Call me crazy, but when I watched One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, I never once thought, “This movie needs a prequel revealing that Louise Fletcher’s Nurse Ratched is actually a crazy serial killer.” But that’s apparently exactly what Ryan Murphy thought, and since no one knows how to say “no” to Ryan Murphy anymore, here we are with Ratched. The Netflix series has frequent Murphy player Sarah Paulson playing the nurse, and while it certainly looks all kinds of stylish, I can’t help but ask: Why?
Ratched looks like it could be a lot of fun. But I remain utterly baffled by the whole endeavor. Is One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest still a hot piece of intellectual property? Did Murphy and company really needthat hook to get this show off the ground? Couldn’t they have just made a series about a crazy nurse that has nothing to do with Cuckoo’s Nest? The whole thing just seems very…strange.
But as long as Ryan Murphy is making shows, people are going to watch them. Ratched “tells the origin story of asylum nurse Mildred Ratched. In 1947, Mildred arrives in Northern California to seek employment at a leading psychiatric hospital where new and unsettling experiments have begun on the human mind. On a clandestine mission, Mildred presents herself as the perfect image of what a dedicated nurse should be, but the wheels are always turning and as she begins to infiltrate the mental health care system and those within it, Mildred’s stylish exterior belies a growing darkness that has long been smoldering within, revealing that true monsters are made, not born.”
The cast includes Sarah Paulson as Mildred Ratched, Cynthia Nixon as Gwendolyn Briggs, Judy Davis as Nurse Betsy Bucket, Sharon Stone as Lenore Osgood, Jon Jon Briones as Dr. Richard Hanover, Finn Wittrock as Edmund Tolleson, Charlie Carver as Huck, Alice Englert as Dolly, Amanda Plummer as Louise, Sophie Okonedo as Charlotte Wells, Corey Stoll as Charles Wainwright, Brandon Flynn as Henry Osgood, Annie Starke as Lily Cartwright and Vincent D’Onofrio as Gov. George Wilburn.
Will a digitally de-aged Jack Nicholson show up in the final episode? No, that will not happen. But we can all dream. The series hails from Murphy and Ian Brennan, with Murphy, Brennan, and Paulson all serving as executive producers alongside Alexis Martin Woodall, Aleen Keshishian, Jacob Epstein, Jennifer Salt, Margaret Riley, Michael Douglas, Robert Mitas, and Tim Minear. Ratched arrives on Netflix on September 18.
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