Casualty (series 1)

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Casualty (series 1)
Country of origin United Kingdom
No. of episodes 15
Release
Original network BBC One
Original release 6 September (1986-09-06) – 27 December 1986 (1986-12-27)
Series chronology
Next →
Series 2
List of Casualty episodes

The first series of the British medical drama television series Casualty began airing on 6 September 1986, and concluded on 27 December 1986. The show was created by Jeremy Brock and Paul Unwin after the pair were both hospitalised for different reasons. Brock and Unwin were deeply concerned with what they saw within hospitals and decided to pitch a document in 1985 for the BBC. It was reported the pitch document 'read like a manifesto', and the show was then commissioned. Geraint Morris was appointed as the show's producer. Casualty was commissioned to boost ratings on BBC One at peak times after ratings began to decline between 1984 and 1985. Prior to first series airing, Brock and Unwin visited a hospital in Bristol where they met a charge nurse called Pete Salt. Salt was appointed the series medical advisor.

The first series of Casualty consisted of fifteen episodes, which aired weekly on a Saturday night. Each episode was individually titled. The first series featured ten main characters, who were all appointed different roles within the A&E department. By the end of the first series, two actors would not be returning for the second series: Julia Watson (Baz Samuels) and George Harris (Clive King).

Cast[edit]

Overview[edit]

The first series of Casualty featured ten main characters.[1] All ten characters were introduced in the first episode of the series.[1] The fifteenth episode saw the last appearances of characters Baz Samuels and Clive King, whose respective departures would be explained in the second series.[2][3] The other eight characters reprised their roles in series two.

Throughout the duration of the first series, there were seven notable actors who appeared in guest roles. Graham Cole played a junior doctor in episode one,[4] Michael Garner played PC McMorrow in episode four,[5] Alfred Molina played Fleet Street journalist Harry Horner in episode four,[6][7] while Vas Blackwood also appeared in episode four, as Bob.[7][8] Stella Gonet played Clare Wainwright, a specialist registrar in general medicine in episode seven,[9][10] while Perry Fenwick played patient Marvin Osborne in episode nine.[11]

Main characters[edit]

Development[edit]

The idea of Casualty came together when co-creators Jeremy Brock and Paul Unwin were both hospitalised for different reasons.[12] During their time at the hospital, the pair were 'deeply concerned by what they saw'.[12] Brock and Unwin pitched a document and sent it to the BBC in 1985. Unwin said in an interview with Radio Times that their pitch 'read like a manifesto', with the first sentence being: "In 1948, a dream was born - a National Health Service. In 1985, the dream is in tatters."[13] Unwin said that he and Brock were both 'left–wing and passionate', and that they 'knew what stories there were to tell'.[13] After the commissioning of Casualty, the BBC decided to team Unwin and Brock up with television producer Geraint Morris.[13][14]

One of the reasons Casualty was produced was to help boost decreasing ratings for the BBC between 1984 and 1985 during peak viewing times on Friday and Saturday evenings.[15] Before Brock and Unwin scripted the first series, they took a visit to a hospital based in Bristol. There, they met Pete Salt, a charge nurse. Salt was appointed the series medical advisor, advising the team of Casualty on what was and wasn't medically possible or accurate.[12][15]

Episodes[edit]

