Love Child: episode guide

Series 1 | Series 2 | Series 3 | Series 4

Series 4

It's 1972 and eight months since we last saw Dr Joan Miller (Jessica Marais), who is now heavily pregnant and fighting for her right to continue her career after the birth of her child. But she encounters a major obstacle in the form of charismatic Dr Andrew Patterson (Dan Hamill), a Vietnam veteran and her new boss at Kings Cross General Hospital.

Matron's control of Stanton House is tested by three pregnant teens that play havoc with the rules: Debbie (Sophia Forrest), a hell-raiser from a privileged family; Elena (Danielle Catanzariti), an Italian migrant whose pregnancy threatens the safety of her relatives in Australia and Italy and Rita (Darcie Irwin-Simpson), a novice nun who has a mysterious "immaculate conception", just what is the mother of this miracle child hiding?

Meanwhile, the older Stanton House girls embrace the opportunities and challenges of life in 1970s Kings Cross. Patty is brimming in the success of her crèche, Martha forges a career in the hospital while revelling in her new role as a doctor's wife, and Viv is a respected nurse determined to buck the system.

Episode 4.01 (27)

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Tue, May 02, 2017 (9pm)
624,000 viewers (14th)
Written by Cathryn Strickland
Directed by Geoff Bennett

Joan's birth plans go awry when she goes into early labour and the new unorthodox head of obstetrics, Dr. Andrew Patterson, is the only one who can help. Meanwhile, there's three new girls at Stanton House.

Mystery surrounds the recent arrival of Italian immigrant Elena, while novice nun Rita believes she's had an immaculate conception, and trouble-making little rich girl Debbie will ensure Matron's hands are full. Amidst the chaos of the hospital expansion, an accidental mix-up goes unnoticed while a shocking turn of events ends in a tragic death.

Starring: Jessica Marais as Dr. Joan Millar, Mandy McElhinney as Matron Frances Bolton, Harriet Dyer as Patricia Saunders, Sophie Hensser-Bloom as Viv Maguire, Miranda Tapsell as Martha Tenant, Dan Hamill as Dr Andrew Patterson, Andy Ryan as Simon Bowditch, Danielle Catanzariti as Elena, Sophia Forrest as Debbie, Darcie Irwin-Simpson as Rita

With: Jerome Velinsky as Marco Capobianco, Sophie Hawkshaw as Mandy, Tessa Coulter as Mrs. O'Reilly, James Sweeny as Craig, Lianne Mackessy as Mrs. Greta Ranovic, Franco Flammia as Crew Member, Emma Birdsall as Lead Singer, Michelle Martinez as Lead Singer, Meg Drummond as Backing Singer 1, Paula Baxter as Backing Singer 2, Dave Hibbard as Velvet Room Band: Drums, Karl Ferguson as Velvet Room Band: Saxophone, Ben Hauptmann as Velvet Room Band: Guitar, Paul Murchison as Velvet Room Band: Trumpet, Paul Curnick as Velvet Room Band: Bass Guitar

Episode 4.02 (28)

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Tue, May 09, 2017
521,000 viewers (15th)
Written by Chris McCourt
Directed by Geoff Bennett

Filled with grief after the death of her best friend Patty, Martha is determined to uncover the truth of Patty's final hours, and drags Viv along with her on a wild goose chase that ends in the last place Martha expected.

Elena's troubles are compounded with the arrival of her brother. When he discovers that being in Stanton House has nothing to do with having tuberculosis, Elena is consumed with shame and makes a life-threatening decision.

Keen to impress his new boss, Bowditch joins Andrew for a night out on the town. Matron suppresses her niggling doubts about the baby switch while Joan finds her feet as a single stay-at-home mother.

