The Daily Telegraph


- Gabriel Tate

Few would have predicted that this unassuming series would still be going 18 years after its debut, let alone that it might acquire the services of Eileen Atkins and Sigourney Weaver along the way, but Doc Martin has long been making this sort of farce look appealingl­y easy. This 10th series will be its last, but on the basis of this understate­d opener this time there will be neither fireworks (all the stuntwork feels cherishabl­y homespun) nor undue tampering with the well-worn formula, the fine cast simply allowed to enjoy themselves with a set of characters who fall just shy of caricature.

We’re back on the beat again with Martin Ellingham (Martin Clunes), lost and as grumpily pedantic as ever, pressured into renouncing his position as GP in the picturesqu­e Cornish coastal village of Portwenn by GMC members concerned about his blood phobia. When a newcomer (Fay Ripley) arrives with her son for counsellin­g with Martin’s wife Louise (Caroline Catz), Martin instantly suspects she has a condition which could quickly prove fatal; but will anyone allow him to intervene? Shopkeeper Mrs Tishell (Selina Cadell) has her own plots concerning how to bring him back to the frontline as soon as can be, but events conspire to overtake even her dogged efforts.

 ?? ?? Abigail (Fay Ripley) comes to Doc Martin (Martin Clunes) with a suspect complaint
Abigail (Fay Ripley) comes to Doc Martin (Martin Clunes) with a suspect complaint

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