The Good Karma Hospital: season 2 episode 1 review

“Ready for action, Dr Walker?”

The sun rises on a new series of The Good Karma Hospital as fish out of water medic young doctor Ruby Walker, who has left her job in the UK to work in a hospital in India, kickstarts her day in her new apartment with a boxing workout before struggling to kickstart her old motorbike to get to work.

“Just one more day, that’s all I’m asking for…”

A busy day & night lies ahead of her as a record heatwave leaves the hospital besieged by patients. Her boss, Dr Fonseca, challenges her to take charge of her first solo night shift:

“My ship is in your hands tonight, keep her from the rocks, please.”

But before that a home visit awaits, as she ventures out on her newly delivered motorbike some 20 miles to deal with the handsome young son with a cantankerous farmer (“He seems very angry.” “Only when he’s awake.”) and a possible case of appendicitis, a diagnosis that puts her at odds with the ice cool Dr Varma, who is called upon to assist Walker in the resulting operation.

Ruby’s first night in charge takes a dramatic turn; when her patient takes a turn for the worse she decides to carry out a second exploratory, and ultimately needless, operation by motorbike headlight, as a thunderstorm plunges the hospital into darkness. A heart to heart with her patient’s father brings up her non existent relationship with her own long lost father.

News of her eventful baptism of fire draws the attention of the local paper, much to Varma’s annoyance. The newspaper story in turn draws the attention of a mysterious stranger at the appropriately named Serendipity tea estate, some 250 miles away.

Affairs of the heart are brought to the fore in some of the episode’s subplots. Dr Nair plans to remarry, a move met with disapproval from his son AJ who finds himself demoted from ambulance driver to orderly after a third speeding offence. Sister Mari is nursing a broken heart and lets out her frustration on the staff and Ruby’s punch bag. The ice cool Dr Varma has a date and Lydia’s supper with Greg turns awkward when the subject of engagement crops up. Elsewhere a woman has a secret financial motive for keeping her elderly dying mother alive, and a familiar face makes a surprise return to Greg’s beach bar.

All in all, series 2 of the feel good drama gets off to a good start with a lively Walker-centred episode containing plenty of plot strands, which will doubtless unfold over the next few weeks…

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