Doctor Doctor (Australian TV series)

Doctor Doctor (also known outside of Australasia as The Heart Guy) is an Australian television drama that premiered on the Nine Network on 14 September 2016. It follows the story of Hugh Knight, a rising heart surgeon who is gifted, charming and infallible. He is a hedonist who, due to his sheer talent, believes he can live outside the rules. His "work hard, play harder" philosophy eventually comes to 'bite' him.

Doctor Doctor
Opening title
Also known asThe Heart Guy (international)
Written by
Directed by
Opening theme"Going Up the Country" by
Patience Hodgson
Country of originAustralia
Original language(s)English
No. of seasons3
No. of episodes30 (list of episodes)
Executive producer(s)
  • Andy Ryan
  • Jo Rooney
Production location(s)
Running time45 minutes
Production company(s)Essential Media and Entertainment
Original networkNine Network
Picture format576i (SDTV)
1080i (HDTV)
Audio formatStereo
Original release14 September 2016 (2016-09-14) 
External links

On 28 September 2016, Nine renewed the program for a second season after just two episodes having been aired. On 11 October 2017, the series was renewed for a third season at Nine's upfronts, and premiered on Monday, 6 August 2018, instead of the previous Wednesday night slot. On 17 October 2018, the series was renewed for a fourth season, which will premiere in 2020.


After a spectacular fall from grace, high-flying heart surgeon Dr Hugh Knight receives a life-changing punishment from the Medical Tribunal—he is forced to work for a year as a country GP in his former home town of Whyhope. Now the only way to salvage his brilliant career is to work as a lowly GP in an under-resourced, small-town hospital surrounded by estranged family, former friends, crazed colleagues, oddball patients, jealous brothers and a newlywed ex-girlfriend.






The series entered pre-production in early 2016, with executive producers Andy Ryan and Jo Rooney of the Nine Network and Ian Collie, Claudia Karvan and Tony McNamara of Essential Media and Entertainment. The Nine Network confirmed that Doctor Doctor would commence production in April 2016 with filming taking place in Sydney and country NSW.[1] In a statement, Nine's Head of Drama, Jo Rooney and Andy Ryan, commented "We are delighted to join forces with Essential Media & Entertainment on the irreverent new family drama series".[1] Inspiration for the series came from discussions that Tony McNamara had with lawyers who talked with him about the Impaired Registrants Program, a practice operated by the Medical Council of New South Wales, which seeks to ensure that medical practitioners are fit for practice and in doing so, the program manages doctors who suffer from a psychiatric illness, self-administration of drugs, alcohol abuse, and physical illness.[2] The series is produced by Essential Media and Entertainment and its first season created 800 jobs and production expenditure of $11.6 million in Sydney and Mudgee, as well as $300,000 in grants from Screen NSW.[3]

The series premiered on Nine Network on the earlier-than-expected broadcast date of 14 September 2019, and in the process, post-production of the ten-episode season was rushed.[4] On 28 September 2016, prior to the broadcast of episode three, Nine renewed the series for a second season, due to its growing success. Ian Collie commented, "We love how the national audience has taken to Doctor Doctor. It’s a show with heart and smarts and thrilled that Nine are backing us to go again. Roll on season two!"[5] On 11 October 2017, it was announced that the show was renewed for a third season at Nine Upfronts for the 2018 schedule.[6][7] Doctor Doctor was renewed for a fourth season, which was confirmed on 17 October 2018, and went into production in April 2019. The season was set to premiere sometime in late 2019, however, it was announced on 16 October 2019, that it will now premiere in 2020.[8][9]


The casting director of Doctor Doctor is Kirsty McGregor, who has worked for casting on popular television series, such as Modern Family and Top of the Lake.[10] It was announced in early 2016 that Rodger Corser had received the leading role in the series as heart surgeon, Hugh Knight, before the Nine Network has formally announced the series.[3] Corser was still appearing on the ABC drama series The Doctor Blake Mysteries, for which he only appeared in Season 4 in 2016, and of the role he said that "he was enjoying playing a different style of character to those he had previously played."[11] It was then confirmed that Nicole Da Silva would be cast in the role of Charlie Knight. Da Silva was currently filming the fourth season of Wentworth, appearing in for only six of the twelve episodes and in a supporting status, due to her new starring role in Doctor Doctor, she had to travel between Sydney and Melbourne switching between roles.[12] It also seen her reconnect with her former Rush co-star, Rodger Corser.[13] In an early announcement, it was stated that additional supporting cast would consist of Ryan Johnson, Hayley McElhinney, Shalom Brune-Franklin, Tina Bursill, Chloe Bayliss and Dave Eastgate[1][14] It was later revealed that Steve Bisley would appear in the series as Jim Knight.

