Come on Dr Foster, it's time for a reckoning
Were you one of the millions who tuned in to watch the final episode of Dr Foster? The show none of us could stop talking about reached its explosive final conclusion on BBC One last night. And though Dr Foster has made totally addictive viewing from start to finish, not least because of a BAFTA-worthy performance by Suranne Jones, there are a few more far-fetched elements to the plot we think we need to discuss. For example...
1. The original hair-on-scarf suspicion
Let’s talk about the scant evidence that sparks this whole thing off. Gemma suspects her husband is having an affair after finding a single long blonde hair on his scarf. Really? As someone with thick long blonde hair (which moults a lot), on this basis I’m pretty sure I’ve ignited the suspicions of hundreds of women all over London. Also – as features editor Hannah Rochell points out – “maybe he was just hugging a long-haired Labrador.”
2. Everyone being in on it
Isn’t the general rule of having an extra-marital affair that you keep it to yourself – or at most tell a trusted best friend. And even if you do spill the beans to a wider group, would you really then book a secret ‘don’t tell Gemma’ French holiday? But when she discovers the secret ‘affair phone’ she also finds cosy snaps of her neighbours sitting around in the sunshine drinking Burgundy and (presumably) going "HA HA Gemma doesn’t have a clue about this! Ooh, why don’t we take a picture of us all together so there’s conclusive evidence when it does all comes out that we were all here together. That’ll give her FOMO.” Where do these people live, Evil-on-Thames?
3. The mother-in-law
Who knows about the affair for two entire years, then just blithely mentions it when they’re sitting out in the garden, in the same tone you might discuss a stressful traffic jam.
4. The ‘you’re clearly lying to my face’ scene
In episode two Gemma asks her husband outright if he’s having an affair, having amassed a large portfolio of evidence that he is. He denies it. We can’t really imagine a situation where we wouldn’t start hurling things across the room. Gemma does the opposite.
5. Seducing Neil
Would Gemma really set fire to the moral high ground just to get hold of her husband’s accounts?
6. The brazen doctor appointment
When Gemma ambushes Kate’s doctor appointment and questions her about her sex life, Kate needlessly tells the wife of the man she’s sleeping with that she’s having an affair with a married man. It all felt a bit too cold and callous. Surely Kate would feel a tiny pinch of guilt? Or just avoid the subject?
7. The kissing-right-in-front of the window scene
When Gemma storms into the office and Simon’s PA pulls back the curtain to reveal them kissing outside in broad daylight on a bench behind the building, a building full of employees who presumably know he’s married to someone else. Come on!
8. The dramatic professional unravelling
At the beginning of the show Gemma is a respected senior partner in her GP practice, a position you don’t get to without being consistently brilliant at your job. It’s one thing taking your eye off the ball because your private life is falling apart, but the avalanche of negative RateMyGP reviews felt a little too sudden to be believable. And hey presto, in the final episode we discovered that the bad reviews had in fact been faked by Neil's vengeful wife, who (it turns out) has hated her all along. Something about it felt a little bit... odd?
9. The money problem
As one InStyle Twitter follower, Julie Thompson Dredge (@JTD1997) pointed out yesterday "someone that powerful and successful wouldn't let their partner control their money." The image of Gemma as a top GP and senior partner seemed to jar with the apologetic "Simon controls all the money" Gemma we saw speaking to her divorce lawyer. Wouldn't she be more in tune with the family finances?
(10) Having said all this...
We still loved the show. Even though we feel like Simon got off pretty lightly in the end considering his consistently amoral behaviour - not least in the final showdown when he yells "everyone does it" at Gemma and then assaults her. Nice guy. The only sliver of consolation arrived in the last scene, where we saw Gemma happy with her son and living in the house she loves after dealing Simon a financial trump card. Still though. What a bastard.