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S08E07 is the seventh episode of the eighth series and the 68th episode overall of Call the Midwife. It originally aired on 24 February 2019 in the UK.

Overview[]

A woman's pregnancy is affected by her husband's infidelity, Sister Frances faces her first solo delivery, Shelagh receives news about May, and Valerie's loyalty is tested.

Plot[]

Vincent and Heather Pugh are expecting their first child, but Vincent has been visiting a prostitute for sex. His transgressions are exposed however when Heather tests positive for gonorrhoea, and she is taken to the maternity home for treatment. Also, Mother Mildred assigns Sister Frances to attend her first solo delivery despite the inexperienced young nun's lack of confidence.

While at the bingo one night, Valerie notices that her gran still seems to be having trouble with her boil and convinces her to see Dr. Turner. Elsie is found to have not one, but several boils, and Patrick takes a swab and sends it off for testing. Patrick also pushes for the opening of a Brook Advisory Centre in Poplar, but Violet is reluctant to commit council money to the project.

Sister Frances is assigned to Constance Blakemore, pregnant with her second child. The birth runs into some trouble, but despite her lack of confidence, Sister Frances rises to the occasion and successfully delivers a baby girl. When she returns to Nonnatus House, she is warmly applauded by her colleagues, and Sister Frances begins to grow in confidence.

Sister Monica Joan is watching the 1964 Summer Olympics on TV, but so far Britain hasn't managed to win gold. One night, the midwives, joined by Fred, watch as Ann Packer competes in the 800-metre race when the phone rings and Trixie answers it. It's Valerie's Aunt Flo, who is in a panic. She asks to speak to Valerie, whom Trixie calls. When Valerie answers, Flo tells her to bring her nurses bag down the pub and to come round the back. When Valerie says it sounds like there has been an accident, and Trixie says she'd best come with her.

When Valerie and Trixie arrive down The Black Sail, Flo sends them up to the backroom where they find Elsie standing over a young woman lying on a table in excruciating pain. When Valerie asks "Gran, has someone been doing an abortion", Elsie answers "Yes. Me". Trixie tends to the young woman, who reveals her name to be Teresa, and tells Flo to send for an ambulance, warning her that if she or Valerie has to go and do it, they'll be coming back with a police officer. Trixie accompanies Teresa to the hospital fearing she might miscarry en route while Valerie stays behind and chastises her Gran for her actions.

Heather Pugh gives birth to a baby girl, and no sign of infection is found in the newborn. When Vincent comes into the room, she lays down some ground rules, also adding that she wants to call their daughter Agnes after her mum. Now that Sister Frances has proven herself, Mother Mildred says her services are no longer required, and she returns to the Mother House. The episode ends with Sister Monica Joan smiling as Ann Packer receives her gold medal, and a devastated Valerie weeping and smoking a cigarette outside Nonnatus House.

Characters[]

Midwives[]

Beatrix Franklin
Valerie Dyer
Lucille Anderson

Nuns[]

Sister Julienne
Sister Monica Joan
Sister Frances
Sister Hilda
Mother Mildred

Patients[]

Heather Pugh
Constance Blakemore
Phyllis Crane
Teresa Banley

Other[]

Elsie Dyer
Aunt Flo
Cyril Robinson
Patrick Turner
Shelagh Turner
Timothy Turner
Angela Turner
May Tang
Frederick Buckle
Violet Buckle
Vincent Pugh
Miss Higgins
Aubrey Woolf

Songs featured[]

It's For You by Cilla Black (not heard on DVD release)

Quotes[]

Familiarity need not breed contempt. A new adventure of a special dress can render the mundane bright, and the accustomed novel. Sometimes, we simply see each other through fresh eyes, and there's joy in it.

- Mature Jenny's opening narration.

Valerie: You haven't seen the things I've seen. You haven't seen young boys left motherless. Young women shaking with fever, passing clots of rotten matter into a toilet bowl. You haven't seen patients crying in my clinic, cause they're married now. They're married. And it's safe. But they can't hold on to a pregnancy, because they've been so badly lacerated by something someone like you keeps in a sideboard drawer or underneath her sink!

- Valerie chastising her grandmother for performing illegal abortions.

We can never foretell when our fortunes will turn, or when the story will change. Sometimes we see each other through fresh eyes, and there's no joy at all. We see what was concealed, and what is shameful. We see what is true. And nothing familiar remains.

- Mature Jenny's closing narration.

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