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Series 5 is the fifth series of Call the Midwife and was originally broadcast in 2016 on BBC One.

Plot[]

Series five takes the show fully into the 1960s, a time of sending men into space and development for the east end, the old slums coming down and the new tower blocks coming up and medical advancements like vaccinations which improve the lives of everyone. But the mission for the nurses of Nonnatus house remains the same, bringing babies into the world and supporting mothers in their hour of need, which would seem to be a never ending string of babies but a new medical advancement would change women’s lives forever, the contraceptive pill allowing them to take control of their own lives. But not all medicine would turn out to be good as babies were being born with deformities all across the district and the link was found in what was once hailed as a wonder drug.

The new uniforms

The nurses get new uniforms, the old ones having been used since the start of the series. But despite that old wounds remain unhealed, curate Tom Hereward and Barbara Gilbert begin seeing each other, Tom’s ex fiancée Trixie tries to hide her being upset but in the end Tom and Trixie agree they must let each other go and Trixie comes to be happy for Tom and Barbara. The other big relationship for the series is Patsy and Delia, Delia having just recovered from a big head injury her mother reluctantly allows her to lodge at Nonnatus House allowing both Patsy and Delia to be close to one another but still so far with the eyes of the other midwives, however their love still thrives. Another important part of the series is Sister Evangelina, after a baby nearly dies of dehydration after the sister pushed a mother to breastfeed she decides to depart to spend time at a silent order and it is doubtful as to whether she will return but she does come back in the penultimate episode but after having had a stroke.

Barbara, Sister E and Phyllis

Other smaller plots involve the Turner family life, Timothy Turner convinces his father to give up smoking and the family take a camping holiday together which goes horribly wrong. Sister Mary Cynthia is brutally attacked in the street and it begins a time of mental instability for her. Topics handled in this series include abortions, unmarried pregnancies, typhoid, on the street violence and above all thalidomide and it’s affects on the new-borns and their families. In the last episode Sister Evangelina dies of a second stroke and all of the district joins in mourning one of their most faithful and beloved of midwives.

Episodes[]

See also: List of Episodes
Christmas special
No.

overall

Episode Directed by Written by Original air date UK viewers


(millions) [12]

34 Christmas Special Juliet May Heidi Thomas 25 December 2015 10.13
The BBC plan to televise a carol service from Poplar, but Shelagh's plans for the event are thrown into chaos when the children's choir she has organised is quarantined due to a measles outbreak. Following an argument, Sister Monica Joan goes missing, and when a body is found in the river the nuns fear the worst. This proves to be a false alarm, however, and the elderly nun is eventually tracked down at the now-abandoned country house which had been her childhood home. A partly-recovered Delia re-enters Patsy's life.
Series 5
No.

overall

Episode Directed by Written by Original air date UK viewers


(millions) [12]

