Casualty review with spoilers: Lev's secret revealed and Jan messes up

Casualty peeled back yet another layer of Lev (Uriel Emil) in tonight’s episode. As well as being a paramedic, kitten-rescuer, dependable and loyal husband and father, he’s previously been revealed to have a violent past as a vicious football thug.

Today we learned that he’s also harbouring another secret – he’s attracted to men. And this possibly explains the football thug business as well, because we saw that when he realised he had feelings for another boy when he was a child in Russia, he was told to ‘stop behaving like a pansy.’

Unable to deal with his own feelings he lashed out at the object of his affection. Being macho became his way of hiding how he felt inside.

All of this was revealed when Lev was called to deal with a stabbing incident and discovered the victim, Evgeny, was also Russian. This brought back memories of Lev’s boyhood friend, Sergei, and how the two had become close when Lev rescued Sergei from being beaten up and a close bond developed between the two boys.

Evgeny was gay, and Lev’s reaction upon discovering this led Evgeny to think Lev was ‘a bigoted piece of work,’ like the worst of his fellow countrymen.

The glimpses we had into Lev’s past and his relationship with Sergei showed that, tragically, in a culture of being the bully or the victim Lev had suppressed his feelings for Sergei to become a bully himself.

Of course a lot has happened between then and now – Lev has been married to Faith (Kirsty Mitchell) and had children, and put his violent past behind him for a career of taking care of people. He isn’t the same man. But we saw that he’s secretly using gay dating apps, so the feelings that he suppressed in his youth are still very much a part of him.

Meanwhile we finally got to meet Jan (Di Botcher)’s wife Ffion (Stirling Gallacher), who is a police officer.

It was their wedding anniversary and although Jan had bought Ffion a card she hadn’t got her a present, which was awkward because Ffion had got one for her. So Jan bluffed (we’ve all been there) that she’d booked them a table at a fancy restaurant.

Even that went pear-shaped when Jan was too busy delivering a baby in the back of an ambulance to remember her dinner appointment. Luckily Ffion also had to work late, and understands that Jan ‘isn’t big on romantic gestures’ and loves her anyway.

Charlie (Derek Thompson) told Connie (Amanda Mealing) and Jacob (Charles Venn) that he’s now decided that he’d rather work with patients than do lots of pesky admin, and anyway Jacob is far better at the pesky admin than he ever was.

So he’s letting Jacob be Clinical Nurse Manager from now on. Just as well Holby’s mythical HR department is notoriously flexible about people swapping jobs just because they feel like it.

Sue Haasler is the author of five novels and the official BBC Holby City book, which you can read about here.

Casualty continues Saturday 25 July on BBC One.

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