For the second season of Doctor Doctor, it was announced that Packed to the Rafters star Angus McLaren would join the cast as ex-army medic, Dr Toke, after a three-year hiatus from acting in television,[15] while it had also been confirmed that New Zealand actress, Brittany Scott Clark, formerly of soap opera Shortland Street, would portray Nurse Mia Holston.[16]

Ahead of Season 3, during a promo which screened in June 2018 on the Nine Network, it was revealed that the show would be losing a major character; in a spoiler, it was revealed to be Jim Knight. In May 2018, it was announced, that Steve Bisley would be returning for the third season,[17] however, he only appeared in the opening episode.

In April 2019, it was announced that Dustin Clare, Kate Jenkinson and Robyn Nevin would be joining the cast of Doctor Doctor for its fourth season.[18]


The series is filmed on location in Mudgee, a town in the Central West of New South Wales, while the entirety of the hospital scenes are shot in the Sydney inner-city suburb of Rozelle, which is located in the city's inner-west. The filming of Knight's home was shot in Sydney's south-west section in the town of Camden. The regional setting for the series has proved to be beneficial for narrative and production purposes. It has been stated that in addition to $100,000 worth of support from the Regional Filming Fund, the regional setting delivers a unique authenticity to the series that it would otherwise lack.[2] Due to the success of the first season, The Knight's home, which was filmed in an actual house, was recreated within a disused wing of the building used to film the hospital scenes from the second season onwards; this was due to limited space in the original home.[19]

In 2017, Ian Collie departed Essential Media in order to establish his own production company, Easy Tiger Tiger, from which Doctor Doctor is currently produced under as of its second season. The company is majority owned by FremantleMedia.[20]

Theme song

The theme song is a cover version of the American band Canned Heat song Going Up the Country, performed by Patience Hodgson of the Australian indie/alternative rock band The Grates.[21] The song is not available for international airings of the series as the opening theme is replaced with the same instrumental music which is used over the end credits.


Doctor Doctor was broadcast on the Nine Network on Wednesday nights 8.40pm during its first two seasons; it was moved to Monday nights at 8.40 pm for its third season.

It premiered in New Zealand on 3 May 2017 on TVNZ 1, where it is broadcast Wednesday nights at 8.30 pm.[22]

The series, which is internationally re-titled as The Heart Guy,[23] airs on pay television broadcaster Sky Deutschland for Germany, Austria and Switzerland.[24] In Norway the series are available on TV2 Sumo. The program is also available in the United States with the title The Heart Guy, where new episodes premiere on the streaming network Acorn TV[25]

In the United Kingdom, the series premiered on 8 April 2018 on Drama Channel[26] where it was broadcast Sunday nights at 8 pm.[27] The second season began airing on 17 June 2018,[27] while the third season commenced broadcast on 10 March 2019.[27] Having secured the rights to screen the fourth season, it premiered on Drama on 16 November 2019, in a new 10 pm timeslot on Saturday nights.[28] Season 4 will screen in double-bill episodes each week.

For catch-up streaming, it is available on demand from 9Now in Australia,[29] and is also on demand in the UK from UKTV Play.[30]

Persian expat Manoto aired the first season from October 2018 for Iran, Afghanistan and Tajikistan.

