Follow TV Tropes


Series / Green Wing

Go To
Alan Statham, and from bottom to top: Boyce, Sue, Guy, Caroline, Mac, Martin, Joanna.

Green Wing was a British "medical" drama that ran from 2004-2006, and was a mixture of comedy, bizarre Soap Opera and pure absurdity that would make Scrubs blush.

The series was notable in that, despite being set at the fictional East Hampton Hospital Trust (and filmed in a real-live working hospital, complete with genuine patients and doctors as extras), the plot rarely ever touched actual medicine or patient storylines. Instead, it focused on the surgeons playing games mid-operations, the Love Dodecahedron the staff are invariably trapped in and the occasional misadventures of the HR department.

It won the "Comedy Of The Year" award in 2006.

In April 2024 it was revived as a six episode audio series for Audible titled "Green Wing: Resuscitated." Set 12 years after the TV series, it was written by the original creators and saw the entire main cast return.

Some plots and tropes used:

  • Abusive Parents:
    • Joanna is clearly the worst mother in the universe, but it never stops Martin from declaring his undying love for her.
    • Although indirectly, Holly has four-year-old Mackenzie pretend he's Mac's son and dyes his hair blond. At the very least it's questionable.
    • Guy's father apparently shoved him off to boarding school as soon as possible, and it's strongly implied Guy hated it there.
  • Accidental Murder:
    • Played for Laughs with all of the deaths in the finale. One woman is murdered by Alan when he holds her down in the shop while he and Joanna are robbing her; his bum is planted firmly over her face and she suffocates.
    • Guy tells Martin he accidentally killed someone because he stopped a patient's real details coming in on time during a heart-transplant after sending an email about his yogurt. Of course, Guy was probably lying.
    • Alan kills Joanna's cousin, believing he's a hallucination. Said cousin is a dwarf, painted green and screaming maniacally at him at the time, so ...
  • Accidental Pervert: Martin...
    • ...accidentally walks in on Rachel weighing her boobs with a set of scales. His attempts to appear innocuous and disinterested only dig him deeper into the hole.
    • ...accidentally becomes a pimp in Season 2.
  • Acquired Situational Narcissism:
    • Martin gets all uppity for a bit after Caroline off-handedly gives him a 7 for his arse during a furious rant against Guy's female ranking system.
    • Alan wins an online caption competition and suddenly thinks he's the funniest man alive, leading Joanna to decide to take him down a peg that ends up as Gone Horribly Right.
    • Angela gets this when a TV crew are filming at the hospital and the director is smitten with her.
  • A-Cup Angst: One episode has Karen being bossed around by the other Human Resources girls (as usual) when she suddenly bursts out with, "NO, I WON'T! I AM NOT YOUR SLAVE!" When the other girls ask her what her problem is, she retorts, "You lot, I am sick of it, taking advantage just because I haven't got any breasts!" Then she sits back down and resumes typing like nothing happened.
  • Affectionate Nickname:
    • Boyce and Martin refer to each other as "Boycie" and "Marty".
    • Harriet gets "Hattie" from her friends.
  • Age-Inappropriate Dress:
  • Air-Vent Passageway: Sue White pulls this as while trying to poison Caroline in the first episode of season 2.
  • The Alcoholic: Most of the hospital staff, in particular Caroline, Guy and Joanna, with very few exceptions.
  • All Just a Dream: Martin's dancing exam sequence.
  • Almost Kiss: Mac and Caroline, as he's describing and acting out the buildup to their first kiss (which Caroline doesn't remember).
  • Always Someone Better: Joanna and Sue White have a bitter rivalry going on. Sue White usually wins, courtesy of her being freakishly insane.
  • Anguished Declaration of Love: A played for laughs version done by Guy to Caroline. She's in the bathroom at the time and the confession is so difficult, the best he can must is that he doesn't just like her but he likes her.
  • Ambiguously Bi:
    • Sue White. While she's had multiple male relationships (Guy and, through the show, is after Mac) she does show some interest in women and does comment: "Maybe I am a lesbian."
    • Boyce, mostly with his interactions with Alan Statham. It's near impossible to tell if he how he does because he wants to genuinely annoy him or because it's fun to tease him. There's also when they spent the night together and it's ambiguous if anything happened. Not to mention, that Boyce shows genuine affection for Statham in the finale and leading up to it (helping him escape the police and Alan singing to him down the phone).
  • Amusing Injuries: Guy getting stabbed in the arm by Mac, and Jake getting stabbed in the head by Guy.
    • The show loves this trope. Karen gets her hair stuck in a printer, Guy sticks his hand in a toaster, Karen falling out the window, etc.
    • You could also count Dr. Statham's self-administered enema, using boiling hot coffee.
  • Attack Backfire: In an early episode, Joanna tells Naughty Rachel to photocopy something. When Rachel points out Ollie is using it to print out fliers for a party, Joanna instructs her to "go kick him." Rachel does, but Ollie immediately forgives her because Joanna told her to, so she was just following orders and asks her out on a date, which she accepts.
  • Attractive Bent-Gender: The sight of Boyce in a nurse's uniform made Alan feel even more confused than normal.
  • Attention Deficit... Ooh, Shiny!: Caroline on occasion. Boyce as well.
  • Ax-Crazy: Probably experienced crossbow shooter Sue White. However, Dr. Statham does psychotically beat a dwarf to death with a stuffed heron.
  • Bad Boss: Joanna, who physically and verbally abuses not just her regular HR underlings, but also various doctors and surgeons around the building. And of course, Caledonian psychopath Sue White.
  • Bad Liar: Harriet goes into involuntary spasms of blinking and facial twitching whenever she lies.
    • Alan Statham also fits this trope, but most of the time he can't even get to the actual lying stage, and ends up blurting out the truth instead.
  • Bait-and-Switch: Caroline kisses Guy when Mac and Holly walk past hand-in-hand, prompting this:
    Guy: ...You were just using me to get back at Mac, weren't you?
    Caroline: *guiltily* Yeah...
    Guy: It's not nice being used, is it?
    Caroline: Sorry.
    Guy: No, no, it's alright, it's just I've never been on the receiving end before.
  • Balloonacy: The special/series ends with Caroline getting lifted away by a bunch of balloons. The alternate ending has both Mac and Guy failing at bringing her back down and getting picked up themselves.
  • Bathroom Stall of Overheard Insults: Caroline is the most trash-talked, most bitched about person in the hospital, and ends up walking in and directly overhearing it 80% of the time too. Even darling Mac labels her "the biggest freak in town" shortly after awakening from his coma, but after she leaves he comments he'd, "Quite like a night out with Caroline Todd."
  • Beach Episode: Doesn't actually happen, but Mac and Guy make up for it by staging a beach barbecue with sand, volleyballs and hot bikini babes on Mac's allotted car-parking space in front of the hospital. Much to Dr. Statham's fury.
  • Beast in the Building: A brief, but memorable moment, is where Sue White brings a Bactrian camel into her office at the hospital, but upon learning today is not a "bring pets in" day, she panics and has to slowly escort the camel out of there.
  • Be Careful What You Wish For: One episode has Alan annoyed and jealous over the fact Mac gets a parking space right next to the hospital because he's a surgeon. After spending an entire episode trying and failing to obtain the space, Mac and Boyce tell him they've gotten at "as close as we could get it" to Alan's office. Cue Alan entering his office to see his car taking up almost the whole room.
  • Bedmate Reveal: Alan and Boyce at the end of S1E08. Whether or not anything actually happened is up for debate.
