‘Ratched Review’: Crafted To The Finest Detail

Bridget Reyes

Disclaimer: This show contains scenes that include violence, blood, gore, smoking, and sexual scenes so viewer discretion is advised. Also, if you can not handle blood or gore I recommend not watching this show


Netflix recently released a new original series called Ratched, which follows a nurse, named Mildred Ratched (Sarah Paulson), in her adventure to save her brother. Now the idea of saving her brother would sound like the brother is in danger but he is actually stuck in a psychiatric hospital because he is a renowned serial killer. 


Nurse Ratched juggles her job at the hospital and plots to release her brother, which is the least of her concerns. With every attempt she makes a new obstacle is presented, complicating her plans. 


Although this show was a new adventure for non-horror fans, rest assured that this show is crafted beautifully. From the cinematography to the background music this show is detailed and crafted to the finest detail. 


Custom Design


Since this show was set in the late 1940s, the vintage aesthetic was a necessary factor in order to make this show come alive. Ratched’s Custom Designers Lyo Eyrich and Rebecca Guzzi put together a stunning display of outfits that Nurse Ratched would wear throughout the show. With bright, bold dresses and hats to combine the cars that Ratched would drive in each episode, the custom designers made sure to make Mildred Ratched’s outfits an iconic marker in the show. 


From every pop of pink to the lightest blue, the outfits every character wore were a statement for the viewer to make sure they focus on the scene. The bright colors played as some sort of warning so that the viewer was aware of which character to focus on. If the character was to be paid attention then they would wear the brightest color, on the other hand, if the character was not meant to be paid attention then they would use a darker and monotone color. The use of color made this show an attention grabber because of how strategic the custom designers were on choosing their outfits and color palette. This is why they deserve a round of applause and praise on their brilliant use of color throughout this show. 




For any horror and thriller show, it is only necessary to cast Sarah Paulson as your main actress. Her acting in horror shows is done with so much passion and emotion, bringing more life into those shows. 


Speaking for her most recent role (Nurse Mildred Ratched), Sarah Paulson adds the power of pathos in her acting. While watching her character develop, the viewer begins to feel like they are watching Nurse Ratched in current time. Not only for her acting but for her having the main role in a series; is extremely powerful, since women aren’t typically cast in main roles. 


Another leading character Edmond Tolleson, played by Finn Wittrock, puts on an incredible show. Cast as the serial killer in this show that many renowned actors fail to play the part, Finn Wittrock makes sure not to disappoint. As he embodies his character, you can see the passion and the twistedness that is needed in order to make a fictional serial killer come to life. 


The dynamic duo of both him and Sarah Paulson embody their characters to the full maximum. As the show plays out the viewer can see how their acting and character developments pan out. These two can surely make a show come to life as if it were Frankenstein.


The only con about this show is the lack of diversity amongst the cast. Although there were other actors and actresses of color, there was no denying the huge difference between the small portion of the actors of color to the majority of the cast being white. Nonetheless each actor regardless of their race performed incredibly in order to bring this show alive. 




In every horror film or show that people watch the main factor is the art of suspense. So wouldn’t suspense be classified as a part of acting, those may ask. Technically, in order to capture the art of suspense, the audience has to focus on the details which are captured through the cinematography. 


Cinematographers Simon Dennis, Nelson Cragg, Blake McClure, and Andrew Mitchell used dimmed lighting and narrow shots in order to focus on the following events. They captured the emotions each character gave as well as capturing the environment so that the viewer can become attached to the show. As the viewer became more and more attached the suspense would cave in the viewer giving them the thrill that every horror show should implement in its audience.    




Another element that demonstrates the time dedicated to crafting the show so beautifully is the music. The background music that played in every episode was carefully selected in order to fit the theme of the show. 


The chosen music genre that played in every episode was instrumental, although it may sound a bit unpleasing the instrumental music added more suspense and emotion in the show. The series music composer was Mac Quayle, who somehow conveyed every emotion of each episode to a beautifully composed instrumental piece. He managed to gather all of the emotions both the viewer and the actors displayed, then converted it to the thrilling instrumental piece that adds to the scenes that are portrayed.


Ratched is not your typical horror show, instead, it is a demonstration of the necessary tools needed in order to produce a horror show. Every element that was included helped tie this show together which makes it incredibly unique. Every detail and every decision made by the crew proved to be worth it, since Ratched is now set for a second season. This show holds the potential of becoming the new standard for horror shows. As for the rest of the audience, it’s time to wait and see if the upcoming season holds the show’s reputation like it did in the first season.