Nurse Jackie: Pilot (series premiere)
by Jane Boursaw, posted Jun 9th 2009 2:46AM
(S01E01) "Shut up. I don't like chatty. I don't do chatty. I like quiet." - Nurse Jackie to young nurse Zoey
It's hard not to think of Edie Falco as Carmela Soprano, because she's so identified with the role. But I have a feeling that after a few episodes of Nurse Jackie, Carmela will fade a bit in our minds and Jackie will start to take over. She's a complex character who snorts painkillers, has sex with the hospital druggist, looks after patients with a vengeance, tells doctors off, and goes home each night to a loving husband and two kids. She's one hot mess.
Seriously, they had me with the opening song, "Theme from Valley of the Dolls," sung by one of my favorite singers in the world, Dionne Warwick. They couldn't have picked a better song to start this series. Like the three women in that movie, Jackie is on a mission, but gets messed up in the process.
If you've ever had any dealings with the medical world, you're probably cheering her as she breaks all the rules to look after the patients' best interests -- whether that means flushing an ear (yes, an ear) down the toilet or telling a doctor how to treat a patient. When the patient dies (because the stupid doc doesn't follow Jackie's instructions), she's determined that something good might come of it. So she forges the dead guy's signature on an organ donor card.
I totally identified with Jackie when she exclaimed to her female doctor friend, "What do you doctors have against healing people, for Christ's sake?!" Our health care system is so screwed up. I hope the next time I'm in a medical situation, there's a Nurse Jackie there for me.
I appreciate seeing Peter Facinelli as a lascivious doctor who grabs Jackie's breast and claims it's because of a stress-induced Tourettes-type thing. This guy's a long way from his character of Dr. Carlisle Cullen in Twilight.
Nurse Jackie isn't for the faint of heart. Looks like we'll be seeing some blood and guts on a regular basis.
Loved it when she and her doctor friend were at lunch, and a woman started choking at the table next to them. "I am off the clock," said Jackie. And then, "Eh, I got it. You're buying lunch."