Nurse Jackie : Season 1

  • Network: Showtime
  • Series Premiere Date: Jun 8, 2009
Season #: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7

Generally favorable reviews - based on 23 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 21 out of 23
  2. Negative: 0 out of 23

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Critic Reviews

  1. The workaday mysteries of Jackie and the phenomenal performance of Falco are more than enough to hold down the series while the rest of the characters find their niche.
  2. 63
    The series too often relies on oddly placed broad humor, which entirely deflates the weightier moments.
  3. A splendid new addition to pay-cable's stock of dark comedies that keep a human heart beating behind the laughs.
  4. With Falco front and center, you don't really care if Nurse Jackie gets silly, as with the patient whose cat attacked his scrotum.
  5. 90
    Nurse Jackie offers both gripping drama and outrageous comedy.
  6. Funny, yes, but in a revelatory way. It is not unusual for a working mother to view every relationship in her life as simply a matter of fulfilling the next indicated task, but I don't think it has ever been so wonderfully, and painfully, captured on television before.
  7. 80
    Grimly funny, streaked with sentimentality and malice, Nurse Jackie is the medical miracle of television's summer season, a blue-collar hospital show without a McDreamy in sight.
  8. Reviewed by: Troy Patterson
    Falco has the strength to sell the overwrought cliches and to force each important moment to its crisis.
  9. 80
    The casting, like the writing and direction, is impeccable, and includes Eve Best as Jackie's doctor friend Eleanor; Peter Facinelli as cute but semi-competent ER physician Fitch "Coop" Cooper; Merritt Wever as a bleeding-heart novice; and Haaz Sleiman as a gay Muslim orderly.
  10. 80
    The result, with its strong, complex, funny, flawed central character, feels truer to life than the zillions of one-dimensional (or no-dimensional) nurses on television.
  11. The fantastical creation of Jackie Peyton, perhaps surprisingly, has shades of gray that make her very real indeed. Both show and character are something wonderful to behold -- and worth taking multiple doses of.
  12. Falco's simply magnificent in a role that exploits a certain no-nonsense quality she's always brought to even the nonsensical aspects of her characters.
  13. At times, there's a dangerous undercurrent of anti-sentimentality, a risk of sentimentalizing curmudgeonliness itself. But for all these flaws, I still found the series excitingly ambitious--funny, sexy, strange.
  14. It has one of the most talented actresses on television as its lead, and yet over all Nurse Jackie is surprisingly, and disconcertingly, off key. This is a drama draped in black humor that doesn’t know when to be funny.
  15. The show’s writers and producers may be trying to force-feed her to us as the health-care equivalent of the whore with a heart of gold. But Ms. Falco manages to shake off clichés and attract us to her for reasons never referred to in the script.
  16. 70
    If there's a glaring flaw, it's in the character of Dr. Eleanor O'Hara (Eve Best). As comic relief, she's far too thin. Nurse Jackie has much richer, darker comedy to offer.
  17. Reviewed by: Brian Lowry
    While the title character is consistently rough and the language blue, in subsequent episodes (Showtime sent six out for review) the series increasingly feels like all style and limited substance--a star showcase that's less "triumphant return" than "Nice to have you back, but ..."
  18. 60
    For all of its charms, Nurse Jackie needs to offer a little more than an enigmatic nurse and a parade of clever grouches.
  19. Tonight's pilot suffers from a few up-the-ante, "look-at-me!" moments, like when Coop grabs Jackie's breast and claims it's a nervous tic. Future episodes are more grounded and less desperate to shock for the sake of grabbing viewer (and network) attention, but they're no less enthralling with both drama and humor.
  20. 100
    Once you get past the premiere, series are often a crapshoot. But Showtime made all 12 episodes available for preview, and through that run, the energy never flags and the performances get deeper and richer.
  21. 88
    The half-hour format is perfect for this deftly directed program, which is character-based storytelling concentrated to espresso strength.
  22. Reviewed by: James Poniewozik
    Some of the supporting characters need work (especially a too sitcommy administrator played by Anna Deavere Smith), and some patients-of-the-week veer into clichés. But Falco is outstanding as a living reminder that you meet angels only in the next life.
  23. Reviewed by: Verne Gay
    The pilot is flawed (most pilots are), not particularly funny and even--bizarrely--deploys two bland jokes from the "Weeds" premiere at 10 (did the writers trade notes?). But Falco is good, proving that she can transcend Carmela Soprano.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 62 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 9 out of 14
  2. Negative: 4 out of 14
  1. Richard
    Jun 30, 2009
    I've now watched 5 episodes of 'Nurse Jackie' and my review is as follows. This is an idea put into place without a plan. With I've now watched 5 episodes of 'Nurse Jackie' and my review is as follows. This is an idea put into place without a plan. With an average of 2 laugh's per episode, it is not a comedy. With no compelling medical cases, it's not a drama. It goes without saying it was never meant to be an action thriller. Which leaves us with what lies on the surface. A show of despair with no characters we can relate to, no character we would choose to spend time with, and certainly no character we ever hope to see as care givers. I see no value to this show, entertainment or otherwise. I'm done with it. Full Review »
  2. Dec 7, 2016
    Jesus fu*ken christ, I'm loving this show! I got netflix and was trying a bunch of stuff out, you know, house of cards, arrested development,Jesus fu*ken christ, I'm loving this show! I got netflix and was trying a bunch of stuff out, you know, house of cards, arrested development, breaking bad, you know the drill. I come across nurse jackie, you know ""carm" from the sopranos.