  • Belligerent Sexual Tension: Guy and Sue White. Kim and Boyce.
    • Caroline and Mac, at least at first.
    • There's some Statham/Boyce to be sure. And just a dash of Sue/Caroline.
  • Berserk Button: Normally easy-going Mac is furious when Guy lies to Martin about his exam results.
    • Joanna does NOT like being told she's old, or her age referred to at all.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: Lyndon finally snaps after Joanna buys him in the Slave Auction and gives her a "The Reason You Suck" Speech.
    • Do NOT piss off Mac, as Guy found out the hard way.
    • Harriet can be this when pushed too far.
  • Big "NO!": Sue White screams one when Mac pulls out of the Slave Auction. She then recovers and promptly buys Guy instead with little fuss.
    • Guy does one after Caroline tells him (during a hypothetical discussion about fox hunting) that his cubs were ripped to shreds by the hounds.
  • Bigger Is Better in Bed: Sue discovers this about Martin in one episode, complete with oil painting.
    • Sue never actually sleeps with him, though.
  • Big Damn Kiss: Mac and Caroline after Holly leaves.
  • Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: Karen spends the first series as a bullied, self-loathing, friendless Butt-Monkey. By the time the Special rolls around, she is a flashy, arrogant, domineering bitch who eclipses Rachel in social status and positively terrifies the rest. Granted, the last appearance of her before the special, she got knocked out of a window and nobody even noticed. (Apparently the blow to the head totally changed her personality. Though she may or may not now have a prosthetic hand).
    • Also Angela, whose bitchiness gets turned up to eleven after she becomes the face of a TV documentary set at the hospital.
  • Big Ol' Eyebrows: Guy.
  • Bittersweet Ending: Mac and Caroline get married. Mac's still dying.
  • Black and Nerdy: Hospital IT consultant Lyndon Jones, also the show's only black character. He is very intelligent and doesn't fall into the stereotypical nerd archetype as he's also a Chick Magnet.
  • Blackmail: Sue blackmails Joanna and Guy at the beginning on series two after she gets the tape of them two having sex.
  • Blatant Lies: During Mac's coma, Alan draws on his face with felt pens and plays ping-pong against him. Caroline walks in and Alan claims he had nothing to do with it and it was a "tiny ping-pong man". He then chases him away.
    • "Are you talking to me like a Nazi from a film?" "... Nothing could be further from the truth."
  • Born Unlucky: Caroline's first day at the hospital sums this up nicely. She is locked out of her brother's house and has to sleep in her car, Joanna pulls her hair (to "see how well she deals with stress"), everyone keeps asking her why she smells funny, "Have you been to a festival?", "What's that smell? Is that mini-cabs?" Sue gropes her arse, she hears Angela telling Martin to do horrible things to "the new girl" (because Mac told her to try being jealous) Guy persuades her to come stay at his flat and so everyone assumes she slept with him when she didn't. And then there's what happens to her during the rest of the series...
  • Boyish Short Hair: Caroline.
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall: Done extremely rarely, if ever. In the second series, Guy gives a thumbs up when he and Caroline tumble off screen while making out. But there is nobody there to see it but the audience.
    • In the DVD commentary, Stephen Mangan says that he did that solely for the benefit of the crew—and was rather surprised when he saw that it'd made it into the show.
  • Brief Accent Imitation: The surgeons decide to spend an operation talking in Geordie accents for a laugh. Guy makes a disturbingly atrocious attempt at it.
    • When Guy accidentally finds himself on the phone with his current lover's boyfriend, he tries being Jeff from Derbyshire.
      "Ohr do they? Which pohrt? Which pohrt? Which BIT?"
    • Alan's accents are... appallingly terrible.
    • In one scene Sue White acts like a Nazi "from a film".
    • And Caroline does an uncanny impression of Sue White's Scottish accent (plus body language) on one occasion.
  • Brutal Honesty: Joanna, Guy and surprisingly, sometimes Martin.
    Dr. Caroline Todd: I'm drinking to forget.
    Dr. Martin Dear: Are you drinking to forget you look a bit like a man sometimes?
  • Buxom Beauty Standard:
    • Rachel weighs hers breasts in one episode. Apparently, she wants to know how much they would cost to post.
    • Caroline makes herself a pair of huge boobs out of bubble-bath foam, but then changes her mind.
  • Call-Back: The show does have some continuity, referring to gags made a couple of episodes before. Most of them are just throwaway lines.
  • Calvinball: It's called Guyball (pronounced Gee-ball) and it is played with a basket upon the head.
  • Cannot Spit It Out: Guy has a very hard time saying "Thank you", apologising and saying "I love you."
    "What I'm trying to say is... I like you... I mean, I like you."
    • And of course, Dr. Martin Dear completely loses the ability to speak coherent English altogether upon finding out Guy and Joanna had sex.
  • Cape Swish: Alan spends an entire episode trying to get his lab coat to do this. Joanna is unimpressed.
  • Car Meets House: Not invoked as traditionally as it should, but nonetheless, Dr. Statham's Vauxhall Vectra does somehow end up being squished into his office by Mac and Boyce. (Bizarrely, although the Vectra is clearly damaged, the building seems completely unscathed). Alan phones roadside assistance and dutifully turns on his hazard lights as he should.
  • The Cast Show Off: Amongst other things, Mark Heap's impressive ping-pong skills.
    • Mark Heap started out as a professional juggler, and often uses his skills in Alan Statham's physical comedy.
  • Catapult Nightmare: Martin's exam/dancing dream sequence ends with him waking up, sweating, full-dressed in bed.
  • Catchphrase: Guy saying "Let me finish!" after realizing he's just said something offensive, and trying to rectify it. Also "See you in Zurich" is often the prelude to his chatting somebody up.
  • The Casanova: Arrogant, self-centered man-whore Dr. Secretan manages to get just about any woman he wants, by pretending to cry and/or ending cell phone conversations with the jet-setty "I'll see you in Zurich." Guy blurs the line between Casanova and Kavorka Man but is more of the former.
    • Parodied when he reels off a long-winded, sorrowful cock-and-bull story in an attempt to hit on Joanna, who laughs at him for it (but still sleeps with him anyway).
    • Subverted with his later undying love and failed attempts for Caroline, which drops him down to a Casanova Wannabe.
  • Casanova Wannabe: Martin is the polar opposite of Guy in every way, a relatively unpopular, socially awkward and rather dumb individual who spends the series in totally unrequited love with Caroline. Rachel's pet nickname for him is "Martin Dear, isn't he queer?"
    • Mind you he does end up in a relationship with Karen Ball, but not many people would count that.
      • Especially as he instantly regrets it when Karen turns out to be more demanding sexually than he can cope with.
    • He accidentally becomes a pimp to "Double-D" Suzie as well.
  • Casting Gag: Kim and Boyce's sexually-charged relationship is a reference to The Office, where the two actors also played a young couple. They had similar relationships to each other on both shows.
  • Catapult Nightmare: Martin on the morning of his exam.
  • Chekhov's Gun: Before Caroline's date with Jake, Guy is shown stabbing an egg with a Swiss Army Knife during a conversation with Caroline. After the date, Guy throws the knife at Jake to stop them kissing.
  • The Chew Toy: HR clerk Karen Ball—not even the deeply pathetic Martin Dear can bring himself to be nice to her. Neither can the office copy machine or the printer.
