Friday, 28 February 2014

Beyond The Hub Doctors 'Ditched' featuring Matt Rippy



Writer – Andrew Cornish
Producer – Matt Carter
Season 15, Episode 199
Released 26th February 2014

‘Hartnell, Troughton, Pertwee, Baker, Davison, Baker, McCoy, McGann, Eccleston, Tennant, Smith Capaldi.’

It’s Russell Redmond’s Stag do, and Dr Al Haskey has roped Howard Bellamy into being the designated driver for the day, I’m assuming the reason for this may have been from a previous episode.  Russell is one of Al’s best friends from Uni, where the whole crew that are at the pub with their silly flat caps with a vehicle depicting their profession, are gathered.  Dr Al is hoping that Russell will choose him over the Shrink from Boston, Eddie ‘Buck’ Rogers III, because he feels he deserves it more. 

Whilst Al and Russell catch up, Eddie arrives and is duly welcomed and given his special hat, which looks like a bottle converted into a Buck Rogers style space ship.  Eddie arrives in a loud red Hawaiian shirt.

During their catch up there are revellers parading around the bar with a large sink plunger pressed against their foreheads, and drunkenly saying: EXTERMINATE.  There are cosplayers in various costumes from Star Wars to Doctor Who, I’m certain I identified a plush Zygon walking in the hallway, and a paradox Dalek on the counter. 

Trouble kicks off in the episode when Russell evades any questions about his fiancée whom the two other men Al and Eddie know intimately.  Eventually Russell tells the pair that there won’t be a wedding as he’s already married, and he leaves the pub, with Al, Eddie and Howard following after him, Howard being the only one able to walk in a straight line.

Russell tells them a few home truths about the pair, how Al and Eddie haven’t grown up, always talking about Conventions like a couple of kids, while Eddie is disgusted that Russell hasn’t owned up to being gay, after the pair of them spent a year together in a relationship in Uni.  Eddie still harbours some feelings about that, but now feels cut to the quick.  He staggers off away from Al and Russell.   When Howard rejoins Al at the bar, he thinks someone should go after Eddie, eventually Al agrees.

Howard locates Eddie in a copse of trees, he’s lying on his back by a small stream.  He can’t move, and he’s bleeding.  Before Howard and Al found him, Eddie had taken a wrong footing after peeing against a tree and fallen into the bushes and had been lanced by a metal rod poking out of the dirt, it had almost hit an artery and he was still at risk from bleeding to death if they didn’t get him to a hospital in time. 

Because Howard hasn’t been trained in giving an injection, Al has to do it, but Al is heavily intoxicated and struggles.  During the dose, Eddie stops breathing and it rests on Al to save his life. 

The casting for this episode is fantastic, it gives us the regular crew with Ian Kelsey and Ian Midlane but it throws into the mix, Matt Rippy who plays Eddie ‘Buck’ Rogers III, a sci fi geek who loves his Star Wars, and who when he dies, wants to be buried in his Han Solo outfit.  Ian Midlane who plays Dr. Al Haskey loves his Doctor Who and uses the names of the Doctors as a mantra because it’s a boost to his confidence.

I’m so glad I was in to watch this episode as I had the best afternoon ever.  I love Rippy’s accent and although I knew it would be impossible to hear a mention of Torchwood anywhere, it was nice to honour Doctor Who and I punched the air several times.  Doctor’s just gained a new fan; I think I’m going to enjoy watching Dr Al Haskey from now on.  Thank you Andrew Cornish for writing an excellent episode.

©BBC Doctors 2014

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