Fourth season delay

While the Nine Network originally planned to air Season 4 in 2019,[31] it later delayed the broadcast to 2020.[32] In October 2019, it was announced that the fourth season will premiere on the United Kingdom's Drama channel from November 16 before it airs in Australia next year.[33]


SeasonEpisodesOriginally aired
First airedLast aired
11014 September 2016 (2016-09-14)16 November 2016 (2016-11-16)
21016 August 2017 (2017-08-16)18 October 2017 (2017-10-18)
3106 August 2018 (2018-08-06)8 October 2018 (2018-10-08)
410[34]2020 (2020)[35]2020 (2020)[35]


Critical reception

Reviews for the series have been generally positive. In a review from Debi Enker for The Sydney Morning Herald, she stated that in contrast of other medical dramas it "Takes a different approach. It's gentler, funnier, and it's set in the country."[36] Steve Molk of DeciderTV mentioned that "Doctor Doctor is dependable, honest and sincere Aussie Drama with a full cast stronger than has been seen in a long time."[37] In a review for the online website, The Medium is Not Enough, the series was given a more mixed reception, when it was criticized for becoming more serious following the first episode with a mix of humour in turns; mentioning "If you're going to get serious then you need to do it consistently, not just in bits you like". However it was said of the series that "A decent enough show with potential that’s already been rewarded with a second season, Doctor Doctor nevertheless needs to look hard at what it wants to be in life if it’s to avoid losing patience."[38]

Award nominations

Doctor Doctor has been nominated for several awards throughout its run. In 2016, series casting director, Kirsty McGregor, was nominated the Casting Guild of Australia award for Best Casting in a TV Drama.[39] Tina Bursill has received two nominations at the AACTA Awards, first in 2017, for Best Guest or Supporting Actress in a Television Drama,[40] and 2018, for Best Lead Actress in a Television Drama.[41]

The series has garnered a total of 16 nominations at the Logie Awards. In 2017, nominees included, Ryan Johnson for Most Outstanding Supporting Actor, Nicole da Silva for Most Outstanding Supporting Actress, Shalom Brune-Franklin for Best New Talent, while Rodger Corser was nominated for Best Actor, Most Outstanding Actor, and the Gold Logie Award for Best Personality on Australian Television, and the series receiving the nomination for Most Outstanding Drama Series.[42][43] In 2018, Roger Corser was nominated for Most Popular Actor, Most Outstanding Actor, and the Gold Logie Award for Best Personality on Australian Television; the series was nominated for both Most Popular Drama Series, and Most Outstanding Drama Series.[44] In 2019, Corser was nominated for both the award for Most Popular Actor, and the Gold Logie Award for Most Popular Personality on Australian Television, while the series was again nominated for both Most Popular Drama Program, and Most Outstanding Drama Series.[45]

As of 2019, the series has not been the recipient of any award wins.


Season Timeslot
Ep First aired Last aired Rank Avg.
Date Viewers
Date Viewers
1 Wednesday 8:40 pm 10 14 September 2016 759[46] 16 November 2016 785[47] 8 777
2 10 16 August 2017 758[48] 18 October 2017 735[49] 10 721
3 Monday 8:40 pm 10 6 August 2018 726[50] 8 October 2018 642[51] N/A 619
4 TBA 10 2020 TBA 2020 TBA TBA TBA

Home media

Title Release date Additional
Region 1 Region A (MOD) Region 2 (Germany) Region 4
Series 1
29 September 2017[52] 16 April 2019[53] 25 August 2017[54] 23 November 2016[55]

  • 10 episodes
  • 3–DVD set
  • 2–Blu-ray set
  • Released as "The Heart Guy" in United States and Germany
  • Ratings:
  • Other releases:
    • "Series 1 & 2" also available on DVD (Region 4 only — 6 December 2017) (6-DVD set)[57]
    • "Series 1−3" also available on DVD (Region 4 only — 5 December 2018) (9-DVD set)[58]
Series 2 26 June 2018[59] 16 April 2019[60] 23 March 2018[61] 6 December 2017[62]


  • 10 episodes
  • 3–DVD set
  • 2–Blu-ray set
  • Released as "The Heart Guy" in United States and Germany
  • Ratings:
  • Other releases:
    • "Series 1 & 2" also available on DVD (Region 4 only — 6 December 2017) (6-DVD set))[57]
    • "Series 1−3" also available on DVD (Region 4 only — 5 December 2018) (9-DVD set)[58]
Series 3 2 April 2019[64] 23 April 2019[65] TBA 21 November 2018[66]

