"One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest" has a great legacy in both the literary and film world. The themes of power, conformity and mistreatment in mental institutions are still discussed today. Nurse Ratched is the antagonist of this story. Ryan Murphy and Evan Romansky created "Ratched" to give the audience more information about the character.
The show starts off with a mass murder of priests by the hand of Edmund Tolleson (played by Finn Wittrock). Tolleson was eventually arrested and admitted into the Lucia State Hospital in California. Mildred Ratched (played by Sarah Paulson) bulldozes her way into the hospital through blackmail and murder to become the top nurse and to see Tolleson.
"Ratched" had some good moments, but the bad moments took over it. The show is campy and plays well with color. The costumes are amazing, a consistent theme in Murphy's shows. The acting is also great, and Paulson was phenomenal. Although, no acting in the world can ever make this show better.
I think "Ratched" does a great job of shining a light on issues that were prevalent at the time. Psychiatric hospitals used barbaric methods to try to cure their patients, torturing them in the process. The show doesn't hold back on showing the graphic sides of lobotomies and hot baths that burn patients' skin. During this time, we also see how homosexuality was treated as a mental illness.
It's important to discuss these topics because many people fell victim to these atrocities. It also shows how we need to take better care of those who are mentally ill.
With the show excelling in themes, costumes and acting, it fails with the general story. It's only eight episodes, but it's a snooze fest. It felt like Murphy was trying to make a worse version of "American Horror Story: Asylum."
When Ratched implements intricate plans to manipulate a situation in her favor, it seems clever, but the delivery was lazy and flat. There's potential to show off these plans, but I'm never in awe about them.
Also, the random relationship between Tolleson and Dolly (played by Alice Englert) was too weird and random. Why are they making this character have a relationship with a mass murderer? It's just lazy writing to create a shock factor.
Also, the ending was bad. That's all I have to say about that.
I genuinely believe that this can be passed as part of the "American Horror Story" series. Although, "American Horror Story: Asylum" is a better show to watch than "Ratched." I do appreciate the themes that are discussed in this show, but the whole plot could've been better.
I don't know what more they can do in the next season. The show fell flat, but I can feel hopeful that they can revive it. Murphy usually does well in the horror genre, but this show just didn't do well with it.
It was a good idea to show the origin story of an infamous character, but the idea didn't triumph at the end.