  • Chick Magnet:
    • Mac, who is universally adored, admired and lusted after by almost everybody at the hospital with little-to-no effort on his behalf. He spends the series being chased down by Caroline, Emmy, Holly and of course, Sue White.
    • Lyndon is the other main example of this trope, a handsome, sweet-natured IT consultant who is regularly called out to perform mundane, bullshit tasks by regular nurses and clerks who find themselves besotted with him.
    • Both men find themselves actively envied by Casanova Dr. Guy Secretan due to their lack of intention and effort in getting women.
  • Cloud Cuckoo Land: Everyone, with the possible exception of Mac and Lyndon, is a Cloudcuckoolander, so the hospital counts as this. Bear in mind that this is a place where riding a motorbike naked through a hospital isn't considered too weird and neither is giving birth to a lion.
  • Control Freak: Angela irons her pants, and when Caroline throws a house party, she follows her boyfriend Liam around, pestering him to "line his stomach", even when he insists he's not hungry.
  • The Cobbler's Children Have No Shoes The fact that medical staff have unhealthy lifestyles is not unexpected, but for people who work in a hospital, the characters seem to get precious little attention for their bizarre injuries (maybe Law of Conservation of Detail, but still. They also seem to have remarkable healing powers, though). Also, the fact that Sue receives no apparent medical attention (or any other kind of attention, actually) for her alleged pregnancy or labour—despite where she works—increases its implausibility. (Though it could be that she just didn't tell anyone she was pregnant, since she apparently did it by stealing Mac's sperm. She may not even really be pregnant—she shows no sign of it and gives birth to a lion cub.)
  • Coincidental Dodge:
    • Guy Secretan attempts three times to hit Jake in the head with a Guyball, but Jake keeps inadvertently dodging the balls every single time.
      • Doesn't turn out so well for Jake later on at Caroline's flat, when Guy finally succeeds in hitting him in the head. With a Swiss army knife.
    • Happens again when Guy pushes a trolley at Lyndon after he (accidentally) pulls a woman Guy was talking to. Lyndon then walks down a different corridor, leaving the cart to crash into a random doctor.
    • Caroline accidentally dodges a crossbow bolt that Sue fired directly at her head.
  • Comedic Sociopathy:
    • Sue White in a nutshell. Her hobbies including stalking people, molesting people, threatening to put spells on people and shooting at people with a bow and arrow. She also gives birth to a lion cub, which raises a whole lot of questions that don't need to be answered.
    • Also could qualify regarding Kim and Rachel's attitude towards Karen.
    • Also, Joanna and Alan's Bonnie and Clyde-style crime spree.
  • Comically Missing the Point: Happens quite often. A prominent example:
    Mac: I think... my son's hair might be dyed. Do you realise what that means?
    Martin: Hm... probably that he's quite concerned about his appearance... oh my God, he's gay!
    • When Statham kills Joanna's dwarf cousin with a heron, Joanna gets angry with him and asks him if he realises what he's done. Statham responds: "MY HERON!"
  • Construction Catcalls: Subverted. Joanna tries to get a reaction out of some burly roadworkers by strutting past them repeatedly. After they remain completely oblivious, she flashes and verbally abuses them instead.
  • Continuity Nod: In the first series Guy is seen talking on the phone with one of his friends who has just bought a jet ski, "Nobody buys a jet ski, you hire them, you tosser! No, how are you gonna get it on the plane? When are you ever gonna use a jet ski?!". In series 2 after the "incident" Guy has lost his driver's license and been blacklisted from using both taxis and the bus, so he ends up jet skiing to work. Then he hits a swan and is banned.
    • In the second episode, Martin notices that the hospital bulletin board has an ad for a cello for £80, and he thinks it's a bargain. Later in the second series, Sue notices a cello for sale on the same bulletin board, but for £40 now. She thinks it's a rip-off.
  • Cool and Unusual Punishment: Guy sellotaping Martin to the wall of a men's toilets and threatening to "phone the gays." This was punishment for Martin unintentionally giving Sue White a videotape of Guy and Joanna having sex.
  • Cool Bike: Mac's motorbike, which he likes to drive around the hospital. Naked.
  • Cool Crown: The Crown of Confidence that Guy made, which he wears when giving himself a confidence boost. He lets Caroline borrow it.
  • Country Matters: The way in which Dr. Alan Statham's "Consultant Radiologist" name badge gets consistently defaced throughout the series.
    • Sue White calls Guy one, which ends up getting him all hot and bothered.
  • Covert Pervert: Harriet and Angela, surprisingly enough.
  • Crying Wolf: Naturally, Mac is totally unwilling to believe that the reason Guy lied to Mac about him and Caroline hating each other was because Sue White was blackmailing him.
  • Cut His Heart Out with a Spoon: Literally threatened by Guy to Mac if he tells anyone that Guy was a bridesmaid when he was five.
  • Damned by Faint Praise: During a bumbling speech to Joanna, Alan comments, "You may not be the youngest or even the prettiest woman in the hospital, but in this age of casual ... chlamydia ..."
  • Deadpan Snarker: Everyone has a few moments of this, but notably Mac, Joanna, Kim and Caroline.
  • Did I Just Say That Out Loud?: A lot of characters have moments like this, but notably Caroline, Guy, Martin and Alan.
  • Disappeared Dad: Martin, but this is mainly because Joanna makes it difficult for them to locate each other.
  • The Ditz: Harriet Schulenburg manages to forget either her kids or an article of clothing in about every episode. She once arrived at work and a cat jumped out of her bag:
    Harriet Schulenburg: *puzzled* "Well, who did I leave at the vet's then?"
    • Honestly, this trope applies to the whole HR department.
  • The Dog Bites Back: After witnessing a regular chav chatting up Karen, Martin decks him with an out-of-character left hook.
    • Martin never manages to bite back against Guy though and remains his bitch throughout the entire series. Until the Special, that is.
  • Doorstop Baby: Guy was left on the door of an orphanage by his then-teenage mother.
  • Drama Bomb Finale: The end of series two, and the tone of the series finale/special.
  • Driven to Suicide: Alan and Joanna rather romantically stride naked, hand-in-hand, into the North Sea to kill themselves to escape persecution. The extended ending shows they weren't very successful at dying though.
  • Dude Looks Like a Lady: Boyce is referred to as a "porcelain ladyboy".
  • Dude Magnet: Caroline, despite her social awkwardness, 70s clothes and masculine haircut, manages to attract Mac, Guy, Martin and Jake, although it's obvious she is only truly interested in Mac.
  • Dude, Not Funny!: When Angela confides to Guy and Martin that his ex, Holly, is not only engaged to a top surgeon at another hospital but is also pregnant (note Holly aborted her child with Mac) and asks them not to say anything. When Martin accidentally blurts it out, Guy takes the chance to start taunting him about it. After Mac gives a very understated "Fuck you." and leaves, Guy laughs it off and says Mac can't take a joke, and this is Angela and Martin's non-verbal response, to the point it makes Guy awkwardly leave.
  • Dude, She's Like in a Coma: Gender-flipped, in Season 2 Sue steals some of Mac's semen and then manages to impregnate herself with it. (Possibly—she seems to believe she's pregnant, but shows no outward signs of it, and apparently gives birth to a lion cub.)
  • Eat the Evidence: When Dr. Statham decides to invade the operating theatre.
  • Embarrassing Middle Name: Guy's is Valerie.
  • Embarrassing Nickname: Common nickname for Martin is "Fartin." He also goes into a very lengthy anecdote to Caroline about how he came to be known as "Titbrain" at high school.
