Casualty review with spoilers: Sadness as the team say goodbye to Duffy
8th February 2020

After last week’s shattering episode in which Duffy died, Casualty continued with the heartbreak tonight as we saw Charlie (Derek Thompson) preparing for his beloved wife’s funeral.

Charlie was surrounded by supportive friends and colleagues, but the way bereavement can make you feel completely alone even in a crowd of people was portrayed to devastating effect. Even with caring friends around him, Charlie was missing the one person he wanted to be with. He was also blaming himself for not taking care of her properly, and for feeling some relief that her pain was now over, and this is something that friends can help with. David (Jason Durr) and Robyn (Amanda Henderson), in particular, reassured him that he did his absolute best for Duffy even when things got very challenging.

Connie (Amanda Mealing) was also feeling guilty, for very different reasons of course. Duffy was able to forgive her before she died, but even so Connie couldn’t bring herself to attend the funeral. The funeral procession went past the ED entrance and the staff who had to work came out to applaud and pay their respects to Duffy.

This was more than Connie could bear and Archie (Genesis Lynea) found her in her office afterwards, in tears. Archie has had more than a few issues with Connie herself, but she held out the hand of friendship to her and asked her if she wanted to go for a drink. Connie refused – but the ice between those two has definitely thawed.

At the funeral Charlie made a beautiful speech about his wife. ‘I think of the carefree young staff nurse who bustled up to me in her cap and tunic, and the gorgeous cheeky woman that she became, and I just feel thankful,’ he said. He urged people not to waste time. ‘I loved Duffy for 30 years,’ he said, poignantly. ‘I was only married to her for three.’ Then he went home, and after his guests had gone he made himself a cup of tea. Out of habit, he also put out a cup for Duffy and when he realised this he sat down and sobbed like his heart would break.

While the focus was very much on Charlie and the funeral, there were still ill people to be treated at the ED. Archie needed Connie’s help in a case of domestic abuse. They discovered that the abuser was not the apparently angry and controlling boyfriend of a pregnant young woman, but the young woman herself.

And Rash (Neet Mohan) had to treat Niall, a man who’d hurt himself at a demonstration against speeding drivers. This was another case where things weren’t as straightforward as they seemed when it turned out that Niall had only joined the road safety protest movement after he himself had killed a woman’s daughter in a hit and run. He and Lil, the mother, had become friends over the years and she was devastated when she realised that he was the man who’d killed her daughter.

Sue Haasler is the author of five novels and the official BBC Holby City book, which you can read about here.

Casualty continues Saturday 15 February on BBC One.

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