‘Ratched’ Episode 1-4 Review

By: Taylor Nute, A&E Editor

tn1041@plymouth.edu

On September 18th, the highly anticipated Netflix show, Ratched, was released. The show is a prequel to One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, and tells the origin story of iconic character Nurse Mildred Ratched as she begins to work at the fictional Lucia State Hospital. This is a review of the first four episodes. Warning: spoilers ahead!

The first few episodes tell the audience how Mildred Ratched came to work at Lucia State Hospital in California. Her precise and calculated actions help her quickly gain the trust of most of the nurses around her, and even Dr. Hanover, who runs the institution. Ratched occasionally goes to visit Edmund Tolleson, a serial killer in the institution and her brother. Throughout the first four episodes, many things happen; Ratched vows to get her brother out of the hospital alive, a hitman (who just so happens to live a few doors down from Ratched at a motel) is hired to kill Dr. Hanover, and Ratched helps sneak out two patients at the hospital who were receiving treatment due to their sexual orientation.

The show was created by Ryan Murphy, who also created two other successful shows, Glee and American Horror Story. Because of this, there were high hopes as to how Ratched would turn out. Unfortunately, though, it didn’t turn out as great as some hoped. The plot is constantly all over the place and requires too many outlandish events to keep it going. It’s as if the writers couldn’t quite figure out how to put the plot together.

The show isn’t all negative, though. The shots of the hospital and California landscape are visually stunning and feature a wide array of soft and poppy colors. The acting is worthy of praise, as well. Sarah Paulson, who places the titular character, is able to bring the calculated, hard working nurse to life effortlessly. Each character is well written, and their interactions are always believable. 

After watching the first 4 episodes, I’m not quite sure I would recommend the show, simply because of the strange, outlandish plot. However, the plot could come together more through the last half of the 8-episode series. The review for the last four episodes will come out in the next print.