With: Jerome Velinsky as Marco Capobianco, Sophie Hawkshaw as Mandy, Tessa Coulter as Mrs. O'Reilly, James Sweeny as Craig, Lianne Mackessy as Mrs. Greta Ranovic, Jaye Rosenburg as Pretty Girl, Jade Lewis as Told, Rebecca Smee as Rhonda, Peter Maple as Pimp

Episode 4.03 (29)

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Tue, May 16, 2017
Written by Fiona Samuel
Directed by David Caesar

When Joan's baby is refused a baptism, it's just the start of Joan's worries. She competes for a permanent doctor's position, butting up against both a determined Bowditch and a sexist rival with wandering hands, and discovers balancing work with motherhood is a tougher job than she'd anticipated.

On a secret mission, Debbie steals Martha's car and takes the Stanton House girls to check out Elena's betrothed, but their joyride ends with a medical emergency for Rita. Viv decides to take a walk on the wild side when she visits a nudist beach and has an intriguing encounter, while Matron scoffs at Andrew's proposal to allow fathers into the labour ward.

Starring: Jessica Marais, Mandy McElhinney, Sophie Hensser-Bloom, Miranda Tapsell, Dan Hamill, Andy Ryan, Danielle Catanzariti, Sophia Forrest, Darcie Irwin-Simpson

With: Matt Day as Father Ross; Lianne Mackessy as Mrs. Greta Ranovic, James Mackay as Lance, Harriet Gordon-Anderson as Kate, Chloe Bayliss as Wanda, Daniel Berini as Clive, Caroline Downs as Disapproving Protestor, David Soncin as Paolo, John Bonaventura as Paolo's Father

Episode 4.04 (30)

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Tue, May 23, 2017
597,000 viewers (15th)
Written by Fin Edquist
Directed by David Caesar

Matron's growing suspicions she mixed up Joan's baby with another leads to a confession with Father Ross. Matron struggles with her conscience as she weighs the hospital's reputation against Joan's right to know.

As Viv starts to feel the stirrings of wanderlust, Martha is driven by guilt; Bowditch's mind is firmly on starting a family, and she's determined to keep the fact she's on the pill a secret. Debbie manages to secretly rendezvous with her lover Alan, and discovers their plans to move to Paris have hit a snag.

In the excitement of the International Women's Day march, Joan senses baby Laura is unwell. After a diagnosis of pneumonia, Andrew does all he can to help cure the child, but as Laura's condition worsens, Joan is forced to accept the harshest truth of all - her baby might die.

With: Matt Day as Father Ross; Ben Hall as Alan Fitzgerald, Harriet Gordon-Anderson as Kate, Caitlin Harnett as Busker, Jaymie Knight as Male Reporter, Mia Donatelli as Young Woman, Aileen Beale as Young Mother, Jordan Sanfrancesco as Young Man #1, Sam Trottman as Young Man #2, Emma Birdsall as Lead Singer, Meg Drummond as Backing Singer #1, Paula Baxter as Backing Singer #2, Dave Hibbard as Velvet Room Band: Drums, Karl Ferguson as Velvet Room Band: Saxophone, Ben Hauptmann as Velvet Room Band: Guitar, Paul Murchison as Velvet Room Band: Trumpet, Tim Curnick as Velvet Room Band: Bass Guitar

Episode 4.05 (31)

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Tue, May 30, 2017
473,000 viewers (20th)
Written by Vanessa Alexander
Directed by Shannon Murphy

Elena is overwhelmed when Ed, the father of her child, turns up at Stanton House and wants to marry her. After Debbie tells him Elena has been sold into an arranged marriage, Ed is determined to fight for their love and his baby.

Meanwhile, Joan returns to work in an attempt to bury her grief after the death of her daughter, raising the concerns of everyone except Andrew who understands her need to throw herself into work.

Martha puts her heart and soul into creating the perfect dinner party to celebrate her husband's recent promotion, but when the party degenerates into a cold war after the revelation of a secret, Bowditch storms out in anger resulting in a devastating accident. In the aftermath, Joan finally crumbles, giving into the intense grief she has been suppressing for weeks, turning to Andrew for help.

