Call the Midwife’s Shelagh Turner star on return of fan favourites

Call the Midwife: Rhoda discusses thalidomide compensation

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The nurses of Nonnatus House were stunned when they helped Rhoda (played by Liz White) deliver her daughter, Susan Mullucks (Emily Webb), who had severe deformities with no clear explanation. Rhoda and her family recently appeared in the latest Christmas special after she became pregnant with her fourth child and worried the same fate was in store for her newborn.

Susan was born without any limbs and became Call The Midwife’s first Thalidomide victim, shedding light on the historical medical tragedy.

During the Christmas episode, the Mullucks were struggling financially after Rhoda refused to settle an amount after being affected by Thalidomide.

Her husband, Bernie (Chris Reilly), started to become distant and turned to alcohol to cope with the stress, finally admitting he was worried their new baby would be the same as Susan.

Rhoda was continuing to fight for her daughter after Mrs Avis refused to let Susan participate in a talent show under the pretence of not wanting her to get hurt.

Mrs Avis reminded Rhoda “Susan isn’t like everybody”, to which she snapped back: “You have no idea how much she wants to be.”

Shelagh Turner (Laura Main) helped Susan to take part in the talent competition, Poplartunity-Knox.

Meanwhile, recovering alcoholic Trixie Franklin (Helen George) helped Bernie with his addiction, which brought him closer to Rhoda.

Laura recently opened up on the return of the fan-favourite family and expressed her love for the actress who plays Susan.

Speaking to Express.co.uk, Laura said: “She has this wonderful face that just lights up and she is an absolutely beautiful girl, isn’t she?

“And you can see the love that her dad has for her as well and he means it when he says how beautiful she is.”

She also touched on what it is like to work with the young cast, especially since Shelagh and Dr Turner (Stephen McGann) have four of their own.

“It is nice to have that core of young actors as well! I also want to talk about Max McMillan [Timothy Turner]! Wow, he was so great.

“He was 11 when we first worked with him and to see him do that. Now they are a little bit older and have got each other it is actually lots of fun.

“Gone are the days where little Alice who plays Angela, who we did get at six months old and was quite upset in the early series for about two years.

“But now they have each other and it’s play school for them, they have so much energy and there is less sort of nannying and coaxing them, they just love it.”

Call the Midwife writer Heidi Thomas previously spoke about revisiting the Thalidomide storyline for the Christmas special.

Discussing the Mullucks’ new baby, she told Radio Times: “It puts them under a certain amount of pressure and gives them a lot to worry about.

“We haven’t actually been with that family for five years, so we’re picking up the pieces for them and it makes for a very special Christmas special.”

As well as looking back at the Thalidomide scandal, the new series will also take a look at the latest medical advancements of the time, including the show’s first ventouse birth.

Call the Midwife airs Sunday from 8pm on BBC One.

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