  • 10 episodes
  • 3–DVD set
  • 2–Blu-ray set
  • Ratings:
  • Other releases:
    • "Series 1−3" also available on DVD (Region 4 only — 5 December 2018) (9-DVD set)[58]

See also


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  2. Barrett, Dan "New Nine series Doctor Doctor is no joke". 9 September 2016. Retrieved 27 July 2018.
  3. Knox, David (3 December 2015). "Doctor Doctor new drama coming to Nine". TV Tonight. Retrieved 7 March 2016.
  4. Knox, David (29 August 2016). "Airdate: Doctor Doctor". TV Tonight. Retrieved 17 October 2019.
  5. Knox, David (28 September 2016). "Renewed: Doctor Doctor". TV Tonight. Retrieved 17 October 2019.
  6. Knox, David (11 October 2017). "Nine 2018 Upfronts: Renewals underpin new slate". TV Tonight. Retrieved 17 October 2019.
  7. Palmer, Benjamin (22 May 2018). "Doctor Doctor is back in Mudgee for season 3". Western Magazine. Retrieved 17 October 2019.
  8. "Doctor Doctor Series 4". Retrieved 30 August 2019.
  9. Burke, Tina (16 October 2019). "CONFIRMED! Here's when Doctor Doctor will return for Season Four". Now to Love. Retrieved 17 October 2019.
  10. "Television". Retrieved 27 July 2018.
  11. Domjen, Briana"Rodger Corser hopes Doctor Doctor will be renewed for second season after strong debut". 16 September 2016. Retrieved 27 July 2018.
  12. Harvey, Kerry (22 May 2017). "Doctor Doctor's Nicole da Silva on balancing feisty Franky and warm Charlie". Retrieved 8 September 2018.
  13. Dunk, Tiffany "Nicole da Silva's role in Channel Nine's new drama Doctor Doctor is a far cry from Wentworth". 13 September 2016. Retrieved 27 July 2018.
  14. David, Knox (7 March 2016). "Nine announces cast for Doctor Doctor". TV Tonight. Retrieved 17 October 2019.
  15. "Ex Rafters star turned WAAPA grad makes TV return". 16 August 2017. Retrieved 27 July 2018.
  16. "Kiwi nurse hits up Aussie show Doctor Doctor". 14 April 2018. Retrieved 27 July 2018.
  17. David, Knox (4 July 2018). "Doctor Doctor cast spoiler ahead". Retrieved 8 September 2018.
  18. "New cast announced as filming commences on Season Four of DOCTOR DOCTOR". TV Blackbox. 30 April 2019. Retrieved 27 May 2019.
  19. Cooper, Nathaniel (14 August 2017). "Doctors and curses: life gets complicated in a new season of Nine's medico drama". Retrieved 8 September 2018.
  20. Knox, David (12 September 2017). "Essential producer sets up Easy Tiger Productions". Retrieved 8 September 2018.
  21. "DOCTOR DOCTOR - Opening Title Design". Vimeo. 10 November 2016. Retrieved 21 July 2018.
  22. "TV series Doctor Doctor answers calls for a country drama". 23 April 2017. Retrieved 4 November 2019.
  23. Knox, David (31 May 2017). "Doctor Doctor sells to Europe as 'The Heart Guy'". TV Tonight. Retrieved 17 October 2019.
  24. Knox, David (31 May 2017). "Doctor Doctor sells to Europe as 'The Heart Guy'". TV Tonight. Retrieved 5 August 2017.
  25. "Acorn TV | The Heart Guy". Retrieved 26 December 2017.
  26. Knox, David (12 January 2018). "UK picks up Doctor Doctor". TV Tonight. Retrieved 12 January 2018.
  27. "The Heart Guy (Doctor Doctor)". Retrieved 8 September 2018.
  28. Munn, Patrick (29 October 2019). "Drama Sets UK Premiere Date For 'The Heart Guy' Season 4". Retrieved 4 November 2019.
  29. "Doctor Doctor". 9Now. Retrieved 22 July 2018.
  30. "The Heart Guy". Retrieved 21 July 2018.
