This is one nurse you don’t want by your bedside.
As far as iconic characters go, villainous Nurse Ratched has to be up there with the best. Originally brought to life by Louise Fletcher in the Oscar-winning drama One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, Nurse Ratched (AKA Big Nurse) is the main antagonist of the mental institution in which she works. Ratched abuses her power by revoking patient privileges, conducting cruel torments and wreaking havoc with her every move.
The character has also been portrayed in ABC’s Once Upon a Time by Ingrid Torrance. In the show, she works for the Evil Queen in the Storybrooke Sanitarium.
Now, we get the prequel series we all deserve, thanks to the creator of American Horror Story, Ryan Murphy, and screenwriter Evan Romansky. Sarah Paulson will be bringing Ratched to life once again, but this time, we get to see where it all began.
Who’s in it?
We finally get to see Sarah Paulson in the full-time villainous role she deserves!
Having played 10 (11 if we’re getting technical) diverse and sometimes outrageous characters across the American Horror Story (AHS) anthology series, it’s clear this leading lady’s talents are endless. In the eighth instalment of the franchise, we got a taste of Paulson’s dark side as she played an abusive tyrant who uses the apocalypse to her advantage. For the most part, Paulson’s other portrayals would be good-minded or morally ambiguous characters who are weak and are pushed to their limits to try and survive, but they’d never usually be considered as outright evil. One of Paulson’s key talents is giving everything and more to her characters, so we’re really excited to see her tap into her chilling side.
Starring alongside Paulson are a number of pretty recognisable faces, including; her AHS colleague, Finn Wittrock; Corey Stoll (House of Cards, The Strain); Cynthia Nixon (Sex and the City); Sharon Stone (Basic Instinct); and the legendary Judy Davis who’s career stretches over 40 years.
You sure can tell this TV show has AHS written all over it. From the editing, to the cinematography, and the cheeky yet eerie music, we think this is going to be a successful addition to Ryan Murphy’s collection of evil tales.
In the trailer, Paulson presents herself rather elegantly through her stature and mannerisms, but her stony face is certainly telling of her inner demons. We think she hits the nail on the head as a younger Big Nurse.
Cinematography wise, there’s a lot to admire. The colour scheme is straight out of 1940s classical Hollywood, with yellow, green and red tones taking prominence. The show is bursting with colour and reminiscent of the era, and boy does it look good. The costumes are also brilliantly nostalgic, with the nurses outfit matching the period (note the long dress, fabric belt and sleeves coming to a cuff at the wrist), alongside tailored dresses, suits, and the neck scarves to match. As for the props, there’s also plenty of classic cars to transport you back to the 40’s.
It also looks like there’ll be enough violence going round to tickle your nerves. The whacky and frantic-paced editing offers a montage of inmates being injected, restrained, submerged in boiling bathtubs, and even set on fire. If the burnt bloodied body walking down the corridor isn’t enough to get your heart racing, we’re sure there’ll be a few more tricks up Romansky and Murphy’s sleeves to make you shudder in your seat.
Ratched will premiere on Netflix on 18 September 2020.