  • Enfante Terrible: Harriet's son Robbie. According to his teacher, he likes to bite people, tells his teachers that his parents don't bleed and is very disruptive. Unless he's pretending to be dead of course, which can go on for several hours.
    • The little shit is actually taken to the HR office by Harriet in one episode, where he delights in smashing up as many things as he can on her desk.
  • Even the Guys Want Him: Lyndon.
  • Everybody Smokes: One of the few modern comedies today that actually has several of the main protagonists portrayed as chain smokers, although they never escape criticism from others, especially due to their chosen workplace.
  • The Exit Is That Way: After Caroline walks in on Angela and Liam having sex, she tries to make a swift exit but walks into a dead-end on the landing, forcing her to awkwardly backtrack past their bedroom in full sight.
  • Eye Scream: Joanna mistakes liquid paper for eye drops.
    • In the first episode, Kim is wearing an eyepatch because she got sperm in her eye. She tells everyone she has conjunctivitis.
    • Caroline sprays mace in Martin's eyes because she thought he was a mugger.
  • Extreme Doormat: Martin lets Guy boss him around, belittle him and casually insult his girlfriend with feeble attempts to prevent it; Mac has to step in several times when Guy takes it too far.
    • Karen. The HR staff walk all over her (Joanna forgets her name half the time) and she generally seems to be the only one who actually does any work.
    • Caroline has a hard time saying "No," when Angela asks to move in with her, even if she finds Angela very annoying.
  • Face Doodling: Alan does this to Mac when he's in a coma.
  • Fall of the House of Cards: Martin and Boyce spend their time as House Officers building large castles out of chocolate bars. Their efforts are swiftly destroyed when Sue White dives on and slides across the desk on her chest.
  • French Jerk: Guy Secretan is half-Swiss and a massive Jerkass, even if he is culturally Anglo.
  • Freudian Slip: Joanna and Guy attempting to be normal again.
    Joanna Clore: Good morning.
    Dr. Guy Secretan: Good Mummy...oh, Jesus!!
    • Guy just seems incapable of speaking to Joanna normally after the incident.
    • Alan is also extremely prone to these.
  • The "Fun" in "Funeral": Sue wears a bunny costume to Angela's funeral and Martin shares his thoughts and feelings through the medium of interpretive dance.
  • The Friend Nobody Likes: Guy, on occasion.
  • Funny Background Event: When Dr. Statham goes into the Chinese takeaway there is a sign on the counter saying "NO CHEQUE'S" (sic). Later, after he's been in there some time annoying everyone, it's been replaced by a hand-written one saying "NO POMPOU'S TWAT'S".
  • Funny Foreigner: Kim's unintelligible Turkish sex-slave Murat. He manages to speak enough English to compare Karen to "Queen". Not an actual queen, but Brian May from Queen.
  • Gay Bravado: Boyce does a lot of this in the company of Dr. Alan Statham. It's initially to troll him, but the two develop a genuine fondness for each other that might well be romantic. They get a Big Damn Kiss in the series 2 finale.
  • Genre Savvy: Early in the first series, Mac says to Caroline, "I think there's enough soap operas set in hospitals, don't you?"
  • The Glasses Gotta Go: Joanna ends up needing glasses in Season 2, and although the HR department are unusually nice to her about them, she notices the wrinkles on her hands, face, etc and promptly freaks out and stomps on the glasses.
    • Mac finds a pair of glasses in one episode and promptly puts them on Caroline, who at first finds it funny but then quickly takes them off because they "smell funny".
  • Granola Girl: Caroline attempts to become a Granola Girl in order to impress Holly and appear superior to her, but only makes herself look like a creepy, confused twat.
    Dr. Macartney: So, just to make sure we've got this absolutely right, um, one night last week, Twig, Berry and Bush broke into a farm using a slashy fence thing, stole a real, actual pig, drove it to Central London, took it up in a lift, kept it in a small, cramped flat, and you pop round occasionally to take it for walkies?
    Dr. Caroline Todd: YES!! Will you STOP going on about it?
    • Karen buys vegan shoes in one episode, but she promptly freaks out and throws them out of the window when Rachel and Kim inform her that a gecko is in fact a small lizard. Karen's shoe then hits a pigeon.
  • Gratuitous French: Mainly used by Mac to confuse Guy.
  • Green-Eyed Epiphany: Mac is noticeably annoyed with Guy's lecherous antics towards Caroline at her party when she's very drunk, and hangs around once Guy leaves to help Caroline while she's ill.
    • Guy realises he "Like-likes" Caroline when she starts dating Jake.
  • Hammerspace: Sue White pulls an entire standing lamp out of a bag.
  • Harp of Femininity: Angela plays one to Grade 7, while her more tomboyish housemate Caroline struggles to get a sound out of her flute:
  • Harpo Does Something Funny: The scenes between Sue and Guy, as both of the actors are improv actors. Example.
  • Heroic Bastard: Martin, Mac and Holly's son (which isn't Mac's, but still a bastard) and Guy.
    Guy: "Does it bother you that your son's a bastard?"
    Mac: "Does it bother you that you're a bastard?"
    Guy: "Well, my parents were victims of circumstance."
    Mac: "Not even talking about your parents."
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: Mac and Guy, Boyce and Martin, and Kim and Naughty Rachel.
  • Hilariously Abusive Childhood: Martin is hinted at having this. With a mother like Joanna, what would you expect?
    • Guy is implied to have had one as well, especially as he apparently went to a boarding school at a young age and the memory reduces him to snivelling to himself in the cloakroom.
  • Hollywood Heart Attack: Alan Statham spends an entire episode hyperventilating and suffering multiple debilitating panic attacks. He is convinced that he is dying of a heart attack, but nobody seems to give a toss.
    Joanna Clore: Christ Alan, you look like a northern junkie...
  • Hospital Hottie: Angela, Boyce, Guy, Lyndon and Mac.
  • Hurricane of Excuses: Dr. Secretan has an excuse for almost everything, ranging from sorrowful anecdotes of childhood lost to completely absurd, made-up scenarios. His poorest effort by far was simply blaming Mac for the female ranking system that he devised.
  • I Ate WHAT?!:
    • Guy steals Sue's lunch one day as she gets a special meal all to herself, only to learn that it's umbilical cord sushi and he leaves to throw up.
    • Alan has second thoughts when he tries to eat a patient's gall bladder. Luckily he never swallows it.
  • I Call Him "Mister Happy": Karen and a heavily pregnant Harriet are reading through a book of male baby names, leading everyone to believe they're discussing names for Harriet's baby. What they're actually doing is choosing a name for Martin's penis.
  • Improv: Part of the auditions were "improv battles" so naturally all of the actors had the freedom to mess around with the script as long as the end result was good. In the DVD extras the writers joked how they would create the perfect script and the actors would simply ignore it.
  • Improvised Weapon: Statham kills Joanne's dwarf cousin (who was pretending to be a goblin) with a stuffed heron.
  • I'm a Humanitarian: Non-violent example: Sue White eats umbilical cord sushi.
  • I Can't Dance: Angela's boyfriend comments, "She really is the perfect girlfriend... although, she does dance a bit like a wolf." Cue the camera panning to Angela doing just that.
  • I Need a Freaking Drink: When Martin finds out Guy and Joanna have gone back to his flat together, he's so shocked that he feels an urgent compulsion to drink Guinness and smoke cigarettes, even though he does neither.
    • Caroline does this when she finds out about Mac and Holly's child.
