Binge Guide

Weekly Binge: Nurse Jackie

by | April 8, 2015 | Comments

Hello, Nurse! Showtime’s Nurse Jackie, returning on Apr. 12 for its seventh and final season, is a show on many people’s “I’m gonna get to that” list. It’s totally binge-worthy, so here’s what you need to know before starting. Could be just what the doctor — er, nurse — ordered.


Nurse Jackie

Nurse Jackie
What’s the premise? A pill-popping nurse in a frenzied New York City hospital struggles to keep a handle on her addiction and deal with a destructing marriage while tending to patients in need.

What’s it like? Sort of like a Grey’s Anatomy on steroids (or Vicodin, Xanax, Oxycontin, Adderall, or Percocet), Nurse Jackie has become a reference point for shows dubbed “dramedies.” Its charming treatment of real-life anguish steers viewers into a place of hope, connecting us to these wondrous and fragile characters. Due to its succinct thirty minute episodes, Jackie often ends up on “comedy” lists for award nominations, but its comedy is fueled by an honest portrayal of tragedy, with stand-out comedic performances by Merritt Weaver (Zoey) and Anna Deavere Smith (Gloria Akalitus).

Where can I see it? Nurse Jackie can be found on Showtime (online with subscription), Amazon Instant Video, Vudu, iTunes, Google Play, Xbox Video, and XFinity by Comcast. All six seasons are also available on DVD/Blu-Ray for all you old-schoolers. Season seven premieres Apr. 12, on Showtime.

How long will it take? There are six seasons and a total of 66 episodes. With each episode running around 30 minutes, it’ll take you a total of 33 hours. You may want to schedule a visiting nurse to bring you food and fluff your pillows while you watch.

What do the critics think? Nurse Jackie is Fresh as far as the critics are concerned. Season one is Certified Fresh at 95 percent, while seasons two through five are 75 percent, 80 percent, 100 percent and 71 percent respectively on the Tomatometer. Season six drops a bit to 67%. Over the years, critics have responded positively to the show. Of season five, Matthew Gilbert from the Boston Globe said, “It’s honest, credible, trustworthy storytelling.” Matt Roush of TV Guide reviewed season four, calling it “one of TV’s most uncompromising dark comedies.” Of season one, Popmatters’ Michael Abernathy said Nurse Jackie “offers both gripping drama and outrageous comedy.” Since its debut in 2009, Nurse Jackie has been a standout work that has fans and critics laughing and crying along.

Why should I watch this? In the role of Nurse Jackie, Edie Falco has been nominated for five Emmys, one of which she won in 2010 (the show itself won three additional Emmys), and she’s also been nominated for six SAG Awards and four Golden Globes. But one stellar performance is not reason enough to get addicted to a TV series. Excellent supporting players and gripping scripts make Nurse Jackie a winner with its perfectly balanced combination of funny and sad. Many may suspect that Nurse Jackie is more of a “women’s show,” but the issues of addiction and adultery resonate across genders. And ultimately what keeps everyone coming back is the biting hilarity of the dialogue.

What’s my next step? Edie Falco’s award-winning performance on The Sopranos should be your first step. Grey’s Anatomy is an obvious choice for those who are addicted to medical dramas. And another current medical drama is NBC’s The Night Shift. Highly recommended, though, is the short-lived Laura Dern- and Mike White-created TV show Enlightened, which has a similar tone to Nurse Jackie. For those who enjoy more traditional medical dramas, there’s ER, Chicago Hope and the short runs of Trauma Center and Monday Mornings, but for sitcom-style medical antics, try Scrubs. Jackie costar Peter Facinelli can now be seen on American Odyssey. Fans of the show should also enjoy the Certifed Fresh shows The Good Wife and The Knick, which stars Clive Owen as the cocaine-addled Dr. Thackery in turn-of-the-century New York City. On the film side, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest is worth watching for its critique of healthcare institutions and Erin Brockovich shows another funny-yet-serious depiction of strong women making a difference.

