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Film / Carry On Again, Doctor

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Carry On Again, Doctor is a Carry On film starring regulars Sidney James, Kenneth Williams, Charles Hawtrey, Joan Sims, Barbara Windsor, Jim Dale and Hattie Jacques. This was mostly criticized as a weaker rip-off of Carry On Doctor, and many claim that this was its sequel, despite none of the characters from the "original" appearing once, and the actors that were in the original were playing completely different characters. (Well, apart from Jacques playing "Matron", again.)

Dr James Nookey (Dale) is the scourge of Long Hampton Hospital, somehow finding himself in one embarrassing situation after another, to the anger of senior doctors Frederick Carver (Williams) and Ernest Stoppidge (Hawtrey). After a series of incidents culminating in getting drunk at a hospital party and making a disastrous attempt at courting model Goldie Lockes (Windsor), Nookey is sent by Carver to a medical mission on the inhospitable Beatific Islands, where he learns of a native slimming potion created by the mission's medical orderly, the womanizing Gladstone Screwer (James).


He flies back to England to cash in on the potion with investment from the medical mission's founder, wealthy widow Ellen Moore (Sims), and he soon finds success running a lavish slimming clinic, even luring away the head matron (Jacques) from his former employer. However, Carver, outraged that his dream of a private clinic funded by Mrs Moore has been hijacked by Nookey, shows up seeking a cut of the profits, as does Gladstone when he learns that his invention is making Nookey a very rich man.

Hilarity Ensues.


Tropes Included:

  • Accidental Misnaming: Dr Nookey's native guide mishears his name as "Dr Cookie", then introduces him to Gladstone Screwer as "Dr Kinky" (the flustered Nookey initially corrects him to "Cookie").
  • Actor Allusion: Wilfrid Brambell plays an elderly but lecherous patient who has come to Long Hampton Hospital for a hormone injection. As he is led into the consulting room, the theme tune to Steptoe and Son, in which Brambell starred at the time, plays on the soundtrack.
  • All Men Are Perverts: At first, this is implied with Dr Nookey. Stoppidge tells Carver of Nookey's supposed dirty behaviour towards young female patients and nurses, but Carver doesn't believe him (and supposedly the viewer's not supposed to either). But soon after, we get a scene of Nookey owning a calendar with a bikini-clad Goldie Lockes posing on it (presuming the rest of the calendar is full of photographs like that), moaning to another doctor that he wants to find a patient with an "attractive" body, acting unprofessionally upon the sight of Goldie's half-naked body and then shamelessly flirting with her in front of the Matron, and trying to force himself upon her when they reunite. Stoppidge might just flat out not like the man, but his accusations must have some truth in them.
  • Apron Matron: Miss Soaper AKA Matron, as is typical for Hattie Jacques' characters in the medical Carry Ons, is physically imposing, a tough boss to the nurses, and is the first line of defence for nurses and female patients against the sexual advances of wayward doctors like James Nookey.
  • Balloon Belly: When Dr Nookey is first trying to court Goldie, he shows her the hospital's X-ray machine, but gets carried away and causes a massive electrical surge; his attempt to head off the problem at the fuse box just makes things worse, especially for an unfortunate patient on a ventilator which begins pumping faster and faster, causing him to inflate like a balloon.
  • Bitch in Sheep's Clothing
    • Dr Stoppidge seems outwardly harmless, but spends the first half of the film scheming to get Dr Nookey struck off, or at least sacked from Long Hampton, although he was led to this out of concern that Nookey's behaviour could rub off onto new staff.
    • Dr Carver, once he discovers that Nookey has become friends and business partners with Ellen Moore, joins Dr Stoppidge in scheming to bring down Dr Nookey, or at least get a share of the money he is making from the clinic.
    • Dr Nookey himself, after discovering the slimming potion that Gladstone made, decides to make himself a rich man with the potion back in England, and chooses not to tell Gladstone of the piles of money he is making, instead continuing to pay him in cartons of Rothmans cigarettes per their original agreement.
  • Blackmail: In the film's penultimate sequence, Dr Carver threatens to reveal the slimming clinic's secret to the Medical Council unless Dr Nookey makes him a partner in the clinic. Between this demand and Gladstone replacing the serum with male hormones (thereby causing the female patients to start growing full beards) to force Nookey to make him a partner as well, since he invented the serum in the first place, the clinic is renamed the Moore-Nookey-Gladstone-Carver Clinic.
  • The Cameo:
    • Series regular Peter Butterworth appears in a single scene as a shuffling patient whom Dr Nookey and a colleague try (unsuccessfully) to diagnose at sight.
    • Peter Gilmore portrays a blond curly-haired doctor who's in close partnership with Nookey.
    • Wilfrid Brambell, alias Albert Steptoe on Steptoe and Son, makes an uncredited appearance (accompanied by the Steptoe and Son theme music) as Dirty Old Man patient Mr Pullen.
    • Scrubba, the native girl whom Gladstone presents as a possible girlfriend to the lovelorn Dr Nookey, is played in an uncredited (and silent) appearance by former Miss Guyana turned actress/model Shakira Baksh (four years before she became the second wife of Michael Caine).
    • Regular Ms. Fanservice Valerie Leon appears as Nookey's secretary, who wants him so bad.
    • Carry On theme music composer Eric Rogers appears as the lead clarinet player in the band at the staff party.
  • Cassandra Truth: Stoppidge keeps warning Carver about Nookey's antics, but isn't taken seriously until Nookey reacts to a spiked drink at the staff party (although Stoppidge was the one who spiked it).
  • Chubby Chaser: Having lived on the Beatific Islands since birth, Gladstone Screwer falls in line with the local views on beauty: that in a woman, bigger is better. He is somewhat puzzled when Dr Nookey tries to explain the slimmer ideal of beauty held back in England, and when he goes there himself, he is immediately attracted to the heavyset Matron.
  • Cloudcuckoolander: Dr Ernest Stoppidge, as ever for Charles Hawtrey's characters in Carry On films. It doesn't occur to him that there's anything untoward about telling a paranoid female patient who is out of her bed that he just wants to get her back into bed, while when he goes undercover in drag at the slimming clinic, he keeps forgetting that he has a female cover identity and says he'll only share a room if it's with another man, and that he and Dr Carver roomed together as medical students.
  • Dirty Old Man:
    • Mr Pullen, the elderly patient who visits Dr Nookey for a hormone injection, already seems to have more than enough hormones to go around. When Nurse Willing leads him into the consulting room, he gropes her chest and backside and whispers lewd suggestions (which the audience cannot hear) into her ear.
    • Gladstone Screwer, par for the course for Sid James' characters. He has five native wives in the Beatific Islands, one for every weekday, and many children by them. When Dr Carver and his secretary, Miss Fosdick (Patsy Rowlands), arrive on the islands, Miss Fosdick becomes his Saturday wife, and when he arrives in England, he begins aggressively pursuing Matron as his prospective Sunday wife.