  • I Will Only Slow You Down: On the cliff's edge, Martin stoically urges Guy and Mac to save themselves and leave him to fall to his death. Jerkass Guy agrees with him and supports his decision, earning him a Precision F-Strike from Mac.
  • Icy Blue Eyes: Boyce has "chipped ice" blue eyes, according to Alan.
  • Inferiority Superiority Complex: Guy. If you look underneath his arrogant alpha male bravado, it's clear he's actually quite insecure and pathetic.
  • It Doesn't Mean Anything: Caroline tells Mac that their first kiss ("lip incident") was an accident and that she doesn't even like him, but it turns out the kiss she was describing was the one she had with Guy; she didn't remember the kiss in the toilet with Mac. She eagerly pushes for details, and when he describes it to her, he downplays it as "average" (clearly teasing), but they nearly act it out again in a cupboard and end up thinking this trope and she ends up weak in the knees as she walks away.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Guy Secretan, eventually.
    • Kim and Rachel are often very mean to Karen, but they often try to give Harriet useful advice and help her with her problems.
  • Kavorka Man: Jibbering twat Dr. Alan Statham is known to have had several sexually-charged conquests throughout his lifetime, despite being completely and utterly devoid of personality, looks, charm and even the most basic social skills.
    Dr. Alan Statham: Surreptitiously however, I was bringing her to climax with a breadstick...
    • Although Joanna outright states (via Karen) that the only reason she went out with him is because she was bored. Alan also stalks Cordelia, a woman who works at the hospital chapel, but she is utterly repulsed by him.
  • Kick the Dog:
    • Almost literally: Harriet accidentally brings the family cat to work (and, implied, leaves one of her kids at the vet's). Upon seeing it, Joanna stomps on it and then punts it across the room.
    • Guy reads Martin's exam results for him and tells him he's passed with merit. Martin is ecstatic and the room breaks out into a mini-party/celebration, with hugs, booze and face-licking, before Martin goes off on his merry way. Only after he's left does Guy reveal he was "joking", and that Martin failed the whole lot.
    • When Angela leaves for Canada, Caroline reluctantly wishes her luck. Angela comments on how mature this is and says she expected Caroline to be jealous. When Caroline admits, "I hate you. I hate your clothes, I hate your success and I hate your flicky hair." Angela responds gleefully with, "I know! You're the perfect girlfriend!" before sauntering off.
  • Kiss of Life: Alan demands one from Boyce, even though as Boyce lampshades, mouth-to-mouth is only for the specific case where someone's not breathing. Boyce gives a hard Aside Glance before going to it very vigorously.
  • Kissing Under the Influence: Caroline kisses four different people at the party after 22 shots of tequila.
  • Labcoat of Science and Medicine: Many of the characters wear the white coat. Alan Statham in particular is keen to make sure it "sweeps" majestically when he walks.
  • Ladykiller in Love: Guy when he falls for Caroline, even though he's more of a Casanova Wannabe than a Ladykiller.
  • Lame Comeback: Like his bad puns, Dr. Statham loves this trope.
  • Lame Pun Reaction: Dr Statham makes a lot of dreadful puns throughout the series. One example was when he won an online caption competition. The image was of an X-ray and his winning caption was "X-Ray Charles". Boyce could only stare at him in horror before saying it was absolutely dreadful.
  • Large Ham: Guy, Sue White, Alan.
  • Last-Second Word Swap: Guy and Alan are the most frequent offenders.
    Alan: Mr. Boyce, I suggest you don't waste everyone's time by raising your nipples— HANDS!
  • Law of Inverse Fertility: Harriet and her husband.
  • Leaning on the Fourth Wall: Alan complains that a film crew is "disrupting medical science" by filming a documentary in the hospital. It is later revealed that the director of the crew is going to Toronto to make a "part-improvised doc rom-com". These comments could practically be about the show itself: Green Wing itself is a partially improvised romantic comedy about doctors that was filmed in a real hospital.
  • Les Yay: Among the several people Caroline kisses during her party is Sue White.invoked
  • Lies, Damned Lies, and Statistics: When Statham won an online caption competition he proudly boasted he got 100% of the votes. Only 7 people voted.
  • Literal Cliffhanger: The scenes were almost identical, as both occur with a large vehicle losing control in a field, swerve to miss a sheep and ends up hanging over the exact same cliff, even with two people sitting in the front seats and Martin in the back.
  • Little People Are Surreal: Especially when painted green.
  • Love Dodecahedron: Almost every character is romantically involved with two or more people;
    • Caroline - fought over by Mac, Guy, Martin (sometimes), Sue (when she isn't trying to murder her) and Jake.
    • Martin - in an on/off relationship with Karen from HR.
    • Boyce - in a relationship with Kim from HR, yet has a love/hate relationship with Alan. He also flirts with Rachel at times, offers Martin a hand-job if he'll open his exam results, and asks for "a go" on Martin's prostitute when he briefly (and accidentally) becomes a pimp.
    • Lyndon - fought over by pretty much everyone in the building, but especially in HR (including an affair with the heavily pregnant and married-with-four-kids Harriet.
    • Joanna - in an on/off relationship with Alan. She has sex with various other people, including Kim's Turkish pen-pal (we assume), a sixteen-year-old boy, and her long-lost son, Guy.
    • Sue, when Angela is trying to secure an early release.
    Sue: Do I look like a mug? Have I got a handle? Am I made of china, am I kept in a cupboard or on a small wooden tree? Would you like to put your lips on my rim? You may answer that question, the others were rhetorical.
    • Another from Sue, to Caroline.
    Sue: I think I would like to touch a big woman's breasts. I'm not a lesbian, but they look so inviting, don't they? Actually, maybe I am a lesbian. *starts laughing silently*
    • Some subtext between Angela and Caroline, particularly when they have a fight over Angela's pants. In one episode, Angela casually slaps Caroline on the arse as she leaves the room.
  • Luke, I Am Your Father: It is revealed that one of the reasons Martin can still practice medicine despite being pretty bad is because he is Joanna's unwanted son. Exaggerated during the series one finale with Joanna discovering Guy is her son after having sex with him.
  • Manipulative Bitch: Holly.
  • Master of the Mixed Message: Mac is aware that Caroline is besotted with him and takes pleasure in teasing her over it, though he obviously does have some feelings towards her. She puts up with it for a long time but eventually confronts him about his cruel behaviour.
  • May–December Romance: At one point, a mentally-deteriorating Joanna inexplicably wakes up in bed with a 16-year-old schoolboy. (Hilariously, both the boy and his mum seem totally okay with it, the mum even bringing Joanna a cup of tea when she comes to wake up her son for school.)
    Dr. Alan Statham: I keep seeing dwarves...
    Joanna Clore: I keep seeing Harry Potter underpants!
  • Meaningful Name: When Sue impregnates herself with Mac's sperm, she names her baby Simba. Besides the obvious reference, it means "lion," referring to how she calls Mac's hair the lion's mane. However, it get even more meaningful as she gives birth to a lion.
  • Men Don't Cry: Mac successfully restrains himself from turning on the waterworks, even in the full knowledge that he's dying of an incurable disease and that he'll never marry, have children and live a full life, as a sobbing Martin Dear blubbers out to him.
    • Subverted and lampshaded by Sue White when she catches Guy crying like a sissy in the cloakroom.
