I used to love ER. There was just something about it that kept me coming back. But no other Hospital drama really grabbed me. Scrubs was a little too immature and Grey’s Anatomy seemed to be a little too focussed on romantic relationships for me to give it a serious look at.
Nurse Jackie on the other hand was a bit of a dark horse. It seemed like it would have a bit of attitude to go along with some black humour. It could, quite possibly be the Hospital drama for me.
And it is. It’s a peculiar mix. The main character, Jackie Peyton is an interesting character. On the one hand she’s an angel in disguise. She bends – no, she breaks – the rules when ever she can to make sure that people get the treatment they need, often crossing into territory that could put her in jail if she was ever found out. But none of it is ever for her benefit. She also loves her husband and two daughters. She’s almost a role model.
But then there’s the other side of her. Her drug dependancy that is the only way she copes with her life at work, the affair she’s having with the pharmacy guy who gives her the drugs. It’s in total contrast with her angelic side, but it also makes her character so much more interesting, and gives the show as a whole much more depth.
Fortunately it’s not all about Jackie. She on her own would drive any sane viewer to the mental wards in short time, so lucky for us she is surrounded by range of characters that bring warmth, humour and life to the series. One character in particular is almost way over the top, but is played in such away, and has limited screen time, as to add a degree of lightness to the otherwise dark humour that pervades the show.
Unlike ER, where the interesting cases were what made the show (at least to begin with) Nurse Jackie is about watching and waiting for a house of cards to come collapsing down. Sure, we have some interesting cases that come in, and some good deeds done despite the legal ramifications, but in essence the drama is all about Jackie Peyton’s ever increasingly difficult balancing act spinning faster and faster as the season progresses, loosing control rapidly as we anticipate a total implosion.
It’s certainly a wild ride – though one that can carry a sedate pace at times, and winds up making you an accidental addict by the end of the third disc.
Reviewed by: Jonathan Read
Release date: June 9th, 2010
Stars: Edie Falco
Length (Minutes): 322
Aspect Ratio: 1.78 : 1
Supported Audio: Dolby Digital Surround 5.1
Studio: Sony Pictures