Nurse Ratched, the nurse on the coronary heart of the Academy-Award successful One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, is one in every of cinema’s most infamous villains. Ryan Murphy discovered the character compelling sufficient to create Ratched, which casts Sarah Paulson in Louise Fletcher’s unique function. But oddly sufficient, the brand new Netflix sequence will not be the nurse’s first tv look.
That could be Once Upon a Time.
Yes, the ABC present about fairytale Disney characters coming to life in the true world additionally options Nurse Ratched in a minor, recurring function as performed by Ingrid Torrance.
Once Upon a Time, which ran for seven seasons on ABC, could be very loosely about fairy story characters floating round a small city in Maine with out their reminiscences. The present flip-flops between the true world and the fantasy one, because the characters attempt to break their curse.
Ratched showing in Once Upon a Time isn’t truly as bizarre as it’d sound. Throughout its seven season run, the sequence creators pulled not simply from Disney films and fairytales, but in addition from literature such because the Wizard of Oz, Greek mythology, and Arthurian legend. Ken Kesey’s e book is certainly not as fantastical as the opposite examples, however it’s a e book so, positive, Nurse Ratched seems in Once Upon a Time with the likes of Elsa, Mulan, Sleeping Beauty, Captain Hook, the Mad Hatter, and others. Nurse Ratched is simply named a few instances, however we all know she’s not only a random nurse, as a result of scripts for the sequence discuss with her as Nurse Ratched.
I by no means saved up with Once Upon a Time, however if you happen to spend lots of time within the Disney fandom area, you choose up sufficient random tidbits in regards to the sequence to really feel such as you saved up with Once Upon a Time. So I puzzled to myself: can I get the complete Once Upon a Time expertise by simply watching the Nurse Ratched scenes?
Here’s how my self-imposed experiment performed out:
[Ed. word: This article accommodates very imprecise and vastly out-of-context spoilers for six seasons of Once Upon a Time]
Nurse Ratched makes her debut within the remaining moments of the 12th episode of the primary season, which suggests I began watching Once Upon a Time in earnest within the remaining moments of the 12th episode of the primary season. The Evil Queen girl (Lana Parrilla) saunters as much as the psychiatric wing of the Storybrooke General Hospital and palms Nurse Ratched a rose. Nurse Ratched, whose title isn’t talked about but however, and I need to stress this, is Nurse Ratched, says one thing about how nobody ever visits a selected affected person. And that individual affected person is … Belle (Emilie de Ravin), the star of many Once Upon a Time GIFsets. Why is she right here? I have no idea, nor do I discover out, as a result of I’m solely watching Ratched’s scenes, so it’s time for the subsequent one.
Nurse Ratched returns to OUAT within the season 1 finale. We’re again on the psychiatric wing once more, which is underground and creepy. She’s on the desk, simply doing her job, when Sebastian Stan, who performs Jefferson, the Mad Hatter character in eyeliner, is available in and offers her some tea. One sip knocks her out. Jefferson then breaks into the hospital to free Belle.
Nurse Ratched returns in season 2. Belle is again within the psychiatric wing, although it now appears to be like like an actual hospital as an alternative of a dungeon. What occurred between seasons? I’m unsure, as a result of I’m solely watching Nurse Ratched’s scenes. She meets with this sizzling girl in a fur coat (Meghan Ory) and after she throws a match, Nurse Ratched comes over to sedate her. Ratched tells the woman within the fur coat that Belle has “been like this the whole time” and that they’ve needed to preserve her closely sedated. Ratched escorts Belle out of the room.
Later in season 2, Rumplestiltskin (Robert Carlyle) is on the lookout for Belle, however finds an empty hospital mattress. Let me emphasize as soon as once more simply how a lot of a makeover this hospital has gotten on this imply time: in season 1, Belle was saved in a cellar with just one tiny window, however now she will get a mattress. Anyway, Rumple is like “Where is this patient?” and Nurse Ratched is like “Well, she should still be here” and he’s like “THEN WHERE IS SHE?!” after which Ratched runs off to search for Belle. She appears intimidated by him, which isn’t the cutthroat ruthless Ratched we all know and love.
Ratched doesn’t seem in any respect in season 3. Whatever occurs throughout season 3 of Once Upon a Time stays in season 3 of Once Upon a Time.
When we get to season 4, Ratched is as soon as once more behind the desk of the psychiatric wing. She doesn’t say something. Also, the hospital is creepy once more. Evil Queen and another evil-looking girl (Rebecca Mader) stroll previous Nurse Ratched, however the place they go, I have no idea, as a result of I’m mainly watching Once Upon a Ratched.