      Dr. Guy Secretan: Don't be nice to me-
      Sue White: Oh alright, pull yourself together you cretinous fuckwit! What sort of a man hides in other people’s coats, rocking and whinging to themselves? I’ll tell you what sort of a man! A self-centred, egotistical WANKPOT! Unhook yourself and stop being so weak. Men don't cry, they're strong hunter-gatherers. So go hunt, go gather, go be a total CUNT because that's what you do best!
  • Mexican Standoff: Guy vs. Mac, brandishing hot cups of tea and coffee as weapons.
    • Another happens with arcade game guns, with Guy holding Martin at gunpoint and Mac talking him down.
  • Mid-Life Crisis Car: The very first scene features Joanna asking a salesman which of two cars will make her look younger: the salesman deadpans, "Neither. They are both just cars."
  • Mistaken for Gay: In the special, while Joanna and Alan are hiding out in the caravan park, a man thinks Alan's gay because of "the shorts and 'tache", Joanna doesn't correct him and so the man promptly invites Alan on a walk by the river.
    • Also invoked a bit too literally as "Gay Secretan" is a common error that most hospital staff seem to make.
  • Mr. Fanservice: Mac, especially in the coma dream sequences (including wrestling shirtless with Guy in front of a fireplace.)
  • My God, What Have I Done?: Guy just barely shows the faintest signs of this reaction after he gets drunk, has sex with his mum, stabs Martin with Botox, punches Mac, steals an ambulance and drives it off a cliff.
  • My Local: The hospital staff are often seen sinking pints at the local boozer after work, which is never named but is always the same pub.
  • Nerd Glasses: Alan Statham and his 1970s box glasses.
  • Nerves of Steel: Mac is usually very composed in dangerous situations, the best example being when he tries calming down a hysterical Guy in the Season One finale.
  • Nice to the Waiter: Mac and Guy's personality differences are effectively summarized by the way they treat the working classes at the hospital.
    • Mac seduces the dinnerladies with genuine charm and compliments, and effortlessly strikes good friendships and rapport with the janitors.
    • Guy attempts to mimic this on several occasions but completely fails to hide his inbuilt pompousness and snobbery, and often ends up in humiliating slanging matches.
  • The Nicknamer: Some classic examples here, mostly courtesy of Sue White and Guy Secretan. Alan gets likened to C3PO, while Martin is aptly described as "the love child of Wayne Sleep and Godzilla" or "The King of the Elf-people."
    • Sue likes to switch her nicknames for Caroline around, referring to her variously as "Dr. Trodd", "Dr. Plodd" and "Dr. Dudd".
  • Nobody Calls Me "Chicken"!: Guy sticks his hand in a toaster, just because Holly essentially dares him to (he believes it's broken, though). He's also always engaging in silly contests with Mac, such as coffee/tea eating, flame-fuelled arm-wrestles, running through a swimming pool and the Spoon of Destiny.
  • No Name Given: Dr. 'Mac' Macartney. Lampshaded and unrevealed variously throughout the series, especially when he is looking at his medical test results:
    Dr. Macartney: Sometimes I forget I have a first name.
  • No Sense of Personal Space: Holly, especially towards Mac and Caroline, the latter of whom is obviously rather uncomfortable with it.
  • Noodle Incident: When Guy orders Martin to do something (yet again), he's about to go do it when Mac asks, "You're not going to go, are you?" when Martin says he is, Mac says, "What's he going to do, attach jumper cables to your nipples?" Martin replies, "No, he'll probably do something different this time."
  • Paper-Thin Disguise: When Guy is banned from visiting Mac's hospital room he wraps a black sheet round his head and pretends to be a crazy old Greek woman, Caroline is completely oblivious. She catches on after he's left, though.
    Dr. Guy Secretan: Goodbye.
    Dr. Caroline Todd: Bye.
    Dr. Guy Secretan: BYE!
    • She does rather pointedly mention Battleships to him later.
    • Also:
      Dr. Guy Secretan: Her name's... Hhhhcccccchhhhhhh.
    • Subverted when Statham dresses up as a Mountie when hiding a corpse. Joanna said it was incredibly stupid.
  • Not What It Looks Like: Frequently. And frequently averted.
    Dr. Alan Statham: "Erm... you might be thinking I'm comparing my penis to that of a corpse..." (Beat) *walks away guiltily*
  • Offhand Backhand: Lyndon does this to Alan after Harriet breaks up with him, and a heartbroken Caroline does this to Martin.
  • Old Maid: Joanna is in total denial that she's past her prime, but goes to ridiculous length to keep her actual age a secret, which is why Martin is forbidden to tell anyone they're related.
  • Old Windbag: Doesn't begin to cover Alan Statham.
  • The One Thing I Don't Hate About You: Boyce is very keen to shovel dirt on Guy's name to Caroline in the first few episodes due to his immorality and hedonism, but concedes that "he is of course, good. Very good."
    • Most people feel this way about Guy.
  • Only One Name:
    • The ubiquitous Boyce, whose first name we never hear. He never even gets referred to as "Doctor", and unlike Mac, the existence of a first name is never alluded to. He's just Boyce.
    • Same with Rachel, although she does get the "Naughty" prefix. Not that any of the characters ever refer to her as such—she's only Naughty Rachel in the credits.
  • Only Sane Man: Pretty much just Mac and Lyndon, who are also the only two Chick Magnets.
  • Outlaw Couple: Alan and Joanna in the special. Most of the crimes they commit, though, are really due to their own stupidity.
  • Opposites Attract: Effortlessly cool Lyndon falls for sweet, scatterbrained Harriet. (Apparently, Lyndon likes "big pants").
  • Overly Long Gag:
  • Parental Abandonment: Guy was abandoned by his teenage mother and doesn't know who his father was.
  • Parental Incest: Guy doesn't find out Joanna is his long-lost and presumed-dead mother until after they've slept together. And it's been caught on tape.
  • Parental Neglect: Unintentionally, but Harriet tends to lose track of them. Once she forgot to pick Oscar up from a school trip and he ended up sleeping on a park bench.
  • Parking Payback:
    • After Alan starts harassing Mac about his parking space, Mac gets his own back by somehow dropping Alan's Vauxhall Vectra into Alan's office, with assistance from Boyce.
    • In another instance, Joanna shunts two cars out of the way in her BMW so that she can park. (This is actually part of Mac's coma fantasy, though).
  • Parody Sue: Angela.
  • Pet the Dog: Joanna may treat Martin poorly, but she does at least send him a postcard when she and Alan go on the run. Also it's implied that she has some influence over the fact Martin still gets to work at the hospital. As long as he doesn't tell anyone she's his real mum, at least.
  • The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything The doctors who rarely speak to a patient or have a work-related conversation. Not all of them (Mac, Caroline and Guy's Seinfeldian Conversation scenes are frequently over an operation, though they seldom refer to what they're doing).
    • Combines with Shouldn't We Be in School Right Now? for the junior doctors — or rather, Shouldn't Dr. Statham Be Giving An Actual Seminar?, given that he usually swiftly goes into bickering with Boyce and sends them all out.
  • Poor Communication Kills: Martin is so horrified that Guy and Joanna have disappeared off in order to have sex that he can barely string together an intelligible sentence to Mac, which is a shame because otherwise he might have arrived in time to stop them.
  • The Prankster: Boyce.
  • Precision F-Strike: More like a Precision C strike, where Sue White tells Guy, "Men don't cry, they're strong hunter-gatherers, so go hunt, go gather, go be a total cunt, because that's what you do best!!"
  • Put on a Bus: Dr. Angela Hunter gets what is probably the most generous bus-sendoff ever. That is, until she is later killed off-screen in an unexplained incident with a moose, constituting a Bus Crash.
