First Ratched Trailer: Sarah Paulson Become Infamous Nurse
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First Ratched Trailer Shows Sarah Paulson Become Infamous Nurse

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BY March 4, 2021

Less than a week after they released the first images of the show, Netflix released the first trailer for Ratched, an upcoming series offering a new take on a familiar character. Let’s watch it and wildly speculate about everything.

In The Words Of My Sister, “What This About?”

First, the show is part of Ryan Murphy’s massive deal with Netflix, which has already produced shows with buzz-worthy trailers like Hollywood and The Politician. And if you recognize the name Ratched, then you probably already know what this is about. Skip to the next section or whatever–I won’t mind. (Yes, I will.)

If the name doesn’t ring a bell, though, then here’s all you need to know. Nurse Ratched, aka Big Nurse, is a character from Ken Kesey’s book One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, which he based on his time working in a mental hospital. Most people, however, are probably most familiar with the character through Louise Fletcher’s portrayal in Miloš Forman’s film version, where she was given the first name Mildred.

first ratched trailer Nurse Ratched in One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, image via Fantasy Films and United Artists

Nurse Ratched is the head nurse at the hospital, but she operates more like a tyrant. She controls the patients through deprivation and reward, based on how she feels about them. And unsurprisingly, she’s not fair in her assessments–they’re completely dependent on her whims. Furthermore, the hospital bigwigs don’t really care, because she keeps an orderly ward.

Also, apparently a version or homage of her was a character on ABC’s Once Upon a Time, but I’ll just have to take their word for it.

First Ratched Trailer Shows The Origin Of Evil

While the film shows Nurse Ratched as fully formed, the show will explore some of what made her so awful. We know that in her early years, for instance, she spent time as a military nurse during WWII. We see a brief glimpse of that in the trailer. The series is set not long after the war–in 1947–so we’ll get to see how Ratched transfers her field nurse skills to a working hospital.

Looking at the first images the other day, the first thought I had was “Asylum vibes,” as in American Horror Story: Asylum. The trailer marries that with the vintage glamour feel of Hollywood. The trailer’s pretty clear on what kind of lady Ratched is, unsurprisingly. However, we still only get hints at the other characters. These include Jon Jon Briones as Dr. Richard Hanover, apparently the hospital head, and Vincent D’Onofrio as Governor George Milburn. Finn Wittrock will appear as Edmund Tolleson, a serial killer in the hospital. Finally, the cast also features luminaries like Sharon Stone, Judy Davis, Cynthia Nixon, Amanda Plummer, Corey Stoll, Sophie Okenedo, Alice Englert, and Charlie Carver.

You can watch the trailer below. Ratched will start terrorizing Netflix on September 18.

What do you think of the first Ratched trailer? Let us know your thoughts on social media or here in the comments.

featured image via Netflix

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Salomé Gonstad is a freelance writer who grew up in the swampy wilds of south Alabama. When she's not yelling about pop culture on the internet, she's working on a supernatural thriller about her hometown. Also, we're pretty sure she's a werewolf. Email her at

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