Monkey Business: Sneak Peeking at Ryan Murphy’s Ratched

Written by | The Lens

Gather ‘round, gays, because camp is in session. Ryan Murphy has unveiled an early glimpse of his forthcoming Netflix series, Ratched, and it looks like a candy-coated poison pill. The deliciously over-the-top imagery evokes the best of American Horror Story and the worst of Friends. Did we mention there’s a monkey sitting on Sharon Stone’s shoulder?

Ratched is a prequel to the cinematic classic One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest. That film explored the delicate balance between free will and freefalling. Jack Nicholson cemented his legacy as the most charismatic, kinetic leading man in Hollywood. Louise Fletcher created an iconic villainess whose very name is synonymous with callous care and institutional abuse. Cuckoo’s Nest is one of only three movies in history to earn Oscars in all five major categories: Best Screenplay, Best Director, Best Actor, Best Actress and Best Picture.

But that was the mid-70s. This is 2020. Hello, Sharon Stone’s monkey.

Don’t get us wrong; we love kitsch. The preview posters are devilishly divine, from the tips of Sarah Paulson’s bloody gloves to the toes of her bloody shoes.

If anyone can mine the caustic soul out of Nurse Ratched’s icy demeanor, it’s Paulson. Murphy had great success navigating the epic catfight between Joan Crawford and Bette Davis with his mesmerizing biopic-series Feud. By sidestepping the exploitation factor, Murphy was able to elevate the subject matter. Ratched is playing in the same dirty sandbox as Feud, serving us vintage faces, fashion and fierceness…

In addition to Emmy winner Paulson, the cast includes the legendary Judy Davis as Nurse Betsy Bucket. Pause in reverence of that bonkers character name. Other notable names you’ll see in the credits: Amanda Plummer, Vincent D’Onofrio, Cynthia Nixon, Rosanna Arquette, and everyone’s favorite freakshow, Finn Wittrock.

But the sinister star of Ratched is its title femme fatale, played with throwback zeal by Sarah Paulson. The veteran vixen plumbs the depths of Nurse Ratched’s own insecurities to construct a towering terror of menace.

But, let’s face it: nothing could be scarier than Sharon “The Animal” Stone.

Sorry, we just can’t get over that cuckoo capuchin. Get ready to go ape for the premiere of Ratched, which debuts on Netflix September 18th. Bust out your bananas and enjoy the insanity.

(Photos courtesy of IMDB)

Last modified: August 4, 2020