Thursday, March 24, 2011

Doc Martin

My British obsession continues ... I have recently gotten hooked on the drama/comedy Doc Martin about a cranky doctor (Martin Clunes) that leaves his London surgeon gig to become the GP in small (fictional) town Portwenn, Cornwall, England. The idyllic setting contrasts with the eccentric, and often needy, characters that interact with the Doc. It's not just a place where everybody knows your name, but also your business. (If you're a fan of Northern Exposure you'll recognize the similarities: successful doctor goes to small town to practice, kooky characters, love interests that can't quite get it together, there's even a radio DJ on both shows.) Sort-of medical mysteries (not quite on par with House, though) are the general formula for each episode. However, this does not tire as it is the relationships that are the real emphasis.

Although the Doc is lacking a decent bedside manner, he is an earnest and talented doctor and comes through when it really matters. The local school teacher Louisa (Catherine Catz) recognizes this, and despite their first encounter, they quickly form a friendship and an awkward romance develops. Martin's Aunt Joan (Stephanie Cole) is also in his corner, whom he used to visit in Portwenn as a child. As the seasons progress you come to understand why Martin is so prickly (case in point: season two episode "The Family Way " where Martin's estranged parents come to visit and his mother has a very frank and brutal conversation with him).

Check out another great show from across the pond. Enjoy the quirky characters and the beautiful scenery.

Seasons 1-4
Find them in the catalog!