This is the third piece of my article about Catherine Russell and her character Serena Campbell.
Since Berena broke up in December 2018 there has been a lot of unneeded negativity towards Holby City and the BBC. Criticising the writing and the handling of the break up after promising a ‘happy ending’.
The characters, Serena and Bernie were a very much popular relationship on screen. They had a huge fandom and received positive feedback for their representation.
In interviews Catherine and Jemma Redgrave spoke about the positivity and feedback they had got. They both knew how much their representation meant to their fans.
In August 2019 Bernie Wolfe was killed in an explosion. This was not what fans had anticipated for their much-loved half of Berena.
Once the showed aired, Catherine Russell was on the end of backlash. I believe that the reason for this is because Catherine is vocal on social media. At the heart of Berena, Catherine was very vocal and proud of the role she was playing. Happy to share her representation and “it matters”. Catherine has the right to be vocal in what she does, I, and other fans are very disheartened at how Catherine has been treated with the end of Berena. But, the show must go on and so must Serena Campbell.
I want to take this opportunity to show the impact of Catherine’s character Serena and Catherine Russell herself has on those that follow her.
@Sue Vickers-Thompson wrote, “Catherine put herself out to explain events and was frequently castigated and held to account for events beyond her control as virtually the only person involved on social media. Overall we need to remember that Berena was a great story, which went to many hearts and so thanks and appreciation to Catherine, Jemma and Holby for their hard work, talent and care that created something special which will live on for quite a time.”
@Claire wrote, “Before the Berena storyline, I loved your character. You shown that a woman can be of power and be true to herself too. I enjoy following you on Twitter.”
@nettadryden wrote, “Catherine is a fantastic actress and inspiration. Her tweets brighten up my day. I will always support her.”
Catherine tweets on a day to day basis, this brightens up the fans’ day. Tweets are political, which helps us understand what is going on with the very crazy Government. Her tweets can be hilarious. Catherine’s day to day life, her choice to share with the public. Not many celebrities share their life on social media and we appreciate the fact that Catherine does. I, for one, respect Catherine hugely. She is a human being with her own rights and beliefs. Not everyone agrees with everyone else and that’s okay. I admire the fact that Catherine takes us on her journey.
@co_sharp35 wrote, “Catherine inspires me every day with her fierce spirit, her strong sense of self and her beauty. She is wonderful at her job and doesn’t deserve the horrible way some have treated her.”
@tinesindt wrote, “Even through the things people have put you through, you still have time to talk to us, that in my eyes is worth more than anything.”
Let’s talk about Catherine’s acting. Now it must have been very hard to play and portray her many characters emotions. As you have seen in part 1 of this article, Serena has been through a lot of heartache. Her mother dying, her daughter dying, her friend also dying and then Bernie Wolfe dying.
@dryandsweet wrote, “I am a fan of Catherine’s, not because she tries to be perfect but because she tries. She’s a talented lady and a funny one. I’m sad about how things have turned out on and off screen but I don’t regret watching or becoming a fan of hers.”
@claribelle13 wrote, “I’m utterly floored by Catherine’s acting and her ability to convey emotions, not only by the way she delivers her lines, but the emotions her face expresses as well.”
@aprilsmum wrote, “In my eyes Serena will always be the Queen of Holby. Serena’s cracking one liners, hilarious eyebrow raise and her ‘nobody dare mess with her’ attitude.”
Those who have met Catherine have agreed that she is patient, caring and listens to what you have to say.
@Chelseasmith wrote, “Catherine, you are an amazing person. So caring and have so much time for people. I’m so grateful for everything you do.”
@wordsofbin wrote, “More than an ally, Catherine feels like a friend. She made the transition from living silently to living proudly. In both Rachel Cazalet and Serena Campbell, Catherine has shown women who love women are not a breed apart but are rather funny, gentle, powerful, intelligent, quick witted, beautiful and fond of Shiraz. I have nothing but time for Catherine Russell.”
@toongirl wrote, “Catherine truly is an inspirational role model. I’ve had the pleasure of meeting Catherine and every time she has been happy to give her time. As a consequence of seeing Catherine in Holby, I then started watching her other work, which is brilliant. Catherine truly inspires me through both her acting and who she is as a person.“
Now, we all know that Catherine comes from a family of comedians. We have her father Nicholas Smith who played in ‘Are You Being Served’. We have Catherine herself who has made us laugh on Holby. At the Convention where she joined Jemma Redgrave. We have the famous “ I hate my fucking scrubs” quote. We also have her hilarious train tweets (not that late or cancelled trains are funny, but the humour of the content In the tweet). We also have the comedian Sam Russell who is the son of Catherine, who goes on stage regular to deliver his funny lines.
@nataliehopkin2 wrote “Catherine Russell has inherited the impeccable comedic talent of her father, passed down to her children.”
Now I’d like to go back to the fact Catherine has been targeted online for the said storyline. I remember Catherine posting a tweet back in July 20017. “I know it would seem likely that actors in continuing TV like Holby would know what storylines lie ahead, please believe me – we don’t.”
Back in October 2016 Catherine responded to a tweet about happy endings. “Though I’m not sure if any of the #HolbyCity relationships have had a happy ending,” answering a tweet she also put “but they had to leave for that to happen.”
Another tweet was “Again they left! Not saying it’s never happened, or indeed that it shouldn’t, but it’s rare.”
Now, I know Jemma Redgrave was contracted 6 months to Holby initially. She did come back for more. Now I also believe that Jemma works on other TV roles. I am thankful that Jemma even appeared on Holby City. I am sad that her character has left Holby but I am happy to see where this leads for Serena. No one knows what happened for Berena to end but I’m sure it wasn’t with malicious purpose.
@hannah-gilkes wrote, “I just wanted to first thank you. Not many people can continue to go through what you’ve been through on here…(Twitter) but you have and you do. Holby is the highlight of my Tuesdays. Please continue doing what you are doing. You are fabulous and we couldn’t have you any other way.”
To finish this article I want to wish Catherine all the best. She has worked hard on her role as Serena. She has worked very hard to get to where she has. She has taught me to be the best I can be, and to fight for what you believe is right. Thank you Catherine for being who you are and thank you for continuing to be vocal on social media.