Call The Midwife

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Call The Midwife is a BBC period drama based on the memoirs of Jennifer Worth. It follows Jenny on her everyday life as a midwife in the poverty-stricken east-end of London in the late 1950s.

Series 1


Episode 1

Older Jenny: I must have been mad! I could have been an air hostess, I could have been a model, I could have moved to Paris or been a concert pianist. I could have seen the world, been brave, followed my heart. But I didn't. I side-stepped love and set off for the east-end of London because I thought it would be easier. Madness is the only explanation!

Sister Monica Joan: We are the sisters of St. Raymond Nonnatus; midwives and district nurses. Present at life's commencement and at its end.
Sister Julienne: Sister Monica Joan was one of the first midwives to qualify in England. Her family did not approve of her career choice, nor did they support her on her entry into religious life. It is our privilege to care for her.
Jenny Lee: I see. It's just... I ate at least four slices of that cake and I didn't realise I was coming to a convent.
Sister Julienne: *Laughs* Oh dear! Did you get a dreadful fright?
Jenny Lee: I thought it was a small, private hospital!
Sister Julienne: I do hope you won't run away! Do you have a faith, Nurse Lee?
Jenny Lee: Not really. I'm Church of England.
Sister Julienne: We're Anglican too. The way you worship is your own affair. We wear the habit, you wear your uniform, but we are all nurses first and midwives foremost.

Episode 2

Sister Bernadette: Now, approximately 3-4% of babies arriving at term are born 'breech': that is to say the buttocks, and not the head, will be the presenting part.
Cynthia: Didn't Shakespeare describe Richard III as being breech? Something about him coming into the world with his legs forward...
Sister Monica Joan: In Poplar they call it arriving 'arse first.'

Episode 5

Fred: (To the pig he has brought to Nonnatus House) What a team we're gonna make, eh? With your beauty and my brains and the price of bacon sky high!
Sister Bernadette: You know bacon isn't popped out like an egg Fred. This is the bacon, so don't be getting sentimental now.
Fred: Me? Strictly business and no mistake!
Sister Bernadette: Well, there's no mistake about one thing: you got a lot more pig than you bargained for. She's pregnant!
Sister Evangelina: Oh, give me strength!

Sister Monica Joan: Dogs look up to us, cats look down on us. Pigs treat us as equals.

Chummy: (On condoms) If God hadn't wanted their use, he wouldn't have created rubber. It too is entirely natural.

Christmas Special

New Mother: I can't believe it.
Older Jenny: There days and deliveries where I couldn't believe it either! Birth was and will always be the most commonplace of miracles. An event at once familiar and phenomenal, timeless and immediate, briefly making angels of us all.

Sister Evangelina: And when do you see your patient again, Nurse Can't-Take-A-Pulse?
Jenny Lee: It wasn't that I couldn't, Sister, it was that she wouldn't let me.
Sister Evangelina: No, it was she didn't trust you and if you can't make your patients trust you, you are no good as a nurse! Now, answer my question.
Jenny Lee: She's on the list for this evening's rounds.
Sister Evangelina: Oh. Shall I tell you what else is on this evening's rounds? 21 injections, 16 insulin, 4 penicillin, an ear to syringe, a cannula to drain and 3 sets of hemorrhoids to compress!
Jenny Lee: I'm sorry, Sister, but the problem was -
Sister Evangelina: No, I'll tell you what the problem is. You young girls do too much book-learning. You sit for months in classrooms, filling your heads with loads of codswallop, when simple practical tasks are beyond you! (Knocks over ink pot) Now look what you've made me do!

Jenny Lee: Sister Monica Joan, have you ever heard of the 'Workhouse Howl'?
Sister Monica Joan: I have heard the Workhouse Howl itself. One hears it less now the infirmaries are closed and the inmates are slowly... tallied into graves. It speaks of a pain beyond all words.

Sister Julienne: I have come to the conclusion that there are only two reasons for ever doing anything. One is love, the other is fear.
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