With: Matt Day as Father Ross; Travis Jeffery as Ed, Harriet Gordon-Anderson as Kate, Danielle Stamoulos as Mrs. Olsen, Katrina Retallick as Margaret Fulton, Philip Partridge as McGregor, Phil Moore as Bookie, Michael Matthews as Fighter #2, Timothy Parsons as Stunt Performer, Ben Toyer as Stunt Performer, Neal Horton as Stunt Performer, Tara del Borrello as Lead Singer, Meg Drummond as Backing Singer #1, Paula Baxter as Backing Singer #2, Dave Hibbard as Velvet Room Band: Drums, Cameron Bruce as Velvet Room Band: Guitar, Joel Burton as Velvet Room Band: Bass, Al Goodman as Velvet Room Band: Keyboard

Episode 4.06 (32)

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Tue, June 06, 2017
523,000 viewers (19th)
Written by Josephine D. Barrett
Directed by Shannon Murphy

Rita needs to have her baby induced, but is refusing any intervention. Concerned by the situation, Joan and Matron arrange for Rita's mother Liza to visit, in the hope of shedding some light on Rita's growing disconnection with reality. When the truth of Rita's pregnancy is revealed, Andrew and Joan are caught up in the explosive confrontation between mother and daughter.

Bowditch confesses his secret of the hit and run to Martha but his attempt to come clean is impeded when Ed goes into a coma. Viv is thrown when Joan questions the nature of her and Kate's friendship. Viv attempts to distance herself from Kate, but finds herself having to confront her feelings.

With: Matt Day as Father Ross, Travis Jeffery as Edward Thornton, Annie Maynard as Liza, Harriet Gordon-Anderson as Kate, Cyrus as Lead Singer, Meg Drummond as Backing Singer #1, Paula Baxter as Backing Singer #2, Dave Hibbard as Velvet Room Band: Drums, Cameron Bruce as Velvet Room Band: Guitar, Joel Burton as Velvet Room Band: Bass, Al Goodman as Velvet Room Band: Keyboard

Episode 4.07 (33)

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Tue, June 13, 2017
518,000 viewers (19th)
Written by Chris Hawkshaw
Directed by Geoff Bennett

Joan's life is upended by the return of Dr. Lawrence Faber, her ex-fiancé whom she hasn't seen since she left London. He comes to Sydney on the pretense of business, but Joan knows his intention is to rekindle their romance.

After his hit and run, Bowditch is relieved Ed is recovering, but he and Martha are floored when they receive a blackmail letter demanding a large payment. Who can they turn to for help? Viv's fledgling relationship with Kate comes to an end when Kate receives some surprising news. Rita, is due to return to the convent but is having second thoughts as Debbie, does her best to keep Elena, and Ed together.

With: Matt Day as Father Ross, Ronan Keating as Lawrence Faber, Travis Jeffery as Edward Thornton, Harriet Gordon-Anderson as Kate, Di Adams as Sister Bernadette, Sophie Morstyn as Meg Lovell, Taylor Beadle-Williams as Mrs. Baxter, Stan Walker as Singer #1, Meg Drummond as Backing Singer #1, Paula Baxter as Backing Singer # 2, Dave Hibbard as Velvet Room Band: Drums, Cameron Bruce as Velvet Room Band: Guitar, Tim Curnick as Velvet Room Band: Bass Al Goodman as Velvet Room Band: Keyboard Martin Farrugia as Velvet Room Band: Trumpet

Episode 4.08 (34)

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Tue, June 20, 2017
509,000 viewers (17th)
Written by Chris McCourt
Directed by Geoff Bennett

Debbie's dreams of a happy ending with her married lover Alan are irrevocably shattered when he and his wife make a secret deal with Matron.

Lawrence butts heads with Dr Patterson, putting Joan in an untenable position. Caught up in the prospect of a future with Lawrence, she is forced to not only ask herself if she wants to be with him, but whether she has a future returning to London.

