What Is the Storyline Behind PBS's "Doc Martin" Series?

The "Doc Martin" series follows Dr. Martin Ellingham as he transitions from a career as a well-known surgeon to a general practitioner due to the onset of a blood phobia. He finds himself interviewing for a position in the Cornish town of Portwenn, and he meets a cast of colorful characters as he makes the adjustment to small-town life.

The doctor and villagers initially find themselves at odds as the villagers dislike Doc Martin's abrupt and stiff manner and the doctor finds the villagers a little too casual. It is soon discovered, however, that the doctor is an excellent diagnostician.

Doc Martin's personality leads to many comedic situations throughout the series. This is especially true when it comes to his feelings for teacher, Louisa Glasson. Due to the doctor's difficulty in expressing himself, the relationship between him and the teacher is a rocky one.

"Doc Martin" has its origins in several made-for-TV movies. The original character of Doc Martin is much different than the one portrayed in the series. When the company making the TV movies folded, the show was pitched to ITV. To make the show edgier, ITV insisted Doc Martin's character should be stiff, abrasive and socially incompetent.