Doc Martin

MARTIN CLUNES is back in Corn­wall as GP doc martin, and a new four-legged com­pan­ion is about to make life more frus­trat­ing

TV & Satellite Week - - News -

DRAMA ITV HD, 9PM/ITV+1, 10pm Martin Clunes re­turns as Corn­wall’s grump­i­est doc­tor and, al­though the doc and his wife Louisa (Caro­line Catz) are back to­gether, it is not all plain sail­ing.

NEW DRAMA

Doc Martin Wed­nes­day, ITV HD, 9pm

STOMP­ING AROUND the fic­tional vil­lage of Portwenn in a per­ma­nent state of ex­as­per­a­tion, it’s dif­fi­cult to see how Doc Martin’s life could get any more frus­trat­ing.

But there’s a fresh storm brew­ing for the grumpy medic, played by Martin Clunes, when his wife Louisa (Caro­line Catz) gets a new job and also brings home a dog – who quickly makes Doc Martin’s life even more mis­er­able.

We met up with Clunes on set in Port Isaac to talk Corn­wall, ca­nines and the ‘best job’ of his ca­reer… LAST SE­RIES, WE SAW MARTIN AND LOUISA EX­PE­RI­ENCE THE PAIN OF A TRIAL SEP­A­RA­TION. ARE THEY ON SOLID GROUND AGAIN NOW? We couldn’t pos­si­bly carry on with the will-they-won’t-they be­tween Martin and Louisa, so they’re back to­gether.

ARE THERE ANY OB­STA­CLES TO THEIR RE­NEWED RO­MANCE? There are some changes in Louisa’s cir­cum­stances as she em­barks on a ca­reer change and then ex­pe­ri­ences a lot of tor­ment about be­ing a work­ing mother. Martin’s sup­port­ive, but slightly dis­mis­sive too. They also get a dog, which Martin hates. Noth­ing an­noys him more than shar­ing a house with a filthy, stink­ing dog – he can’t stand it! TELL US ABOUT YOUR NEW FOUR­LEGGED CO-STAR… We’ve al­ways wanted to have an­other dog on the show and Paddy’s [who plays Bob] such an eye-catch­ing, beau­ti­ful dog – all he has to do is turn up. He’s al­ready been in Mid­somer Mur­ders!

WE HEAR THERE’S A RATHER DRA­MATIC STUNT IN STORE. WILL THIS BE AN OR­DEAL FOR MARTIN? Yes, we have one episode we haven’t filmed yet that’s quite Taranti­noesque. A char­ac­ter has a bleed from the femoral artery, the

one in your leg that’s a bit of a gusher. In real life, you’d bleed out in about four min­utes.

ARE THERE ANY GOOD GUEST STARS

THIS YEAR? My old friend Caro­line Quentin is back, which was ter­rific, and so is Sigour­ney Weaver, who did a cameo in 2015. She’s friends with Selina Cadell, who plays Mrs Tishell, and she’s so sweet. Af­ter we sent her the script she got back to us al­most im­me­di­ately and said how ex­cited she was. She’s got more to do this time – some lovely scenes. Art Malik and Sa­man­tha Spiro will be pop­ping up, too.

MARTIN IS FUN­DA­MEN­TALLY QUITE RUDE AND MIS­ER­ABLE. WHY DO YOU THINK WE LOVE WATCH­ING HIM?

I think, ul­ti­mately, it’s be­cause he’s a doc­tor in a suit and he fixes ev­ery­thing, but be­cause we’re Bri­tish we don’t like au­thor­ity, so he gets banged into door frames now and then [all of the door frames on the set are de­signed to be slightly too low for Clunes]. He’s def­i­nitely got grumpier since the first se­ries. It’s a creep­ing disease.

YOU FILM IN THE SLEEPY FISH­ING VIL­LAGE OF PORT ISAAC. IS IT LIKE A SEC­OND HOME NOW? We counted up the amount of time I’ve spent here and it adds up to about three and a half years. The res­i­dents have had long enough to adapt to us be­ing here and some have prof­ited hugely – new busi­nesses have grown up as a re­sult of Doc Martin, like the shut­tle bus and the tours.

WILL THE NEXT SE­RIES BE THE GRAND FI­NALE? Well, that’s the last com­mis­sion and we are sort of work­ing to­wards that be­ing the end. But never say never. Per­son­ally, I’ll never get a bet­ter job, but it’s re­ally hard for my wife Philippa [Braith­waite, the show’s pro­ducer]. There are six or seven drafts for each episode to get it right and keep it var­ied, yet the same – yet funny. It’s a mas­sive ask. She’s about to go mad!

NEW

MARTIN CLUNES AND CARO­LINE CATZ WITH NEW­BIE PADDY (LEFT) AND OLD PAL DODGER

CLUNES ON THE SET WITH CARO­LINE QUENTIN AND SIGOUR­NEY WEAVER (INSET)

THE TAL­ENTED PADDY IN MID­SOMER MUR­DERS

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