Tag Cloud

Netflix Christmas movies indie spain supernatural 21st Century Fox A&E Rom-Com Hallmark E3 biography Ellie Kemper Spring TV New York Comic Con IFC mockumentary cats MTV sequel boxoffice BBC critics Martial Arts CW Seed Calendar Vudu cops satire Rock Heroines Nominations anime Lionsgate Tomatazos quibi Toys based on movie game of thrones Nat Geo X-Men Tubi Opinion The Walking Dead Black History Month Fox News casting American Society of Cinematographers cartoon versus Pop TV Disney streaming service tv talk Amazon Prime Video Summer dark OWN natural history PaleyFest mission: impossible Avengers crime indiana jones MSNBC Comedy Central game show cars comedies Year in Review stand-up comedy Creative Arts Emmys Awards dramedy TruTV BBC America slashers strong female leads DirecTV WGN cults Photos spinoff Hallmark Christmas movies First Look Trivia Oscars CBS crossover HBO Max Comics on TV YouTube Red Spike transformers Sundance Now comiccon sports Apple TV+ SundanceTV werewolf Emmy Nominations Character Guide Super Bowl psychological thriller A24 TLC Crunchyroll reviews talk show Sneak Peek Food Network TCA 2017 Rocky Countdown Music 2020 cancelled TV series halloween cancelled TV shows Action screen actors guild video Netflix toy story witnail best composers The Purge festivals YA Emmys Walt Disney Pictures Nickelodeon Disney Plus documentary Musical GoT 71st Emmy Awards singing competition Warner Bros. Cannes 2018 Logo spider-man 45 Quiz Black Mirror space BET Awards Infographic nature GIFs adventure breaking bad Hear Us Out YouTube chucky Pop Universal HBO Go Premiere Dates award winner blaxploitation Endgame Biopics DGA FXX streaming adaptation Elton John ESPN OneApp Cartoon Network Thanksgiving Reality Competition sag awards TV Land franchise discovery Stephen King historical drama Election Kids & Family all-time dragons political drama Rocketman miniseries free movies TV USA SXSW kids APB documentaries Chilling Adventures of Sabrina HBO PlayStation directors doctor who harry potter Film Festival Western Awards Tour PBS The CW BET Lifetime Christmas movies BBC One war Superheroe The Arrangement Columbia Pictures VOD FX on Hulu Crackle 2017 name the review unscripted scary movies Turner Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt 20th Century Fox Binge Guide green book CNN Paramount Network Amazon period drama disaster Certified Fresh justice league Sundance TV Spectrum Originals Discovery Channel joker Country CMT sitcom Captain marvel Teen romance binge Tumblr Trophy Talk cancelled television police drama Christmas foreign technology video on demand finale comic Turner Classic Movies Cosplay Podcast Tarantino asian-american Drama zombies 2015 Freeform zombie a nightmare on elm street SDCC Comic Book dc TIFF Esquire Showtime Schedule Chernobyl richard e. Grant true crime Brie Larson Television Academy NYCC Superheroes Set visit Pride Month Epix stoner thriller Family batman Fall TV Film National Geographic parents ABC Family jamie lee curtis social media Pirates Interview 007 Trailer Comedy TV renewals TNT WarnerMedia Apple TV Plus Baby Yoda Acorn TV series TCM Amazon Prime Shondaland USA Network San Diego Comic-Con RT21 Adult Swim Disney Channel FOX psycho El Rey docudrama VICE news Masterpiece Ghostbusters MCU Holiday Pet Sematary romantic comedy History Horror canceled Winners Writers Guild of America First Reviews Disney renewed TV shows Marvel Television DC streaming service Travel Channel robots The Witch Winter TV child's play TBS spy thriller screenings concert Star Wars Best and Worst serial killer Extras 24 frames what to watch Ovation science fiction RT History anthology aliens Shudder President animated Musicals Marvel cancelled Dark Horse Comics cooking cinemax hispanic Polls and Games crime thriller elevated horror crime drama See It Skip It book Red Carpet LGBT diversity Pixar revenge zero dark thirty movie facebook GLAAD children's TV canceled TV shows Reality Mudbound dogs blockbuster Sundance Paramount Mystery Bravo Apple Women's History Month Peacock Watching Series ghosts ratings DC Comics 2019 TCA Winter 2020 Hulu E! Fantasy IFC Films rotten movies we love ABC die hard 4/20 Anna Paquin universal monsters Box Office Britbox south america spanish language ITV Mary Tyler Moore Sony Pictures CBS All Access theme song politics Song of Ice and Fire television vampires BAFTA medical drama 2016 reboot Lucasfilm teaser Grammys Valentine's Day dceu comics latino Funimation mutant Lifetime LGBTQ Mary Poppins Returns DC Universe FX christmas movies Sci-Fi hist Disney+ Disney Plus independent Animation Video Games VH1 Mary poppins movies films Arrowverse Classic Film Marathons NBC TCA YouTube Premium golden globes Mindy Kaling Syfy Star Trek Marvel Studios criterion Amazon Studios travel Holidays Starz Academy Awards twilight AMC