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Television: Shortland Street Power Rankings – Bella’s Labour of Love

Tara Ward ranks her favourite moments from the past week of Ferndale hijinks. This week: TK gets gruesome, Bella gives birth and a random man makes waves.

1) Bella gives birth to a fully formed human being

As if childbirth wasn’t painful enough, Bella just found out that Lucy’s handmade soap features heavily in this week’s episodes.

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No wonder the baby’s annoyed. It’s had nine months of hearing its doofus father say things like “the baby’s small, right? So it’ll be able to slip out nice and easy”. Before you can say ‘minor fetal distress’, Bella and Jimmy scrub up for a C-section and an impromptu rendition of TLC’s greatest hits.

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But wait: there’s more drama to come. Just as the baby is born and Bella begins the first verse of ‘Waterfalls’, Jimmy clutches his chest, pirouettes and falls down dramatically. Steady on, Jimbo, it’s not always about you.

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Poor Jimmy. He suffers a panic attack, bought on by all the dilating, pushing and sweating that he endured.  (Bella came through the delivery fine, by the way).

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Welcome to the weird and wonderful world of Ferndale, little Stevie.

2) TK makes a hole new orifice

Feeling queasy? Best you look away now.

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Frankly, I could do without watching fake human skin being sliced open, held ajar by a rusty pair of pliers and inserted with some plastic piping that Leanne found in the bargain bin at Bunnings.

No, no, no, Shortland Street. Ask yourself: what would The Flying Doctors do? Dr Standish would never treat us like this.

3) Lucy’s soap refuses to wash away

I prayed this soap storyline had drowned in an urn of boiling water never to be seen again, but this little parcel of fat and oil just keeps bobbing up to the surface. Oh Lucy, why won’t your Lemon Myrtle Magic do what it promises and magically disappear?

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Curtis is just as desperate to get rid of the soap. He sells it to hospital visitors in an effort to impress Lucy and make a quick buck. Party-pooper Lucy informs him selling soap in the corridors is a big no-no, reminding him that hospitals and cleanliness are never a good mix.

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With such focus on Lucy’s soap I’m anticipating a doozy of a soap-related Christmas cliffhanger. Perhaps Drew slips on some Lemon Myrtle Magic, his long limbs flying akimbo in the corridor. Who will save the eye-bags of Ferndale now?

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Or maybe Curtis is arrested for using Soap by Lucy as a foil for Ferndale’s smallest drug smuggling ring. Lucy will bake a file into a giant block of Saffron Sparkle Soap so Curtis can escape, but only after he’s had two weeks worth of pointy-armed showers.

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Simon Bennett, call me: this soap storyline could be a goer.

4) Dayna does it again

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This facial.  Not even past the opening credits and already Dayna shines like the diamond that she is.

6) Damo delivers password pandemonium

When Damo the IT Guy first graced our screens I applauded his refreshing wit, his sparkling charisma, his technical je ne sais quoi. So it is with happy hearts that we welcome Damo back as he bursts into Chris’s exam room, chest puffed out like cock o’ the roost.

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Cock, indeed. Damo is having a bad day and admonishes — nay, taunts — Chris for his technological ignorance. When did you get so cruel, Damo? You may as well have insulted Chris’ hair, for all the hurt you caused.

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Humiliated and embarrassed, Chris takes revenge on the nerd by changing his password to ‘Damoisadick123’. Ha, ha, Chris, that’ll show him!

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Later Damo gives Chris even more lip when they meet at the IV. Thankfully Chris’ new BFF ‘Mo the Maori Wolverine’ scares Damo into submission.

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Don’t let Warner get you down, Damo. You too can have the body and bounce of a Warner well-coiffed do. Just lose the attitude, okay?

7) Wendy wins #POTD

Someone call the union, because Wendy is flaunting her inappropriate use of social media in the workplace.

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Helpless patients are busy having giant plastic tubing inserted into random body parts, Wendy, and you’re updating your instagram? Shame on you. #skivingoff

8) Random man waves in reception

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This bloke gives excellent wave: equal parts cheery and intimidating. Reception will never be the same again.

9) Curtis flirts with both danger and octogenarians

This is Eunice. When Eunice gets mad she shouts ‘piles of rhubarb’, which is the best profanity I’ve heard in years. Eunice has a soft spot for Curtis and brings him over to the Gold Card dark side, persuading him to buy her contraband goods from the cafe like chocolate, newspapers and bottles of vodka.

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Alright, not the vodka, but this is one feisty patient. Never piss off a woman who threatens you with copious amounts of root vegetables. I can’t decide whether I love or loathe her.

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Curtis risks his probation and Lucy’s high opinion by pocketing Eunice’s cash.  When Curtis’ scam is revealed, Ali is daft enough to take the blame for his buddy, even though Lucy knows it was Curtis. So many emotions, so many issues: this is as complicated as a Real Housewives of Beverly Hills boozy dinner.

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Will Lucy learn to trust Curtis? Probably not. Even Curtis knows he’s pushing piles of rhubarb uphill to impress Lucy. “She’s so good and pure, she makes me want to puke”. She’s just like her soap, then.

And so, the dust settles on another exciting week in Ferndale. What will this week bring? Will Eunice move on to other vegetable-based insults? Will TK make more holes in people’s bodies? But most importantly—will the Random Man live to wave another day?


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