  • Disguised in Drag: As part of the plan to get a cut of the profits from the Moore-Nookey Clinic, Dr Carver books Dr Stoppidge in as a female patient named Lady Puddleton.
  • Distracted by the Sexy: Dr Nookey inspecting Goldie, who had fallen over on her back in her revealing "bikini". He is so flustered that at one point, he puts a thermometer in his own mouth instead of Goldie's while taking her pulse.
  • Drowning My Sorrows: Upon discovering that there really isn't much medical work to be done on the Beatific Islands, Dr Nookey grabs two bottles of whiskey from the "medicine cabinet" and the 500-piece jigsaw of Queen Victoria and her children and locks himself in his room for several weeks to work his way through both the whiskey and the jigsaw. At one point, he looks at a letter he sent to Goldie that has been marked "Return to Sender - Not Known" and then at a picture of her on his bedside table before he breaks down crying.
  • Expository Hairstyle Change: A facial hairstyle change; Nookey and Carver both return to England with stubble from their long trips to the Beatific Islands. (Despite being away from civilisation for several months, both have five o'clock shadows like they haven't shaved in three days.)
  • Fanservice:
    • Lockes in her strange heart "bikini".
    • A soaking wet Dr Nookey in a towel after being caught in the ladies' shower room.
  • Four Lines, All Waiting: Expected in a Carry On film.
    • Dr Carver nursing a crush on Ellen Moore, and trying to desperately flirt and win her over.
    • Ellen Moore being thrilled with the service she received after her operation and hoping to join forces with a doctor to set up a private clinic for many of her rich acquaintances, while being paranoid about being the victim of a Gold Digger.
    • Dr Stoppidge campaigning to get Dr Nookey fired.
    • The hospital trying to deal with paranoid patient Ms Armitage.
    • Dr Nookey hoping to find a hot babe to run away with, all while trying to flirt with nurses off-screen.
    • Goldie Lockes hoping to become an actress, and then trying to lose weight in order to be accepted by Hollywood.
  • Girls with Moustaches: In the penultimate scene of the film, Dr Nookey discovers that the reason Gladstone's latest batch of slimming serum looks a bit thicker is that he's replaced it with male hormones, causing the clinic's female patients to start growing full facial hair. In the final scene, when he kisses Goldie after they've just been married, he notes that she hasn't had a particularly close shave that day; she promises she'll shave properly before their first night as a married couple.
  • Hollywood Pudgy: invoked The movie subtly deconstructs and discusses the trope. Firstly, the scriptwriting implies that Goldie is seen as this when she and Nookey first meet (the "Bristol's Bouncing Baby Food"; Nookey claiming when he "can see the connection"), and much later in the story, she arrives as a famous European actress who's been pressured by her agent to lose some weight and she is adamant to do so, even though Nookey points out that she doesn't need the slimming treatment. Also, when Stoppidge shows up in his disguise, Carver has to explain that the treatment on his friend is for "her" top-heavy chest. Perhaps the film implies that this trope is mostly psychological and is much harder for others to notice.
  • Hospital Hottie: Dr James Nookey may be a bit lecherous, but he is still seen as highly desirable by some of the female hospital staff, especially Miss Fosdick, and although she doesn't want to move as quickly as he does, Goldie is still interested in him.
  • I'm a Man; I Can't Help It: According to Dr Stoppidge, Nookey has a reputation of perverted behaviour around nurses and female patients, but Dr Carver thinks he's jealous of Nookey's popularity. But Nookey's behaviour in the movie backs up Stoppidge's comments, such as moaning to staff about not having enough "skirt" around the office, and forcing himself onto Goldie until she smacks him off.
  • Impact Silhouette: In one of the film's best-remembered sequences, a drunk Dr Nookey goes clattering down a staircase on a hospital cart and is catapulted through a window, leaving a Dr Nookey-shaped hole in the glass.
  • Innocent Innuendo: Patient Mrs Armitage is rather uncomfortable in the hospital after catching Dr Nookey in the shower room, and hates being around the medical doctors.
    Mrs Armitage: [about the male doctors] You're all the same. You're only after one thing.
    Dr Stoppidge: No, no, that's quite untrue, Mrs Armitage. I only want to get you into bed.
  • Intoxication Ensues: As part of a ploy to get Dr Nookey to finally go far enough to get himself struck off, or at least sacked from Long Hampton Hospital, Dr Stoppidge empties a bottle of pure alcohol into the pitcher of fruit punch Nookey has procured at the hospital dance. It works; he gets completely soused and makes a huge exhibition of himself, making the front page of several newspapers the next day.
  • Jungle Drums: Parodied. The variable rhythm of the Beatific Island natives' drumming indicates not their mood, but the week's football results.
    Dr Nookey: Oh, those damn drums! What do they keep pounding like that for?-
    Gladstone: Sh! Sh! (listens) Hang on! (runs off)
    Dr Nookey: Gladstone, where are you going? (he stumbles drunkenly after him) Gladstone? (taps him on the shoulder) Gladstone, Gladstone—!
    Gladstone: Sh! Sh! (grabs a pencil and paper and listens, stunned) It can't be!
    Dr Nookey: (nervously) Wh-wh-what's wrong?
    Gladstone: Manchester United 6... Chelsea 1! Arsenal 5... Wolves 0! (Nookey sinks to the ground)
  • Meaningful Name: The name "Gladstone" is primarily associated with travel bags, especially ones used by doctors. This film is from a period when one could safely assume that any person seen carrying a Gladstone bag has something to do with the medical profession, which figured into a plot point in an episode of Are You Being Served?.
