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Tue May 14, 9-10pm, BBC1

By Phil Harrison
Series one, episode one
Sometimes you just have to applaud a job well done. Lucy Gannon’s new six-parter, ‘Frankie’, ticks off almost every cliché in the playbook of heartwarming family drama, but is executed with such unflustered charm and vigour that resistance is nigh-on useless.

This is due in no small part to Eve Myles, utterly winning as the near-saintly district nurse whose devotion to her job comes at the expense of her relationship with shiftless boyfriend Ian (Dean Lennox Kelly). Tonight sees Frankie juggling an old man suffering from severe memory loss but desperate to avoid going into care, the pregnant wife of a serving soldier with a sickly daughter and the swingeing cuts to the services she and her colleagues are able to provide.

But that’s an aside. Political commentary is kept to a minimum and it’s all a long way from ‘Nurse Jackie’: Frankie chooses affirmation of life over cynicism every time, yet somehow does so without turning the stomach.

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