  31. Knox, David (31 January 2019). "Programmer's Wrap 2019: Nine". TV Tonight. Retrieved 31 October 2019.
  32. Knox, David (31 August 2019). "Dramas held back to 2020". TV Tonight. Retrieved 31 October 2019.
  33. Knox, David (31 October 2019). "UK viewers get Doctor Doctor season before Nine". TV Tonight. Retrieved 31 October 2019.
  34. "Doctor Doctor Series 4". Retrieved 4 September 2019.
  35. Knox, David (31 October 2019). "UK viewers get Doctor Doctor season before Nine". TV Tonight. Retrieved 4 November 2019.
  36. Enker, Debi "Doctor Doctor sees the return of rural medical drama to Australian TV". The Sydney Morning Herald. 5 September 2016. Retrieved 27 July 2018.
  37. Molk, Steve "REVIEW: Is there a DOCTOR DOCTOR in the house?". DeciderTV. 5 September 2016. Retrieved 27 July 2018.
  38. Buckley, Rob "Third-episode verdict: Doctor Doctor (Australia: Nine)". 4 October 2016. Retrieved 27 July 2018.
  39. "Nominees unveiled for Casting Guild of Australia Awards". If Magazine. 9 October 2016. Retrieved 24 July 2018.
  40. "7th AACTA Awards". Retrieved 24 July 2018.
  41. "8th AACTA Awards". Retrieved 27 May 2019.
  42. Byrnes, Holly (26 March 2017). "Logie Awards 2017: nominations". Retrieved 27 May 2019.
  43. Knox, David (26 March 2017). "Logie Awards 2017: nominees". Retrieved 27 May 2019.
  44. "Logies 2018: Complete list of winners". 2 July 2018. Retrieved 18 October 2019.
  45. Knox, David (26 May 2019). "Logie Awards 2019: nominees". TV Tonight. Retrieved 27 May 2019.
  46. Knox, David (15 September 2016). "Wednesday 14 September 2016". TV Tonight. Retrieved 27 October 2018.
  47. Knox, David (17 November 2016). "Wednesday 16 November 2016". TV Tonight. Retrieved 27 October 2018.
  48. Knox, David (17 August 2017). "Wednesday 16 August 2017". TV Tonight. Retrieved 27 October 2018.
  49. Knox, David (19 October 2017). "Wednesday 18 October 2017". TV Tonight. Retrieved 27 October 2018.
  50. Knox, David (7 August 2018). "Monday 6 August 2018". TV Tonight. Retrieved 27 October 2018.
  51. Knox, David (9 October 2018). "Monday 8 October 2018". TV Tonight. Retrieved 27 October 2018.
  52. "The Heart Guy: Series 1 DVD". Retrieved 15 July 2018.
  53. "The Heart Guy: Series 1 Blu-ray". Retrieved 26 May 2019.
  54. "The Heart Guy - Staffel 1 [3 DVDs]". Retrieved 9 January 2018.
  55. "Doctor Doctor Series 1 on DVD". Archived from the original on 22 February 2017. Retrieved 22 February 2017.
  56. "DOCTOR DOCTOR - SEASON 1(DVD)". 3 November 2016. Retrieved 8 September 2017.
  57. "Doctor Doctor: Series 1 & 2 DVD". Retrieved 23 July 2019.
  58. "Doctor Doctor: Series 1-3 DVD". Retrieved 23 July 2019.
  59. "The Heart Guy: Series 2 DVD". Retrieved 15 July 2018.
  60. "The Heart Guy: Series 2 Blu-ray". Retrieved 26 May 2019.
  61. "The Heart Guy - Staffel 2 [3 DVDs]". Retrieved 9 January 2018.
  62. "Doctor Doctor - Season 2". JB Hi-Fi. Retrieved 9 January 2018.
  63. "DOCTOR DOCTOR - SEASON 2 (DVD)". 26 October 2017. Retrieved 8 September 2017.
  64. "The Heart Guy: Series 3 DVD". Retrieved 3 March 2019.
  65. "The Heart Guy: Series 3 Blu-ray". Retrieved 26 May 2019.
  66. "Doctor Doctor - Complete Season 3". Retrieved 27 October 2018.
  67. "DOCTOR DOCTOR - SEASON 3(DVD)". 15 October 2018. Retrieved 27 October 2018.
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