurse Bennett are attracted to each other, and we see a romance blossom, which is taboo, since Nurses were not allowed to marry until the mid-20th Century. Paul Hilton, plays the Cocaine addicted, Dr. Dean, who creates a few problems at the hospital.
Each story is self contained, so they do not have to be watched in order, although sometimes a procedure may have been done in a previous story which is referred to. I would like to see more episodes, but to date, this does not appear to be happening.
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