Not Sure If You Can Handle the Gore in Netflix's Ratched? Here's a Guide
Although Ryan Murphy is also the mind behind American Horror Story, rest assured that Netflix's Ratched shares only a few similarities with the horror anthology series; like the stunning costumes, the featured actors, and its aptly timed gore. The show, which is a prequel to the popular Ken Kesey novel One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, follows Nurse Mildred Ratched in 1947 as she seeks employment at a Northern California psychiatric hospital.
With its star-studded cast, including a few familiar AHS favorites, there are a few thrills every now and again, but it's really the gore that gets us. After all, it's set in a psychiatric hospital in the '40s with a killer at its heart . . . the gore was bound to happen. If you're still on the fence about whether or not you can handle it, we've gone ahead and broken down the goriest moments so you'll be ready to stream Ratched, which is now on Netflix.
How Gory Are the Murders?
Ratched doesn't waste any time getting into the gore. In the first episode, Edmund Tolleson brutally massacres a number of priests. The reasoning? One of them is the absent father he blames for his mother's death. The scene is drawn out and we're treated to a number of graphic death scenes, including a priest getting his head bashed in. A later storyline of Edmund's, which is seen in episode six, includes how he was sexually abused growing up and murders his adopted parents as a result. Although we don't fully see him commit these murders, his actions are intercut with puppetry and a trippy narration.
Episode seven sees a former patient named Charlotte Wells lose touch with reality and savagely stab Dr. Richard Hanover to death, but his death isn't even the worst part. Making good on a promise to Lenore Osgood, Mildred Ratchet cleans up the scene before removing Richard's head with a hand saw. The implications are grisly but luckily we don't see the outcome.
Throughout the series, we grow to hate Governor George Wilburn. While he's not considered a murderer by the public like Edmund, he does let a man on death row essentially fry in an electric chair and catch on fire in the final episode.
How Gory Are the Treatments?
Set in a psychiatric hospital in 1947, it's expected that the antiquated and barbaric treatments of the time would be seen in full force. Lobotomies are the most prevalent, with Dr. Richard Hanover performing both a transorbital lobotomy and one that requires a hole being drilled into the head in episode two. Nurse Mildred Ratchet also performs a lobotomy in the episode, although hers is more sinister in nature and is heard rather than seen.
The other horrifying treatment involves hydrotherapy, with the patient essentially being boiled before being immersed in an ice cold bath. While patient Ingrid is merely traumatized from her experience in episode three, private investigator Charles Wainwright isn't so lucky. Mildred tricks him into coming to the hospital and locks him in the hydrotherapy chamber in the hopes that he'll be boiled alive. He escapes but is left looking like a gruesome monster before being shot in the head in episode four.
What Is Ratched's Goriest Scene?
When it comes to gore, nothing compares to the origins of Henry Osgood's lack of limbs, which we learn episode three. In a flashback scene, Dr. Richard Hanover treats Henry with LSD in the hopes that it will calm his violent urges. While high on LSD, Henry reveals to Richard that he believes his arms are someone else's and decides to remove them. Henry then drugs Richard so that he can't stop him and returns holding the disembodied arms of the gardener he murdered. What happens next is something we were not prepared for. Since Richard is incapacitated, Henry decides to remove his arms himself and saws one off before shutting the other in a drawer. It's a scene that will likely stick in your head and is the kind of gory dramatic flair Ryan Murphy is known for.