No.
overall
No. in
series
Title Directed by Written by Original air date
1 1 "Gas" Frank W. Smith Jeremy Brock and Paul Unwin 6 September 1986 (1986-09-06)
A gas explosion at the docks causes a rush of casualties choking on the fumes, but can an antidote be found in time?
2 2 "Hide and Seek" Frank W. Smith Paul Unwin and Jeremy Brock 13 September 1986 (1986-09-13)
A hysterical woman who threatens to kill a baby tests Baz's patience and ability to the limit.
3 3 "Night Runners" Antonia Bird Matthew Bardsley 20 September 1986 (1986-09-20)
A policeman is stabbed at a local football fixture, but is the situation as simple as it seems? A Christian Scientist's beliefs puts her life at a risk.
4 4 "Jump Start" Antonia Bird Susan Wilkins 27 September 1986 (1986-09-27)
The night-shift are faced with a motorway pile-up, bleeding Madonna wannabes, and a drunk Fleet Street journalist.
5 5 "Blood Brothers" Antonia Bird Wally K. Daly 4 October 1986 (1986-10-04)
A desperate runaway is in need of help, and prejudices are challenged when a gay haemophiliac arrives with a cut hand. Baz's long-term future at Casualty looks doubtful.
6 6 "High Noon" Frank W. Smith Ray Brennan 11 October 1986 (1986-10-11)
A law student refuses to accept a diagnosis of Epilepsy, whilst Duffy organises a protest against the planned Casualty service cuts.
7 7 "Professionals" Frank W. Smith Susan Wilkins 18 October 1986 (1986-10-18)
A terrified woman is brought in who has been raped and badly beaten. It does not take the staff very long to discover who the culprit is, but confronting him is fraught with difficulties.
8 8 "Crazies" Renny Rye Matthew Bardsley 25 October 1986 (1986-10-25)
When Holby's taxi drivers are attacked, Megan worries for the safety of her driver husband. Ewart grows concerned about the safety of his staff.
9 9 "Moonlight Becomes You..." Renny Rye Ray Brennan 8 November 1986 (1986-11-08)
When a patient comes into Casualty from an old people's home, a chain of events begins which culminates in a kidnapping.
10 10 "Teeny Poppers" Renny Rye Janey Preger 15 November 1986 (1986-11-15)
Trouble is afoot for Ewart when a young Asian youth dies in Casualty and his family threaten the unit with legal action. Megan is brought in for treatment.
11 11 "Drunk" Jan Sargent Lise Mayer 22 November 1986 (1986-11-22)
Rumours of a Royal Visit to Casualty cause havoc. Baz and Charlie fight for the life of a half-drowned boy, but their joy at saving him is overshadowed when one of their own is brought in by ambulance.
12 12 "Quiet" Michael Brayshaw Roy Mitchell 6 December 1986 (1986-12-06)
Casualty is besieged by all manners of cases, including the victor of a boxing match and an addict who has taken an overdose. A recuperating Megan proves a valuable confidant for Duffy.
13 13 "No Future" Jan Sargent Paul Unwin and Jeremy Brock 13 December 1986 (1986-12-13)
A dramatic siege on Megan's estate threatens the life of a child, but the perpetrator is found to be neither terrorist nor madman.
14 14 "Survival" Michael Brayshaw Wally K Daly 20 December 1986 (1986-12-20)
The staff is sympathetic when Arthur, who suffers from a heart condition, expresses a desire to end his misery. Baz makes a decision about her pregnancy.
15 15 "Closure" Jan Sargent Jeremy Brock and Paul Unwin 27 December 1986 (1986-12-27)
There is little in the way of Christmas cheer, as the department faces the threat of imminent closure. Morale plummets, inspiring Charlie to organise an impromptu pantomime.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Series 1 (1986)". BBC. Retrieved 24 July 2016. 
  2. ^ Griffin, Cheryl (13 January 2010). "Clive King". Holby.tv. Retrieved 24 July 2016. 
  3. ^ Griffin, Cheryl (13 January 2010). "Baz Wilder". Holby.tv. Retrieved 24 July 2016. 
  4. ^ Griffin, Cheryl (13 January 2010). "Graham Cole". Holby.tv. Retrieved 24 July 2016. 
  5. ^ Griffin, Cheryl (13 January 2010). "Michael Garner". Holby.tv. Retrieved 24 July 2016. 
  6. ^ Griffin, Cheryl (13 January 2010). "Alfred Molina". Holby.tv. Retrieved 24 July 2016. 
  7. ^ a b "Stars who had their first break on Casualty: After 30 gory series of the medical drama, we reveal the actors who went from the hospital ward to Hollywood". Daily Mail Online. 7 September 2015. Retrieved 24 July 2016. 
  8. ^ Griffin, Cheryl (13 January 2010). "Vas Blackwood: Previous Appearances". Holby.tv. Retrieved 24 July 2016. 
  9. ^ Griffin, Cheryl (13 January 2010). "Stella Gonet: Previous Appearances". Holby.tv. Retrieved 24 July 2016. 
  10. ^ "My six best books: Actress Stella Gonet on Little Women, Rebecca and French cooking". Sunday Express. 11 October 2013. Retrieved 24 July 2016. 
  11. ^ Griffin, Cheryl (13 January 2010). "Perry Fenwick". Holby.tv. Retrieved 24 July 2016. 
  12. ^ a b c Unwin, Paul; Brock, Jeremy (7 September 2011). "25 years strong: the idea that defined Casualty". BBC. Retrieved 24 July 2016. 
  13. ^ a b c Unwin, Paul (3 September 2011). "Casualty creator: we were left-wing and passionate". Radio Times. Retrieved 24 July 2016. 
  14. ^ Hayward, Anthony (15 July 1997). "Obituary: Geraint Morris". The Independent. Retrieved 24 July 2016. 
  15. ^ a b Holland, Patricia. "10". Broadcasting and the NHS in the Thatcherite 1980s: The Challenge to Public Service. 

External links[edit]