    I start to watch and the cast of characters is enchanting, "coop, thor, zoey, o'hara & eddie" her children and husband?! She's married? LOL, you'll get it if you watch the show. The show go by so fast and they are all interesting with good premises and you see even though "jackie" is a drug addict she works everybody around her like puppets, all to help sick people, her family & friends. It really is amazing, she is such a good person who does a lot of fu*ked up things, all in order to do right.

    You know its a good show when I sit down to watch an episode or two and I end up sitting for 6 lol but I'm enjoying the drama, comedy and the raw emotion. great show.
    Full Review »
  3. Jan 18, 2016
    Out of boredom, I binge watched this entire series on Netflix because a friend told me I'd like it because I liked House MD.

    It's nothing
    Out of boredom, I binge watched this entire series on Netflix because a friend told me I'd like it because I liked House MD.

    It's nothing like House MD.

    This show starts off terrible and gets worse. Where to even begin... Nurse Jackie tells the unbelievable story of Jackie Peyton, an unlikable character who uses and abuses everyone around her who never, ever turns likable. Every episode serves as a teaching aide of bad writing to aspiring writers everywhere as the titular character's horrible actions and zero planning is constantly saved by deus ex machinas and astronomical coincidences time and time again.

    Is there a problem? Will Jackie get caught? Is she clever enough to avoid detection? NO! The problem will always solve itself in an unbelievably dumb way! Someone knows her secret? No worries, they'll just drop dead (this happens... several times). Marvel in awe as the same group of 10 people around her constantly have terrible memories and constantly fall for nonsense time and time again. These characters would lose peekaboo competitions against infants (infants at least catch on eventually).

    I found myself watching to HATE this show and it's character. It's just so dumb and stupid. The writing is horribly bad and inept as the writers don't even seem to understand how the real world works. From introducing a character being commonly known to be diabetic in one episode to having him be commanded to skip meals while working (are you serious?). Or having Jackie forge prescriptions for controlled substances and filling them at pharmacies all over the state (which would sic the DEA on her arse almost immediately). Or having a doctor push too much insulin on a patient by accident causing her to pass out IMMEDIATELY (which isn't how insulin works). I could go on and on with examples but this review only lasts so many letters.

    Storylines and events are brought up, then dropped when the writers realize they've painted themselves into corners. Jackie just skates through each episode doing unbelievable nonsense to the people around her and when it looks like she might be in trouble - BOOM, the Hand of God intervenes... or the entire matter just gets dropped. Oops, wrote ourselves into a corner there. No cleverness. No planning. Nothing.

    This show only serves a few functions:
    1. It should be used as an example of horrible writing for aspiring screenwriters. Each episode is rife with scores of examples of what not to do.
    2. it will make you hate humanity. (Watching this show will make you hate everything on two legs and remind you of the worst humanity can possibly be.)
    3. If you are curious how good Metacritic's userbase opinion is, watch this entire show, then look at this score. You won't trust the ratings anymore.

    Only two people come out of this series looking halfway decent: Merritt Wever and Tony Shalhoub, both of which are golden.
    Full Review »