Season 5 is probably the most hoppin’ season for Nurse Ratched, as she seems in 4 completely different episodes. The season kicks off with a Kid performed by Jared S. Gilmore truly calling Nurse Ratched by her title! Confirmation! He’s looking for his mother, so he walks into the creepy model of the psychiatric wing and spills his drink on her in order that Captain Hook (Colin O’Donoghue), who within the present is a really enticing dark-haired man in eyeliner, can sneak in. I don’t know who he goes to see, however poor Nurse Ratched’s uniform is ruined.
But she bounces shortly again from that loss, showing in that season’s sixth episode to ship lunch to one of many sufferers — the evil-looking girl from season 4, who is seemingly nonetheless on this place. The affected person is seemingly pregnant and actually craving onion rings, however Nurse Ratched delivers a plate of frankly bland trying greens, saying that the mayor has instructed her to solely feed this prisoner natural, regionally grown greens, as a result of she’s apparently pregnant. This pisses off the affected person, who sends Ratched off. Where is the domineering Nurse Ratched we all know and love? Why is she such a pushover?
Ratched makes use of her nurse expertise within the eighth episode, when the pregnant girl begins to offer delivery. By that, I imply, she frantically goes to the door then summons the lady’s sister and a person who I believe is her child daddy (Sean Maguire). Apparently, everybody’s somewhat freaked out as a result of she was solely two months pregnant however now’s going into labor! It’s due to darkish magic, she says, however … whose darkish magic? Well, we received’t discover out, as a result of it’s onto the subsequent Ratched scene, the place she holds the woman’s hand as she provides delivery!
In season 5, episode 10, the hospital is again to trying like an precise regular hospital as an alternative of a horror film — although that may very well be as a result of we’re within the maternity wing and for some purpose Ratched has a shift protecting this desk too. Hospital shifts, am I proper? The previously pregnant girl marches in and Ratched is like “You can’t be here!” after which the evil girl waves her hand and Ratched passes out. Evil girl looks like she’s on a mission, however I’m not positive what she’s on the lookout for. Probably a child?
Nurse Ratched’s remaining appearances are in season 6, the present’s penultimate season. In the third episode, the Evil Queen (who’s now not evil?) heads right down to the psychiatric wing and takes a casserole dish from Ratched. This is one other second the place they point out Nurse Ratched by title: Evil Queen feedback that in comparison with the cup of noodles Nurse Ratched serves, her lasagna is match for a king, which is able to hopefully get the affected person to speak to them. Technically this spills a bit over from when Nurse Ratched was on display, however I’m letting it slide as a result of she was immediately talked about.
In episode 16, Ratched as soon as once more commandeers the desk in entrance of the creepy psychiatric wing. Evil Queen and Henry go right down to see a affected person and Ratched feedback that this explicit affected person has by no means had any guests. Spooky! Evil Queen and Henry suppose this affected person will assist them. Ratched unlocks the door, revealing a dude named Isaac (Patrick Fischler) who’s typing at a typewriter.
In Ratched’s remaining look, we see principal character Emma Swann portray a swan. Ratched is available in — which suggests that is going down within the psychiatric wing, in all probability, which now options some good home windows — and tells Emma that her son is right here to go to. Ratched leads her out to the ready room, which has undoubtedly been spruced up since final time we noticed the hospital. Henry and Emma speak a bit about how none of their family and friends are actual, as a result of Emma thinks the entire fairy story stuff is a delusion.
This is probably the most plot we’ve gotten from watching the Ratched scenes, as a result of Ratched is hovering within the nook and going to make a reappearance. There is one thing a couple of Black Fairy wiping Emma’s reminiscences, however Emma insists that she’s simply unwell. They recount the occasions that I presume occurred in earlier seasons (he ate a poisoned apple turnover at one level, however Emma saved him with True Love’s Kiss). Ratched comes again to offer Emma her drugs. She appears to be like fairly domineering, but in addition doesn’t actually intrude with Henry exhibiting Emma some cryptic notes. Ratched walks away proper as some new evil-looking girl (Jaime Murray) hovers over Henry, so now we’re stopping.
Once Upon a Time does have a seventh season, nevertheless it’s a delicate reboot set in Seattle and focuses on grownup Henry. So Ratched’s time in Once Upon a Time ends when the present’s time within the city of Storybrooke ends. If there’s any information that this expertise has given me about this present, is that it takes place in a hospital greater than I assumed it could. I’ve additionally realized that there are extra evil girls than I initially thought. But apart from that, I don’t know if I realized something from this expertise that I didn’t be taught by osmosis on-line. If something, it’s solely introduced up extra questions.
I’ll say, nonetheless, that watching it for about ten seconds throughout six seasons has sparked an curiosity in me. Who are these mysterious sufferers that preserve exhibiting up? Why does the psychiatric wing appear like a dungeon typically and a traditional hospital different instances? Are there extra sizzling males in eyeliner? Is this the intrigue of Once Upon a Time working its magic on me, a prone Disney fan?
All seven seasons of Once Upon a Time are streaming on Disney Plus. One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest and Ratched are streaming on Netflix.