Posted: 07/02/2010

 

Doc Martin Series 4

by Del Harvey




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The much adored Doc Martin returns with the fourth series full of his typical inappropriate remarks, social blunders and romantic comedy. The good Dr. Martin Ellingham is a mish-mosh of House, Monk and Northern Exposure, and the result a delightful fish-out-of-water series.

Series star Martin Clunes (Shakespeare in Love, Men Behaving Badly, Reggie Perrin) shines in this award-winning comic drama set amid eccentric townsfolk and spectacular scenery of a small Cornwall fishing village. The series features regulars Caroline Catz (Hotel Babylon, Murder in Suburbia), Ian McNeice (Day Of The Dead, Valkyrie), Joe Absolom (EastEnders, Touching Evil), and Katherine Parkinson (Easy Virtue, Pirate Radio).

Doc Martin is a huge hit in the U.K., with 9 million viewers, and airs on PBS in the states. Series 4 of the hit dramedy sees two unexpected arrivals that complicate the good doctor’s already messy life.

Dr. Martin Ellingham (Martin Clunes) is brilliant, dedicated, and highly efficient. He’s also brusque, abrasive, and terrified of blood. Once a successful London surgeon, he’s now a general practitioner in the idyllic Cornish fishing village of Portwenn, where he’s every bit as eccentric as the villagers he serves.

After his wedding day disaster, Doc Martin is even grumpier and ruder than before. His former fiancée, Louisa (Caroline Catz, Murder in Suburbia), has left the village to avoid embarrassment. The doctor himself plans to return to London as a surgeon—if he can conquer his fear of blood. But it’s hard to leave a place as charming and full of eccentric characters as Portwenn.

Matters quickly become complicated when Louisa moves back with startling news. Meanwhile, Martin’s old flame, Edith Montgomery (Lia Williams), takes a job at the local hospital and sets her sights on the doc. Sparks and rumors fly as patients crowd his office: a shouting oil rigger, the inept local constable, a woman who sees her dead husband’s ghost, and a man who eats his own hair. Facing all this, will Doc Martin leave Portwenn after all?

Doc Martin debuted on ITV in the U.K. in September 2004. Since then, four series have aired. A fifth series has been commissioned by ITV. Filmed in the idyllic Cornwall village of Port Isaac, Doc Martin won the 2004 Best TV Comedy Drama at the British Comedy Awards.

This is an absolutely wonderful series featuring some of the most comedic and enjoyable characters ever put on television. If you have not seen the series, I highly recommend you get all four seasons so that you may get caught up for season five, coming out next year.

Del Harvey is the founder of Film Monthly, a film teacher, a writer and a film critic in Chicago.



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