With Viv's wanderlust and longing to see more of the world, she stands up to Matron, telling her exactly what she thinks about Matron's motives and the continued subjugation of young women at Stanton House.

With: Ronan Keating as Lawrence Faber, Ben Hall as Alan Fitzgerald, Megan Smart as Barbara Fitzgerald, Sara West as Jennifer Hartley, Jess Dunbar as Busker 1, Matt Price as Busker #2, Dami Im as Singer 1, Samantha Jade as Singer 2, Meg Drummond as Backing Singer #1, Paula Baxter as Backing Singer #2, Dave Hibbard as Velvet Room Band: Drums, Cameron Bruce as Velvet Room Band: Guitar, Tim Curnick as Velvet Room Band: Bass, Al Goodman as Velvet Room Band: Keyboard, Martin Farrugia as Velvet Room Band: Trumpet

Episode 4.09 (35)

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Tue, June 27, 2017
543,000 viewers (15th)
Written by Vanessa Alexander, Lara Radulovich, Wendy Hanna
Directed by Wayne Blair

Feeling abandoned and in a world of hurt, Debbie tries to destroy Elena's dreams of love and happiness. Elena is further devastated when its revealed she can't keep her baby, even if she does marry the baby's father, Ed.

When her child's autopsy report throws up some surprising inconsistencies, Joan comes to the shocking realization her baby was swapped, but will Andrew support her? With his and Martha's help, Joan gets the evidence she needs to demand a hospital inquiry. Feeling increasingly cornered, Matron digs in her heels about keeping her secret.

Starring: Jessica Marais, Mandy McElhinney, Miranda Tapsell, Dan Hamill, Andy Ryan, Danielle Catanzariti, Sophia Forrest, Darcie Irwin-Simpson

With: Matt Day as Father Ross, Travis Jeffery as Ed Thornton, Jerome Velinsky as Marco Capobianco, Zoe Ventoura as Nurse Fleur Healy, Andy Carbone as Sleazy Guy, Cyrus Villanueva as Singer #1, Meg Drummond as Backing Singer #1, Sharon Muscat as Backing Singer #2, Ben Isackson as Velvet Room Band: Drums, Cameron Bruce as Velvet Room Band: Guitar, Tim Curnick as Velvet Room Band: Bass Al Goodman as Velvet Room Band: Keyboard, Marty Farrugia as Velvet Room Band: Trumpet

Episode 4.10 (36)

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Tue, July 04, 2017
532,000 viewers (14th)
Written by Sarah Smith
Directed by Wayne Blair

Set against Election Day 1972, Joan finally learns the truth about the baby swap, but is faced with the awful prospect she may never be reunited with her daughter when the other mother, Greta, doesn't believe it. Despite being warned by Andrew to keep a cool head, a desperate Joan visits Greta at her home. Instead of convincing her to relinquish her baby, Greta's husband Peter calls the police.

Meanwhile, Andrew, with help from Martha and Rita, finds the evidence they need to prove the baby swap. Matron is finally faced with her mistake, and despite their close relationship, Father Ross proves less reliable than Matron had hoped. As this unfolds, Debbie and Bowditch frantically search for Ed, bundled away by Elena's brother Marco, so they can get him back to the hospital in time to marry Elena before she gives birth.

With: Matt Day as Father Ross, Travis Jeffery as Ed Thornton, Lianne Mackessy as Greta Ranovic, Simon London as Peter Ranovic, Jerome Velinsky as Marco Capobianco, Vincenzo Prosperi as Waiter, Kelly Zacharias as Nurse, Jerome Pride as Dock Worker, Craig Blair as Security Guard, Caitlin Harnett as Singer, Meg Drummond as Backing Singer #1, Sharon Muscat as Backing Singer #2, Ben Isackson as Velvet Room Band: Drums, Cameron Bruce as Velvet Room Band: Guitar, Tim Curnick as Velvet Room Band: Keyboard, Al Goodman as Velvet Room Band: Keyboard, Martin Farrugia as Velvet Room Band: Trumpet