  • Putting the "Medic" in Comedic
  • Quirky Doctor: The series is loosely based on the premise that hospitals are full of people like this. (Though as they're mostly the doctors who don't do anything, being any good at their job largely falls into an Informed Attribute.)
  • Raging Stiffie:
    • Frequently celebrated by Dr. Secretan.
      Boyce: I'm getting a semi.
      Dr. Guy Secretan: Semi? What's wrong with you boy, I'm like a flagpole!
    • Alan gets one whilst playing the recorder, much to the amusement of Boyce.
  • Rape as Comedy: Sue White crosses a Moral Event Horizon when she forces Mac to come while he's unconscious.
  • Really Gets Around: Joanna, Guy and Naughty Rachel are essentially sex-workers.
    Naughty Rachel: *to Ollie* Oh, and just so you know? I always fuck on the first date.
    • Caroline's brother as well, apparently. When Martin asks what he does, Caroline flippantly answers, "Oh, whatever he can get his hands on."
  • Redundant Romance Attempt: After Martin buys Caroline at the slave auction, Mac gives him some frankly rather dubious advice to act like an arsehole, successfully destroying the entire date from the get-go. He does fix it by having Martin tell Caroline he'd been hypnotised and Caroline had accidentally said his "trigger-word."
  • Revival: An audio revival in 2024 titled "Green Wing: Resuscitated" saw the entire main cast return for a brand new series which picks up 12 years after the events of the TV show.
  • Rhetorical Question Blunder: Alan and Guy.
    Guy: We said no book questions! What am I, a girl?"
    Mac: Yes, you are, but the correct answer was John Milton.
  • Road Trip Across the Street: Quite literally. Martin Dear lives in a flat directly opposite the hospital, but he nonetheless still takes the 15 second drive on his scooter every day.
  • Romantic False Lead: Holly, who of course happens to appear just as Mac and Caroline are about to lock lips. And when that isn't enough to put the brakes on, she pulls a small child out of her sleeve. Caroline often fantasizes about shooting her.
    • Jake to Caroline, to an extent.
    • Emmy, again for Mac.
  • Running Gag: Several. Mac getting repeatedly called ginger and replying he is blond. Hair in general is running joke: Guy's gets increasingly long and curly over the series, Rachel dyes hers from blonde to brunette between season 1 and 2. Karen gets her hair trapped in the printer. Joanna dyes hers peroxide blonde which earns her comparisons to Jimmy Saville. People making fun of Alan's moustache. Guy Ball. The Human Resources department's odd games. (Like diving to the floor whenever the phone rings, drawing a hopscotch on the floor, switching desks to confuse Joanna, etc.)
  • Rule of Three: Used a fair bit throughout the series, notably in the cliffhangers at the end of each series. Also the core surgical team of Mac, Guy and Caroline, present together in almost every operation.
  • Seinfeldian Conversation: Quite a few occur each episode.
  • Sensitive Guy and Manly Man: Mac and Guy, sorta, although Guy is actually quite emotionally fragile under his macho facade.
    • Martin and Guy.
  • Sequential Symptom Syndrome: Joanna, with a donut in her mouth, walks in on Harriet describing the symptoms of pregnancy, including a craving for fatty foods, and finds herself feeling the rest of them too.
    • Strange variation by Sue, who reads a book on pregnancy aloud to herself and overacts each symptom.
  • Series Continuity Error: In series 1, we hear that Holly is pregnant. She shows up in series 2 conspicuously not pregnant, and with a four-year-old son but no baby. No explanation is given.
  • Sesquipedalian Loquaciousness: Alan Statham often speaks in ridiculously complicated sentences and vocabulary, and sometimes even resorts to French and Latin just to express himself.
    Boyce: My only worry is that, er, when I do become a fully-fledged doctor such as your good self, I'll have to adopt an archaic use of words and a long-winded sentence structure...
  • Shirtless Scene: Mac and Guy wrestling shirtless in front of a big fireplace in one of Mac's dream sequences.
  • Shout-Out:
  • The Shrink: Jake Leaf, who is a complementary therapist.
  • Significant Monogram: Alan Roderick Statham is certainly an arse.
  • Similar Squad: According to Word of God Naughty Rachel, Kim and Karen are respectively meant to be female versions of Guy, Mac and Martin.
    • Although Kim is generally a lot more abrasive than easy-going Mac.
  • Soap Opera: Caroline loves Mac who's with Holly who may or may not have had his baby, meanwhile Guy and Martin love Caroline...
  • Sorry, I'm Gay: After being dumped by their respective girlfriends, Jake and Lyndon sit in the pub drinking together. When sex-starved Joanna starts coming onto them, Jake claims they're gay. Upon her insistence, they awkwardly kiss so she'll leave them alone. She later comes back and asks if they can do it again.
  • Spit Take: Sue White sprays coffee all over her desk in a ridiculously exaggerated fashion after finding out about the Guy-Joanna sex tape.
  • Spy Speak: When Alan and Joanna go on the run.
    Boyce: The weasel is still in its cage. The weasel is still in its cage... The weasel is out of the cage! The weasel is out of the cage! Fly, pelicans! Go, go—the weasel is returning to the cage! The weasel is returning to the cage, so pelicans to the kitchen! Pelicans, go to the kitchen. Go to the kitchen! The kitchen! The bush! The kitchen is the bush!
  • Stalker with a Crush:
    • Sue White is this trope. The scene in which she makes a clay statue of Dr. Mac and considers differently-sized genitalia is but one shining example. She even steals some of his genetic material while he's comatose to try to impregnate herself with his child.
    • Joanna goes into the territory, though not quite to the extreme as Sue, with her chasing of Lyndon.
  • Stealth Insult:
    • Mac, mostly towards Alan.
    • Angela and Holly both do this to Caroline.
  • The Stinger: In the extended version of the final episode, while Mac is flying away with Caroline on a balloon (with Guy) he has something very important to tell her, implying the disease may or may not be real. It also shows that Statham and Joanna survive the finale.
  • Stalker with a Test Tube: Sue who eventually gives birth to a lion.
  • Strong Family Resemblance:
    • Guy and Martin, since they are half-brothers.
    • Martin and his father, though neither of them ever realize this.
  • Stuff Blowing Up: Surprisingly little of this happens, however, Alan and Joanna's stolen camper van does explode in the middle of nowhere after Alan tries to change it over from petroleum to fermented vodka and cow shit.
  • Surreal Humor
  • Surprise Incest: Guy and Joanna.
  • Suspiciously Specific Denial: Dr. Statham does this very often.
    "I DIDN'T KILL HIM!" Everyone in the waiting room stops and stares at him, he continues: "Said the man... in the novel... about killing people. NOT DWARVES!"
    Alan: You're probably thinking that in some bizarre way that my playing the recorder has caused, erm, an expansion down below.
    Boyce: I wasn't thinking that, but I am now.
    • Subverted:
    Alan: Erm... you may be thinking that I am comparing my penis to that of a corpse. (awkward pause, walks off)
  • The Tease: Mac does this to Sue to get the infamous tape back from her; "I want...what's in your pants."
    • Sue White does this to Guy, although they have slept together at least once.
    • Joanna to Alan.
  • Team Mom: Harriet, sort of. She does help Caroline get a pen top out of her nose. She grows into this role fully in Resuscitated, where she has risen to the head of HR and actively treats all of her staff like they were her children.
  • Terrible Interviewees Montage: When Caroline is looking for a new flatmate.