35 Episode 1 Syd Macartney Heidi Thomas 17 January 2016 10.40
It is now 1961. When a baby is born with severe deformities, the midwives find it difficult to handle the situation, and the baby's father rejects her completely, to his wife's dismay. Trixie's new sideline as a keep fit instructor brings her into conflict with Sister Julienne, and she also becomes suspicious of the relationship between Barbara and Tom. Rather than return to Wales as her mother wishes, Delia is invited to move into Nonnatus House.
36 Episode 2 Syd Macartney Harriet Warner 24 January 2016 10.44
Sister Evangelina's vocal opposition to mothers using formula milk causes a young woman who is unable to breastfeed to doubt her abilities as a mother and places her baby in danger through dehydration. In the aftermath of the incident Sister Evangelina asks to temporarily leave Nonnatus House to spend time with an enclosed order. Barbara is caught between an expectant mother and her husband, who is accused of being workshy. When it is discovered that he is actually terminally ill, his wife begs to have her baby induced before her husband dies. Phyllis develops feelings for a man she met at an evening class, drives him on a country outing, but is shocked to find that he has concealed from her that he has a wife with dementia.
37 Episode 3 Sheree Folkson Carolyn Bonnyman 31 January 2016 10.16
A new mother is diagnosed with typhoid, stirring up uncomfortable memories for Patsy, whose mother and sister died of the disease in a prisoner of war camp. Eventually, the young woman's grandmother is revealed to be a carrier of the disease, a situation which she struggles to accept. A young teacher, pregnant by a married man, loses her home and her job and is driven by desperation to attempt to abort her own baby, at the time a crime. Barbara agonises over whether to tell Trixie that she has been invited to have dinner with Tom.
38 Episode 4 Sheree Folkson Heidi Thomas 7 February 2016 10.57
A bright young man is delighted to gain a place at university, but his plans are complicated when his girlfriend discovers that she is pregnant, and he must decide what is the right thing to do. Sister Julienne is seconded to a hospital and witnesses another baby born with very severe birth defects. When the baby dies before its mother has even seen it, Sister Julienne must decide whether her faith permits her to conceal the truth about the birth from the mother. Meanwhile, Dr Turner and Shelagh begin to search for a cause for the birth defects. Trixie and Tom finally come to terms with the end of their engagement, and she gives her blessing to his relationship with Barbara.
39 Episode 5 Lisa Clarke Harriet Warner 14 February 2016 10.23
When Phyllis' car breaks down on the way to a delivery, Delia must talk a young mother through her home birth over the telephone. Subsequently the mother begins to display erratic behaviour and finally goes missing. Phyllis learns of the young woman's past as a prostitute and, after tracking her down, tries to convince her that she does indeed deserve her new life. After reading up on new schools of thought linking cigarettes to cancer, Timothy Turner resorts to shock tactics to stop his parents' smoking habit. When Violet is incapacitated, Fred takes over running her shop, with disastrous results.
40 Episode 6 Lisa Clarke Heidi Thomas 21 February 2016 10.23
Thora, a middle-aged woman, is pretending to be pregnant in order to conceal the fact that her unmarried daughter is expecting a baby. The Turners go on holiday, necessitating the appointment of a locum doctor. When the locum gives bad advice over the phone to Thora, she unwittingly places her daughter's life in danger. Trixie has to use all her skill to save the situation, and Thora is left coming to terms with the consequences of concealing secrets. A number of violent assaults take place on women in Poplar, and Sister Mary Cynthia becomes the latest victim. Traumatised at first, she eventually finds the strength to lead the police to the attacker.
41 Episode 7 Darcia Martin Heidi Thomas 28 February 2016 10.80
Patsy assists Daisy and her family of itinerant barge-dwellers, who eschew many of the trappings of modern society. When Daisy rejects the opportunity to give birth at the maternity home after accusing Patsy of meddling, Patsy must deliver the baby on a barge at the height of a violent storm. The advent of the release of the contraceptive pill causes a dilemma for Sister Julienne, who worries about the moral implications. A young man who was compelled to marry his girlfriend when she became pregnant and is distant from her comes into his own as a husband and father when his wife is stricken with a potentially fatal condition. Sister Evangelina returns to the convent but reveals that she has suffered a stroke.
42 Episode 8 Darcia Martin Heidi Thomas 6 March 2016 11.46
The Turners receive the news that the drug thalidomide, which the doctor had regularly prescribed for women suffering from morning sickness, has been withdrawn after being linked with birth deformities of the kind observed in recent months in Poplar. He must deal with his own guilt as he and Shelagh, with the help of Phyllis and Patsy, begin an effort to link the drug to the affected patients. A young man, recently returned to Poplar, makes haste to marry his Australian fiancee before the arrival of their baby, who is born at the couple's reception. After a brief return to work and struggles with her health, Sister Evangelina has a second stroke and dies, leaving the Nonnatus House community devastated and the people of the East End lining up to pay their respects.

Cast[]

Midwives[]

Nuns[]

Other[]

Guest Stars[]

  • Liz White as Rhoda Mullucks (episode 1, 8)
  • Chris Reilly as Bernie Mullucks (episode 1)
  • Maggie McCarthy as Olive Nattrass (episode 1)
  • Katherine Rose Marley as Stella Beckett (episode 2)
  • Jason Mazna as Johnny Beckett (episode 2)
  • Jessie Cave as Connie Manley (episode 2)
  • Paul Copley as Tommy Smith (episode 2)
  • Sadie Shimmin as Meg Mahoney (episode 3)
  • Claudia Jessie as Jeanette Su (episode 3)
  • Andrew Koji as Benny Su (episode 3)
  • Hannah Morrish as Dorothy Whitmore (episode 3)
  • Ted Reilly as Ian Bulmer (episode 4)
  • Chloe Harris as Linda Lanyard (episode 4)
  • Hayley Carmichael as Sadie Bulmer (episode 4)
  • Becci Gemmell as Ruby Cottingham (episode 5, 8)
  • Teresa Banham as Sister Knowles (episode 5)
  • Celeste Dodwell as Roseanne Dawley (episode 5)
  • Andrew Havill as Denis Dawley (episode 5)
  • Sarah Durham as Thora Hills (episode 6)
  • Jill McAusland as Diane Hills (episode 6)
  • Rosie Jones as Lizzie (episode 6)
  • Jasmyn Banks as Judith Coleman (episode 6)
  • Kathryn O'Reilly as Daisy Blacker (episode 7)
  • Grace Stone as Gina Matlin (episode 7)
  • Danny Walters as Leslie Matlin (episode 7)
  • Anjana Vason as Tripti Valluk (episode 8)
  • Sheena May as Noelle Anselm (episode 8)
  • Will Brown as Mitchell Anselm (episode 8)
  • Rosie Cavaliero as Tessie Anselm (episode 8)

Reception[]

Coming soon...

References[]

Coming soon...

Characters Introduced[]

  • Rhoda Mullucks, a mother of a deformed baby.
  • Bernie Mullucks, a father of a deformed baby.
  • Susan Mullucks, a severely deformed baby.
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