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Call the Midwife: The Casebook

  • Education

Summary

Stephen McGann presents a look at the true stories behind the drama series, meeting midwives, nuns and doctors who worked delivering babies during the 1950s and 1960s to hear their accounts of the social and medical changes of the period. He talks to a former colleague of Jennifer Worth, writer of the original Call the Midwife books, and a photographer who documented the social conditions of the time. Stephen also returns to the home where he was born to share his mother's own story of childbirth.

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Review

Rating: 3 out of 5.

Stephen McGann, aka Dr Turner, presents a compendium of real-life and behind-the-scenes accompaniments to the imminent sixth series of Call the Midwife. He explores the history of midwifery, the genesis of the BBC drama and the writing of memoirist Jennifer Worth, with series creator and head writer Heidi Thomas offering her insights into how it all came together.

The most affecting sections are on the real lives that inspired Worth and Thomas: we meet a woman born with deformities due to thalidomide, and hear about how the contraceptive pill and the NHS changed poor Britons’ lives. It’s an engaging mix, even if McGann is a bit hammy as he acts the part of a perpetually awestruck presenter.

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Credits

Cast

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PresenterStephen McGann

Crew

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DirectorJames Brailsford
DirectorClare Lewins
Executive producerPippa Harris
Executive producerGillane Seaborne
Executive producerHeidi Thomas

Details

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