Call The Midwife’s second episode of series eight may have featured a heart-wrenching sickle cell disease tragedy, but it was Annette Crosbie who stole the show.
Viewers of the BBC drama applauded Crosbie – an actress best known as Margaret Meldrew in classic sitcom One Foot in the Grave – for her performance as stubborn elderly lady Clarice Milgrove.
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The episode saw nurse Lucille (Leonie Elliott) visiting Clarice, who was suffering from a leg ulcer. And, as Lucille soon discovered, Clarice was living amongst the junk she had been hoarding for years, a mess that had authorities threatening to re-home her.
Lucille even learned that Clarice was wrapping up waste meant for the toilet in newspapers before stuffing it up the chimney.
UK fans! 2 days left till the next episode of #callthemidwife! In Sunday's episode, Lucille finds herself caring for a challenging new patient… Call the Midwife. Sunday at 8pm on @BBCOne 🙂 pic.twitter.com/HRUYemUj4f
— Call the Midwife (@CallTheMidwife1) January 18, 2019
But despite the rubbish (and smell), the two women quickly bonded, with Clarice showing Lucille a medal she had been given for her role in the suffragettes.
Viewers – including MP David Lammy – hailed the poignant scene, praising Crosbie’s tear-jerking performance.
This episode of #CallTheMidwife has got me in pieces. Annette Crosbie as Miss Milgrove the old suffragette just so inspiring. And so rare to see a storyline dealing with Sickle Cell Anaemia. Thank you.
— David Lammy (@DavidLammy) January 20, 2019
Can we stop and take a moment to appreciate the performance of Annette Crosbie on #callthemidwife tonight. What an actor.
— Marc Fisher????????◼️ (@Marcfish86) January 20, 2019
#callthemidwife Congratulations to Annette Crosbie for such a moving performance. Amazing scenes between her and Nurse Anderson. ???. Beautifully written and acted. Tender scenes that are thought provoking. Congratulations to #BBC for tremendous show.
— Julie sadler (@sadler_julie) January 20, 2019
#callthemidwife Annette Crosbie deserves an Oscar for that. Absolutely brilliant ??
— Julie Kimber (@JulieKimber10) January 20, 2019
So it was Annette Crosbie playing a former Suffragette who made me cry this week! I always find it incredible how a show set in the 50s/60s can be so relevant, especially when it comes to women's issues. #callthemidwife
— Sharon Templeton (@stempleton27) January 20, 2019
BAFTA for Annette Crosbie please? #CalltheMidwife
— George Mann (@sgfmann) January 20, 2019
— Pip Brace (@Pip_Brace) January 20, 2019
With half of the audience left crying, Clarice’s story had a bittersweet ending. Although she was finally moved to a home, Lucille convinced her to move of her own free will, as “a woman of substance can make a life anywhere”.
— BBC One (@BBCOne) January 20, 2019
And that left the other half of the audience bursting into tears…
Call the Midwife does it again. Stories of strong, wonderful women that manage to reduce me to tears on a weekly basis #CalltheMidwife
— In a bunker with cake and coffee (@madvixen1983) January 20, 2019
— felicity jade (@felicityjade) January 20, 2019
This article was originally published on 21 January 2019