  • Throw the Dog a Bone: Martin finally gets a date at the end of Season One, but it is Karen.
  • Time Skip : Resuscitated was released in 2024, 17 years after the TV finale, but is only set 12 years after those events.
  • Token Minority: Lyndon, the IT Guy and Chick Magnet. When Dr. Statham asks to have him removed, Sue milks the fact he's the only black character and silently suggests Statham is racist.
    • Lyndon also has to put up with some rather pathetic racism from Martin, although it's mostly Martin being Innocently Insensitive.
    • During the first episode, Joanna randomly asks Caroline if she's Asian because "it would really help my quota".
    • In one episode, Guy buys curry at lunch (which he hates) only so he can wave it in the faces of two Middle Eastern "looking" women so he can mock them because it's Ramadan. One of them responds: "We're Hindu, you nipple!"
  • Tomboy and Girly Girl: Flatmates Caroline and Angela.
    Dr. Guy Secretan: Oh look, it's Ken and Barbie.
    Caroline and Angela: *deadpan* Hi.
  • Tranquil Fury: Mac, when he stabs Guy. This is totally subverted when he finds out about Martin's exam results, though.
  • Trash of the Titans: After Joanna goes AWOL with Dr. Statham, the HR girls become Drunk with Power and go crazy trashing the office, eventually turning it into a sort of tribal sanctuary.
  • Tuckerization: Patrick Schulenburg (Assistant Producer), Rachel Alabaster (Production Manager) and Jon Jennings (Second Assistant Director).
    • The latter's name appears on the door of the Neurosurgeon's office, where Mac finds out his devastating news.
  • Tyrant Takes the Helm: Subverted. Sue (and everyone else) assumes she will automatically be promoted to Director of Human Resources in Joanna's absence, allowing her to wreak even more of her sociopathic lunacy with even greater authority. Charles blocks this however, for reasons he isn't too keen to explain to her.
    Sue White: Well you can FUCK off then!!
    Charles: Yep, now you're getting warmer.
  • Unfortunate Names: Donald Twat, Martin's dad.
    • Joanna points out Secretan sounds like "secretion."
  • Ultimate Job Security:
    • All four of the HR girls (except for Karen, who ends up stuck doing everything) just sit there tossing their one brain cell around the room, as Joanna so aptly puts it. Not one of them is ever fired.
    • Martin Dear also manages to remain a full-time doctor at the hospital, despite failing all of his exams and demonstrating next-to-no competence or initiative whatsoever.
  • The Unintelligible: One episode has Alan deciding he wants to be part of a council, so asks Sue White for advice. She promptly tells him to get a voice coach because he "sounds like a-a-a-a hysterical child that's swallowed a conker!"
  • Uncomfortable Elevator Moment: Guy has to share a crowded elevator with Joanna. It is the first time they've seen each other since finding out they were mother and son shortly after having sex with each other.
  • Unresolved Sexual Tension: After Sue and Guy blast Cluster FBombs at each other in the cloakroom, both admit to feeling extremely sexually aroused and fired up. However Sue cockteases Guy and walks out, leaving him to hurriedly finish himself off and clean up the mess.
  • The Unreveal: An In-Universe example has Holly calling Mac "Paul"... only for her to explain she nicknamed him after Paul McCartney.
  • Unsympathetic Comedy Protagonist: The majority of the characters could be classed as this, but mainly Guy and Statham.
  • Unusual Euphemism:
    • Dr. Statham uses these all over the place.
    • So does Sue. She has a huge list of euphemisms for her vagina—"The old sideways smile. You know, my woman glove. My skin mitten. My panty piggy-bank." Also for giving birth—"Parcel through the letter box. Bun out the oven. Troops out the landing craft. Brick out the front shitter. Watermelon out of your Jap's eye."
  • Ventriloquism: In one episode, Sue gets a dummy who she argues with. When she's breaking into Holly's locker, the dummy is sitting on a bench and tells her not to do it. They argue again and Sue stuffs in it the locker when she leaves.
  • Violent Glaswegian: Sue White, presumably, as her actress is from Glasgow and uses her own accent.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: Mac and Guy.
    • Caroline and Angela to an extent.
  • Walk and Talk: Caroline's induction at East Hampton with Joanna.
  • Waxing Lyrical: Sue to Guy.
    "You just can't get me out of your head. La la la, la la la la."
  • Welcome Episode: Dr. Caroline Todd goes to her first day at the job after sleeping in her car, locked out of her new house. She uses pine-scented air freshener as deodorant. The wacky ensues.
    Dr. Macartney: Is that minicabs?
    Joanna: "Have you been to a festival?"
  • "Well Done, Son" Guy: Martin wants some love and affection from Joanna, but she keeps her relationship with him a secret and says she's embarrassed by him. It doesn't help that he doesn't pass his doctor's exam.
  • We Want Our Jerk Back!:
    • While Dr. Secretan is on probation, he is replaced as anaesthetist by various socially awkward droids lacking in personality or flair. Mac and Caroline force one of them to wear a Donkey mask, to provide some reassurance. They also ask him to "say something really twattish" like "Switzerland has the highest average global sperm count."
    • Boyce is also left depressed and longing for after being humiliated by a devastating Precision F-Strike from Dr. Statham's replacement.
  • We Were Rehearsing a Play: Alan and Joanna use this as an excuse when Boyce walks in on Alan shouting several inappropriate things while Joanna is interrogating him about his odd behaviour. Needless to say, he doesn't seem to buy it.
  • Whammy Bid: Martin surprises all by storming in with a £4,790.82 bid on Caroline at the slave auction, not realising the previous bid was around 10 pence.
  • What Did I Do Last Night?:
    • Caroline trying to work out all the different people she drunkenly kissed the day after her housewarming party.
    • Dr Statham has this problem after the slave auction when he wakes up in bed, sucking on a naked Boyce's thumb.
  • With This Ring: Preparing to propose to Caroline, Martin sews an engagement ring into a banana and forces her to open it. She takes a bite to shut him up and swallows the ring.
  • Yandere: Sue White tries to kill Caroline when it becomes obvious they both have feelings for Mac. She also cuts the brakes of a random doctor's car to get Mac his job back when he's about to transfer to Sheffield and blackmails Guy into trying to keep Caroline and Mac separate.
    • She also shows elements of this in the direction of Caroline, whom she snogs and gropes a few times over, when she's not trying to off her.
  • Yank the Dog's Chain:
    • Caroline, after putting up with Guy telling everyone they had sex, competing with Emmy and all the crap she gets in Season One, finally gets to kiss Mac... only for Season Two to show he ended up in a coma and loses all memory of their relationship.
    • Two for Alan Statham:
      • Near the end of series one, Joanna falsely believes she's pregnant with Statham's child. She tells him about it and he gets really excited about it. The next time he talks to her, she tells him it was a mix-up and she wouldn't want his child anyway.
      • In the second series he wins an online caption contest and is really pleased with this (arguably this is the single best thing to happen to him throughout the whole show). Joanna hates how happy he is and decides to give him a real scare, by having her dwarf cousin hide under his desk and pretend to be a goblin. Statham is really scared and ends up accidentally murdering her cousin; so they now have to cope with the guilt of covering it up and eventually flee the law.
  • You Go, Girl!: Caroline forcing Guy into signing a confession that she didn't sleep with him.
  • Zany Scheme: Martin decides the best way for Guy to not find out he opened private letters from Guy's father, is to travel to Switzerland and repost them from there.