Casualty fans should brace themselves for disaster tonight as an air ambulance hits the hospital, putting the lives of everyone in the emergency department at risk in the process. So will one of the show’s most familiar faces be meeting their maker as a result of the catastrophe?
Seeing as this is the big 30th anniversary episode, there’s bound to be huge jeopardy for the regulars, especially seeing as both Connie and Grace are already in enormous peril thanks to their car having plunged down a ravine. Hinting at trauma for her character, actress Amanda Mealing recently told RT:
“We’ve never seen her completely break down before and, here, you see all those raw, uncensored emotions. Some people can act pain, anguish and anxiety, but I think you have to be a genius to fake that. I can’t do it. I basically spent a week getting really upset for 12 hours a day. And it left me exhausted and depressed – I had an emotional hangover.”
Then there’s Jacob Masters, the ED’s resident hero, who will be seen squaring up to Charlie and springing into action once disaster strikes. Not that actor Charles Venn is worried about Jacob putting his life on the line:
“As a kid, I dreamt about being an action man. I was always lively and energetic – and I actually wanted to be stuntman when I was younger. Never got to carry that through as the acting thing came along. But I always wanted to get involved in action-based type roles. So I’m living the dream in many ways. It’s pretty good. I can’t complain.”
Of course, Casualty is rather prone to putting its guest stars in danger. And this evening we have ex-EastEnders star Pam St Clement, who’ll be playing crotchety patient Sally Hodge. Might she come to a sticky end? Says the actress of her role:
“She’s an unfortunate woman because of her emotional baggage and she doesn’t always come over as being very nice. But it was a nice complicated character to play – very condensed.”
And then, of course, there’s show stalwart Charlie Fairhead, who’ll be marking his own three decade anniversary. But might this be his final shift? After all, Casualty writers did recently put Charlie through a heart attack ordeal – so could the helicopter crash see him off? Is actor Derek Thompson concerned that Charlie might be written out?
“No, not in the least bit! I would have been rather surprised if they’d done that, but I’d also have been very interested if they had. People find it very hard to accept when we say that ‘the job is the job’ and the job can be two days or two years.
“I’m constantly surprised that it’s turned out to be 30 years, but at the same time, it feels like energy well spent. But I didn’t worry that they’d do it without forewarning me!”
So who do you think could come to a terminal end? Watch the trailer below and don’t forget to watch the episode itself at 8pm tonight on BBC1…