  • Out-of-Context Eavesdropping: Dr Stoppidge stops by Dr Carver's office, gleefully anticipating he is giving a vicious dressing-down to Dr Nookey after he caused a meltdown of the hospital's electrical system. Inside, Dr Carver is, in fact, asking for Dr Nookey's advice on how to charm Mrs Moore into funding his private clinic, and when Dr Stoppidge switches on the intercom outside Carver's office, this is what he hears:
    Dr Carver: I'm sorry, but I've got to say it - you're the most wonderful person I've ever met! Every time I look into your beautiful eyes, I'm filled with... ecstasy!
    Dr Nookey: Now hold hands... (gasps) Ooh, that's good, that's good.
    Dr Carver: What a lovely hand you've got!
    Dr Nookey: Kiss it, then! (sound of kissing) Ooh, that's it!... oh, I adore you!
    Dr Carver: I adore—
    [a shocked Dr Stoppidge switches off the intercom and sinks into a chair in disappointment]
  • Product Placement: While on the Beatific Islands, Dr Nookey finds that the medical supplies consist entirely of a cabinet full of bottles of Johnnie Walker Red Label Scotch whiskey, recognisable by the square bottles and diagonal labels. When Gladstone names cigarettes as his preferred currency for the slimming potion, the Rothmans label on the box Nookey hands over is also clearly visible.
  • Punny Name:
    • Goldie Lockes being a play-on-words for Goldilocks.
    • Dr Carver is certainly an apt name for a surgeon.
    • When Dr Nookey returns to Britain and opens a clinic with capital from Ellen Moore, the new institution is called the Moore-Nookey Clinic.
    • Scrubba, which is not really a name that a woman would want to be called.
  • Putting the "Medic" in Comedic: As ever for the medical Carry On films, the doctors are various flavours of quacks and perverts (terrifying at least one patient into discharging himself rather than risking being operated on by the surgical staff), while the patients are assorted hypochondriacs, sex fiends, and basket cases.
  • Reaction Shot: Near the end of the montage of scenes of the hospital's electrical system going haywire, there are brief shots of the stunned reactions of Matron, Dr Stoppidge, and Dr Carver.
  • Sexy Secretary: When Dr Nookey opens a private practice on Harley Street on his return to England, his secretary, Deirdre (played by series semi-regular Valerie Leon), dresses provocatively and flirts aggressively with him; only his still-lit torch for Goldie keeps him from responding to her advances, appealing as he seems to find the idea.
  • Shout-Out:
  • Single-Target Sexuality: Dr Nookey only has eyes for Goldie and dismisses other women's advances because they will never be as good as her.
  • Sophisticated as Hell: Dr Frederick Carver, as so often with Kenneth Williams' Carry On characters. After Dr Nookey's drunken antics at the hospital party, Dr Carver describes him as "up the alimentary canal without a paddle".note 
  • Stage Name: Goldie Lockes. Her real name is Maud Boggins.
  • They Do: In the film's final scene, Dr Nookey and Goldie have just been married at the newly renamed Moore-Nookey-Gladstone-Carver Clinic, with the rest of the cast present to wish them well.
  • Toilet Humour:
    • In Peter Butterworth's single scene, Dr Nookey and his colleague guess from his shuffling gait that he has either haemorrhoids or a slipped disc. He says they're both wrong. He thought he was going to break wind... and apparently he was wrong as well. He proceeds to shuffle uncomfortably to the gents' toilets.
    • When Dr Nookey's enthusiasm with the X-ray machine causes the hospital's electrical system to fail catastrophically, there is a brief scene in which the patients' bedpan lights are all going off at once, and a flustered nurse is hastily assembling a huge stack of bedpans to carry into the ward.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: Dr Ernest Stoppidge is forced to disguise as a female client in Nookey's slimming clinic to see what his secret formula is. When he and Dr Carver eventually find the ointment, Carver forces Stoppidge to quickly some to work out the ingredients from its taste, just as Nookey and Screwer catch them in the office, making Stoppidge accidentally take a large gulp of it and seizure on the floor. A scream from the hallway distracts them all to the cries of several female patients with hairy faces and slight masculine features rushing around the building, making the group realise that the formula has made the consumers change sexually. The final scene shows Nookey and Goldie leaving the local church happily married with Nookey pointing out that Goldie's kiss has probably given him stubble rash, implying that the hormone formula has left permanent effects on the consumer. However, Stoppidge is never seen after his seizure in Nookey's office. Did he have a slight hormonal change too, or did he completely change into a woman?
  • Who Would Be Stupid Enough?: When Mrs Moore tells Dr Carver that the doctor at the medical mission she established on the Beatific Islands has died and she needs to find a replacement, Dr Carver says that only someone really stupid would take the job... at which point he spots Dr Nookey. (Although even Dr Nookey isn't that stupid; when Dr Carver offers him the job, he laughs uproariously at the absurdity of the idea.)
  • Younger Than They Look: When Dr Carver visits rich patient Ellen Moore, who feels exhilarated after having her appendix removed:
    Moore: I feel ten years younger!
    Dr Carver: Splendid, splendid!
    Moore: Be honest now, do I look like a woman of 40?
    Dr Carver: [amazed] You really feel as young as that?
    Moore: [disappointed] No, that's what I am.

For other Carry On films about hospitals, see Carry On Nurse, Carry On Doctor and Carry On Matron.

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